LSM//006

Interview

- Where was the mix recorded and on what equipment? Any special techniques on the go?

 

I recorded the mix on my setup at home. I bought my DDJ-400 controller when I first started playing out and I realised that the digital vinyl setup I had at the time was a lot more trouble than bringing a controller or a couple of usbs with me!

 

- What was the aim of the mix - was there anything in particular you were trying to express?

 

For the last couple of years I’ve been obsessed with what I’ve been calling “slow work” which is really just footwork which has heavy r&b and soul flavours to it. More often than not in music that has a bpm of 160 and above it’s all about the bangers and I’ve been seeking out music from artists that shows a softer side to the higher tempos. DJ Ends has been such an inspiration to me in this respect.

I really wanted to make a mix that was full of feeling - often my style is mostly heavy hype tunes with soulful parts mixed in amongst that and I wanted to create something that had the opposite ratio of hype to soul than usual. So, this mix is a softer, more soulful listen with some bigger badder beats in there too. 

 

- When you construct a mix like this do you think about the piece as whole, a few songs at a time, or do you just go on instinct and feeling and see what comes out the other end?

 

I think when I start creating a mix I have an idea about what I want it to feel like as a whole and then as I begin creating it usually changes and sometimes becomes something different than what I had imagined. With this mix the concept stayed within what I had imagined mostly, but also included some other more subversive tracks.

 

- Are there any tracks you want to point out specifically in the mix?

 

There are so many tracks by artists I have so much respect for in this mix! I think I’d like to point out that I have included quite a few by DJ Ends because, after DJ Rashad, they have been a big influence on my journey into footwork. “Peachy” by bastiengoat is a track I’d like to talk about - this track has been a favourite of mine to play during live sets for a couple of years. The track is so full of joy and vivacity, and I always end up playing it all the way through whenever I mix it in! Another track I’d like to point out is Sherelle's “160 down the A406” which is from their first EP release. I think what Sherelle is doing in music right now resonates with me so completely and I love this first release - I can’t wait to see what comes next!

 

- How did you get into electronic music?

 

My earliest memories of enjoying electronic music have all come through movie soundtracks - Blade, Tomb Raider, Batman, Trainspotting - but I grew up listening to punk and rock mostly, and it wasn’t until I was introduced by a friend to drum and bass in my early 20’s that I properly fell in love with electronic music. Through drum and bass I found my love for high tempo bass heavy music and my appreciation for other electronic genres has flowed from there. I think part of my love for electronic music is the culture that comes with it - going to raves growing up in Manchester and finding acceptance, love and kindness gave me a sense of belonging in the scene.

 

- Have your tastes changed over time - both in what you listen to and what you play out? More specifically, have you noticed any difference/changes in your taste between pre-covid and now?

 

Such an interesting question! I think my tastes are always evolving, especially in terms of what I play out. I would say that covid has had a really interesting impact on the music I am listening to and playing out, for example, I don’t live in a particularly queer household currently and during lockdown I was really missing queer spaces and community, so I found myself listening to a lot more queer music, and a lot more house and techno as a result, which is definitely now showing in the music I’m playing out - I’ve started mixing in techno with jungle and footwork, and I love the results!

 

- Any favourite labels, artists, or tracks that you want to publicly declare your love for at the moment?

 

Yes!! Hooversound Records, which is run by Sherelle and NAINA. I am all over the vibes being released on this label. I recently created a mix for Vandelay Radio and I had to stop myself from playing NOVA CHEQ’s entire FUK.GOV.UK EP. I also want to say that there probably hasn’t been a set or mix I’ve done that hasn’t included a track from ITOA since I discovered their music. Everything Worst Behaviour Records (run by Anna Morgan and Bell Curve) is putting out is dope.

 

- What makes a party/rave/club night extra special for you?

 

Inclusivity. If I can see that the space is one where people feel free to be themselves and express themselves however they want to then that’s when I feel a lot of joy. If the line up is diverse I feel like this goes a long way to creating an inclusive atmosphere. I feel like the sense of belonging you get from dancing in a crowd is an important part of electronic music and everyone should be free to belong in whatever way is right for them.

 

 

- You are part of the wonderful Booty Bass crew - how did you all come together? Do you see the crew growing over time? 

 

I actually came to Booty Bass through attending the nights when it was just Ngaio playing. I went to every single one, and was always dancing front centre, loving the vibes. Ngaio actually recommended the Mix Nights course run by Saffron Records, which is where I learnt to DJ and after that Ngaio asked me to play a Booty Bass event, and the rest is history! Devo and I were the first to join, we played our first event as a crew on New Year’s Eve at The Plough in Bristol, and then later Adibah and 2Honeys joined. We were a fearsome fivesome for quite awhile and now we have the amazing Hannza and Fabienne as part of our crew too! I’m sure as the crew grows and changes we will all grow over time, especially with the plans we have for the future!

 

- What's on the horizon for you at the moment - gigs, nights, radio shows, production etc?

At the moment I’m focusing on music production - I’ve just started a course with dBs Sound & Music Institute in Bristol and I intend on continuing to do a degree, which I am so excited about! I am currently trying to document my story via Instagram and hopefully soon via newsletter as a non-binary person navigating such a male-dominated environment. Apart from that I have a few gigs coming up, in November - I’m playing in Swansea on the 19th at PYNK - a queer dance party, which I’m really looking forward to and in December I’ll be playing a new event that that champions underrepresented artists called TIMER on the 9th at Mr. Wolf’s in Bristol, and on the 18th I’ll be playing at House of Savalon’s Queer Drag Cabaret show at Strange Brew, Bristol, alongside such incredible talents: Travis Alabanza, Rhys’ Pieces and Chiyo.

 

- What's your favourite track/album outside of electronic music - something you'd never play on a night?

 

Too many to say! Recently I’ve been listening to a lot of Kadhja Bonet - such talent! Also Greentea Peng, who hosted the first Queer Rave event that I played at in London in August. I have also been writing an essay for dBs recently about the revolution and empowerment in punk, particularly in the Riot GRRRL movement of the 1990’s and trying to talk about what we can learn from the punk D.i.Y subculture in electronic music to increase diversity in our culture and communities, so I have been revisiting a lot of songs that I loved (and still love now!) when I was younger, like “Rebel Girl” by Bikini Kill.

 

- As a geordie collective, we leave our most important question til last; what's your go to order from greggs?

 

Haha! I love this. As a vegan I’m obviously a fan of greggs, and my go to choice is their vegan sausage rolls! I really loved the steak bakes they were doing too - so comforting!

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