Massive new album ‘Multiverse’ coming out on Anjunabeats
Welcome to DMCWORLD James. ‘Multiverse’ is your new album coming out next month on Anjunabeats. How long did it take to complete and can you talk us through each track…
“From start to finish it was about 3 years in total, although it’s developed and evolved a lot since then. I learnt so much about production during that time, and the scene itself changed as well, so a lot of the original material I wrote for it didn’t end up making the final cut. The title “Multiverse” is basically a reflection of the tracks on the album, which are very distinct from each other in style and mood but come together to form a whole. It’s largely a dance album, and there’s quite a lot of club material of the progressive/house style that people know me for. There’s also some new directions outside of anything I’ve done before, including some more upbeat trance elements and more fully fledged vocals. It’s a big step for me and I think people will be happy with where it’s ended up.”
How do you think this album’s sound differs from your debut album ‘Everything Is OK’?
“It’s a bigger sounding album than my first one, it’s wider in terms of scope and aimed at the big rooms, whereas the first album was more of a home listening affair. Things are really stepping up to a new level this year on the DJing front, so this release is really a statement and expression of that. My production skills are a lot better than they used to be, and having finally built myself a studio over the last few years has been a huge help.”
You are a classically trained pianist – how / when did the change to a focus on electronic music happen?
“In my final years of high school I made the switch after going to an all ages “rave” with my friends at the local university. Ferry Corsten was headlining, and was actually the first DJ I ever saw play. After that I started producing trance music in my bedroom, and started releasing records two years later. I still have daydreams about learning to play the piano well again, but if I ever have some free time for music I usually just end up tweaking stuff back in my studio.”
What did your parents think of your choice in career?
“They were actually pretty supportive! At first they weren’t really sure where I was going with it, as the scene in Australia didn’t get much attention from the mainstream in the 90s and it was all relatively new. They knew all along I’d most likely end up a musician in one way or another so they let me roll with it and see where it went. Nowadays they think it’s great – my dad even listens to my podcasts on his MP3 player.”
You once said that your style is a “storytelling club music”. Can you elaborate…
“Using melodic and chordal elements in music is a powerful way to convey a story, so I’ve always aimed to have that happening in my tracks. On the flip side, club music needs to have a certain simplicity and drive to really get people going, so it’s all about finding the right balance. The newer sounding dance records leave the musicality to the breakdown, and then make the rest of the track all about the beats. I think this works pretty well.”
How important to your career has been your Jaytech Music monthly mix show?
“It’s definitely a huge help, as it helps people keep up to date with my sound as a DJ as well as a producer. Services like SoundCloud, iTunes and Facebook are a great platform for getting your mixes out there – nowadays new listeners can visit my website and have my music streaming straight away. It’s also a great way to promote my new tracks, and with the monthly guest mixes, other upcoming artists.”
What have been some of the highlights to date on the live circuit for you in 2012?
“Returning to London’s Brixton Academy for Group Therapy was excellent, as was the UK tour that followed it. EDC in Vegas was a definite highlight as well. One of the craziest looking stages I’ve ever played on, with a capacity of something like 20,000 people. Got quite drunk after my set too…the last things I remember are asking Norin & Rad to be more “trancetastic,” walking through the lobby of the Cosmopolitan with an open bottle of vodka spilling everywhere out of my bag, and having the universe’s best club sandwich at 7am. It’s moments like those that stay with you.”
What are the big festivals you are looking forward to over the rest of the summer – your diary looks stacked…
“Definitely keen on Tomorrowland in Belgium. That’s going to be wicked! Also very excited to be returning to New York for Electric Zoo in September, and Kiev for Global Gathering.”
Tell us about the tour with Above & Beyond, what were some of the highlights?
“It’s a blast playing with those guys, as they’re a pretty dynamic bunch and are serious about putting on a good show. Although it’s hard to pick, my favourite shows with them have been Glow in Washington DC (amazing venue!) and Festival Hall in Melbourne last year. Brixton Academy in London is definitely up there as well.”
You have been producing music since the age of 14 and you have had heavy support from the likes of Sasha, Tiesto and Armin. Who though were your DJ heroes when you were growing up? Who inspired you…
“I always loved Hybrid, as they were wicked in the studio and played awesome party DJ sets as well. I was also inspired by some of the bigger progressive guys of the time such as Nick Warren and Hernan Cattaneo. The UK scene of the late 90s and early 2000s was a big inspiration as well, as the dance sound was becoming huge over there. We were tuning in to the broadcasts back in Australia and wondering what it would be like to be there.”
What is your current top 10 you are spinning?
“Outside of material from the new album, it’s be something like this:”