Ladies and Gentleman. I would like to take a moment to ask you a question. Have you ever felt so passionate about something, about someone, about anything, that the thought of it encompasses your whole day? It envelops your mind, your spirit, your soul, your entire being? Well, if you are so lucky as to have experienced such emotions, you can understand the raw hunger which drives this new and exciting band to do what they do best. Write, record, produce and perform music.
Introducing Two Down a.k.a. 2D, the Hard-Rock/Grime band whose band members ‘Origins?’ range from Brighton to Croydon to London. Perhaps it is fair to say at this point that it is understood that the thought of this amalgamation of genres (Hard-Rock/Grime) may seem somewhat un-conventional? It is this rebellion against normality however, that is the driving force and some might say brilliance behind this band.
Benn (Ben Slack) and Kroman (Callum Richardson) are the two members that make this band whole. They met at the end of 2006 whilst studying at ‘Gateway School of Recording’ in London, where they both showed an interest in each-others opposing tastes in music. From primary experimentation where they played about with mixing the two genres they individually favoured, it became clear that something special could be born. Apart from studying at the same University, both have very different background stories to tell.
Benn was brought up in the countryside where, from a young age, he developed a love for the more conventional instruments that music had to offer. He began by trying his hand at the piano. After about a year, he felt the need to try something a little different, and so he moved on to learning the acoustic guitar. As the teenage years came about, and the rebellious side that enjoys making as much noise as is physically possible began to emerge, he traded in his acoustic guitar for the thrills that the electric guitar had to offer. His love for Hard Rock music became an instant addiction and from that moment Benn was shredding powerful riffs at full speed and of course, at maximum volume. After numerous attempts of joining and creating different bands, Benn finally decided he wanted to do something completely different to anything he had ever attempted before. Something that excited not only him, but also hopefully many others.
Kroman was brought up mainly in Croydon and the surrounding areas. It was here that he learnt to express his musical abilities via what they call ‘alternative fashions.’ He took up the mic at a young age and ever since, he has been spitting on (not litterally) various projects. He formed a crew entitled ‘NWC’ (‘No Witness Crew.’) Together with numerous other vocalists, producers and DJ’s, he developed his talents moving swiftly forward into the depths of the Grime scene. ‘NWC’ ended due to internal political issues, but this was the catalyst to beginning a new crew entitled ‘LBC’ (‘London Borough of Croydon.’) Kroman is now the other half that makes the whole of ‘Two Down.’
Kroman and Benn found that they both shared the same desire. This was to create something totally different to what they, and anyone else, have ever done before. From this they decided to try and make something of their juxtaposing talents. ‘Two Down’ was born.
Although the band aims to remain individual, there are influences which crop up within their music every now and then. These influences are inspirational artists such as ‘Our Lady Peace,’ ‘He Is Legend,’ ‘Between the Buried and Me,’ ‘Minus the Bear,’ ‘Slipknot,’ ‘Linkin Park,’ ‘Korn,’ ‘Mudvayne,’ ‘Damien Rice,’ ‘The Beatles,’ ‘Dizzy Rascal,’ ‘A Perfect Circle’ and ‘Lisa Hannigan', 'Wiley', 'Pay As You Go Cartel', 'Eminem', 'Uncle Murda', 'UB40', 'Oasis', 'Papoose' and 'Busta Rhymes' to name but a few!
‘Two Down’s’ Debut album entitled ‘Origins?’ which was recorded at “Broken Silence Studios’ in West Sussex, portrays the crossover of two distinctive genres. These include earth shaking, glass shattering, mind blowing beats, finished off by a rigorous programme of perfecting every single second of each and every single song to ensure it was exactly how they wanted us all to hear it. The creation of this album was a more fluid operation than initially expected, taking just 22 hours to write, record and master. Tracks were built quickly, many lyric pages were processed, the album was recorded and the process was complete. They used an amalgamation of low tuned guitars and hardcore vocals to ensure the songs gelled together consistently, creating a plethora of innovative and fresh sounding songs which are not to be missed! The intention behind ‘Origins? was to in no way shape or form feel that they had to hold back or screen what they did musically and/or vocally. This allowed them to create something totally spontaneous, without having to be concerned by the fact that they have to adhere to the norm.
Since completing ‘Origins?’ ‘Two Down’ has released a bonus disc which features along side ‘Origins?’ This follow up is entitled ‘The Sessions.’ This album includes a delicate acoustic infusion of the original songs on ‘Origins?’ as well as DJ Remix’s and original versions of some of the tracks. They have also just finished their second full-length studio album which goes by the name ‘Forward March.’ This album has a totally different feel to that of ‘Origins.’ It has a few songs which are quite personal to the band, making this album more meaningful. It also portrays how the band has grown artistically and how they have stretched themselves in every direction to ensure the second album is every bit as exciting as the first. If you felt that ‘Origins?’ contained mind-blowing beats, and an innovative array of songs, it is an absolute must that you hear ‘Forward March.’ The album features explosive songs such as ‘Two Faced’ which fuses light verses with extreme lengths of Hard Rock to make the song totally unique. Think heaven verses hell. Think light verses dark. Think God verses the Devil, and you might get an inkling of what sort of contrasts have been fused together in this song! Quite frankly, this song, and in fact this whole album will blow the living c**p out of you!!
When the band aren’t busy recording in the studio, they have been known to practice at ‘Ground Zero Studios’ in Brighton and at ‘The Rehearsal Rooms’ in Pease Pottage. This is in preparation for upcoming gigs which are lined up covering the next few months, as well as a planned Christmas Tour of the South. The band will be updating everyone on dates, times and venues for these events.
A Personal note from ‘Two Down:’ ‘We hope that all you guys get as much enjoyment out of our music as we have in making it. We hope to see you all at upcoming shows. Thank you so much for your support!
Benn & Kroman a.k.a. ‘Two Down.’
- Written by ALT