Drum and bass duo Sigma showcased their skills at Rise Festival in the French Alps.
Rise Festival takes place annually in the French Alps, welcoming ravers from across the globe. The ninth edition of the festival included performances by the likes of Bicep, Hybrid Minds, Sammy Virgi, and Sonny Fodera. Another notable name on the lineup was UK-based Sigma, a longstanding pillar of the drum and bass community.
Over the last 15 years, Sigma has been making waves in the world of drum and bass and has garnered chart-topping hits in the UK. The act consists of Cam Edwards and Joe Lenzie, who met at university in the mid-2000s and have consistently made music together ever since. Their 2014 single, “Nobody to Love,” made an indelible mark on the scene. They then released their first studio album, Life, in 2015, with their sophomore album, Hope, dropping in 2022.
In recent months, Sigma announced their newest album, London Sound, which drops January 24. The singles leading up to their latest work have showcased a different style of drum and bass than the fare Sigma fans have come to love.
With Rise Festival underway, we caught up with Sigma to learn about their new album, creative process, and historical roots in the drum and bass scene. Cue up their recent single “Run From You,” and read on to see what they had to say.
Stream Sigma – “Run From You” on Spotify:
Hi Sigma, thanks so much for sitting down with us today. The beginnings of your project took place in the UK in the late 2000s, not long after the rise of liquid DnB. How does it feel to be a foundational element of the DnB scene?
Being considered a foundational element of the DnB scene feels incredibly humbling and gratifying. We never imagined that our music would have such a significant impact when we first started, but it’s been an amazing journey so far. It all started in a shed in Joe’s parents’ back garden!
You met at university and have garnered many successes throughout your initial rise to commercial success. Can you talk about the journey you have had throughout Sigma’s rise from friends at university to the forefront of the DnB scene?
Our journey from university friends to where we are today has been nothing short of incredible. We started making music for fun, not realising it would lead us to the forefront of the DnB scene. The support from our fans and the opportunities we’ve had along the way have been truly remarkable.
One standout aspect of your tracks are the dynamic samples. For example, “Adrenaline Rush” samples “Bittersweet Symphony,” and 2013’s “Nobody to Love” features a Kanye West “Bound 2” sample. Can you shed light on the sampling process? Does the sample come first, or do you choose to integrate that later on in the process?
Sampling is an integral part of our creative process. Sometimes, the sample comes first, and we build the track around it. Other times, we create a track and then decide to integrate a sample that complements the vibe. It depends on the inspiration behind each particular song.
Over the years, you’ve collaborated with renowned artists like Paloma Faith, Ella Henderson, and Labrinth. What do you value the most about collaborating with other artists? Do you have any upcoming collaborators that fans may be excited about?
Collaborating with other artists is something we love to do. It brings fresh perspectives and ideas into our music, and it’s a fantastic learning experience. While we can’t reveal all our upcoming collaborators just yet, we’re always excited to work with talented artists and bring something new to the table for our fans. Look out for tracks with EYK, Joe Devlin, and DOKTOR.
This year’s releases — “Adrenaline Rush,” “City Lights,” and “The Corner” — all demonstrate DnB in a different way from your music of previous years. Can you talk about the shift in your sound?
Our recent releases do indeed showcase a different side of DnB. We’re constantly evolving and experimenting with our sound to keep things interesting for ourselves and our fans. We want each release to offer a unique experience while staying true to our roots in drum and bass.
You also have a forthcoming album, London Sound, that’s set for release in December. What sets this album apart from past releases?
London Sound is a special album for us because it represents our connection to the city where it all began. It’s a reflection of the diverse and vibrant musical culture of London. We’ve put a lot of love and creativity into this album, and we hope our fans will enjoy the journey it takes them on. It is also our last album under this current record deal.
Finally, you’ve executed a lot of great work since your initial rise nearly 20 years ago, and the sound of Sigma has evolved over the years. What excites you about the future of the project?
Looking ahead, what excites us most about the future of Sigma is the endless potential for creativity. We’re always eager to explore new musical territories, collaborate with amazing artists, and connect with our fans on a deeper level. The journey is far from over, and we can’t wait to see where it takes us next.