Detonate: Caspa

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Call it kismet. Just around the time the dark dubby sounds of dubstep was making inroads into KL, Andrew X at Rock Corner Bangsar Village II passed us a copy of Caspa. While we hadn’t heard of him then, since we first plonked the CD in the stereo our world’s gone all wibbley. Say hello to British dubstep and wobble wonderkid, Caspa.

Named after the character in Larry Clark’s film Kids (and not the friendly ghost), London’s Gary McCann aka Caspa hit a homerun first time out when his first track, ‘Bassbin’ got picked up almost instantly by BBC 1Xtra. Not bad for a bloke who was destined to play basketball on scholarship.

A regular radio show on UK’s Rinse FM made him a scene fixture, and with remixes for the likes of Deadmau5 and Kid Sister upping his speed, and a rep for cleaning up the big rooms of UK and Europe with his bullet strength basslines and judderingly massive riffs, Caspa’s quickly took on the mantle of posterboy to this exhilaratingly fierce new sound.

It’s a position acknowledged by those in the know. Immortalised on Mixmag‘s cover alongside DJ/producer and partner-in-crime Rusko, with whom the pair have formed label The Dub Police, Caspa has also (with Rusko again) mixed up Fabric’s first and only dubstep compilation, Fabriclive 37. Now coming after 2 EPs Ave It Vol 1 and Vol 2, comes Caspa’s debut album, Everybody’s Talking, Nobody’s Listening.

Fittingly launched at Fabric with Skream, Benga and David Rodigan – the latter lends some proper dub reggae toasting to the album’s intro – the diverse output is much a result of Caspa’s musical upbringing. In an interview with Caspa says “My brother playing loads of hip hop … Gangstarr, Mobb Deep, Wu Tang.” While Caspa himself readily sucks up all that’s troubling the musical zeitgeist: “D & B, a bit of Chase & Dave, House, Old Skool UKG… Anything really!

Gangster movie samples (‘Well ‘Ard’) sit alongside crackin’ club bangers, and cohorts Dynamite MC, MC Beezy (Disco Jaws), Uncle Sam and MC Rod Azlan all contribute. Caspa even demonstrates knowledge and old schooling by way of ‘Back To 93’ which harks back to the intelligent jungle of past. Sure there are the occasional uninspired pop-leaning crossovers and even a weak attempt at wooing the lay-deez on the frankly awkwardly immature ‘Victoria’s Secret’, but if a measure of formulaic tunage and dubstep purist maligned wobble helps to shed new light onto a shadowy scene, then we’re all for the ghost that’s running this machine.

Caspa’s debut album Everybody’s Talking, Nobody’s Listening is out now. More about him at

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