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Rekindle (Murray Creagh)

Author: Andrez
Sunday, 1 January 1995
The drum 'n' bass sound has been etching away at the Australian psyche over the past few years, just as the rave and techno scene has seen its dominance subside. And while visits from international icons like DJ SS, Grooverider and DJ Rap have helped to fuel the local imagination, the current crop of DJ's and producers living right here in our own country are making their own inroads that are just as legitimate and equally crucial. Rekindle is one of those people. This is his story.

Murray Creagh is one of the Australian producers who features on the 'Pure Drum & Bass' compilation and he makes music under the aliases of Rekindle as well as Raised By Wolves. And while drum 'n' bass and hip hop influences have made a significant impact on Murray's current activities, there was a past life to speak of. "When I was really young I got a bass guitar and I was really into funk things like Sly & The Family Stone, Grand Central Station, early Run DMC, and then Prince as well," he explains. "Not long later I got my first drum machine as well and I started messing around with that; somewhere along the line, with music changing - this was around 1987 when hip hop was coming through - I saw that the band thing was over. Technology had got to the point where it was more economical to do it yourself. That's definitely the case now, and I have my own studio in my house to pursue that goal."

Murray goes on to assess the contemporary sounds and inclinations that inspire his imagination. "I'm into heaps and heaps of stuff - especially some of the distorted tech-step drum 'n' bass, although I feel that maybe that direction is coming to an end. Right now all the new stuff I'm writing is kind of new wave drum 'n' bass, kind of like Devo. It's a lot faster, too."

In 1997 jungle has reached a stage where the moniker itself has become defunct. As with techno it's a generic term that takes in a broad spectrum of styles, deviations, nuances and mutations. It's the music of the moment in its various forms, be it dancefloor oriented or chilled-out listening grooves. You'll discover it in various disguises, from the darkcore tech-step of Ed Rush, Nico, Fierce and Dillinja to the abstract and often anarchic deviations of Squarepusher, Mike Paradinas and Luke Vibert; the electro-drum 'n' bass fusions offered up by T-Power and local producer Amnesia right through the spectrum to the chilled out intelligence of LTJ Bukem and Brewster.

Murray feels that all these tangents are just as important. "I like the darker aspects, but a lot of DJ's will only play one style and that's cool but it can be limiting - I'd like to see it mixed up a bit more."

On its own level the recently released and locally-produced 'Pure Drum & Bass' compilation takes a tentative step towards the jump-up style perhaps more familiar to admirers of DJ SS and DJ Rap; while it includes respected overseas producers like Omni Trio, Natural Born Chillers, Aphrodite and Mickey Finn there's the Australian input of Exponents, Son Of Sam and Rekindle - and they hold up their end of the bargain without an artistic hiccup.

"It's good to be there on a compilation of such quality," enthuses Murray. "One thing I like about the 'Pure Drum & Bass' compilation is that it's a mixture of English and Australian tracks rather than just one or the other - I think it's an important integration because we are on par with them these days and we do compete with what they're doing." He shrugs. "They don't make a big deal of the fact that there are a few Australian tracks on there."

The compilation itself also has more meaning for Murray as he explains. "My track 'Kandy Weapons' is the first track to be released under my new project Rekindle - so I'm definitely happy it's getting so much attention. But I've done heaps of compilations and different remixes over the last few years with my other project called Raised By Wolves; it's a partnership thing with another guy and we produce both drum<

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