It’s 2007 and deep in a basement in the West Yorkshire town of Huddersfield, a powerful new movement is beginning. This is the start of ‘Powah’, an event which has brought together artists, sound system and a love of dubstep to explosive effect.
In 2008 they left their formative basement and moved to Bar1.22 where they promoted the first proper dubstep night in Huddersfield. The event featured Kromestar, Distinction, Exodus and the Bass Junkies on the mighty Axis Sound. Promoter Dave Cowan described these sessions.
‘It was fantastic, we had acts such as Luke Envoy, RSD and Mrk1. But when the roof started falling down we knew we’d outgrown our first home and moved to our new setting, Legends. This club is in an arch under the railway viaduct in a quiet industrial part of Huddersfield, away from anyone disturbed by sound. The ethic of the night is based around a true underground ethos, taking the values of roots music forward into progressive electronic music and sound system culture.’
All the artists, promoters and sound men involved work together as a family. There’s a strong influence from dub and roots reggae. The members include Ras Sis, Red J, City Skank, Iko, Rootikal D, Andy G and the most recent additions, Celt Islam and Connectionist. Their next event will raise money for the Haiti relief effort. Dave stated that they were - ‘Really proud to bring Bobby Friction from Radio1 who despite playing in some very conventional settings thouroughly enjoys getting his hands dirty and playing some grimey dubstep in an underground setting.’ The event takes place at Legends in Huddersfield on Sat 24th April. Check the ‘Powah Dubstep Revolution’ Facebook group for more info.
This article appears in the forthcoming issue of ATM Magazine (ATM88 - March/April). ATM is stuffed with the latest news, interviews and features from the underground music scene - Check it in your local record shop or in larger WHSmiths.