Dope Ammo Gives Us The Lowdown On The Forthcoming Moondance & Dope Ammo Album [Interview]

Published 30th September 2021

September 2021 saw the already epic release of the 'Together EP' by Dope Ammo and Moondance; a six-track EP bringing together artists such as DJ Rap, Dope Ammo, Shades of Rhythm, Acen, Ray Keith, Liquid, Billy 'Daniel' Bunter, Benny Page, Origin8a & Propa, Danny Byrd, MKII and Jasmine Knight.

Well guess what? That was just an album sampler for an even bigger album project - also titled 'Together' - due early 2022 and this one is gonna be massive...

Dope Ammo and Moondance have come together to produce a huge various artists album featuring both legends of the scene and new talent alike and will be teasing us over the coming months with four more album sampler EPs. Given the already pretty-epic scale of the first sampler it's safe to say that we're pretty excited to learn more and see how this unfolds.

We caught up with Dope Ammo himself to get the lowdown on the project and it's origins...

First of all, this project is huuuge! Where did the idea come from?

After doing the Baby D remix and going into lockdown I wanted to start doing tracks that were going to lift me in such a dark time. I just started to pick out tracks from the early 90’s that massively inspired me. Before I knew it, I had around half a dozen with an old school hardcore feel.

Initially I was going to put an album together by myself but then after hooking up with Moondance over lockdown I pitched the idea to [Moondance promoter] Funki and he was super excited about it so we decided to bring in all your favourite Moondance Artists and some other old school legends to put together a various artists album from Moondance and Dope Ammo.

You’ve had an association with Moondance for some time now – did that pre-date the album?

Yeah I hooked up with Moondance when we had to release the Baby D single. I only had a year on the contract, so we had to put it out during lockdown. I saw that Moondance were doing some amazing streams during lockdown so I asked Ellis Dee and he put me in touch with Funki from Moondance.

I then said to Funki would he be interested in doing a live stream launch for the Baby D remix and he was well up for it. Since then, we've worked together quite a bit and it seems to be going really well. Funki is still maintaining that old school stamp and we have brought that new school flava to keep things fresh.

Moondance is known for its diverse line-ups – did that influence how you approached the track list?

Absolutely! We wanted to make sure there was something for everyone - jungle, dnb, old school and new school rave - and you can see this with all the artists involved. We've got all your favourite Moondance artists as well as legends from back in day such as Ray Keith, Awesome 3, Jonny L and Hyper On Experience.

Did the lockdown/restrictions throw any spanners in the work while trying to pull all this together?

It was good in the fact that everyone was available to work on tunes. However we did have to wait sometimes as Slipmatt, Ratpack and DJ Rap needed to come to my studio, but due to restrictions weren't able to make it over, so we had to wait which did delay things a bit but we got there in the end.

The first EP sampler features legends of the scene and newer artists such as Origin8a & Propa – was that a conscious decision?

We wanted a mixture of new and old. Origin8a & Propa have been smashing it with their new old sound so it would have been silly not to include them as we want to hit not only the old school heads with this album but all the new school heads to. We really want to make it as popular as possible.

How will the project be rolled out in terms of formats and timescales?

We have another 4 samplers to drop on digital before the full album in March 2022 which will be accompanied by a full vinyl box set courtesy of the awesome Chris at Kniteforce Records who has partnered on the vinyl side of things. We’ll probably do a USB also with some unreleased dubs and lots of merchandise.

There are some creative mashups of artists and genres on the sampler - Benny Page’s remix of “Sound of Eden” being a perfect example – how exciting was it hearing these for the first time?

The whole project has been mega exciting. Just hearing new mixes and old classics done well is an absolute delight. I have definitely got the sickest tunes on my USB that I have ever had and I am simply loving playing all these tracks out.

Your tune with Rap and Jasmine Knight ‘Together’ is a blinder. You guys have worked together before – have you developed a shorthand in the way you collaborate?

DJ Rap is an absolute delight to work with and we really gel well together and are completely on the same tip. It’s just works and we have a formula now. I will come up with a rough idea then Rap will play in the chords, and we will all write the lyrics together then Jasmine will go away and expand on it.

Jasmine is amazing too and working with her is so easy and we seem to get really good results from our music. It’s great! I’ve already got the follow-up lined up, we just need to all get in the studio and do it.

What can we look forward to from the upcoming EPs?

I don’t want to give too much away but we have got some monster tracks. We are in a position almost that we have too much great music so it’s difficult to pick what we want to release next. It’s a great problem to have!

Do you have any favourite tracks or is that like picking a favourite child?!

I have my favourite tracks but again I don’t want to give too much away too early. I’m really happy with the way the title track 'Together' came out. Its smashes it in the dance and everyone seems to love it which is great.

When the project was in its infancy were there any tunes in particular that you were desperate to include as a remix?

There as still quite a few we wanted to include but sometimes it’s difficult getting the rights to these classics as they are so sampled based so clearing then can prove quite difficult. We managed to get some great tracks and remixes with the help of Chris Kniteforce such as Jonny L ‘Hurt You So’ and NRG ‘Feel The Fury’.

Has Funki spoken of a launch party to coincide with the album’s release next spring?

That's next on our agenda and we really need to sit down and sort that one out pretty soonish!

The Moondance and Dope Ammo 'Together' album is due March 2022 with a further 4 EP samplers prior to that. For all updates and release info make sure to follow Dope Ammo on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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