How did you get into the electronic music scene?
From a very young age I was pretty enthralled in music, my parents listened to everything from U2 to The Doors, Cypress Hill to Simon & Garfunkle. It wasn’t until highschool that I started listening to a lot of dance music but more like Australian electronica eg The Presets, PNAU, Grafton Primary, things like that. My infatuation of synthesized sounds within live music grew and grew leading into listening to a lot of Gorillaz and old school Calvin Harris. But when I went to senior college in Coffs Harbour for year 11 and 12, that’s when it really kicked off. A friend introduced me to psy-trance, and around the same time my uncle introduced me to James Blake. Two very different ends of the musical spectrum that both prompted me to start looking at music in a different way and made me want to know more about the electronic music scene and the purpose that drives it. After this I began to explore dance music properly for myself, and I found a kind of intermediate between the heavy, psychedelic 4x4 and the experimental minimalism; tech, funk, house and the minimal genre itself. Around this time, near the beginning of year 11, I went to my first doof. It was gritty, it was raw, I’d never seen anything like it, and I loved it. And haven’t turned back really, I’ve just let my infatuation grow and electronic music has just become more and more a part of my life since.
You run the amazing Bassic Records, what brought on the idea for the label? Tell us a bit about the sound of the label?
Firstly, thanks for calling it amazing! It is amazing work, I work with so many overly talented and humble people and it is a real honour to do so. The label was sparked by Jacob Crisp and I at about the beginning of 2013. We had become quite close friends, bonding over techno mainly, and were put on a few of the same bills in 2012. I wasn’t into production but started throwing parties at this point, so my focus laid in curating music not creating it. As we started to notice the talented DJs and producers around us and the lack of platform for promotion and releasing of outdoor tech styles, we decided to create one our selves. So we started the label originally as a collective of 4 DJ and/or producers, like-minded in our approach of pushing tech in the outdoor scenes.
The Bassic Records sound is not restricted to a specific style of tech, it is within respect, anything techno, house, minimal, progressive (tech not trance) that takes influence from the outdoor scene. Made for a big sound system out in the abundant Aussie bush. Perfectly representing the Bassic sound would be our home artists Ken Zo, Käse Kochen, Ark-E-Tech, Doppel, Storm King and Bass To Pain Converter. Their individual sub genre’s cross over progressive techno, psy-tech, melodic techno, deep house, tech-house, deep tech, industrial techno and more, but all fit neatly under being described as lush, open, powerful and innovative. I think something that separates Bassic from other labels is that our sound isn’t about Bassic, it is driven by our artists. And that’s been our purpose from the beginning.
Any plans to starting producing in the future?
As you can imagine I get asked this one all the time! And to be honest, there is none at the moment. I can feel it inside me that one day I will, but I don’t think I will until I’m bursting at the seems with cravings to do so. Or maybe just until I have any spare time. At the moment I am very happy continuing to learn and play with the art of DJing, I find a lot of musical satisfaction from doing so. Curating music on the label, connecting artists, organising remixes, compiling releases, and the graphics as well, it’s incredibly exciting and rewarding and I get a lot of creative release through doing so.
Favorite gig you’ve played to date?
This is definitely a hard one, I’ve played so many amazing events in the last couple of years each with their own highlights. I think I can narrow it down to three of different categories!
Boutique Festival - Strawberry Fields 2013 – This was my first major festival gig and when the day came, the pressure was on. I played in the tree house stage at the bar on Saturday afternoon, 3 – 5pm I think. When I started my set with an old Pete Oak track at about 118 bpm my friends came to wiggle on the d-floor and show support. Give it about half an hour and I was well into funky tech-house and people were noticing and coming over for a peak and a dance. By the end of the set I was dropping heavy 128bpm minimal to at least a couple of hundred wild partygoers. It was amazing. Indescribable for someone who had been DJing as short a time as me.
Indoors - WeLove at the Burdekin Hotel, August 2015 – These guys have become family to me since they booked me out of the blue, and I’ve started attending religiously. WeLove run the Friday nights at the Burdekin Hotel and have created one of the best vibes I’ve seen indoors clubbing since living in Sydney. I played tracks by some more popular artists as well as some very underground stuff and all of it was lapped up, the energy was electric and never died out. Stoked to say I’ll be back there in January, and these guys will always have my full support.
