Paul Woolford is a DJ/producer who illustrates the difference between following trends and pursuing evolution. Woolford first came to light in the early ’00s as an integral part of Leeds’ Back To Basics. His sound—as demonstrated on releases for 20:20 Vision as Bobby Peru—was a hip-swinging UK variant of jackin’ Chicago house. Then in 2006 “Erotic Discourse” happened. The zeitgeist-capturing track was arguably that year’s biggest, affording Woolford new levels of global attention as he continued to hold down his summer residency for We Love Space in Ibiza.
However, like so many smash successes, “Erotic Discourse” seemed to be a blessing and a curse for Woolford. None of his subsequent productions seemed to quite measure up until in 2011 an adroit run of singles and remixes cast him in a completely new light. Carl Craig’s interest in Woolford was a large contributing factor—the Detroit veteran invited Woolford to tour with his Planet E imprint during their 20th anniversary tour and signed his Achilles / Razor Burn EP—but it was his flirtation with the UK bass scene that seemed to get the creative juices flowing most freely. Between his collaboration with Psycatron on Hotflush, Stolen, remix of T. Williams “Heartbeat” and support from Rinse FM DJs like Ben UFO, Woolford appeared to have turned over an enthralling new leaf. (Check his new material as Special Request for further evidence.)
The influence of the UK’s new school is patent on RA.308 although it always remains as an undercurrent to Woolford’s killer house and techno selections, which includes music from Actress, Claro Intelecto, Dario Zenker, Conforce and Kowton.