Selected by Don Crispy

LTJ Bukem

Courtesy of Liquid Room
LTJ Bukem

Drum' avatar LTJ Bukem returns to a hero's welcome with two nights of Progression Sessions DJ sets this weekend at Liquid Room showcasing his epic first solo album, Journey Inwards. The appearance comes on the heels of visits by Goldie and 4Hero as the latest installment of the Drum & Bass Sessions which bring leading UK talents to Tokyo on a regular basis.

Hailed by some as the godfather of the genre, Bukem was weaned on jazz and R&B, but was transformed by the English rave movement of the late '80s.

"I used to go to Biology and Sunrise and think 'Fuck me, man,'" he recounted in an interview with the website. "Systems, people having a good time, you couldn't have that anywhere else. So I was there every weekday doing it so hard it was stupid. When I started making tunes, that was the thing I wanted to be involved in."

Credited with softening the hardcore breakbeats sound with soulful melodies and jazz-influenced chords, LTJ's atmospherics began to make a mark in the mid-'90s. Setting up residency in London's Mars Bar, Bukem and friends, who were to form the nucleus of the pivotal Good Looking record label, began to weave their own magic, attracting an ever-growing following to their events.

Forming Good Looking in 1994 as an outlet for his own and others' material, Bukem began releasing a number of Logical Progression and Earth series albums which have come to be regarded as definitive works of drum'n'bass. Around that time he also began making regular appearances at Liquid Room.

The Saturday night All Night Sessions will offer the typical driving, up-tempo breakbeat sounds, while the Sunday evening Sunday Sessions promises an exploration of Bukem and Co's more recent chilled-out, down-tempo approach, typified by the new album.

Joining Bukem from the Good Looking crew will be DJ Blame and veteran MCs Conrad and DRS. From Tokyo, DJs Makoto and Inza will provide backup.

Info: Liquid Room, 6/10, 11pm, JY3900 (adv), JY4500 (door); 6/11, 7pm, JY3500 (adv), JY4000 (door). Tel: 03-3200-6831.

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