Subaltern Records is an independent vinyl label established by Gabriele ‘Mentha’ Romeo and Joban ‘Jobanti’ Thomas. The idea to start a label roots back to the early 2000s when both Mentha and Jobanti were living through the birth of Londons darkest electronic music: Dubstep. Through a collective named ‘Mind The Dubstep’, the Italians Mentha, Shiva, Murk and MC Shorty joined forces and were running nights in the capital of 140 inviting some of the genres most influential players.
After Mentha and Jobanti, the imprints IT and arts mastermind, came together in 2012 to lay out the final plans for the label, it didn’t take long before SUBALT001 ft. Mentha & Murk with an Ipman remix on the flip rolled off the press. After the first few releases featuring Prism, D-Operation Drop. Geode and Clearlight as well as remixes by the likes of Gantz and LAS, it became clear that Subaltern was here to stay.
Early 2014 after the fourth release, the team was joined by Daniel ‘Otz’ Tyllack, mainly responsible for A&R duties and creative work behind the scenes. In what could be described as the formative phase of the label, refining the Subaltern sound out of south London, the vision was clear – focused on a forward thinking approach to dark bass music around 140 bpm, which has character and communicates feelings, stands out in the club and is distinctive enough to be equally enjoyed at home. This approach led to releases from artists like Piezo, RDG and Taiko with remixes by Thelem, AxH and Biome.
Early 2015 followed a critically acclaimed two part collaborative compilation with US imprint Tuba NYC released on special Subaltern / Tuba USB keys. Later in the year, the team relocated to different locations, now running the label from Berlin, Bristol and Hamburg and welcomed the latest addition to the team with Matt Debondt – responsible for public relations and providing general support in managing the label.
2016 & 2017 marked some of the most successful releases of the label to date with heavy plates by the likes of Taiko & Le Lion and Ago as well as Clearlights phenomenal second EP, followed by Kaleidoscope Vol. I, the first in their VA series featuring Helktram, ILL_K, D-Operation Drop, Shu and Zygos. Also 2018 is looking stacked, with music coming out from Bisweed, Subtle Mind, Saule and Taiko, Subaltern continues the journey, pushing the boundaries of soundsystem music for over 5 years and not stopping anytime soon…