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Basement Jaxx Interview 2014

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basement jaxxThe two-man duo of Felix Buxton and Simon Ratclie, out of the Brixton district of South London, England, has been crafting dance music rooted in House but incorporating pop, hip hop, dancehall, and Afro-Caribbean styles for 20 years.

While they belong with the other great two-man British dance acts like the Chemical Brothers and Groove Armada, Basement Jaxx’s music also has crossover appeal rooted in the fact that the production team prefers to write songs that could stand on their own, whether played on a single acoustic guitar, fully produced, or played with the large band that backs Basement Jaxx when they do their live performance gigs rather than simply DJing.

The act helped define house music of the late ’90s through the mid-2000s, scoring Number Ones on the U.S. Dance chart with tracks such as “Rendez-Vu,” “Red Alert,” and “Bingo Bango.”

Since releasing a stellar singles collection in 2005, Basement Jaxx has entered what could be called their “mature” period, releasing cohesive
albums and even branching out into film scoring by teaming with Steven Price for the music on the 2011 British indie-sci-fi sleeper hit, Attack the Block.

The seventh Basement Jaxx studio album, ‘Junto,’ came out in August, and is followed by a tour with the group’s stage band.

1. The stage show for your last tour was quite impressive. When you start touring for to support ‘Junto’ this year, are you going to try to top the last one?

Buxton: You have to always try and make progress and get better and slicker, and I suppose it’ll suit the new material, as well. In a technological way, it would be lovely to advance the live act, but that’s all to do with cash. How much can you pump into the show? Part of that is how well the album does. Everything’s so related.

2. Do you have a regular band you work with and keep together?
Ratcli‡e: Yeah, three of our singers have been with us for over a decade, and the drummer. There’s a strong core.

3. Is the stage show very technical or are you running everything live? Are you working with any sequencing onstage?

Buxton: We’ve just got Logic playing backing tracks, and we’ve got live instrumentation: drums, percussion. We’ve got DJing and live band at the same time. Ratcli‡e: Keyboards, guitar, brass—all on top—and then about five vocals.

4. In the 20 or so years you guys have been DJing and producing, things have progressed so much that computer power isn’t much of a problem anymore. What do you think about the current state of making music? Do you like how it’s advanced technologically?

Buxton: It’s miles easier. If you think about when we started, getting the beats to sound a certain way—now you’ve got thousands of beats already done, and you can manipulate them and technology just keeps jumping forward. It’s exciting; it’s really good. I think that what 10-year-olds will be doing in five years’ time will be amazing. That’s what’s exciting. One thing I heard about recently is a helmet a scientist in England is working on. It takes your brain patterns, your thought patterns, and uses it to sync up to music creation. The idea that people can think their own music, and think melodies—they’ve actually proved that it works. So maybe we won’t be doing this at all; everyone will be creating their own music, which is amazing. I do want to find out more about it. I thought with our album we should really try to get that involved somehow, because that’s real, new technology and really exciting. That could be like when vinyl first came along or when people first had the radio. It could be a massive step in the way that we get creative and perceive things, and also for everybody to get involved.

5. When you write music, do you often just hear something in your head so that a helmet like that would be perfect for you, or do you more often sit down and tinker with melodies until you have something?

Ratcli‡e: Both, really. Sometimes you’re just playing around, something comes along and you just persist with it. Other times you have a very clear idea of what you think it should be, and it might be a bass line or a melody or a beat or rhythm, and you start with that.

6. Do you write along with the band, or on your own?

Ratcli‡e: We tend to write on our own. We’ve got three possible working rooms in our studio now, so sometimes together, sometimes separately. Then we bring singers in and might try several singers on one song. Buxton: On this album we’ve got more collaborations with other people than ever before. So it was writing a song with someone else. But I think a lot of dance acts often just get someone who comes in and does a top line. We’ve always been more like a band in the fact that we create the songs, which could be around the fireside

7. A lot of the album’s songs sound like it was a party in the studio, with a ton of vocalists and musicians. Do you record big groups of people at once or track individually?

