Winning over the hearts of old school junglists and new lovers of bass music hasn’t proved too much of a feat for Loadstar. Comprised of the immensely talented duo, Gavin Harris (Xample) and Nick Hill (Lomax) their musical development took two very different paths. Inspired by a wide range of artists such as, Prince, Quincy Jones, Ed Rush & Optical, Roni Size and Dillinja it was clear that fusing both of their sounds would result in major success. The darkest most experimental Drum & Bass juxtaposed with thought-provoking insatiable melodies proved to be the trademark of this wildly talented duo.
Fate had introduced Xample and Lomax before they knew they would become the new darlings of RAM Records. Initially, they meet in 2004 when Gavin booked Nick, one-third of the production trio, ‘Holdtight‘, for a Drum & Bass night he was promoting. Shortly after, Gavin came home from university and bumped into Nick who had also just moved to Bristol igniting the idea of working together. Nick was actively producing and releasing a lot of tracks for major labels so it was no mistake that he landed on the Ram Records with a VIP for the track, ‘Artisan’. Gavin was also noticed by Andy C and co-founder Scott Bourne when he sent them demos of tracks over instant messenger. Ten minutes later they replied and ultimately, signed him to the prestigious label.
Subsequent to joining forces and releasing more music together, they realized they would have to come up with a moniker to reintroduce themselves to the drum and bass world as a unit. After sifting through old rave tapes and outdated technology, they came across an old E-mu synthesizer. While the E-mu was taking some time to load, it displayed a spinning star. There it was. They had their ‘eureka’ moment and decided to name themselves, ‘Loadstar‘. It was the beginning of a new era that would change their careers forever.
Beginning to work together in 2006 they released tracks like, ‘The Latter/Lowdown‘ which was their first B-side and ‘Contra‘ another relevant single in their history. However, their debut track as Loadstar titled, ‘Link to the Past‘ released in late 2010, would prove to be the best start any duo could ask for. The track became critically-acclaimed and resulted in them winning ‘best new single‘ at the Drum and Bass Arena Awards. Continually releasing new music and producing for other artists like Hadouken! & P Money, kept them busy and engaged in all areas of bass music.
The most pivotal year for them would be 2013. Releasing their debut album, ‘Future Perfect’, a 15-track exploration in creating a cohesive project as a duo was beyond successful. Standout tracks including, ‘Black & White’, ‘Refuse to Love’ and ‘Warrior‘ were well received by fans and supported by their peers. The waves of dark, deep aggressive bass contrasted by the beautifully euphoric melodies were executed seamlessly. They also released their smashing 2-hour essential mix that year highlighting their inspirations, the music they like playing and everything in-between. The feedback from their label, and media outlets including, radio and magazine confirmed that the direction they have taken thus far, has been favourable.
All of Loadstar’s success has been the by-product of patience, learning and passion. Purveyor of all things hot, Zane Lowe called them ‘superstars in the making’ and dubbed them with, ‘the hottest record in the world’ one two occasions; for their remix of Ed Sheeran’s ‘You Need Me, I Don’t Need You’ in 2012 and ‘Warrior’ ft. Jakes in 2013. Never shying away from a challenge, they’ve done endless remixes all over the musical spectrum. From doing a mash hit for Annie Mac on BBC Radio One for Jessie J’s ‘Price Tag’, to remixing Noisia’s ‘Tommy’s Theme’ there is no project too difficult for them to take on. They have continued to explode in the bass music scene and proved to be a massive, versatile duo.
No more wishing upon a star! They’ll be making all of us starry-eyed inside the House of Boom alongside the RAM RECORDS family: Calyx & Teebee, DC Breaks, Rene Lavice and none other than the executioner himself, ANDY C.
Words By: Saha P