Saul Milton and Will Kennard, more commonly known as Chase & Status respectively, first surfaced in 2008 with their debut album More Than Alot. Since then, the drum & bass duo have refined their sound and travelled right through the music spectrum with their following 3 albums and many singles, which have evolved through a number of genres to something completely different to their original material. Ahead of thier upcoming appearance for Chibuku at Arts Club Liverpool on the 5th of March, we take a look at 6 staple Chase & Status records from their 3 albums to see how the pair have changed musically and what affect it has had.
Take Me Away - Album: More Than Alot
The first album from Chase & Status was and is in the opinion of many, their best to date. Breaking through as one of the first artists to reach high positions in the UK Singles Chart with drum & bass music, they were seen as champions of the genre who brought it to the attention of many, before dance music had conquered the charts as it does today. Take Me Away was undoubtedly the highlight of More Than Alot, being not only successful from a commercial point of view, but also as an earlier underground anthem. Jenna G’s vocals were sparse but very welcome on the instrumental that packs a huge bassline and a drum beat that echoes old school jungle.
Eastern Jam - Album: More Than A lot
More Than Alot won three drum & bass awards for best album, best track and best producer upon its release in 2008 and was a solid LP compiling mostly drum & bass tracks. Eastern Jam (along with Running) was the track that stood out on the LP for being different to most of the others, as it was a dubstep track nestled in a drum & bass album. Once again, this was a genre that had not had much coverage and this was one of the first dubstep tracks to make it onto commercial dance floors. This however would change with the second album.
End Credits - Album: No More Idols
Although No More Idols was largely made up of drum & bass tunes, the album saw Chase & Status collaborate with a number of more popular names from across the music spectrum. As drum & bass received more and more recognition into the 2010’s, vocalists such as Tinie Tempah, Cee Lo Green, Liam Bailey and Dizzee Rascal were enlisted to feature on No More Idols, making the music more accessible, but still keeping the track list made up of largely drum & bass. Here Plan B features on End Credits, which was also chosen as the soundtrack to the feature film Harry Brown and topped the charts, as did many of the other singles on the album in comparison to just a few from the first.
Let You Go - Album: No More Idols
Let You Go features R&B artist Mali and, like Eastern Jam, stood out as one of the tracks on No More Idols that wasn’t drum & bass, adopting a 4x4 sound that came across closer to house or electro than bass music. The single peaked at number 11 on the UK singles chart and paved a way for Chase & Status to become one of the most in demand music artists on the planet as they had discovered the key to chart topping music.
International - Album: Brand New Machine
Brand New Machine saw Chase & Status flip everything on its head, with the opening track International showing straight away just how versatile the duo had become over the years. To the dismay of many drum & bass fans, but to the excitement of many others, Brand New Machine contained only 3 drum & bass tracks, more inclined to Grime and hip-hop, with this single that is super heavy on the wobble.
Deeper Devotion - Album: Brand New Machine
Deeper Devotion offers another tangent explored by Chase & Status on their third album, with an organ bassline and 4x4 beat leaving their roots behind completely. Although their third album sounds like its produced by someone completely different than the first, it didn’t stop it hitting the number 1 position in the UK Dance Album Chart and the no.2 spot overall. It seems Chase & Status may have changed their sound constantly over the past decade, but have managed to obtain chart topping results every time.
Words by Josh Plews
Photos courtesy of Essential Ibiza