Ellie Hewitt, London - United Kingdom - on 7/6/12
Turbo Recordings has launched a new compilation 'New Jack Techno', showcasing fresh new talent on a well established label. As a label, Turbo has been instrumental in launching the careers of artists such as Azari & III, Chromeo and Proxy. Launched in 1998 in Montreal by Tiga, the label's cult following is in for a lesson in contemporary techno with contributions from the bright young things of the global next generation. Ellie Hewitt talks to three of the artists on the album, Locked Groove, Nautiluss and Duke Dumont about their inspirations for New Jack Techno, the sound of the album, some of their childhood dreams, tie-dye, molluscs, and underground procrastination.
So is your name related to the cool molluscs Nautilus. They've been around for 500 million years without evolving... how important do you think it is to evolve as an artist (or a mollusc)? Nautiluss: The name is a metaphor. I don't actually liken myself to a mollusc. I think that as an artist you should always been evolving. If you ever get to the point where you think that you've perfected your craft, then you should probably give it up. Perfection doesn't exist.
Tell us about your track 'Troubleman'? What inspired it, the sound you were going for? It was based on some night terrors. I think I captured the frantic, terrified vibe that I felt when I woke from it.
If you had to pick another favourite track on the compilation which would it be? Gingy and Locked Groove - Tie Dye. Both super talented producers. Love the detuned square bassline and the drums.
You hail from Toronto, Canada, can you tell us a little bit about the music scene over there? Toronto is a hotbed of talent. There is a distinct lack of places for us to play, however. There is a lack of small and midsized venues with good sound and a willlingness to try and build a local community. Fortunately there is a collective of djs/producers (inluding myself) that are trying to take this on ourselves. I can't say too much but look for Neighborhood Watch soon.
As a child, what did you grow up wanting to be? A hacker.
Tell us about your track 'Different Paths' on the New Jack Techno compilation, what inspired the track? Locked Groove: I was listening to a lot of industrial at that time, stuff like throbbing gristle, S.p.k, Nurse with wound, so I guess it's partially influenced by that and also old regis stuff.
You also have a collaboration on there with Gingy called 'Tie Dye', have you ever made your own Tie Dye t shirts? Can you elaborate on the title of the track? I've never made my own tie dye shirt, I'm not a hippie. But then again maybe I should try it! I don't really know why we chose that particular title, I think we just rambled random words and tie dye was the first that seemed to fit at that time. Altho we are both as far away from flower power as you can be, I still love the title.
You've been handpicked by not only Tiga for Turbo Recording but also by Scuba of Hotflush, who were the producers that you grew up listening to? There's loads, I grew up listening to Marshal Jefferson, PAS, Francois k, Derrick may, Suburban knight, Juan Atkins, Robert Hood and loads loads more, basically a combo of detroit, house, disco, funk soul, new wave.
Alot of your music has been described the 'gliding effortlessly' between Berghain Techno and Chicago House, if you had to pick, Chicago or Berlin, which would it be and why? Neither, as much as I love Berlin I don't think it's the right place for me to live. Same for Chicago. I don't think I need to be somewhere particular to do what do in the world. I live in Antwerp surrounded by wonderful friends and family and at this time I don't really feel the need to move out.
How would you describe the term 'bass music' as a genre? I wouldn't know. People always try to box me somewhere and I often get the line 'your music is UK inspired' I don't really hear a lot of resemblance between me and UK producers. I don't know if bass music is a genre, I don't care about genres, I just care about good music.
As a child, what did you grow up wanting to be? I was totally clueless, i didnt want to become anything in particular, but I always had this feeling I wouldn't fit in a normal 9-5 society / job. I don't know why, I'm fortunate it worked out for me and I’m grateful to be doing this.
Your track for the Turbo Recordings series is called 'Underground Persistence', are you a very persistent person? Duke Dumont:Depends on the task at hand. With regards to recording, I put in a 9-5 shift, 5 days a week in the studio, like everyone..But procrastinating can throw persistence out the window. 'Underground Procrastinating' didn't sound as good though.
How would you describe the sound of the album 'New Jack Techno' to someone who doesn't know anything about music (maybe using colours, random words...) ? I wouldn't bother.. If someone doesn't know anything about music, then they are a hollow vessel, walking the face of this Earth.
Who are your top three techno producers? Redshape, Robert Hood, MMM (Erik & Fiedel)
You've remixed the likes of Bat for Lashes, the Mystery Jets and Lilly Allen, do you have any favourite remixes that you've done and if so why? My remix for an Australian band called 'The Canyons', because it's the closest I've come to expressing what was in my mind for the remix, to the finished recording.
When you were little, what did you want to grow up to be? A stunt man.
New Jack Techno is out on Turbo Records on June 18th
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