Buxton: Generally individually. One track, “Mermaid of Salinas,” developed over two years, and [guitarist] Andrea [Terrano], he came up with the melody, and then kind of a smooth guitar ri. We took his original file of that guitar and embellished it, looped it and used that as the beginning of the process. Then a trumpeter was coming past, and he did like half an hour of soloing. Then I spent like a month or something editing [laughs]. [Engineer] Duncan [Brown] cleaned it up in the end. So that’s one part of it.

Then the song actually develops around these parts, because you get really good parts and then it’s kind of like doing a patchwork or a collage.
You just keep on adding layers. Then Andrea was around my house, and I was saying the song should have a melody and a vocal on it as well. He said he wasn’t very good at writing songs, because we were trying to tell the story of the Mermaid of Salinas: Basically he went into the sea and he ended up making love with this woman who was a stranger. So we sat together through every emotion of this experience and got the melody.

Then we did a DJ set somewhere else and he did a live acoustic version and went o going all Flamenco-y. Luckily someone had filmed it on a camera, so we had a record of what it was, and then that piece led to adding a bridge. So that song over two years kind of grew and grew and grew.

8. What’s your studio space like?

Ratcli‡e: We moved there two years ago. Before that we were in just a room basically for a decade in Brixton. That was starting to leak and fall
apart, so we decided to find somewhere nicer. We got a place with a mixing room with an SSL desk, a writing room, and a vocal booth.

Buxton: One of the main things we got back that we had in the beginning was a window. Often studios are dark and all sealed o. Where we moved, the writing room can have the window open, and you don’t need to play music loud to have ideas. So that’s why one room is specifically for mixing; you can pump it up, and it’s completely soundproofed. The other room is a bit soundproofed.

9. How often do you work in the studio?

Buxton: Every day. Ratcli‡e: Five days a week. I try not to work weekends if possible.

10. When you are working in the studio, do each of you gravitate toward your own roles, or do you both work on everything?

Buxton: With Simon, he gets two bars to sound like a track. For me, I’ll do the whole thing, and I’ll play it to Simon, and he’s like, “I can’t hear a thing of what’s going on.” I can hear a whole song that’s all in there, but it sounds like a mess. So it’s kind of like the elements are more important to me than the way it sounds. Obviously it has to sound good, but that’s the way my mind works.

I think generally our music-making process has always been very much a mixture of organic and electronic. So we could be in the studio playing some live instruments; it might be playing the furniture, because it sounds good making a noise. And then processing that, and using synths in the box and things from outside. And then if it sounds good when that train goes past, let’s put the mic out the window and record that.

Everything is just sound, and then you try to make that as quality as possible. ‘Cause we’ve always had lots of layers, and that just builds a picture.

Hi, my name is Erick Ycaza. I have a BA in Advertising & Graphic Design. This blog is to provide you with daily music news and share my personal style.

Interviews

Matthew J Van Howe Opens Up About His New Electronica Album In Interview

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Matthew J Van Howe Opens Up About His New Electronica Album In Interview
On his brand new album, Matthew J Van Howe explores Ambient and Electronica sounds. In addition, you’ll get delighted with chilled vibes as it is filled with beautiful synths. Well, it is up to your imagination and ears to define the ‘Emergent Narrative’. Learn more about this interesting project below.

1 – First of all, what makes ‘Emergent Narrative’ different from your previous records?

To begin with, this album has no vocals which is quite different from my previously released music. One of the design rules I set for myself in ‘Emergent Narrative’ was that I wanted no hooks that would be stuck in your head and to make each track unpredictable so that you would need to follow the song and the album in the moment.

2 – Which artists or bands were your sources of inspiration?

Brian Eno and Liquid Mind for their ambient music for sure. Classic synth influence came from Wendy Carlos and John Carpenter. Hans Zimmer and Ryuichi Sakamoto influenced cinematic moments.

