Crate Digging: The Influence of De Underground Records

Crate Digging: The Influence of De Underground Records

Part of Newham Heritage Month, 2021

Crate Digging: The Influence of De Underground Records

Share your memories

 If you remember De Underground Records, we’re collecting memories as part of the project. We’ve put together a very short form here for contributions. 

De Underground Records was at 18 Sebert Road, Forest Gate, London. It was both a recording studio and a record shop and operated from 1991 until 1996.

Owned by Mike De Underground (Michael Aymer), his brother Cool Hand Flex (Peter Aymer), Uncle 22 and DJ Randall, this independent business became one of the cornerstones in the development of the UK hardcore, jungle and drum and bass scene. The wider De Underground family included A-Sides, MC Fats, Marly Marl and Wacko. De Underground became synonymous with this sound and many well-known releases, including Lennie De Ice’s We Are IE Uncle 22’s Six Million Ways to Die, and Cool Hand Flex’s Melody Madness, were associated with the shop and its labels.

During the time it was open, many of the UK’s jungle and drum and bass DJs, MCs and producers passed through its doors including people like Andy C, Bizzy B, Ellis Dee, Doc Scott, Fabio, Goldie, Grooverider, DJ Hype, Kenny Ken, Richie Montana, Peshay, DJ Rap, Slipmatt, Swan-E, DJ Zinc and many more.

As part of Newham Heritage Month, 2021, Rendezvous Projects conducted interviews with 18 people closely associated with De Underground, including founders Cool Hand Flex, DJ Randall and Uncle 22. We have produced a podcast, a video, an audio trail around the Sebert Road area and will be launching a limited edition publication on 22 May 2021.

(Image above © Peter Marshall, 1992)


This hour-long podcast mixes oral history testimonies from the main protagonists, visitors, producers, DJ’s and passers-by. These include A-Sides, Anita Bhogal, Cool Hand Flex, DJ Chef, DJ Hype, DJ Randall, DJ Skie, DJ Van Waxen / Wacko, DJ Warlock, MC Navigator, MC Fats, MC Rage, Marly Marl, Sherry Morrison, Eddie Otchere Paul Romane, Uncle 22 and Laura Young, some of whom have not given an interview in over 25 years.

Mix by Warlock 

Listen to a mix of rare tracks from the De Underground labels created especially by DJ Warlock. 

Limited-Edition booklet

In a print run of just 500, this 20-pp booklet and B2 pull-out poster is available from our shop.

Audio walk

During Newham Heritage Month, 1 – 31 May 2021, six short sections of audio, which included oral histories from participants, music and a specially created playlist of De Underground tracks by DJ Warlock, were displayed in the area around Sebert Road.

Newham Heritage Month logo
Supported by Newham Council, Royal Docks and Heritage Lottery