Spotlight On Sony/PIAS Warehouse Fire: Big Dada Records

The Spotlight

This week, we’re highlighting a handful of the many record labels who lost inventory in the Sony/PIAS warehouse that was destroyed by a fire during the recent London riots. Today, we’re taking a look at Big Dada.

On August 9th, 2011, the third day of rioting across England, a Sony/PIAS warehouse burned in the early hours of the morning. Sony/PIAS is the largest music distributor for the UK and Ireland, servicing over 150 independent labels. The warehouse stocked these labels’ CDs and LPs, in some cases their entire catalogs, and now everything is lost.

The ground-breaking and genre-shattering label Ninja Tune was one of those affected, and today we spotlight one of their sub-labels, Big Dada.

Dada has been the preeminent home for underground UK hip-hop since 1997, but its roster has grown considerably larger than its London base. Diplo and Spank Rock both released debut albums through Big Dada, as well as Speech Debelle, winner of the 2009 Mercury Prize Award for the Dada-released album Speech Therapy. The label has consistently released music from forward-thinking producers and musicians, a trend with no signs of faltering.

Up next from the Big Dada vaults is the new LP from label stalwart Roots Manuva. Born Rodney Smith, Roots has planted himself on the crossroads of hip-hop, dub reggae, and dance music, carving his own niche sound that has inspired this generations’ newest genres, including grime and dubstep. His forthcoming album, 4everevolution, is a bulging 17 songs in length, each one after the next a take on various different styles – some Roots had until now dabbled in. Take “Watch Me Dance” – available for free download below – an amalgamation of UK Funky rhythms and a Sly Stone in space bassline with his signature smooth vocals.

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Watch for 4everevolution to hit stores worldwide September 26th. Pre-order the album here.

Buy music from Roots Manuva and more at the Ninja Shop. Supporting independent artists and labels is one of the most important things a fan and music-lover can do, and now is as important a time as ever to purchase music. The Sony/PIAS warehouse fire affected over 150 labels, many of which lost their entire stock supply. For a complete list of those affected, check this spreadsheet the organization LabelLove compiled.