3 – What message are you trying to send with these new songs?

As the title suggests, I want people to listen and tell their own stories as they progress through the album.

Travel Into Matthew J Van Howe's Sonic Universe Of Electronica
4 – Do you have any favorite track from this material? What makes it so special?

Personally, I like “Scarlet” a lot. It has a depth of complexity horizontally from a higher-pitched synth in 3/4 time looping with the 4/4 time of the rest of the piece only connecting every 12 measures which complete a cycle almost like months in a year. It appeals to my mathematical side and the analog to years in a lifetime is poetic in a sense.

5 – How long did it take you to produce it?

From start to finish I’d say a little over 2 months.

6 – Do you think music videos are important in order to promote your career these days?

Interesting question. I think in general, people don’t actively listen to music as much as they used to so as far as promotion I think videos are a good tool. With the resurgence of Vinyl, I think that is changing. This album was designed to be actively listened to and not watched, so I don’t think a music video fits the intent or design very much.

Matthew J Van Howe
7 – Have you tried new social media/music apps like TikTok?

At present, I have not tried TikTok. I am interested in apps that are centered around music, however.

8 – Did you ever consider giving up or retiring from the music industry?

I did stop making music for a while to pursue making movies and also board games, but I’ve returned once again and it makes me happy.

9 – How many synths do you own? Which model is the best?

I own about 4 different synths. On the album, I used a lot of the ARP 2600, Prophet 5, and Arturia’s digital emulation of the Fairlight CMI. In my opinion, they have these lush textures that I used to create rich, gentle soundscapes.

10 – What else can we expect from Matthew J Van Howe in 2020?

I am mastering a 25 song improvised piano album entitled, ‘Memories I Would Otherwise Forget’ that will be out later this year.


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DENNII Opens Up About Latest Track, “Back 2 Love” — Interview

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DENNII Opens Up About Latest Track, “Back 2 Love” — Interview
Allow Electro Wow to introduce you to DENNII, a rising European music producer and DJ with enough talent to impress. Frankly, “Back 2 Love” is the kind of housey track that will grow on you in mere seconds. We had a chat about his latest single, so scroll down and read the full interview right here!

1 – How are you feeling with the release of “Back 2 Love”?

I feel great about it, cause’ I’ve spent a lot of time to find something that fits me and emotion that I wanna bring, something different, enough club oriented but still radio-friendly and unique on the market.

2 – What artists inspired you to produce it?

There are a lot of artists I am amazed by like Tchami and his basslines, Matroda and his power to always bring something new, Chris Lake, Hugel to name few. I am always trying to stay true to myself and my sound to keep it simple, catchy and unique.

3 – What message are you trying to send with this song?

There is no message really in it, at the moment when my friend sent me the vocals I enjoyed it cause’ there are a lot of heart-breaking moments’ in our lives and I founded myself in it and hope that people are also going to. It went great, lyric about broken love and energetic background. My next single “Burn” is gonna send strong message and it’s out 1st of April.

DENNII Interview
4 – Who is the singer behind the powerful vocals of “Back 2 Love”?

I really don’t know, one of my friends gave me these vocals, he said he bought it from some ghost singers and didn’t know what to do with so I took it and worked great for me.

5 – What made you come together and work on this track?

Music. As I told before, I really don’t know whose vocals are, but I would like to find out.

6 – The music video looks amazing I like how the camera captures the reaction of your fans. Where was it filmed? Please tell us more about it.

The video was filmed by one crazy guy who likes to spend time with his camera more than his girlfriend I think. Different places, different venues, clubs, and festivals. So he wanted to do it with his material and I said yes. Some of the material is from my show’s here in Switzerland, some in Croatia.

7 – I know you are about to release your next single, “Burn” in April. What can we expect?

