Matt Black, from dance music pioneers Coldcut, releases his remix app <i>Ninja Jamm</i>.
If you ever went to a club or rave back in the 90s, chances are you spent some of your time shuffling around the dance floor to Coldcut. Whether it was them DJing or one of their remixes or tracks, the duo of Matt Black and Jonathan More were a strong presence in those early days of electronic music. Not just in their records and DJing, but also their influential style.
Their Solid Steel radio show, which is still going to this day as a webcast, featured a melting pot of music where old blues tunes would be remixed into freeform jazz and reggae in their signature cut-up style. And if you haven't heard their mix album 70 Minutes of Madness then you're doing yourself a disservice.
"Timber" by Coldcut and Hexstatic
This is before we get into timeless tracks like "Timber" and "More Beats + Pieces", the former part of the audiovisual Natural Rhythms Trilogy which was a collaboration with Hexstatic. And now one half of these dance music pioneers has released a free-to-download remix app called Ninja Jamm. It's a collaboration between Matt Black and Seeper with touch and gesture controls and effects and remix modes. The idea is that you can purchase Ninja Tunes content from their roll call of artists—Amon Tobin, Bonobo, Mr Scruff, Cinematic Orchestra, and more—in "Tunepacks". These packs will give people access to the beats, melodies, vocal, effects, etc so they can put their personal stamp on the tunes.
The sell is that its intuitive to use and combines "DJing and studio definitions of mixing", so novies and experts can use it to their skillset. The app's been a long time coming and follows on from Black's 1997 VJamm software which allowed people to manipulate video in real-time. It follows a number of music apps designed by well-known musicians, like Brian Eno's generative app Scape, where old pros impart their knowledge through interactivity.