South London has emerged as a hot-spot for UK musical talent in the last decade. Dwellers include the wondrous saxophonist Nubya Garcia and the unassumingly brilliant keys wizard and composer Joe Armon-Jones, as well as a host of others making pioneering movements in the jazz scene.
A few months ago, we attended Joe Armon-Jones’ debut headline show at Electric Brixton, where he curated a diverse and rich line-up of musicians, sound engineers and DJs. Warming up for Joe was Maxwell Owin, the DJ and producer who also hails from below the river, and is responsible for a number of productions for both Garcia and Armon-Jones.
His debut release is a collaboration with sharp lyricist Phoebs AKA Iron Dread, in what is an evident exploration into the space between soul and grime music. Phoebs’ words dart effortlessly over a glitchy dance-cum-grime beat by Owin that doesn’t get any less fresh the more you hear it.
The release, which is the first on Sibin, the new label project from Maxwell Owin & radio host Anja Ngozi, comes with the original mix and a version for the club.
This intriguing collaboration is not the only project that Maxwell Owin is involved in; the South Londoner is also a member of the new-found collaborative project Extra Soul Perception.
The group is an export of the British Council’s New Art New Audiences programme, which brings together artists from the UK, Kenya and Uganda with the hope of celebrating commonality across borders. The album drops on June 19th via Waella’s Choice.
In the meantime, Come With The Ragga will spin on repeat; it is a triumphant debut from Phoebs & Maxwell Owin that attempts a brave blend of sonics with overwhelming success.