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At the mere age of eighteen, Chris Reed (then Plasticman) had well and truly entrenched himself in the South London UK garage world. From early on, he was obsessed with the darker sounds that the genre had to offer, and would often play works from the likes of Wookie, Zed Bias, Groove Chronicles, and Steve Gurley. At that point Reed was a member of the 'Fearless Crew, alongside Tricks & Spells, until a split in 2001 freed him up to pursue his solo productions.

Reed began by experimenting with production on FruityLoops, as were a growing community of young producers, all attempting to make dark garage tracks that would catch the ear of Big Apple Records resident DJ Hatcha. Others around at the time included Skream and Benga, amongst more experienced heads Artwork, Benny Ill & Horsepower Productions. By the end of 2001, although Plasticman's tracks were generally overlooked by DJ Hatcha, they were however picked up by East London Grime pioneer, DJ Slimzee, who signed Plasticman's Venom / Shockwave to his Slimzos imprint, and released it in early 2002.

By 2003, Reed had been supported by DJ Hatcha on tracks such as Hard Graft, which saw his grimy take on the instrumental sound being welcomed by the FWD family, leading to releases on Ammunition Promotions' Soulja, and ROAD imprints and in the summer saw Reed's first appearance at the world famous FWD event at Plastic People, London.

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