The prominence of Chase & Status in the drum & bass music scene is unparalleled, playing large part in the genres rise in popularity around the late 2000’s. In 2009, the English duo went from scaling the UK Dance Chart to the UK Singles Chart, with a genre which had only come into existence in the mid-nineties.
It was their second studio album, No More Idols, released in 2011, that put them on the map, collaborating with a host of artists including Plan B and Tinie Tempha. At the time it was mostly praised, yet faced some criticism for its fairly lengthy discography, and desperate attempt to break into mainstream music. However, 10 years later and it’s proved to be more than successful for Saul Milton and Will Kennard, who now own their own record label.
No More Idols is an eclectic mash up of a dozen genres from reggae to soul that work harmoniously together to create an album of pure rave nostalgia. The 15-track album features some of the most renowned songs from the drum & bass kingpins, such as ‘No Problem’, which was included in the FIFA 12 soundtrack and snaps between Caribbean influence and headbanging drum & bass.
Despite its name, ‘End Credits’ was the start of the album’s success, reaching number nine in the UK Singles Chart. It was a breakthrough for not only Chase & Status but for drum & bass as a genre that was taken seriously. This was closely followed by ‘Let You Go’, which has become somewhat of an anthem amongst ravers, as the infamous lyrics “There’s no way on earth / hell would have to freeze / more than twice before / I will let you go” are followed by a beat drop so intense it leaves you with goosebumps.
Featuring an exceptional collaboration with American singer Cee Lo Green, the duo brought us ‘Brixton Briefcase’, a track truly distinct from the rest. It was here they showed a clear reggae influence in the vocals, complemented by gritty, powerful instrumentals. ‘Blind Faith’, another club classic and their highest charting single to date, is packed with powerful vocals in addition to a more subtle influence of reggae than ‘Brixton Briefcase’. The lyric “sweet sensation” sums up perfectly how we feel about this song.
Approaching the album’s tenth anniversary, Chase & Status are still paving the way in the drum & bass phenomenon. Having released their fifth studio album RTRN II JUNGLE back in 2019, we could be seeing a sixth album come this year, following a two-year release pattern. Nevertheless, No More Idols left a heavy mark on the rave-scene forever, and it’s likely that Chase & Status songs, new and old, will be played for years to come.
Words by Eliza Laben
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