Om Unit

British producer and DJ Jim Coles' work as Om Unit is an intricate yet fluid hybrid of several forms of bass-heavy electronic music. Notable as one of the first producers to fuse juke/footwork with jungle, his music shows a clear reverence for drum'n'bass while simultaneously pushing the genre forward. Initially debuting the Om Unit moniker in 2009 with material which leaned closer to dubstep and wonky hip-hop, his work grew increasingly complex and harder to define with releases such as 2013's full-length Threads occupying their own sonic territory. Om Unit has released material on well-regarded drum'n'bass labels such as Metalheadz and Exit Records, and is responsible for Cosmic Bridge, a label similarly dedicated to futuristic bass explorations. Initially from London, Jim Coles began producing jungle during the '90s, when he was a teenager. The following decade, he switched to hip-hop and became a turntablist, releasing several albums under the name 2Tall, including 2007's Beautiful Mindz, a collaboration with Dudley Perkins and Georgia Anne Muldrow. Following 2008 full-length The Softer Diagram, Coles adopted the name Om Unit as he began incorporating dubstep into his sound. Om Unit's track "Encoded" was included on Fabric's early-2010 compilation Elevator Music, Vol. 1, and a white-label remix of Joker's "Digidesign" made the rounds. Om Unit releases soon followed on labels like All City Records and Terrorhythm. In 2011, as Chicago's juke/footwork scene began making waves throughout the dance music world, Coles started drawing parallels between the emerging sound and his drum'n'bass roots. Under the pseudonym Philip D Kick, he produced footwork-infused bootleg edits of classic jungle tracks like LTJ Bukem's "Horizons" and Omni Trio's "Renegade Snares." As Om Unit, he released two EPs on Civil Music (The Timps and Transport) which ranged from electro to sideways jungle. He also launched Cosmic Bridge with "Solar Cycle," a collaboration with dubstep producer Kromestar. Dream Continuum, Coles' juke/jungle hybrid project with Travis Stewart (Machinedrum), released a one-off EP titled Reworkz on Planet Mu in 2012. Following that year's Aeolian EP, Civil Music released Om Unit's debut full-length, Threads, in 2013. Bringing a fresh perspective to the drum'n'bass scene, he released Small Victories (with Sam Binga) on Exit Records that year, additionally making his debut on Goldie's revered Metalheadz with Sleepwalkers. A full-length titled Inversion followed on the label in 2014. Relocating to Bristol in 2015, Coles kept busy running Cosmic Bridge, additionally releasing a series of collaborations with Sam Binga under the white-label BUNIT imprint. He also remixed Nasty Habits' techstep classic "Shadow Boxing" and released a trilogy of Torchlight EPs. In 2017, Om Unit released his third full-length, Self, which he described as the true sequel to Threads. The following year, Coles released the first proper Philip D Kick EP, Pathways, as well as the debut 12" from his jungle alias Mahakala. Om Unit's EP Violet appeared on a label of the same name in early 2019. ~ Paul Simpson

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