Breakage aka James Boyle is never been one to be pigeonholed. Moving effortlessly through styles from drum and bass to dubstep, Breakage has proved himself to be one of the most versatile operators in either scene to date. A prodigious talent, he already has a number of classic releases under his belt but continues to develop his sound. Combining rich tones and a sense of spaciousness in the mix, Breakage’s music is both subtle yet devastatingly effective.
Never afraid to make an impact, he burst onto the drum and bass scene back in 2000, announcing his arrival with a raucous remix of a hardcore classic, Nasty Habit’s ‘Here Come the Drums’ on Reinforced.
He backed up this bold move, however, with a series of EPs for the legendary label proving he was no young pretender. Breakage was at the forefront of a new wave of breakbeat scientists bringing a percussive sound back to drum and bass at a time when the scene seemed to have forgotten it’s jungle roots.
Breakage continued his good form dropping a number of sort after releases for the Inperspective label, his remix of Equinox’s ‘Acid Rain’ twisted the Amen break to new levels and served as a rallying call for producers looking to bring back the original drum and bass sound.
Further releases came on labels including Critical and Scientific Wax, before his debut album release in 2006 ‘This To Shall Pass’ gained wide spread critical acclaim and included some slower tempo material, hinting at what was to come.
James signed with Shy FX’s mighty Digital Soundboy imprint in 2007, and soon turned heads with the haunting half- time beats of ‘Clarendon b/w Shroud.’ It came as no surprise that he would make waves in the dubstep community with his next release, ‘Callahan b/w Untitled,’ after having remixed one of the scene’s biggest tracks to date, Benga & Coki’s ‘Night,’ alongside Shy FX as Digital Soundboy.
2009 saw Breakage cemented himself as a main player across the British dance music press and taste- making elite. Following on from the superb ‘Together’, Breakage released ‘Run Em Out’ feat. Roots Manuva b/w ‘Higher’ followed by the thuggish reworked ‘Hard’ feat. Newham Generals and David Rodigan, which has gone on be become a underground anthem with Zane Lowe naming it his ‘Hottest Record In The World’ on his Radio 1 show.
His sophomore LP ‘Foundation’ was released in March 2010 on Digital Soundboy, featuring Skream, Burial, Roots Manuva, David Rodigan, Newham Generals, Donae’o and more. The album has been a tremendous success across the dubstep/d&b scenes as well as widespread mainstream acclaim. IDJ, DJ MAG, NME & Mixmag all named the record ‘Album Of The Month’ and it supporters included the likes of Zane Lowe, Pete Tong, Laurent Garnier and Benga.
Alongside his original recordings James has also recently turned in remixes for the likes of Massive Attack, Florence & The Machine, Plan B, Magnetic Man, Underworld & Claire Maguire.
To quote a certain Mr. Roots Manuva… ‘Breakage is a man with an ear for deep, deep, sub-sonic frequencies. He goes in low. I thinking he’s talking to sea-life. He’s talking to the squid”.