Gig of the week: Bulletproof

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In the survival-of-the-phatest world of dancefloor electronica, Kiwi drum ‘n’ bass DJ/producer Jay Monds has remained Bulletproof for 10 years.

Auckland-based Monds (aka Jay Cyanide) has 80-odd 12-inch releases and two albums to his credit,
including 2008’s Dark Times – Desperate Measures.

His hectic schedule sees him tour Europe, the United States and Asia annually, while on home turf his Sidechain and Razorgang side projects in “neuro-esque” drum ‘n’ bass and dubstep have attracted keen attention from overseas labels.

But he’s not about to take a breather. Ahead of Saturday’s DJ gig at Subculture, Monds says work on a third Bulletproof album has already started.

“The way I see it, to maintain a presence in the New Zealand market as an electronic producer you have to release albums and do it consistently,” he says.

“People expect a new Bulletproof album, and I want them to expect it to have drum ‘n’ bass and dubstep, but this year I’m going for a completely different angle.”

Monds says this year’s project involves an unconfirmed roster of Kiwi bands, MCs and producers, with the likes of Shihad, Luger Boa and Bic Runga so far expressing interest in a remix album.

“I’ve already got P-Money, David Dallas and PNC remixes completed, and I’m about to do a Scribe one … 

There’s a couple of other big secrets in there.

“It’s basically a New Zealand commercial-music album remixed electronically and released on to the commercial market.”

While Monds’ “no compromise” attitude to Bulletproof’s sound poses a constant challenge to deliver fresh material, he’s confident he’s still producing the goods.

Writing is a “60/40 split between influences and innovation – in favour of innovation”, he says.

“It’s really important to maintain your identity in this genre.

The stuff I make is exactly what I would want to play as a DJ. “When [original Bulletproof partner] Josh Lees and I were working together back in the day, we were trying to come up with a name that would describe our sound.

Bulletproof was the one.

We felt you could shoot a Howitzer tank shell at it and it would bounce off.”

Catch Bulletproof at Subculture on Saturday from 11pm