SBR : Hi ! Firstly can you introduce yourself. You’ve been pretty active since 1993 so tell us a little bit more about your music.
Well actually it all started 20 years ago, on a Saturday of June 1992 (shit…). First rave, first blast, never stopped since. One year later I was starting to mix, two years later I got my own decks and 5 years later in 1997 we bought our first studio with my colleagues from BudBurNerZ. Since these days, most of my life turns around hard electronic music should it be thru DJing, creating music, producing music, organizing parties and more recently doing lobby with institutions and government for the defense, recognition and promotion of electronic musics in France.
In terms of music, most of what I play and produce is hard but can go from hardcore (no mainstream) to drum and bass or dubstep. Fat bass, intense music, this is what I like !
But I also play some techno and electro sometimes. I have different type of bookings from Silent Parties by Silence Events to massive events. As a DJ, I tend to adapt to the audience.
SBR How would you define your style ?
Mmh, good question. This discussion came up pretty often when we were releasing stuff with BudBurNerZ because our music was usually pretty far from any standard hardcore music with a name like UK hardcore, gabber, Frenchcore, etc. I guess this is also why people enjoyed our music, because we always tried to break barriers and come up with crazy shit not tacking in account this or that artist or this or that style. Same thing when I DJ, I always play what I like and this means you can have dubstep in a hardcore mix, breakcore in a Dutch festival, etc.
SBR : When was the first time you heard hardcore and can you tell us a bit about this memories ?
The first time was when I was in « seconde class », I was around 15 and we had all these mix tapes of everything like breakbeat, acid house and some hardcore. But at this time I was more in breakbeat and jungle so it did not strike me at first. But when I heard hardcore on highly amplified systems in rave parties (June 1992) this is when I was stroke by this music. Powerfull bass, fucked up sounds, no limits, this was just what I loved to dance on all night long. From there I started to grow my EP collection with all this crazy music and never stopped!
SBR You’ve seen (and been part of) the evolution of hardcore for the last ten years. Do you like the way it evolved? What do you think about it?
Well it’s always good when things evolve! It shows that it’s not hype or a trend but something that will stay. In the early 90’s people were saying that electronic music was just a trend, something that would not live time and look where it stands today. Same with hardcore, at first almost everybody did hardcore because there was no « styles ». Then the scene grew and artists came up, labels and people followed and now we have a scene. I am happy we have many producers, new comers, labels, parties all around the world. It still is quite a small scene but has real passionates and artists, people who are ready to work a normal 9 to 5 job and then come home and work almost all night on their music. This is worth anything! I am not going to argue around personal tastes, real hardcore, gabber, etc. All I can say is that I prefer 100000 times to have a festival like Dominator, 100% harder styles, even if the mainfloor is 100% mainstream gabber. This gives a chance to hard music to exist and when people wonder around the event and bump in the more extreme stages, they discover the other side of hard music. Just look how crossbreed and hard industrial hardcore became popular in the past years, thanks to festivals like this, parties like Prspect or Musick in Belgium. So yeah, as long as we will have positive creative energy the hard scene will always evolve!
SBRIf you had to go to a desert island what 3 LP/EP would you take with you ?
Do I get food and drink also? More seriously this is a hard question as I have musical periods and I can’t really say this or that is my favorite LP or EP… But here we go:
Jones & Stephenson – The first Rebirth
Public Enemy – Fear of a Black Planet
The 4 Seasons – Vivaldi
Oh oops, I just found the Mokum 16 and the Analog Bubblebath falling out of my suitcase… haha…
SBR Do you prefer vinyl? CD? Laptop?
I’ve never tried laptop so I can’t say but when it comes to CD or vinyl I do both even if the past years I play more on CD for practical reasons. I enjoy both and do not find myself reduced technically with Cd’s. After years of heavy record bags, shitty MK2’s (even in major clubs and festivals) I decided to go for CD. I am not in the CD vs Vinyl debate as I guess it’s just a matter of finding what suits you best.
SBR you are member of the famous crew Party Uniq who promotes the parties Le Grand Méchant Beat in Paris. What do you think of hardcore/crossbreed/darkstep in France ?
Happy to hear we are famous !! We mostly are passionates and friends, Sophie, Virus, E-Tree and myself with the help of friends and artists like Ankou and Axiom. We spend 100% of our time and side money in the organization of hard music parties in Paris.
Hardcore has always been strange in France in terms of parties. We had good years, between 2000 and 2005 with big parties mainly organized by Epileptik, Audiogenic and some Sound Systems but the lack of professionalism of most of them, except Audiogenic who is still active today, almost killed our scene and scared off most of the venues, major distribution channels, media, etc. Since 2005, when we started Party Uniq and our parties the way has been hard but we feel we are getting there. We started off in very small venues, with parties at 5 euros entrance, like Mind Blast where we offered for 5 euros Simon Undeground, Unexist, BudBurNerZ and many more (people were still trying to negotiate the price of the entrance).
Darkstep is a big question in France… A part from us Party Uniq and our friends Matozoides, I don’t know another crew which programs darkstep in their parties and no French drum and bass event books darkstep artists. It’s like the radioactive clouds from Chernobyl, Darkstep did not enter France… LOL! Still as we are a little stubborn we have been promoting this music and these artists with our parties Break The Rulez that took place at La Java and where we had Limewax, Mystification, Robyn Chaos and a few more. These parties were kind of an experimentation where we mixed hardcore, darkstep and breakcore, and asked for example hardcore artists like Mark N and Simon Underground to play darkstep sets instead of hardcore, book guys like Duranx3 or Noize Creator, and try to give a fresh spin to the French hard music scene.
Regarding Crossbreed, this a bit newer music and we see people starting to like this style because it offers a mix of breaks and core (even if this mix of styles has always been present in hard styles thru breakcore, UK hardcore with drum and bass breaks, etc). We hope this will get big like it is in other countries and this style can contribute to create bridges between people and styles in France.
The next real test for us regarding Darkstep and Crossbreed will be the second edition of Therapy Sessions France on November 10th 2012 at Glazart with a sick line up!!
SBR Your are running the label Party Trax can you tell us a bit about your next releases
Well this is still very fresh and we only have two releases out for the moment from the excellent French artists Murmure, IOM Factory, Kill’Em All and Murdock. These two were hardcore but party trax is not only dedicated to hardcore so we will come up soon with dubstep releases from some new French artists, as well as techno or any other music we would like to see out here. The focus is on French artists for the moment but we will also be presenting foreign artists that we like. We do digital at first but also have plans for some vinyl.
SBR : What advices would you give to a beginner dj/producer?
Work your ass off; don’t pay attention to the others and what they say. Create your own personality and don’t neglect technique should it be for djing or for creation. The path is long, frustrating and the objective should not be recognition but PLEASURE.
SBR thanks for this interview if you have a last message to leave feel free 🙂
Thanks to you for this interview all the people who support our music, our parties and our shitty moods
Get ready for the fucking season 2 of Le Grand Méchant Beat starting Saturday October 6th at Glazart. Till then stay tunned on our website www.partyuniq.com for information, music, line up’s, etc.
Keep it hard and stay tuned for more musical sickness!