I am leveling up with this one, which really describes me in all ways. Energy is also stronger and bigger, the message from this one is that you always have to go further, no matter what, you have to fight for something. I think a lot of people is going to find themselves in it.


8 – Where exactly can we listen to your mix sessions, ‘Music Like Religion’?

My “Music Like Religion” sessions I am publishing on my Mixcloud profile, it’s the best of what I have at the moment on my playlist for live shows. Every month I publish one. Besides my radio-friendlly tracks are also the IDs that I work for live shows which are more energetic, party-oriented tracks which I am releasing in April too.

9 –Is there any live show you would like to announce?

There are few, but I am still in negotiations with the agency I work for. The Castle Club, Thun CH, I’ll be a resident in April and May. Summer festivals in Switzerland, Kalypso Club in my homeland Croatia, Zrće Beach.

10 – Finally, what would you like to achieve as an artist in 2020?

I just want to enjoy what I am doing and make people also enjoy it. I hope I will fulfill expectations from everybody. Thank you a lot for having me.


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Eric Remington REVEALS ALL About His Music Project Lavender Galaxy — Interview

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Eric Remington REVEALS ALL About His Music Project Lavender Galaxy — Interview

This interview lets you discover more about Eric Remington aka Lavender Galaxy. Without a doubt, his new music project caught my attention mainly because it’s a blend of funk-infused, chill, energetic Pop melodies. Scroll down to read all!

1 – Thanks for your time, how do you feel as an artist after 13 years hiatus?

Oh, man… I feel like a huge void has been filled. Words really cannot describe the feeling of making music gives to me.

2 – What does your new project Lavender Galaxy mean to you?

Lavender Galaxy is a new beginning for me. A dream fulfilled. A dream lived.

3 – What themes are your lyrics about?

Finding the love of your life, finding happiness in what seems a dark place, hope, and living your life to the fullest. “Lip Gloss” was the song that started this whole project. I always like to surprise my wife, and she can be a tough one to surprise, so I made her a song… “Lip Gloss”. The lyrics in “Lip Gloss” are all about her and the fun we have together.

4 – Your self-titled album sounds pretty good, how did you come to collaborate with all the vocalists?

Well, I worked with quite a few vocalists and writers until I found the right people to fulfill this vision… to get the right sound. Once I found Marvin, Antonia, and Nekane, I knew this was it. The internet is a never-ending resource of untapped talent. If you need a bass player, look online. If you want someone to sing harmonies with you on a track, you’ll find one.

Lavender Galaxy Interview
5 – How did you get your creativity flowing while recording this material in the studio?

Ideas usually happen in the damnedest places. Most time you just hear something that starts that creative fire. Sometimes it’s just a word someone says, something I see, or simply just a strange thought that transitions into a lyric, which transitions into a song idea.

6 – Do you have a favorite song? If so, what makes it so special?

I have two favorite songs. One is “Pills Of Pain”, which I wrote almost 15 years ago. It was my late cousin Mike’s favorite song, whom I lost to drug addiction, and I’m currently working on remaking and releasing it in honor of him. The second favorite song is “Time With You”, which is by one of my best friends, Jeremy Hartman. Damn tune still chokes me up when I hear it 15 years later because it reminds me of when we were all learning to make music together, and all the things we lived through together.

Lavender Galaxy music
7 – Are you planning to release a music video? Please tell us more.

I actually just released the music video for “Paradise”, which is an anime based story I wrote, which actually sets the stage for all the other Lavender Galaxy videos. They’ll all be tied together in some way. The video for “I’d Follow You” just finished filming and is expected to be released before the end of March. The video for “Here You Are” is starting filming soon and is expected to be released later this month or early April.

8 – How does this album differ from your previous music projects?

Lavender Galaxy is a lot more upbeat and fun. My older works had more of a saddened and darker tone to them. This is some serious night and day differences from way back when.

9 – What about an album remix? Do you like this idea for the future?

