(I was lucky to be able to interview the Executioner himself, Andy C at Webster Hall, via Electronic Night Life. Give them some love and check out my interview below.)
1. How has your summer been? Do you have any cool stories/highlights from 2014 so far that stand out? Summer’s been incredible man. The summer kind of kickstarted, for me it was March. I know that’s not summer, I did Ultra and I did a little tour. I did like a week in the US, and then it’s just gone crazy since then. I went out for two weeks in June and I’ve played the most amazing festivals already. Electric Forest was amazing, EDC was incredible, Paradiso, Spring Awakening. I’ve been blessed already, you know. Then I come back to the UK and I went straight to Ibiza, doing a residence in Amnesia. Serbian Exit Festival, there ya go, tens of thousands. I mean, honestly it’s crazy. And here I am back in America, this tonight, Red Rocks tomorrow, and we’re only halfway through the summer. The bags are getting bigger and bigger under the eyes.
2. What do you think of the state of D&B today? As a 20+ year veteran as a producer & DJ of drum and bass, what are your thoughts on how the music is received globally today? I think it’s being received better than ever, I’ve gotta be honest with you. In the original days, it was one or two countries and that spread. And you know, America went mad for it in the late 90’s, but now, the resurgence & reception I’m getting from the crowd is just phenomenal. So, basically, in a nutshell, the music has been around It’s not a fad, it’s a foundation. Everybody knows what the music means, Everybody knows what the music is. For that very reason, that’s why it’s kicking off and popping off on every continent around the globe?
3. Do you have any thoughts on the fast/slow, footwork and garage infusions that have been coming out of Brixton, from artists such as Om Unit & Machinedrum? I love any kind of new genre, I’ve got to be honest with ya, I’m a music person, I listen to all kinds of new stuff. The thing about new genres is that music needs them right? It can’t stay still, it can’t be boring. You can’t decide a date and then nothing else new is ever going to come out. And when the new stuff comes out, you know what it does? It inspires people that have been making music for a long time, it inspires a new generation, and also at the same time it draws new people in. And when it draws new people in, I get to play the festivals so I get to intro them to Drum & Bass, so that’s the idea. You get to perform and play to crowds that wouldn’t necessarily hear your music, and that way we grow even bigger.
4. What’s your favorite track off RAM Drum & Bass USA? I like Volumes 1, 2 and 3. How about that?
5. How has the explosion of EDM & Dubstep affected Drum & Bass in the USA? Do you find American ravers more or less into D&B these days? I think that affected it in a positive way. The explosion in general of dance music, electronic music, dubstep music, drum & bass music, whatever you want to call it, the size & power & the frequency of the parties that we’re seeing now, is something really, really special. It’s affected it in a positive way. I’ve got a lot of good friends in the dubstep scene, who used to be drum & bass producers. And you know what, they appeared at festivals in June, I’m hearing a lot of drum & bass coming from the guys, so that’s a good thing as well.
6. Where is your favorite place to play in the USA? Like I just reeled off them dates to you, each one had a unique setting and a unique vibe to it. And so for that reason, how can you single out a place in a nation as big as this.
7. Have you ever collaborated with Hospital Records on something original, as opposed to live gigs & album compilations? If not, is there a Hospital artist you’d love to get into the studio with? I love all the guys in Hospital, so you know, why not. Maybe we should have a little get together at the end of the show, get the laptops out and have a little battle of the beats.
8. As the master of three turntables, do you have any thoughts on these pre-recorded sets we’re starting to see more and more often? Well anyone that hits play…Honestly, look at me, I’ve travelled…I do not travel to press play, I travel to work up a sweat and enjoy myself. Each to their own, but on a personal level I like to work on the set.
9. With the recent rash of deaths at major US dance festivals, do you have any thoughts on harm reduction like DanceSafe at events? Oh that’s absolutely the pits. Honestly, when something like that happens, it’s awful, terrible. I don’t know how you police a crowd as big as that, you know. At the end of the day what’re you going to do, people might drop stuff before they get in the venue. So really, it’s a delicate subject, and at the end of the day, the kids, the people going out to these parties, they need to take care of themselves. There’s having fun and there’s having too much fun.
10. What is coming next from Drum & Bass? Where do we go from here? I wouldn’t like to make as grand of a statement as that, but I would say, for myself? After all the mad touring of the summer is out of the way, I have some solo records coming out in the Autumn, so I’m putting the finishing touches on them now, some solo material, looking forward to it.
Bonus! Any favorite tracks to throw out to the readers? One I wouldn’t mind listening to tonight, would be Renegade Snares (Foul Play), or seeing as it’s New York, I know they’ve got a little flavor of Babylon, Splash.