Your 2015 diary is already littered with far flung trips to Slovenia and Bali whilst last year saw you smash the living daylights out of clubs in such out of the way places as Novosibirsk in Russia. But what was the most surreal experience you had DJing last year?
“Getting paid to have a four day holiday in Barbados at an all-inclusive resort that led straight on onto a picturesque unspoilt beach was pretty surreal. We were thinking…seriously, we are getting paid for this!”
Your story begins way back, friends for years raving under canvas and out in the fields to the likes of The Prodigy. Where were the big events and who were the DJs you were following back then?
“Fatboy Slim, Carl Cox and The Prodigy were our favourites back then and to be honest, not much has changed. We went to some great events raving…Dance Valley in Holland, Nature 1 in Germany, Creamfields and of course SW4 which we still go to every year. Ibiza is another story; so many good memories…”
The next step in the story is when you set up your own hard house label, what made you want to start a label in the first place?
“At the time we were working with Nukleuz, Tidy Trax and Kaktai. We had released a fair few records and the next step was starting a label to release our tracks. It also helped that we both worked in London next door to a record pressing factory. We used to head over in our lunch hour to check out the test pressings or order the next batch of vinyls. The guys there were really cool and always sorted us out some really cheap cash deals!”
The hard house scene was looked down at by many, but the scene has produced so many big producers that are seriously ripping it up today. Why do you think it got so much bad press?
“Hard house is a scene that is quite stuck in its ways. There isn’t much room for it to evolve. The plus side of this is it is a great launch pad for a producer starting on the ladder. It’s one of the easier scenes to get into and you don’t have to be the best producer in the world to write a banging hard house track. The fact so many Hard House producers from when we were doing it are doing so well now just proves that!”
Was music always going to be the choice of career for you two or during school days were there other opportunities?
“We were both massively into music throughout school and college but it didn’t seem like it would ever be a job. It was just something we loved being involved in, whether it was going to gigs (yes we were both rockers at college), playing in bands, or just listening to our Walkmans in class when we were meant to be working! I always thought I’d be a graphic designer. I think Kieron knew he would be working in music but at that time he was a guitarist. It wasn’t until around the year 2000 when we both bought Akai S2000 samplers learnt how to use them and started bashing out some seriously dirty beats that everything changed.”
What did your families think of your choice of eventual careers?
“Luckily we are both from really supportive families so there was never any pressure to ‘get a real job’.”
2003 saw you two take a new slant on things when you started writing house music together. What was that whole experience like, did you find it a simple development?
“In 2003 we decide to write our first trance track. We sampled the theme from the film ‘The Lost Boys’. It went on to be Judge Jules’s most requested track of 2003 and charted at 21 in the national charts. After that we wrote quite a few trance records and did a load of remixes. Our first house track was another bootleg, this time Boy Meets Girl, Waiting For A Star To Fall. Our version got signed to Sony Records and got to number 3 in the national charts. It also hit number 1 in the UK radio playlist chart with all the major stations playing it. Not bad for our first stab at a house track!
Tell us about your studio set up…
“We use Cubase with a MOTU soundcard and Makie HR824 Monitors, KRK VXT8 Monitors & KRK VXT4 Monitors. We have a load of outboard gear but most of it stays in the cupboard now. Today’s plugins are amazing. We love Massive, Trilian, Sausage Fattener, The Waves plugins…we also use Loopmasters sample packs.”
What inspired you to start Zulu Records?
“Really it was the frustration of labels continuously moving their schedules around. We would do our best to plan our releases so one would come out each month. The labels would move the dates at the last minute and you would end up with a month with no new track out then two coming out on the same day. The great thing about having our own label is we can now set our own release dates. It’s great that the label has built up so nicely. Considering Zulu is less than two years old it’s come along way!”
Who is the most exciting new DJ you have seen recently?
“We saw Bontan at the Toolroom party at ADE and he was playing some really cool stuff. He is definitely one to watch for !
It may not be good for images, but MDE really love…
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