I’d consider it, for sure. I love working with other musicians. In fact, Jenn Desantis did a short remake of “Paradise”, which I loved so much that I asked to put do a little mastering on it. She’s got a spectacular voice and I’m seriously considering collaborating with her in the future.

10 – What’s next for Lavander Galaxy?

Where do I begin? You’ll find out in 2021.


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Interview | Questions & Answers With Kēvens

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Kēvens

There is nothing new in the fact that greedy corporate interests represent a threat to our Mother Earth. Climate change is a critical issue that will get worse in the next years if we don’t take action and protect our planet. In this interview, I had the pleasure to chat with Kēvens, who worried about the environment, created a music video entitled, “World Is Burning”. Open your mind to his words, and let’s raise awareness together for the conservation of nature. Learn also about the artist’s career below.

1 — Do you really feel the world is burning?

I certainly do. I learned long ago if your neighbor’s wall is on fire, it’s your problem too. What happened in Australia will happen again somewhere else, I pray not but it’s up to us to be vigilant and do everything in our power to reverse global warming. That window of opportunity is closing fast.

As a Florida resident, the last few hurricanes we went through have gradually intensity and I have a nauseating feeling that’s not going to stop.
In 1992, I experienced my first cat 5 hurricane and it was devastating. Now due to increasingly careless human activity on the planet, primarily the burning of fossil fuel that pump (CO2) in the atmosphere, methane, and other greenhouse gasses, the atmosphere and oceans have been heating up, glaciers melting way faster than originally predicted. Yes, World Is Burning 🥵

2 — Why is it important to create awareness through music?

Music is a language everyone can speak, it is the best platform for sonic expressive communication I know. If you have something serious to say, put it in a song.

3 — How do you respond to those who deny the reality of climate change?

I simply tell them the climate crisis is real, whether they believe it’s manmade or the Earth’s natural cycles, climate change is happening. In the end, no matter what, Mother Nature will heal herself, but we may not be able to recover.

4 — Where do you find the most inspiration to write your lyrics?

I’ve been asked this question the most over the years. My source of inspiration comes from The Almighty through life’s experiences.

5 — Can you tell us more about your life’s mantra?

My life’s mantra is “Positivity is a Necessity “ When I was much younger I had a best friend, Anthony Booker, who died tragically. I felt at a loss since we had plans to take our band Le Coup at the time to higher heights.


Years later after countless trials and errors in the music industry in addition to personal failures in love relationships, I discovered meditation. Through that new outlet, I came to know the power of positive thinking.

In 1997, a gentleman by the name of Jason Donavan (of Zenfest) hired my group, to perform at The Florida Zen Music festival. After my performance, DJ and Producer, Francisco Mendez said to me, there is trouble brewing by the main arena, the audience is being rowdy due to the heavy police presence. He urged me to get on stage and “do my thing”. Mind you, this is the rave era when parties got shut down regularly.

I went on that stage, while a member of Rabbit in The Moon (DJ Monk) was spinning. I did a little toasting to the drum and bass track he was spinning to get in sync with the audience before I decided to address them. I told the masses, “Most of us have travelled from far to be here. We don’t want to cause any trouble with the authorities, we just want a chance to dance and celebrate life!” They responded with loud screams of joy, to my surprise.I went on to say, “We don’t want this party to get shut down, so let’s raise our voices and tell the Police ‘Positivity is a Necessity’ “. At this, the crowd started chanting along with me — there was little to no music playing, just me and thousands of “strangers” raising their voices in peaceful resistance. That was the first time I used my motto in public and saw its effect. After that, things cooled off, and the event continued without any more tension with the authorities.

6 — Would you describe your musical style as drum and bass?

I would say that drum and bass is the foundation of my musical style. The drum and bass I am talking about is not the modern one but from the early reggae dub days.

7 — Over the years you’ve performed in different music festivals. Which one is your favorite? Why?

I have three special moments that comes to mind and want to share them with your audience.

