While DJs like Zinc have evolved beyond drum and bass, there is a counter-current of younger producers stoking a revival of the Goldie Years. Be it Zomby’s “Where Were You in ’92” or Skream’s big, ravey edits, nostalgia for early 90s dancefloor flavors – drum and bass, breakbeat, and jungle – is at an all-time high.
Camo UFOs, the LA-based duo of Thee Mike B and Nate Day, aim to fill the void. The two jungle fanatics are building a name for themselves with a string of remixes and mixtapes. I first heard of the pair on their R U SICK mix for the Fool’s Gold Foolcast. R U SICK is a high-energy hour of synth stabs and Amen breaks. During its finest moments, “Show Me Love” melts into tunes by the aforementioned Zinc; elsewhere, the UFOs pay tribute to ragga jungle (via early Rusko).
As remixers, the duo does a good job of identifying a song’s essential core before giving it the Camo UFO treatment; too often a remix loses the essence of the original. They remixed the biggest dance tracks of the last two years, “Mega” by the Count and Sinden and “Pon De Floor” by Major Lazer. Turning “Mega” from electro to jungle is an easy task; chopping up “Pon De Floor” is much more impressive.
A revival is only as good as its revivalists. Camo UFOs find the perfect balance between nostalgia and forward thinking, touching on genres and subgenres that haven’t sounded fresh in over a decade. Sometimes the best future grooves come from the past.