While the roster on England's much-hyped trip-hop label Mo'Wax is packed to the gills with bedroom boffins turned recording artists, Attica Blues is the closest it comes to having an actual band.
The pancultural collective began life in 1994 when producers D'Afro (born Charlie Williams) and Tony Nwachukwu first met up. D'Afro had previously founded London's Urban Poets Society collective, but the duo later became Attica Blues for their continuing studio experiments. While trying to sell some Japanese hip-hop records, D'Afro met up with Mo'Wax founder James Lavelle and was offered a spot on the label. The duo began recording their first single alone but when a local student, the Egyptian-born Roba El-Essawy, visited the studio during the recording for their debut single, D'Afro and Nwachukwu decided to add her to the group. Attica Blues released their first two EPs Vibes, Scribes 'N Dusty 45s and Blueprint in 1995, and followed with two more during 1996-97. Mo'Wax issued their self-titled debut album in September 1997. D'Afro and Nwachukwu have also worked as remixers for Flora Purim and Sneaker Pimps as well as label-mates U.N.K.L.E., DJ Krush and Adriana Evans. ~ John Bush, Rovi