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British producer Darren White, more commonly known by the moniker dBridge, has continually pushed the limits of drum'n'bass since the genre's inception. Initially producing breakbeat hardcore and hip-hop-influenced jungle during the early 1990s, he formed the short-lived but groundbreaking techstep duo Future Forces Inc. with Jason Maldini in 1995. Both members then formed the highly successful drum'n'bass supergroup Bad Company along with DJ Fresh and Vegas, releasing aggressive tracks like "The Nine" and "The Pulse" that helped define the sound of the genre around the turn of the millennium. As the group became inactive around 2003, dBridge devoted more time to solo work, releasing atmospheric tracks on labels like Metalheadz and V, in addition to his own Exit Records. By 2010, dBridge and similar-minded producers Instra:mental and ASC had established a club night and label called Autonomic, which also became the name of their hard-to-define blend of drum'n'bass, dubstep, IDM, and other styles. White continued blurring genre lines on experimental releases such as his 2018 full-length A Love I Can't Explain.
Darren White started making music after studying computer programming at college. He moved to London and stayed with his brother Steve White (later known as neo-soul artist Steve Spacek), and the two released a white label breakbeat hardcore EP as the Sewer Monsters in 1993. White then released a jungle track called "Crash Test No 2" as D-Bridge in 1994, and he also released music as part of the trio Dub Hustlers, along with Lennie De Ice (whose 1991 single "We Are I.E." is regarded as one of the first jungle tracks) and GMC Blood. White continued releasing singles on Phat Trax and Trouble on Vinyl, establishing his name within the jungle scene. At Trouble on Vinyl, he met Jason Maldini and the two formed Future Forces Inc. in 1995. Producing tracks inspired by LTJ Bukem's "intelligent" style as well as the emerging jump-up scene, the duo became the first act signed to Renegade Hardware, debuting with the 1996 single "Flash Gordon." They continued pushing their sound into darker, more intense directions with subsequent releases like "Dead by Dawn" and 1997's "Tanhauser's Gate" (issued by Rawkus Primitive), before the project came to an end in 1998.
From there, White and Maldini left Renegade Hardware and started Bad Company with Michael Wojcicki (Vegas) and Dan Stein (DJ Fresh). They launched their own BC Recordings in late 1998 with "The Nine," a woozy yet intense track that quickly became an anthem of the drum'n'bass scene. This was followed by several other well-received releases, including 1999's The Fear EP, 2000 full-length Inside the Machine, and 2001's "Planet Dust" (on Prototype). The group continued releasing complex, bracing material such as 2002's Shot Down on Safari and 2003's Ad Infinitum EP before winding down. Breaking away from drum'n'bass for a bit, White contributed to Spacek's album Vintage Hi-Tech. He launched Exit Records, and additionally released material on Metalheadz (2004's "Bellini"), Creative Source (2005's "Something to Hide"), and other labels, gradually developing a more intricate, less aggressive sound than he had been known for as part of Bad Company. His first full-length as dBridge, The Gemini Principle, appeared in 2008.
In 2009, dBridge and Instra:mental (Alex Green and Damon Kirkham) started a podcast and club night called Autonomic, the name for their genre-blurring 170 BPM hybrid style. The trio showcased this innovative sound with the 2010 mix CD FabricLive.50, as well as releases on the Autonomic label. White continued releasing experimental drum'n'bass as dBridge, appearing on labels such as Disfigured Dubz and R&S, additionally venturing into techno with his Velvit pseudonym. He also became involved with several additional collaborative projects: dBRm with Keith Tenniswood (Radioactive Man), Heart Drive with Kirkham, drum'n'bass quintet Module Eight, and Autonomic family project the Binary Collective. In 2017, dBridge and German producer Kabuki released the mini-album New Forms Season 1, which included collaborations with Cooly G and Addison Groove. A Love I Can't Explain, dBridge's second full-length, appeared in 2018. Less than a year later, a shorter album called Lineage was released as an accompaniment to White's first book of photography. ~ Paul Simpson
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