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RIP Optiv

Sad news coming from the dnb world today; Edward Holmes, known fondly as dnb producer/label head Optiv of the legendary Cause 4 Concern, is said to have passed away.

While not a creator of the neurofunk sound, Optiv—as a part of the then-quartet C4C—played a huge part in helping the sound grow, netting releases on their self-titled imprint in 1999 before spreading their wings to imprints like Virus, Renegade Hardware, Timeless, Metro, True Playaz, and a host of others. While they were on their tear, Optiv set up his own imprint, Red Light Recordings, which not only nurtured the future of the scene, but also helped usher in established talents like Black Sun Empire to the larger dnb realm.

It was via Red Light that Optiv started a long list of collaborations, linking with Bulletproof and Gridlok early. Always one to link with producers to explore the darker side of the dnb sound, Optiv found a kindred spirit in BTK, who he started releasing material with in 2011, resulting in three album-length projects released during their union (2012's Dirty Tricks, 2014's Blackjack, and Authentic Part One, which dropped in 2016).

No cause of death is being shared at this time, but that hasn't stopped drum & bass community from sharing condolences along with their thoughts on his legacy.

We put together an Apple Music playlist full of our favorite tunes from Optiv's extensive catalog. Tune in and celebrate his legacy. Rest in peace, Optiv.


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