In talks with|CODA*
Images and words by Anthony Mortarelli
Recently I caught up with Martin Omond of the South London based live dubstep act CODA. Still a fairly new band CODA has still been making their mark. The past year and a half they have been tearing up clubs and deafening festival goers with their filthy basslines, and dirty rhythms. Sharing stages with 16Bit, Trolly Snatcher, Breakage, Reso, and Gentleman’s Dub Club to name a few. This coming April they’re dropping their Debut E.P. “THE BREACH”.
So who makes up CODA?
“Our line up consists five people – Kerry on drums, Stacey on the mic and guitar, Seb on trombone, and Noj and Martin on computers running all the samples, sequences and effects…”
When you guys first got together was the mindset to make dub heads weak at the knees or just to see what would happen?
“I don’t think we originally set out specifically to be a dubstep band. Noj and I had been producing tunes together for a while, not just dubstep but all sorts of bass music. We’re both very into drum & bass so I guess that’s kind of how we became friends and starting writing together. I then met Stacey at the Academy of Contemporary Music and starting hanging around with him and his brother Kerry. They’d been talking about starting some kind of live electronic act so once we all hanging about together it just kind of evolved from there. Seb has played in bands with Kerry and Stacey for ages, so when we started looking for a brass player he was the obvious choice. The fact we play dubstep now I guess just stemmed from the fact that that’s what everyone happened to be working on at the time.”
You have your Debut E.P. “THE BREACH”, coming out Apirl 4th how are you bunch kickin it off for us?
“We’re having an EP launch party on Thursday 7th April, at the Brixton Jamm. We scouted London for quite a while looking for the right venue, and I think we’re more than happy with the vibe and the sound system at the Jamm. We’ve got some very special guests coming down on the night – Rod Azlan from Dub Police, fresh back from touring the states with Caspa, and Subterra who’ll be spinning drum & bass into the early hours. We’ve been seriously working on refining our set recently, trying to up the game as much as possible and keep the energy levels consistently high throughout. We’ve put in a lot of work getting everything ready for this gig, so we’re really excited and very much looking forward to showcasing some new material in front of fans new and old! There has been talk of an afterparty was well…but you didn’t hear that from me!”
Sick line up! So how’d you come up with the name for the EP? Playing loads C.O.D. at the time and couldn’t think of anything else?
“Haha no C.O.D hasn’t come out the box for a while actually! We’ve been way too busy for that recently! The name came about quite quickly to be honest – we wanted something kind of military-related, and we thought as it’s our first release, it kind of signifies our ‘breach’ into the world of music, so the name fitted perfectly.”
When you played at the O2 Indigo it went off when you dropped your Bootleg remix of Prodigy’s ‘Firestarter’. Do you have any new heavy hitters in store for us?
“Ah that would be telling! You’ll have to come down to the EP launch to find out!”
Do you plan on keeping it strictly Dubstep or do you guys plan on branching off or mixing it up for future productions?
“I think we don’t want to pigeonhole ourselves too much; I don’t want Coda to be tied down to one particular genre. Obviously you have to be able to market your sound and create something consistent but I think as long as we keep it in the realms of UK bass music, I’m pretty open to ideas. We have a pretty strong garage and 2-step influence in our music as it stands, and I know me and Noj have been very much into a lot of the new ‘future garage’ tunes that have come out recently, so I think that already comes through in our sets. We’ve been experimenting with other rhythms and tempos recently as well, so I’m sure you’ll see that come out in our shows soon.”
Where do you think Dubstep is now and what do you think is the future for the genre?
“I think dubstep now is actually a very exciting genre to be involved with – there’s a lot of very fresh producers who fall into the dubstep camp who are experimenting with some really exciting ideas. The genre covers such a massive range of moods and styles now, for example we’re big fans of Joy Orbison, Martyn, Scuba…that kinda stuff, and I’d really like to incorporate more of that sound into our music – I think it needs to be represented much more. I get the impression that a lot of people hear the word ‘dubstep’ and immediately associate it with those screeching wobble basslines, and it’s a shame because I really believe dubstep has a lot more to offer than that. We’ve had people come up to us after gigs and say things like ‘I really hate dubstep but I really liked what you guys were doing’, so I think people need to be exposed more to the deeper underground side of the genre.”
In that light what do you have in store for us this year? We seeing some collaborations, more festivals dates?
“I think this year we’re really going to be pushing for exposure, trying to play as many shows and get in front of as many audiences as possible, and hopefully things will pick up for us after that. The summer festival schedule is slowly filling up, we’ve got Aeon Festival, Beach Break Live and Great Escape confirmed so far, so I think it’s going to be a good summer for us!”
Last question probably the most important question… Nandos or KFC?
“Oohhh…I know whatever I say there will be others in the band who disagree! Kerry is a big Nando’s head so he’ll kill me if I say KFC, but Noj is the other way round…either way, we definitely love chicken hahaha.”