Behind The Scene: Birthday cakes, good vibes and taking over Leeds with 1Forty [Interview]

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Having been absolutely smashing it since their opening event, Leeds based UK Bass brand 1Forty have built up a reputation as one of the scene’s top events. We caught up with them for a chat to find out why they started and where things are headed for them in 2017.


Easy! So lets start from the beginning: How did 1Forty come to exist and why?

I went to a lot of events once I turned 18 and there was 1 major influence which stood out for me which was Jamz [run by Butterz head honchos Elijah & Skiliam]. They were some of the best parties I’ve ever been to. When they called it a day it left a massive gap in the market, as no one else in Leeds really offered a combination of genres within the spectrum of UK underground bass music. From that moment I knew it was time to get something in motion and put our own twist on it.

For those that might not know, tell us the thinking behind the name of the brand?

140BPM is the origins of what our brand has evolved around. When Grime, Bassline & Garage started it was all at 140BPM a decade ago or thereabouts. However with the developing sound of bass music in the last few years its coming in at lower BPMs, even though its still catered for the same crowd. I think its great as it has become much more diverse. Especially when combined with old & new. Some people call it bass house, but its a fine line. It still has elements from these original genres though, which is why its grouped with them and fits so well.

Oneman headlined for you on his birthday at the start of February. How did that go?

It was a wicked experience. We got him a personalised 1Forty birthday cake with his logo on it. He loved it and we got everyone to sing him Happy Birthday! You’ll see on the aftermovie which is dropping very soon. Every name on the bill brought to the table exactly what we expected. Oneman with his unique selection playing everything from The Streets to Preditah, Spooky with his dubplates and ridiculous refix’s and Notion who has a lot of weighty VIP’s for his sets even though people go nuts for the originals so no one expects it.. turned the place on its head.

Photography By Elliot Young

Oneman’s personalised birthday cake

Whats been the biggest struggle for you as an event so far?

I think it has to be the same as any new brand and thats establishing yourself in the scene. Leeds has so many events its always going to be a challenge to force yourself to the forefront of those within your scene. The way we have branded ourselves along with the names we have brought in on the line ups and the team we have on board has all combined to achieve this so were really happy we hit the ground running.

What do you think the most rewarding part of putting on your own events is?

Our main statement as a brand is:

‘A club night that captures the resurgence in some of the UK’s best underground genres by curating the best line ups the underground scene has to offer, creating high energy atmospheres that will live long in the memory.’

We put on our parties for the people. Thats why we collate the line ups we do. So for me it has to be looking out from the booth onto a sold out Mint Club and just seeing the scenes. It really puts everything into perspective, knowing people will walk away and will always look back to 1 of our parties and say that night was insane.. we still get that quite regularly which is humbling!

You’ve got a couple of collaborative events coming up with Alloy and Jungle Jam, how did they come about?

Jungle Jam got in touch and said they loved what we were doing and how diverse we were making ourselves. They work in the same way as us in a sense they just love putting on parties for the same thing they have in common with their fan base, which is the love of Jungle. With us it evolves around our genres we showcase. There is a crossover between us as plenty of people who like 140bpm tempo also enjoy 170bpm (Jungle/DnB) and vice versa. It will be a great night celebrating their 12th Birthday, we’re honoured to be involved. It’s at Mint Warehouse this Friday (03/03/17)!

Alloy came to us with a really unique proposal about putting on a series of live stream events with other big brands in Leeds and beyond. Live streams are something that have always been of interest to us as I myself am a big fan of Boiler Room, as it’s always revolved around underground culture and promoting it to the masses. Our stream with Alloy sold out in 2 hours after tickets went live which blew us away! You can catch this live on Twitch on the 27/04/17.


Room 3 of Jungle Jam’s 12th Birthday is being hosted by 1Forty

Is there any plans to bring the 1Forty Project to the South?

We’re always thinking ahead. We’ve got some massive plans to expand in the future but we can’t give away too much yet unfortunately!

What’s been your favourite moment since starting the event?

I think it has to be Kane (Cause & Affect) at our Launch and how much he buzzed off the crowd and the vibe. That energy filtered through to the crowd which in turn gave Kane even more energy and it was back and forth like that for a full hour. I’ve never seen anything like it personally. He was cutting all kind of shapes whilst on the decks and the atmosphere he created by using that energy in his set as well was unreal.

What’s next for 1Forty?

As mentioned above we have our collaboration events coming up and then we have a massive event coming to close us off for Summer. This will be announced on Monday (06/03/17). We’ve been sitting on it since Christmas and we can’t put into words how excited we are to see the reaction it has when we drop it. We won’t be totally quiet over Summer though. We’re going to be putting out content plus we also have our residency on UK Mondo and we’ll doing lots of planning ready to take it up a notch come September/October.

Finally, what do you think is in store for the UK Bass scene in 2017?

There’s a lot of speculation surrounding Dubstep at the moment. A lot of people seem to think that could make a return so that will be very interesting to see. Grime is still breaking down walls on a massive scale so I am personally very excited to see the next generation of MC’s and producers come through and how their sound will evolve. Bassline is very much alive and kicking and thats showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon so 2017 will be a massive year for underground music

To keep up with all things 1Forty, make sure you follow them on Facebook and Twitter and check out their mix series below. Jungle Jam x 1Forty is this Friday, at Mint Warehouse.

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