BiographyLondon's Horsepower Productions aren't just part of dubstep's first wave; along with a handful of likeminded colleagues such as El-B, they essentially invented the form, turning the slinky bump 'n' flex of U.K. garage (aka 2-step) into something darker and dubbier. Where garage was all about champagne, Horsepower and their mates crafted tracks that bubbled more like tar.
Between 2000 and 2002, Horsepower released six EPs (on the labels Tempa and Turn U On, the garage spinoff of drum 'n' bass's No U Turn) that fairly redefined the sound of 2-step, stripping it back to a minimal percussive sensibility and filling ballooning space with dub pressure. Their debut artist album, In Fine Style, combined the best of those tracks with new productions to present what was essentially the first dubstep longplayer. They were originally a trio, but member Nasis left in 2002, leaving Lev Jnr and Benny Ill to carry on the torch; in 2004, they followed up with To the Rescue. Fun fact: the first release by Kode9, the proprietor of Hyperdub and "discoverer" of Burial, was a collaboration with Benny Ill; one of those tracks appears on In Fine Style.