A.- Being the closing act at the Ultra Music Festival Soundstage in Miami back in 2003 Bringing an all live band to an EDM scene was a challenge back when I did it in the rave days and it’s still is today. Closing that night validated me as a headlining act and changed the way I promoted my brand.

B.- Gathering of Nations Pow Wow in New Mexico. Over 500 tribes come together to dance, I had never seen anything like that before, so many spiritual dancers with costumes and songs, a treat for the mind-body and soul and experience of the Native Americans no books can teach you. To have been invited to perform in that arena was a true honor, one I will always carry with me.

C.- My all-time favorite to date is in a little town called Takamatsu Japan, the festival was One Love Fest. It was the very first time I performed in a foreign country as a Headliner. Although it was a small arena, I will never forget that experience. I ended up doing three encores, on the last one, the people in the front row rushed the stage, lifted me, and attempted to carry me. It was surreal, I never experience fans with that loving intensity until that point.


8 — What would your pre-show ritual be before performing alone on stage?

There are a few things I always do:

A.- Pray for a strong spiritual connection with the audience, that’s most important to me always.

B.- I like to be alone and silently visualize my intro, a strong intro set the pace.

C.- A quick check with my stage manager making sure the band is dialed in, dancers ready and my wardrobe person is the last person I interact with before walking on stage.

9 — What are you most excited about right now?

At this very moment in time, I am very excited to have lent this song to The Creative Youth Community Development Initiative (CYCDI) with the support of United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in Lagos, Nigeria in a campaign against Climate Crisis to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of United Nations.

10 — Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

With guidance from The Most High, in 10 years my brand will be well established globally for years, inspiring young and old towards taking positive action in improving the human condition.


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Interview | Questions & Answers With Keldamuzik

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Interview | Questions & Answers With Keldamuzik

“Magic” by Kelda Williams aka Keldamuzik is a sexy RnB jam you should definitely add to your playlist. With a total of 4 albums, this is the first single off her upcoming 2020 record via Digz Media Group. Her passion for the entertainment industry has taken her to divide her time among, TV, film, and music projects. Discover more about this new track and her artistic career down here!

1 – First of all, what got you into music?

I started writing a lot of poetry, I decided one day this needs to be converted into music because people were digging it! I always had a passion for writing and performing, I can’t imagine my life without doing this.

2 – How do you think growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area has influenced you as an artist?

Heavy influence for sure, from all the artists that come from the Bay to the culture, it has definitely had a major impact on my career lyrically and musically.

4 – How would you describe your music to someone in just three words?

Fly, unique, inspiring.

Keldamuzik Interview
5 – Do you consider yourself a multi-talented artist? Why?

Because I can apply myself to any type of music and I’ll still be me, I can be on a rock song and someone will be like, yeah that’s Keldamuzik!

6 – Have you ever signed a record deal or do you prefer to stay indie? What are the pros/cons?

I have signed a record deal, it was an indie deal. The pros were that you had access to bigger resources to further your career, the cons were they have many other artists just like you and when they get to project they do, if they don’t, then they don’t and you’re just left on the shelf. I rather stay indie and have my marketing teamwork behind me under my label.

7 – Why is your new single entitled “Magic”?

I wanted something catchy for people to listen to. “Magic” is a fun and radio-friendly song and it has a global appeal.

8 – What is your favorite line from this song?

My favorite line is “Ya candy rain just fell on me”… haha, I don’t know why but I like that line a lot.

9 – Is there any funny anecdote while you were recording the music video for “Magic”?

Hmm…Well, my producer and I were just thinking of something sexy and catchy so we were like when a couple comes together it’s like making “Magic” yeah magic! And shout out to Mrs. Thesis for writing this, while I write all of my rap songs, I get help when it comes to my Pop and R&B sounds.

10 – What else can we expect from Keldamuzik in 2020?

More music, more movies and more content that will be on my channel Keldamuzik Presents which is on Apple TV and Roku… check it out!


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