Josh Hvaal

Hot Creations continues its 2021 release schedule with the four-track EP ‘Getting Better’ from Josh Hvaal, the producer who has become a household name in the contemporary house sphere in recent times. It was in March 2020 that the young UK-native achieved a remarkable feat: releasing his debut EP on Hot Creations. Such an achievement didn’t go unnoticed, with industry heavyweights soon playing his music in the form of Joseph Capriati, Andrea Oliva and many more. Releases have since followed on Yousef’s Circus Recordings, Malgado’s Distortion and Hot Creations’ offshoot Hottrax, standing him in good stead for another successful year in 2021. DMCWORLD checks in with the main man…

Hi Josh! Great to have you with us today! How are you doing? Where abouts are you based at the moment? 

Hey DMCWORLD, thank you for having me! I’m currently based in Derbyshire in the United Kingdom.

You’ve made quite an impact since you made your debut on Hot Creations last year! Tell us, what’s it mean to you to have made that big step forwards in your career? 

I feel honoured to have my own sound on arguably the most influential dance music label of our generation. I owe a lot to Jamie and Lee for sure! 

So you’re set to return to Hot Creations in February with a four track EP, titled Getting Better. A great range of sounds across this, it’s solid to say the least!! Can you tell us a bit about the tracks and the idea behind this EP? 

Thank you, glad you like it. This EP gives you a very well rounded view of my sound, as it goes from ghetto house to breakbeat, but it has my own signature to each. It also gives a good idea of what my DJ sets in clubs sound like as well. 

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Did you get to try any of the tracks from the EP out in the clubs before the pandemic? 

I actually wrote Getting Better and Basic about a week and a half before the UK went into lockdown. I was able to test them out in one of my final shows at Stealth in Nottingham, which gave me some great crowd reactions. 

Let’s talk a bit about your studio! What’s your current set up like and were there any key bits of gear/software used in your latest EP? 

So I am very much an in the box producer, but as you probably well know by now my sound is extremely Drum machine lead, so the key piece of hardware I have in my studio is a 808 emulator called the Behringer RD-8. I also use the Roland TB303 for more acidic basslines and the Behringer crave which creates some really unique analog sounds. But as I said I predominantly am an in the box logic producer, I’m a massive fan of the Rob Papen series of VSTs! 

2020 was a tough year across the scene, with music itself playing a big part in many people’s lives. Were there any special tracks that helped you at times throughout the year? 

I think more than anything, this year has made us realise how important music is to everybody. There is such a power that music has over each and every one of us, one record can literally take you back to a memory of a place or a person. For me, I rediscovered a love of 90s breakbeat music, which then inspired my record Tiptoe, which is on this EP! 

Music aside, what else has kept you busy over the last year in the current absence of gigs? 

I’ve actually used this time to work on my physical and mental strength, it’s allowed me to get back in shape and look at how I can better myself every single day.

What would be your dream gig on the other side of the pandemic? 

I would say with my music being extremely warehouse driven, playing the warehouse project in the UK would certainly be up there! 

Looking to the year ahead, is there anything else lined up from yourself  music-wise that you can hint at yet? 

Yes, I’ve got lots of music coming out this year on some really incredible labels, I can’t talk about them as of yet but I can’t wait to announce them. But what I can tell you is that I am going to be launching my own “Nine Year Me” label in Summer this year.

Thanks a lot for chatting with us today Josh! Congrats on the EP and we wish you all the best for the year ahead!

Thank you guys!