"DJ Distance" is a South East London-based producer who was instrumental in dubstep's early development.
Real name Greg Sanders, Distance is credited with introducing the much-imitated heavy riffage of ...
metal to dubstep at the dawn of the genre. Before picking up Cubase and becoming a producer, he was a fan of heavy and industrial bands like Pantera and Fear Factory.
In 2001 he was being drawn to the dark garage sound that was all around him in South London. Tracks by Oris Jay or Wookie on DJ EZ's Saturday night show on Kiss FM caught his ear. He began to obsessively buy records from Blackmarket and Croydon's Big Apple Records, on seminal labels like Tempa and Bingo. Attending FWD>> at its inception when the crowd of 15 or 20 consisted almost entirely of producers, Distance soon took to producing himself. He would bring his early tracks to the club and exchange them with the others creating the new sound, like Scuba, Mala, Jay Da Flex, Caspa and Plastician. Distance's first release was a white label in 2003, then he was the first 12" put out by Hot Flush (Mount Kimbie, Joy Orbison) and went on to release tracks on Pinch's Tectonic label, and the influential Boka label. Regular bookings at clubs DMZ, FWD>> and Exodus followed. Rinse FM gave him a show (James Blake on his one hour 'new artists' section was one discovery).
The late great John Peel was one of the first DJs to play Distance's tracks. Distance was selected by Mary Anne Hobbs to take part in the first seminal 'Dubstep Warz' in January 2006 (a show which was credited with breaking dubstep globally). His full length debut (My Demons) came in 2006 on Planet Mu. It won Dubstep Forum's album of the year. Follow up 'Repercussions' in 2008 also came out on Mu.
In 2007 he set up his own vinyl label Chestplate (a reference to chest-rattling sub bass). He has collaborated with Skream and Benga separately on anthemic releases.
Now in 2011 Distance releases one of his hottest dubs yet in the shape of 'Falling'. Keeping his heavy-weight subscapes - that sound like the machines from Terminator 2 brawling - he has added a vocal element. The track has received blanket support from the scene's DJs; Skream, Benga, Hatcha, and Cyrus. Hip hop & R&B DJ Swerve on Kiss and Mistajam on 1Xtra have been heating it up further.