Scenes germinate globally these days, zip files of tune stems sent from one side of the globe of the other to be worked; successful production pairings abound between people who have never met.
Surely though there is something to be said for musical collaborators who are from the same place, who share the same, local cultural and musical mythology? Though LEVELZ officially is less than 2 years old, the connections and stories between them go back decades.
Each member could feel that it was a special time in the city creatively, and so organically came together to work as a collective, to build something bigger than the sum of their parts, whilst schedules and commitments allowed them to work together. The artists involved are by no means the only talent coming out of the rainy city at the moment, but they are a group of friends who happen to represent the largest part of one of the city’s scenes.
Much of the lime-light has been on the MCs so far, being front and centre, but there is as a super-group of producers behind the project, with many of the MCs being those producers as well. There is a respect for musicianship, reflected by the fact that a 5 piece live band with he 8 MCs has been in rehearsals over a year already. There is an orbiting group of artists – in film, fashion and photography – that also contribute; but it is all still linked by the fact that Manchester is the place that they call home.
Only 2 videos deep, they have already completed a 15 date UK Tour, and have showcased their talents on platforms as diverse Channel 4, Radio 1, Rinse FM, Radio 6 Music and 1Xtra and were also one of Julie Adenuga’s first ever guests on her Beats 1 show, and their music has seen support from across the dance music community.