U.K. jungle music legend Roni Size returns to San Francisco on Saturday for a stripped-down, hyperkinetic drum and bass set with MC Dynamite.
The 44-year-old Bristol resident’s first visit to The City in two years will precede his Sunday set at the gargantuan Coachella Music and Arts Festival in Indio.
Don’t worry about him saving something in the gas tank for his sweltering desert date.
“I never hold back,” Size says. “I play the room. ... I can’t wait. I love San Francisco. The load of times I’ve come to that part of the world, the reception has always been fantastic.”
More than 15 years after jungle, as well as drum and bass, broke in the U.K., Size remains an unapologetically devout follower of the genre, with its fast breakbeats, often composed of little more than sampled drum, snare, high hat and an infectious bassline.
“The States, you’ve adopted dubstep and you’re running with that. ... I love jungle and I love drum and bass. I stick to my guns,” he says, “Imagine if Tiger Woods started to play football.”
Relisten to the Mercury Prize-winning 1997 Roni Size LP “New Forms” and you can hear tons of influences on today’s hit electronic music. The sampling, synthesizers, frenetic tempos and reggae influences are set to a medium simmer in “New Forms,” instead of the nuclear meltdown of modern dubstep.
Saturday’s set should bridge decades of such electronic dance music, Size says: “We bring the fresh new beats, but we also try to keep it nostalgic and bring some of the history that we are known for. ... I’m a bit older. I can afford to experiment and play stuff that people wouldn’t necessarily guess that I would play. ... We’re in a time where everything goes. It’s a party of flavors. I’m glad to be able to come to San Francisco and hope people just absorb what I play.”
Roni will also whet appetites for a new solo LP as well as an LP from his full band, Reprazent, in 2013.
“I’m looking forward to making some new friends — and making some paper as well. I’m not going to lie. There are people out there making millions of pounds. I could do with some of that paper in my lap.”