Interview with Bill Laswell: ‘I think everything’s experimental whether you like it or not. I think that people who do generic pop are experimenting with clichés’
Bill Laswell is telling an anecdote about Ginger Baker, the scandal-prone Cream drummer and star of this year’s cult film Beware of Mr Baker: “In Tuscany, when I went to visit him in his abandoned farm house, nobody knew who he was. I remember Jimmy Page came to visit him and they wanted to play, so they played in this abandoned bar in town, and this guy comes over and says: “You got any Zeppelin?”
Interview with DJ and producer Steve Aoki: ‘You can’t be lazy in this game. You have to evolve and keep your sound fresh, ahead of the curve’
Steve Aoki is a man who puts the ‘busy’ in ‘business’. Not only does the 35-year-old DJ produce and remix tracks, he’s also the driving force behind Dim Mak records, has his own successful clothing line and plays in a band.
Two years ago I went to a festival called Movement in Turin, Italy. It’s the European incarnation of Detroit’s seminal event and was conceived after the promoters, Luigi Mazzoleni (Gigi) and Maurizio Vitale (Juni), first came across techno legend Derrick May. It has grown in stature year after year and I went back just two weeks ago to experience Movement again, while I was there I managed to grab Juni for a quick chat during his hectic schedule.
One area of London’s clubbing landscape that is often overlooked is the world of the promoter. It’s an unforgiving world, often unpredictable but a very rewarding endeavour for those who work hard enough to make a success of it. ‘Apogee Presents’ is a particularly interesting outfit due to the fact that the guys behind it all have full-time jobs and one of them, Tom Gearing, appeared on BBC’s The Apprentice no less! Sadly he wasn’t up for an interview, but I managed to grab some time with his co-promoter at ‘Apogee Presents’, Cameron Smith…
“Professional chaos” is the term used by Big Narstie to describe the effect of combining both himself and True Tiger
“I get really bad stage-fright and nerves just before [we go onstage] because, I don’t know what’s going to happen. You don’t know if you’re going to break something of yours, if something’s going to stop working, if you’re going to break a limb, if you’re going to hurt somebody…” Matt “Butch” Reynolds, guitarist
This week, ‘Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)’, the debut album by New York hip-hop group the Wu-Tang Clan, turned 20 years old. Surfacing at a pivotal moment for the genre, the album marked a step-change in the sound of east coast rap for much of the next decade.
He doesn’t need much of an introduction but Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry is a pioneer of the reggae world and one of the most influential artist/producers to ever have stepped into a recording studio. Building an experimental studio in his back yard, in Jamaica, “Scratch” was the producer on early recordings for such seminal musicians as Bob Marley & the Wailers, Junior Byles, The Heptones, and Max Romeo. His estoeric, often bewildering approach to music resulted in some of the most dynamic, experimental and downright special music to have ever come out of Jamaica.
Earlier this year I received a lovely EP by a lady named Clara Moto. Her music varied from soft and ambient, to energetic and more dancefloor-orientated – it was great to have a collection of tracks that were so diverse yet held together by a very definite style. Clara grew up in Austria, where music was an intrinsic part of her life, taking jazz and piano studies at an early age – at 21 she began DJing and soon started making her own music. With her second album ‘Blue Distance’ (a name inspired by Sylvia Plath), I had a quick chat with her…
In the last year alone, JME has won the Lord of the Beats producer contest, featured on a top 3 hit alongside Wiley and Skepta with Can You Hear Me? and been named as one of the UK’s most influential tweeters
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