Merge: The sound of Trust Audio, TrES-2b and SINE Audio joining forces
The events launch on March 24 at Lightbox
It’s been said so many times in the past but it can never be repeated enough: many hands make light work.
The power of collaborations and collectives runs rife throughout jungle drum & bass history from Full Cycle or Reinforced back in the day to Music Squad and EQ50 in more recent times. Collectives are just as important now than ever before, the market is saturated with so much talent, so many labels and an abundance of events across the UK… By working together it’s a lot easier to cut through the noise, unite similar fan communities and boost each other.
Merge is the latest example of this force-joining energy as Trust Audio, TrES-2b and SINE Audio all link-up for an exciting new event concept that launches later this month, March 24, at Lightbox, London.
Championing the darker, underground and future-focused strains of drum & bass that each label is known and respected for, the innaugural Merge line-up is drenched in forward-thinking heaviness… Benny L, T>I, Trex, Teej, Sweetpea, Jappa, Napes, Trimer, Shady Novelle, Pleasure, NV, Medic, Polarized & J:Rover, Apey, Surface Takeover and Artemis will all be on board for this exciting launch night.
Plenty more exciting plans are set to be revealed as the label owners have been developing and plotting the concept since last year. Each armed with their own collective of exciting new-gen talents on their labels, this is an inspired move for a wealth of new artists who might not be able to get such exposure in a very busy event culture that all-too-often relies on the same big names to and line-up formations to try and ensure ticket sales.
1 More Thing caught up with Trust Audio co-founder Trex, TrES-2b founders Benny L and Trimer and SINE Audio founder AndyDownham-Wade (AKA Apey) for more information…
Easy all. What inspired the Merge events?
Trex: Easy! In the autumn of last year we came with an idea to launch something different in London, based on collaboration. I had been approached by Andy Sine and Lightbox to put something together and I get on well with Benny and Trimer and have music coming on TrES-2b so I asked them if they wanted to go in with the TrES-2b and Trust Audio labels as the hosts.
Trimer: Yeah I really wanted to start our own night after getting a taste of being involved in label nights with Audioporn in 2018/19. So once we began TrES-2B I started looking for places/promoters who would be up for it. That’s when I mentioned it to Trex who also had the same idea. So we were like, “Let’s do it together.”
Benny L: Easy. Yeah Trim mentioned the idea Trex had about doing a collab night and the club and Sine were well on board with it so we was well up for it and excited for what we can do different with the nights too.
Apey: To be honest I’ve been on Joe Trex’s case for a while for some music for SINE. We eventually got a remix out of him which then led me to wanting to work with him on some events. The rest is history.
How did the concept come together?
Trex: It took a while to be fair. The first few meetings were just about getting a name together.
Trimer: A LOT of brainstorming.
Trex: Then we worked on getting a strong image and brand identity sorted. It’s important to get that side right. Then the music concept being dark and menacing. I think there are a lot of nights/ events catering for other types of D&B and jungle in London but this event will be uncompromising and underground.
Benny L: And also that’s something you don’t see much at the moment with independent labels coming together and “merging” their sounds and energy together… Haha, sorry about the pun!
Never say sorry for puns! I love the power of collectives and the idea of strength in numbers. I’ve banged on about it in the past and I really believe in it. It’s important to work together isn’t it?
Trex: Yes I think so and this team-up opens the door to future collaborations with other labels and promoters in the different cities under the Merge name. Lots of avenues to explore.
Trimer: It’s good to reach out to people who have similar goals so you can all elevate together. Many hands make light work as they say.
Benny L: Yeah it can also be hard to get things going for labels starting out too so it’s great to be able to share ideas and events with each other to build each other up!
Apey: I 100% agree. The foundations of a brand or event is the most important thing in my eyes, the history and collectives involved speaks volumes about what you can expect, you can’t buy that.
Totally. Looking back over all of your works and past projects, and the fact you all run labels, you’re all very much community minded people aren’t you?
Trex: Yes I started Trust back in 2016 with Tommy Quest and we are at release 37 now which is mad. Over that time we have been up a roster of very talented artists so to have an event to bring them to play is exciting.
Trimer: Shimon brought me into Audioporn in 2017 and he’s always said he wanted to feel like a crew of mates hanging out, making tunes and having fun. That’s the vibe I like. Having everyone around doing well in things helping each other get better. So to be able to put on a dance and hopefully see everyone having a good time will be the icing on the cake for me.
Benny L: 100% big up to Shimon too. He’s the reason me and Trim have got to be in this position! And to be able to now run a label! We had a taste of doing our first label night as TrES-2b in Brighton earlier this year too and it went so well. It was such a buzz! Can’t wait for Lightbox!
Tell us everything about the launch event. The line-up is sick!
Trex: It’s just a mix of friends and artists that we all rate really. From newcomers to veterans. Two rooms of vibes!
Apey: Lightbox is a nutty venue, the whole complex runs pretty much 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It’s one of the most unique venues in the UK. The event is going to be wild!
What happens next?
Trex: Once we have this one out of the way then we can start making some plans! We’ve had some interesting enquiries already.
Trimer: Yeah we’ve got some sick collabs planned. Stay tuned.
Benny L: I’m well excited to see where this takes us!