In the past decade, the rising Manchester-based producer has endeared himself to wide audiences through his thoughtful, evocative compositions, leading to performances at festivals such as Coachella, Electric Forest, Lightning In A Bottle, Camp Bisco, and Shambhala. As dedication to his craft, he has also achieved collaborations with Island Records staple JP Cooper and Ninja Tune’s Jono McCleery, and a European tour support slot with Emancipator. We sit down with the North-based DJ and producer to discuss his latest single and video ‘Blue Light’, what inspires him and his creative process making records.
Welcome to DMC World, Frameworks, where are you joining us from today?
I’m sitting in an old cotton Mill right now that was built in the 1800s. My studio is based inside the Mill in a small town East of Manchester. It’s a fairly working class town where most people frequent Greggs. Having lived in London and Brighton I really love the working class roots of the North West and find people are for the most part friendly.
As a producer and DJ, what inspires you?
I’m inspired by my surroundings, my family and my life experiences. I think it’s important to try and use these things as fuel in a creative sense. In the past I’ve put too much focus on other peoples music, their sound and their careers. Which can be a great tool to learn and hone a skill set but eventually i think it’s important to find your own musical voice. We are products of our surroundings and those surroundings are unique to each of us, that is for me where the beauty comes from. If you can create from a place that’s honest and sometimes vulnerable i think it translates and people feel that.
BLUE LIGHT Feat Cleopold (OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO)
Tell us about your latest single ‘Blue Light’, how did the track come together?
I started making Blue Light over lockdown and was engulfed with these feelings of motion. I wanted to create something with a forward driving motion, something that had a sense of purpose and poise. The initial idea looking back was super rough round the edges but it did capture the essence of what I wanted to create. Shortly after the idea was captured i sent to Cleopold to throw a few ideas over it. What he came back with worked so well and really sat on the demo with grace, it was almost a yin and yang relationship. The vocal offered the drive of the demo humanity and purpose. It felt like the vocal metaphorically speaking became the voice driving the car.
After we had the structure down I set about mixing. The mixing process took quite some time because i really wanted the track to feel really smooth and polished without losing its charm. I’ve been in the position before where you take a great idea and over produce it into a place it feels like it loses its edge, so that was very much on the forefront of my mind, in that sense its about trying to listen to the track without head and heart and have them both find a middle ground.
We love the cinematic video too, did you work with the director around its story?
I pretty much gave the director free range. We had spoken about the general feel of the track and he came up with a storyboard for the video. I wanted Alex (the director) to embrace his creativity as much as possible.