Words: James Keith

Going through the back catalogue of an artist as prolific as Terror Danjah was never going to be an easy task. Across five full-length albums (six if you include the Industry Standard Mixtape, which we can’t because it’s not on Spotify), TD has explored a few different avenues; grime, dubstep, UK funky—even the psychedelic Purple sound pushed by Joker and the like got a look-in. Arguably, the finest distillation of what Terror Danjah’s about comes from the 2011 album Undeniable. Dubstep, instrumental grime, vocal grime, R&G and his more abstract experimentations (there’s even some turntablism in there) were all boiled down into a concise and well-balanced collection. Once you’ve taken in our playlist, Undeniable is your next port of call.

For the completely uninitiated, Terror Danjah originally started out in Aftershock, alongside Bruza and the rest, before lending his talents to N.A.S.T.Y Crew and others along the way. As a solo producer and as head of his own Hardrive Records, Danjah’s contributions to grime’s early years and then dubstep’s most vigorous and artistically exciting years have marked him out as someone who isn’t just in the right place at the right time—he’s one of the people helping to create the right place and the right time.

One constant that ran through it all, however, was how early he was. When everyone’s looking left, Terror Danjah veers right and goes for the territory people are ignoring. Even if you just focus on grime, he’s responsible for some of the most important, influential instrumentals ever made in “Cock Back” and “Zumpi Hunter”. In fact, dig deep into our playlist at the bottom and we can guarantee you’ll find yourself open-mouthed that Terror Danjah was the man behind your favourite riddim all along.

We’ve done our best to include his production work for other artists (Trim’s “Boogeyman” and Kano’s “How We Livin’”, for example), but unfortunately large chunks of grime’s formative years are missing (and in some cases mislabelled) from Spotify. So while this list is an absolute banger, you’re no doubt going to hop straight into our mentions with some criticisms. Your favourite tune will probably be missing, but hopefully this collects together enough of your favourites with enough deep cuts and forgotten gems that you’re at least content with the list, if not actually happy.

Here are 20 reasons to love Terror Danjah.

Posted on June 21, 2018