The Aussie Burn - Burning Seed 2015 – This festival changed the way I look at a lot of things, about giving, accepting, respecting and the festival experience as a whole. I urge everyone to go to it! I played at the AWC (Alien Welcoming Committee) theme camp, which is run by a wicked crew from Canberra who have their priorities straight - music. Doppel and Logan Zingus and myself were lucky enough to be given a 5 hour slot on the Sunday afternoon/sunset leading up to the Temple Burn. We each played solo and then back-to-back, the vibe was incredible, and it was really special to be able to heighten people’s experiences at an already amazing festival. I stayed up that whole night partying where as I’d taken it easy and was sober for majority of the festival beforehand. The next morning the closing act was nowhere to be seen and so myself and Rennie (co-manager of AWC / amazing DJ / nutcase, in the best way) got to close the stage to a group of very happy campers. Exhilarating, won’t ever forget it.
Up and coming locals acts we should keep an eye on?
Wow okay, the list could be endless. Every week I’m finding new rising talent in Australia that’s almost as striking and unique as the last. Firstly a special mention to my Bassic Records artists, in particular stars that are shining bright lately, those putting in the extra mile, Doppel, Bass To Pain Converter, Matt Dwellers, Ark-E-Tech and Käse Kochen. We have just launched Like Liquid, the new minimal progressive tech project of Hugo Hayes aka Purple Hayes. This project is making leaps and bounds already, his debut ep released early December and the response so far is phenomenal! Other producer/DJs capturing my eye in most recent times include Eeemus, Made In Paris, Retza, Somersault, Mattia Musella, Dylan Carroll, JPA, Cìrukè, Nick Reverse, C-zen, Volkiene and Logan Zingus. All of these guys deserve to be household names when it comes to house and techno and promise you most of them will be!
What vibe did you go for with your podcast?
Lately I’ve been delving into the deeper side of progressive house and tech, completely encapsulated by the emotional journey expressed in majority of the tracks I’ve been sourcing. What I’ve tried to create is a balance between soul wrenching melodies, deep drive and raw groove. Usually what I mix is just what I love at the time, tailored to time of day when I’m playing at a party, and lately this is what I’ve been exploring the most and it leaves me musically satisfied in every way. Some of the labels of whose tracks are in the mix are recently by far my most inspiring; Parquette Recordings, Bonzai Progressive, Endless Music and Manual Music. The mix also consists of tracks that I compiled for my set at Subsonic Music Festival just a few weeks ago. I’ve tried to create a bit of an odyssey throughout the mix, outset delving deep into progressive designs, reaching profound sounds mid way and finishing at our elated destination. Horns, powerful keys and snazzy vocal cuts create a lively, boisterous and powerful energy I try to deliver each time I play.
What parties can we catch you at coming up?
29.1.16 – WeLOVE – Burdekin Hotel, Sydney
5-7.2.16 - Bizarre Garden – Byron Bay region – supporting Catz n Dogz, Be Svendson, DJ W!LD, German Brigante and more
12-15.2.16 - Earth Frequency Festival – South East Queensland
26.2.16 - Diversity Festival – Plantation Hotel, Coffs Harbour – Bassic Records Stage featuring Bass To Pain Converter, Kase Kochen, ZigMon B2B Rogibear and Jimmy D
25-28.3.16 – Rabbits Eat Lettuce – Byron Bay region – Bassic Records Showcase main stage Sunday night – supporting D-nox, Justin Jay, Louie Cut, Morten Granau and more
Abity – Anachronistic
Mendexx – Deceptive Minds (Paul Kardos Remix)
Youngen – The Long Way Home
Lane 8 feat Matthew Dear – Undercover (Eekkoo Remix)
Formel – Entrages
Supacooks – Stratosphere
Animal Picnic & Aaryon – Calathea
Koen Schepens – Chordinaal
Francois Rengere – Equilibre
Dave Seaman & One Million Toys –Everything Come In Threes (D-nox & Beckers Remix)
Hubert Kirchner – DDMZ
Fre3 Fly – It’s Possible (Kiso Remix)
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