Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Steve Angello: Interview 2

Steve Angello`s one busy man. A rising star and dubbed to be the next big thing, it`s hard to believe that this DJ, producer and remixer is yet only 22. Trying to interview him is no easy feat. 4clubber`s Zakiyah Alhabshi realises this at his gig in Singapore, where he headlines a Subliminal party for the soft opening of new club DXO.

First, she has to sit through his bowl of spicy laksa and then, jump into a cab with him (where the interview eventually takes place) en route to the airport where he`s flying to play at club Yellow in Tokyo. An outspoken guy, who, unlike most DJs interviewed, thinks vinyl will make a comeback once MP3 gets too big; Steve also firmly brushes off any nonsense about dance music dying. He points out that some tunes (Eric Prydz`s Call On Me and Shapeshifter`s Lola`s Theme) have crossed over to the commercial charts.

Acknowledging that trends tend to go up and down, he predicts that dance music will be huge in one to two years` time. And this stalwart, who believes Europe to be the epic centre of the industry where new hits and sounds come out first, admits he`ll probably be a designer had he not gotten into DJing.

How did you start DJing?

I started DJing when I was around 12. I began playing Hip Hop, Breaks and got into the whole scratch thing. Then at 15, I got into dance music. At first I was playing techy stuff, then techno and finally house. Now it`s a mixture of everything.

Which is?

Well, I don`t really like to be put into one category. I tend to play techy, really funky, dirty and filthy house. I`m pretty flexible; I can go from a techy track to an old school classic. I can also go melodic and tribal and whack out some serious techno. That`s the kind of stuff people respect. Also, a DJ`s career has more potential if he`s flexible.

When was your first big break?

When I was 15, in Stockholm. I had to lie about my age to get that residency!

So how did you manage to become one of the Subliminal DJs?

I did a release late 2004, `Acid`, on Subliminal. They`re curious to see if I can also DJ. We`ve been doing some parties for a while by then and they`ve heard about us and wanted Sebastian (Ingrosso) and me on board. They asked us to do the latest Subliminal mix and we did the mix, together with Jose (Nunez), and now we`re part of Subliminal and playing everywhere.

You`re pretty involved in pushing the dance scene back in Stockholm. What`s it like over there, music wise?steve angello subliminal

The scene`s quite boring. It`s very much Pop, R & B and Hip Hop. So, Eric (Prydz), Sebastian and I pool our resources and contacts to promote dance music. Swedish people don`t want to pay to see Swedish DJs, so what we do is get people over to make appearances. When I play there, I rather play for free rather than get a small fee.

You have a new EP out under label `Who`s Who. Tell us more about it.

`Who`s Who` is actually me. It has a more electronic edge. Sometimes you want to do some different stuff from your original production so it`s easier to start a new name and push new sounds under that label. I don`t want to be one of those DJs who are only stuck into one sound and they do that for five years and after that, the sound`s not popular anymore and they`ll have a difficult time to change sound. To have a longer career, DJs have to be open minded and have a wide range of music.

Speaking of electronic, electro seems to be the current sound, influencing many tunes these days. What`s your view on that?

Well, look at Alter Ego for example, their productions were massive hits. I think the next step now is to make those type of tracks, but have different arrangements; play around and make them more housey, or add some vocals, like Green Velvet did. He mixed in vocals with electro. Really cool.

What else have you been up to, aside from jet setting around the world and releasing an EP?

SA: Well, I`ve just remixed the new Roman Flugel single which is a hit in Europe and also Moby`s `Raining Again`. I just can`t stop working. I don`t take a break after releasing a track or a remix. I`m back in the studio the next day. Sometimes I`m even working on long flights, thanks to my Mac laptop! So I`m able to work on ideas even when I`m flying. When I get home, I finish what I`ve started. So technology has certainly helped. I did the Moby remix while I was on the Canadian tour.

When do you have time to have a proper life?

It`s not easy. I`m playing at gigs on average three times a week, so I`m all over the place!

Did you have a good time at the recent WMC?

Yes, I did. I did Space – amazing crowd.

How was it playing Singapore last night?

Well, I had fun. I was drunk so it was good!

At such a young age, you`ve achieved more than almost anyone. Where do you see yourself at 25?

Oh my God. I don`t know….. Steve for president maybe? Well, I`d probably like to have a kid.

No comments: