Gimpmode remembered with final Bass Brawl



This Thursday (May 26), the final installment of Wobble House's Billionaire Bass Brawl dubstep DJ competition at Inferno Lounge (393 Marietta St.) is being dedicated to the events creator, Matthew Fox, aka Gimpmode, who died on May 3.

Zan, Distal, Antimatter and Whisperlink will each bang out 25-minute sets for cash. No original tracks, mashups or remixes that the DJs have had a hand in crafting will be allowed. Natasha Fox vs. Kenny Ray, Jimmy Powers, Armanni Reign, Mighty High Coup, DJ Lord and Trench are also on deck. Contestants are judged on a 10-point scale for technique, track selection and crowd presence. First place wins $300. Second takes home $150, Third gets $75 and fourth walks with $25. Ricky Raw hosts.

Click below the jump to read a eulogy written by Atlanta MC and longtime Gimpmode cohort Ricky Raw.

Matthew Gimpmode Fox

The son, the lover, the friend, the artist.

Matthew was a happy young boy, always excited and smiling. He was affectionate, loving, and eager to try new things. His mother, Susan Koch Fox recalls him as the passionate athlete that he was as a child. He played soccer, baseball, football, and golf. His natural ability shone through when he got a "hole in one" on the 9th hole in a family game. "Some people play golf their whole life and never get a hole in one, and MY SON got a hole in one.." - S. Fox

Matthew was goalie when playing soccer and had so much passion for the game that he would hold himself responsible if his team lost. His mother often tried to persuade him to play a position with less direct responsibility but never succeeded. As he grew older he became a well liked neighborhood boy. Before he was even a teen, he began learning about carpentry. As he got older he would often do handy work around the neighborhood for free, as his father George Fox did, just because he wanted to help people. He adored his father and enjoyed spending time with him watching sporting events from football games to professional racing.

Matthew Fox was a passionate lover and he found his love with his soon-to-be wife, Natasha Fox. To see them together was a pleasure. Both of them are beautiful people with a fire in their eyes for each other. The love from the couple radiated through the room whether it was at a casual lunch or a 2 a.m. DJ set while Gimpmode was rocking the turntables. Matthew constantly publicly proclaimed his love for Natasha. He would love to proclaim multiple times in a week that they were engaged to be married and always introduced Natasha as his wife. The two were nearly inseparable and had a passion for each other that lived through their entire relationship and never fizzled out. Their love was evident and unmatched.

If you knew Matt, then you knew that he was excellent at making you feel included and appreciated. Matt preferred not to be alone and was constantly seeking out love. This lust for love led him to work with many friends on music from Daniel Mcbeezy, Mayhem, Paul Swytch, Armani Reign, myself Ricky Raw and countless others. He always went out of his way to include his close friends in all of his business and musical ventures. Many of us had a standing invitation to come over and work on some music or just hang out. At nearly every DJ gig, he invited a list of friends to come be a part of the event. This is how he surrounded himself with love and was able to share himself with the people around him. He never needed anyone to help him perform, as he was truly a one-man show, mixing records with ease and SWAG. His purpose for inviting others to be a part of his musical career was out of a need for camaraderie and a sense of brotherhood. He created the Wobble House crew (which consisted of Ployd, Distal, Jeremy and Gimpmode). He was a key creator of East Atlanta Love, Dark Ages (Sloppy Seconds), and the sole creator of Billionaire Bass Brawl. As Prince Presto and Zone 3 recall, ironically, he was actually asked to leave MJQ years ago for playing dubstep and now I challenge you to go MJQ on any given night and not hear at least some dubstep. No disrespect to those at MJQ but massive respect to Gimpmode for being this far ahead of the curve and not being afraid to play the music he was feeling even before it was widely accepted. Gimp truly was a pioneer of dance music.

My first impression of Gimpmode was a message I received through the forum on asking me if I was into "Clownstep," which is a type of Drum n Bass that at this time got very little appreciation in ATL's dark natured Drum n Bass scene. I remember that I replied something to the effect of "not really,” and proceeded to tell me how he was all about the "wobbles." Looking back, he was reaching out to me to be friends before I even met him and again staying an individual in a time where most DnB heads were into a much darker sound. His goal was to bring fun back to a scene that seemed to be dying and was consumed with fierce competition for a small audience. The scene has since grown to be amazing and possibly even better than it was in the late 90's which has been thought to be the pinnacle of dance music in ATL. Gimpmode was a big part of this growth. I think he was the first DJ to make it seem really cool to play really silly music. He challenged Drum N Bass heads throughout the southeast to take off the black t- shirt, put on a hot pink one and throw some sunglasses on at 2am. "Wake up you mother fuckers, this is a party!" - GimpMode

The first time Matt and I really got to hang out was in Panama City Florida during the off season. This gig consisted of a lot of different DJ's from the Southeast, and I was slated to host. As far as attendance goes, the night was a total bus,t but Gimpmode made it one of the most memorable nights for me and many of the people there. On this night, DJ VOLUME FADER was born, "Big Ups to ALL my Faders!" He spent the entire evening entertaining all of the artists performing (since that was about all that was there) by killing the volume faders on the mixer while whichever DJ was playing and intermittently yelling out absurdities in a strong British accent. I am not sure how the first couple of DJ's felt about this unsolicited action, but it made me laugh until I hurt. I felt like that show was all for me as I am sure every one of the people who were there also felt. I remember the promoter was not able to get us any type of bar tab, however, DJ Volume Fader put on a splendid British accent and proceeded to tell the bartender that he had traveled very far to be here and he was really fancying a beer. I believe he got about 3 pitchers that night and insisted that I drink out of all of them. The camaraderie was thick between us from that point forward.

As our friendship grew we began throwing a night called "East Atlanta Love," which consisted of Dubstep, Hip Hop, Electro, and Drum N Bass. A solid business man, Gimp worked out a great deal for us with the club. I was sold. This guy could talk, unfazed by business meetings and intimidatingly beautiful women. Thus began one of the craziest summers of my life.

I recall being a little nervous when we were going to meet a girl I recently met who would be with a group of her friends. I half seriously asked him to take it easy because these were probably a step up from the girls we had been running into lately. So as soon as we saw the four girls, he walked straight up to them, lay across all of their laps and introduced himself. They absolutely loved it. They ate it up. I had to laugh at myself and appreciate his ability to break the ice with no hesitation, while I sat and over-calculated every move for these girls I felt were out of my league. No one was ever out of Matt's league, in any facet of life. And he knew it. He wanted the world to know it. I need the world to know it now.

—Ricky Raw

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