Jacq’s next destination is the label home of exciting and mysterious duo Wh0. Wh0 Plays Records tenth release is a special one giving a debut to this in demand artist, Jacq manages to combine tech house power and energy with soulful disco elements all in one record, sure to leave you breathless. DMCWORLD caught up with Jacq to find out more about the man behind the music…
Hey Jacq, welcome back you seem to be an ‘in demand’ artist right now – another quality release under your belt on an exciting and mysterious label (Wh0 Plays Records), congrats!
Thanks for having me back guys, yeh it’s all happening so fast at the moment!
How did the release with Wh0 Plays Records come to fruition?
After my release ‘Disco Check’ which was out on Toolroom Trax, I received great feedback from Wh0 in support of the track. They got in touch with me and we had a great discussion about their plans for the label and they asked for any unreleased tracks. At the time I had a few projects in build but nothing demo ready so I set about to finish what I felt I had was suitable for the label. Raise my Voice was a project I’d started in a series of tracks I’m working on and it was screaming Wh0 Plays all over it, so I got to work finishing the track with the label fully in mind for this project. Once the track was ready I sent it over, the Wh0 boys were buzzing off it and I was completely blown away by their positive reaction.
What was the inspiration and meaning behind Raise My Voice?
Raise My Voice is part of my Disco infused Tech series I’m doing at the moment. I really wanted to bring the two influences together into one sound and take inspiration from the best of both. I think it’s great to fuse genres together and find calls and responses in each style to work together.
How was ‘Raise My Voice’ made?
Raise My Voice started out with an idea from the vocal, which I had from a while back. I then went on to make a four bar disco loop and used a plugin called ‘Metafilter’ to give it a filtered disco sound. The bass was made using ‘Mini V’ from ‘Arturia’. It’s based on the Minimoog synth and it’s pretty cool sounding especially for basslines. My main rave stab comes from a plugin called ‘Rave Generator’. I use these stabs in all my tracks and it’s becoming a bit of a staple characteristic to my sound now. The main delay in the track comes from a cool plugin called ‘Crystaliizer by Soundtoys’ and I make the riser effects in ’Sylenth’. I ended up swinging the groove of this track about 30% to make it shuffle nicely, making ‘Raise My Voice into a driving disco tech houser.
How has this year’s pandemic affected your music career?
Massively ruined my plans, I had an annual strategy based on gigs, music and plans for my ‘In the Box’ events in Liverpool. Gigs just disappeared as did for everyone so it left me with more spare time to get in the studio and make music, so there are some positives. I’ve tried not to worry too much about what I can’t achieve and focus more on what I can. I spent a bit of time speaking to labels I’m close with and realised a slight shift in the sounds that will suit the scene this year. This is when I came up with the idea to do more disco house / tech vibe and keep it fun and interesting. I know a lot of artists are holding back from releasing this year which means there is a bigger opportunity to stand out if you can push music out there right now. So that has been my story this year, repeatedly releasing and keep making fun music entertaining my supporters and listeners.
Any tips for other artists trying to continue progressing through the pandemic?
Wear a mask and wash your hands!!!!!!!!!
For me it was all about realising what was going to be possible and working harder on that side of my music. I’ve worked on my production skills, learning new techniques and getting involved with online tutorials. I’ve also done a lot of collaborations with other artists which has been great. We are all in the same situation right now and I found working with others helped in supporting us both, not only with music but also with other issues which are affecting artists and the industry. I’ve met some amazing people linking up like this and made some great plans for next year with them.
Which artists have been the biggest influences on your music?
Mark Knight and the whole Toolroom family
Chus & Ceballos
Illyus and Barrientos
Prok & Fitch
What places are on your bucket list to play?
Toolroom – Source Maidstone or Studio 338
Abode – All venues they host parties at are amazing, so any of their future events
Most memorable party as a raver and most memorable party as a DJ?
Most memorable party as a raver has to be Creamfields 2003 in Speke, Liverpool. I had just come back from Ibiza early hours of Saturday morning and some mates had tickets to go to Creamfields. I was knackered to be honest and wasn’t feeling it but got blagged into going. We all drove over late afternoon, party was in full swing, everyone looking like they’re having a good time. Later on we ended up in Radio 1 Essential Mix arena and Sander Kleinenberg was playing, I looked around the arena and the sun was setting outside , this track comes on I’ve never heard before but it just made me stop and take note . Everything just went into slow motion for a minute, the track breaks down and this whole arena goes into a musical hypnotic state all on the same wavelength. The room goes off and everyone has this one thing in common now and feeling the mind fuck off the track. This track had just got in my head and hooked me in, it’s one of those times I’ve never forgotten through music. I think everyone will have had one of these moments and I bet you can all remember the track at the time, its magic how the music can take you back there. This track in my memory is Bedrock ‘Emerald’…
Most memorable party as a DJwas playing for Sankeys festival last year in Manchester at my old stomping ground Bowlers. I’d partied there for years in the late 90s always dreaming about being a DJ, so when I got my chance it was a bit of a dream come true. There were three arenas and I was playing the same time as the main headliners were playing in the two other arenas. I wasn’t hopeful to get a crowd as I was not a big artist in comparison. When I started my set the room was pretty bare with people. My mate said to me don’t worry just go on and do your thing and enjoy it. Mine was the last set of the night in this arena so I kicked off at 127bpm and just played rammers for an hour. By the end of the hour the room was filled, it was bouncing and the crowd was buzzing. But no one came in at the end of my set to switch off the system or tell us what to do and I didn’t want to be the man who spoiled the party so I looked at one of my mates and said “What do you reckon?” he looked at me and said “Keep it going till someone tells us different!!!” and I managed an extra 45 minutes, it was ace. The whole room was going for it until the sound engineer came in and switched the sound down. Everyone started booing at him, I was loving the energy we had created.
You’ve got to pick six people to party with at an after party, dead or alive – who are they?
Deborah De luca
Thanks for taking the time to join us and answer some questions JACQ!
Thanks DMC it was a pleasure!
Jacq – Raise My Voice out now on Wh0 Plays Records, purchase and streaming links below: