But then XFM rolled up and offered me a platform of my dreams, if you will. It was all about the time slot for me, I guess. I had 14 years of freedom at Radio 1, and I'm really, really grateful to the BBC for everything they did for me. But there was no opportunity there to break out of the 2 a.m. dungeon.

I think XFM understood the value of all the work I did at the BBC and offered me a prime-time slot on Saturday night for all the music I care about.

The other big question is what you'll be playing on tour. In Miami specifically, a lot of people know you for championing dubstep. Are you still playing a lot of dubstep in your club sets?

Mary Anne Hobbs is a total road warrior.
© Shaun Bloodworth
Mary Anne Hobbs is a total road warrior.

Location Info


The Vagabond

30 NE 14th St.
Miami, FL 33132

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Downtown/Overtown


Mary Anne Hobbs, with Gonjasufi and Lorn. 10 p.m. Friday, April 22, at the Vagabond, 30 NE 14th St., Miami; 305-379-0508; thevagabondmiami.com. Admission is free before 11 p.m., $5 after. Ages 21 and up.

It's kind of interesting, really, because dubstep's almost become sort of a metaphor for sonic freedom in many ways. It's really hard to identify a core dubstep sound now. If you really put a gun to my head and said, "You have to name one artist that still represents a core dubstep sound," I would have to say Mala.

But beyond that, I think the genre is so splintered now. There are so many different kinds of trajectories that were all originally influenced and inspired by what happened around 2005 and 2006 at clubs like Forward and DMZ, which were the primary homes of that dubstep sound.

I guess my sets have always been multitextured electronic sets, not just pure dubstep sets. I know America's got a very different interpretation, as well, of the dubstep sound. There are a lot more midrange frequencies in there. And it's much tougher and probably testosterone-fueled. Whereas I tend to err more towards the high-art, experimental side.

But the challenge is to try to come with something that's more unique and very, very multitextured, but will also move people's bodies, because that's primarily why they're there. They want to dance and rave and sweat and share that energy and jubilation with one another. So I'm very conscious of that: In a club environment, it's different than what you simply play on the radio.

Of all the different trajectories you're talking about, which one should we watch for next in America?

UK funky is finding some incredible momentum now. Again, it was a sound that started off as a really raw, basic, primary, stripped-back beat pattern. But now there are so many producers who are making absolutely phenomenal music. The difference is in aesthetics, but also in tempo. Dubstep is built at 140 bpm, and UK funky is slightly slower at 130.

But I think there are some incredible moves being made in that area now. It's something that's taken a little bit longer for America to really seize upon. It's not as immediate as dubstep. It's a more exquisite sound. But it's really, really on the rise.

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