Bombay Bassment Reimagine 2014 Debut Album
Mumbai regaae/hip hoppers collaborate with electronica producer Randolph Correia aka Func on ‘Bombay Bassment X FUNC VIP’
Don’t be surprised if Bombay Bassment’s Bob Omulo takes a while to recognize tracks from his band’s latest remix album. A few weeks before its release, the frontman of the reggae-loving, drum-n-bass-dabbling, hip hop crew jokes that he had a tough time identifying the Func-remixed tracks from the opening bars. “Even for a while after he [Func aka Randolph Correia] sent the album to us, there were so many songs that I’d press play and —before the lyrics begin — I still don’t know what song it is!” admits Omulo.
But that’s only testament to Func’s magic of remixing. On Bombay Bassment X FUNC VIP, the electronica producer—best known as Func to Monica Dogra’s Shaa’ir—throws in everything from dancehall to funk to on the original tracks. ““It’s a ‘Bombay album’ in how Bombay understands and plays reggae and hip-hop,” explains Correia. “We’re not trying to be authentic. This is our take on this music” Sure enough, Func lays down the reverb on “Midnight”, and drops some more dizzy beats on the ska-tinged “Represent”, while crowd favorite “Hip Hop (Never be the Same)” undergoes a serious electro-ambient makeover.
Far from being a musical afterthought, it turns out Bombay Bassment’s electronic counterpart was good to go even before the release of the original, but was indefinitely postponed till after the debut album came through. “Before we even dropped our album we were already working on this with Randolph,” says Omulo. “What he [Func] was coming with was so radically different that we were like, ‘Okay this sounds good but this is not what people are accustomed to when they come to our shows.’ So we decided to shelve that project.”
VIP finally began to see the light of day earlier this year, when Bombay Bassment’s managers over at [artist management company] Mixtape insisted that the music was “too good to let go”. They even decided to forego Bombay Bassment’s follow-up EP in favor of the collaborative remix. “We [the band] were discussing a follow-up EP to the album and they [Mixtape] were like, ‘No no no, before we go to the EP, we gotta put this thing out because it’s so dope!’” recalls Omulo.
To promote the 10-track dancefest, Omulo along with the rest of the band [resident DJ Major C, bassist Ruell Barretto and drummer Levin Mendes] will hit the road this month to travel to Pune, Chandigarh, Delhi and Bengaluru, apart from playing on home ground at the beginning of the month. Hopefully, Omulo says, Func will also join in on the tour to accompany the band: “We’re trying to get him on board but he’s a busy guy; so let’s see how it’s going to pan out.”
Check out the first single “Get Down VIP” below.
Art credit: Manas Kunder
Bombay Bassment ‘Bombay Bassment X FUNC VIP’ Launch Tour
June 3rd – Antisocial, Mumbai
June 10th – High Spirits, Pune
June 15th – S Cafe, Chandigarh
June 16th – Antisocial, Delhi
June 17th – The Humming Tree, Bengaluru