Edinburgh-based dance imprint Fresh Take Records launches their vinyl series Fresh Wax with a five-track VA including tracks from Easy Peelers, THEOS & Berzingue, Mr. Sosa, Aymeric and today’s guest on DMC, Bernado Mota.
Established in 2019, over the past few years Fresh Take Records has built an impressive catalogue of releases that champion sounds ranging from groove-led, organic house to thumping club-ready electro and soaring, broken-beat rave anthems. Though the tones may shift – sometimes wildly – from one release to the next, the quality of their output never wavers, establishing Fresh Take as one of the most reliable underground dance labels in the UK.
One of the tracks on the VA, Party Tonight, comes from Portuguese artist and member of the DVRST collective. Dreamy, ethereal snatches of instrumentals and vocal samples are rooted by a thumping kick/bass combination which brings real weight to what is at heart an emotional and highly affecting house cut.
With Fresh Wax 001 out now, we caught up with Bernardo for a quick chat.
Bernardo Mota - Party Tonight [Fresh Take]
Hey Bernardo – welcome to DMC! Please kick us off by telling us what you’ve been up to this year.
Hey fellas! First of all, thank you for the invitation! This year is going great, I am working with new labels, preparing three fresh EPs that are coming pretty soon! The last release was Fresh Take’s first VA on wax, it includes 5 powerful tracks with different house styles. It’s my second release on wax which makes me really excited to see how people like it.
It must have been a buzz to get your music played on the Boiler Room, and by the legend Jamie Jones no less! Was that a career-high point?
When Fresh Take closed their first VA, which included my track “Only The D”, I was at the beginning of my project as Bernardo Mota and in that time I had just a few listeners and few signed projects.
A couple months after the VA is dropped, I was searching my track on youtube when I came across Jamie Jones mix in The Lab. I was listening to the whole thing without knowing that it contained my track. Suddenly almost on the very end, I start hearing these hard drums mixed with a classic and moody house track. I just thought, “Is this for real?”. It was crazy, I won’t say it was high point but it was a very special moment. Jamie has a big influence and it’s an honour having a spot on Jamie’s approved selections.
Please tell us about the DVRST collective that you’re involved in…
Diversity is the motto “the art of independent thinking together”. Each person in the collective has a different way of thinking, different skills, different musical tastes and we all get together to discuss, create and present content with everything to do with culture and art. In addition to producing events with both music and other art/cultural areas. DVRST is also a record label working with worldwide artists from house to techno rhythms. They have been escalating their portfolio via VA volumes as for some fresh EPs on schedule. Last year I have joined my ‘Just a Sip’ EP on their spotlight which gave me a special desire to release some cuts I have in mind for them.
Your new track Party Tonight is a vibe! How did this one come together?
“Party Tonight” is a project that I had saved for quite some time. It’s one of those projects that you know is solid and has an interesting and catchy sample but my laziness made me forget it was in my “good but needs time” folder. When Fresh Take asked me for some demos to release their first VA on vinyl, I realized I had to go get that project and make it a real steady/friendly sound for vinyl players. The track itself is very simple but has solid percussion that took a supplement from acoustic drums. In the final product we can hear a sample of a jazz horn and a very charming vocal asking “a girl out that night”. I like the idea of defining it as sexy and classy.
That horn sample reminds us of Tim Deluxe’s mega anthem ‘Just Won’t Do’. Do you have a favourite ‘big tune’ from the early 00s?
I don’t have a favourite track honestly. I have always listened to various styles and I was only trully introduced to house when I was 11/12 years old. When a cousin of mine offered me a homemade CD with several originals and remixes of house. The track “At Night (Kid Crème funksta mix)” is one of my favourite for sure, it always fascinated me. I still play it today, it’s a dancefloor belter.
In your opinion, what qualities make for a great record label, one that you would want to work with?
For me a good label is one that has a meaning and that is focused on growing alongside the artists they represent through time. Without any barriers or issues that can jeopardise the development of a career.
What other releases should be keeping our ears out for?
Well, there are a couple of surprises coming with Berlin House Records, theBasement Discos (the TBX100 compilation, that will be special), Lisztomania Records, Sakravi Records, Super Spicy Records and DVRST. I must say that I’m trying to change the style of my productions a little bit. I’ve always focused a lot on tracks that “tell a story” and I realized that many of them are not easy to mix in the middle of a set. I’m currently working and looking to adjust my projects to create something more groove-focused with dancefloor kicking end use.
Finally, what’s been the biggest track of the year so far?
Easy: Sami Dee – U’re The Best Thing (Dee’s 67 East 3rd Street Mix).