Interviewing artists is often a very insightful experience and I find purposeful questions are a vital part of the interview philosophy. The reviewed ideas, motivations and beliefs are in a sense magnified through the interview process– while giving the artist a focused medium for expression. Getting a chance to ask these questions has always inspired me to better myself.
It’s almost impossible not to respect someone that has inspired you. Seven played a key role in my humble beginnings as interviewer; he was one of the first people I interviewed for my blog, over two years ago. 2013 has been a pretty amazing year for the producer, DJ and now label head, prompting my curiosity once again. We sat down earlier this month, conducting one of my most in-depth interviews to date…
Things seem to have taken off for you in recent months. What of your current ventures are you most excited about? Things have been incredible. The first 12 months of running the label was about establishing the brand and artists. I wanted to give all the guys a release on UA to set the ball rolling for them and solidify their connection with us.
Now phase two begins…. Giving them all their own solo releases. I sat and penned out the release schedule this week for right up until December of 2014 and it’s looking to be a very exciting year ahead indeed. I’m going to introduce some brand new artists again next year and put another collaboration release together too. Wayfarer’s UA005 release has been getting some amazing reviews already too and we are very excited for its release on the 16th of December.
How does a usual day in the life of Seven unfold? I have a really active mind and I find it difficult to just lay around in bed, so I wake up early most days around 7am. Being awake at that time is productive as I catch the end of the US day and the start of the UK day. I chat with people on social media while I catch up on the timelines on Facebook and Twitter. I like to see if there are any new producers/ tracks that are causing hype in the scene.
Sometimes I just wake up and sit at my desk sourcing samples and sounds for my own music. After I’m finished doing that I usually have some kind of label task to get on with, usually release related. This can involve a variety of things which have to be done and is typically very time consuming. I have to really plan out my days/weeks now.
Starting my studio productions early in the day has become key to the harmony of my sessions. Studio production typically starts around 12 in the afternoon. My neighbor hates sub bass and will moan consistently throughout the day if I start prior to then – so I’ve learned to be patient. I work through to about 7pm but sometimes beyond if I’m vibing and no one is complaining about the volume of the music. I find it’s easier to get away with working in the later stages of a track late at night as it’s not such a monotonous cycle for the people who I am disturbing with my music (as it’s a whole track being played and not just a kick or bass line on solo being fine-tuned.
If time permits I usually catch up with friends in the evening, sometimes heading over to their places if I’m not feeling too tired. It’s refreshing to be sociable as I am usually on my own in my studio all day!
What’s your favourite beer? I don’t really drink beer. I am quite partial to a glass of vodka or two on a night out though. Grey Goose is usually my choice as I can escape any hangovers beer and wine inflict upon me.
Which artist are you most excited about for next year? I think this is a hard question to answer and I will appear biased as I am always going to pick a UA artist! I believe they are the really pushing boundaries right now and people are really excited about their future projects lined up. Asylum, Chewie and Taiko have been getting some amazing feedback recently and their future productions are top notch. It’s hard to pick just one artist though.
Looking back at your education, do you think it contribute much to where you are right now? Yeah of course it did. I think education is important if you want to achieve goals in life. I had a love and hate relationship with school though. I don’t have a problem with authority, but I don’t like being told what to do in a rude manner, it really gets my back up. I think some of my teachers didn’t have the patience for a classroom of children. Maybe they lost their passion mid-way through their careers and felt trapped. That could’ve probably cause them to feel frustrated and take it out on the kids, and me being a smart arse, I was a prime candidate for plenty of those teachers to take their frustrations out on – my art teacher in particular. She hated me, and constantly put me down in front of everyone, once telling me I was artistic deadwood.
I moved around a lot too, back and forth from London to Essex, so I never really settled in a school anywhere. Because of that I had no class options either, missing out on music and being stuck with double science, geography and history. So I’m not going to lie, I did play truant quite often, literally just going into school to get my mark in the register and then walking out of school and going straight back home and mixing all day on my decks.
When I finished school I went to a graphics academy and studied graphic design, design communication, desktop publishing and APPLE MAC OPERATION!!! That was one of the biggest key learning experiences for me in relation to what I do now. It gave me an inside out knowledge of the Mac OS which has evolved with the times and has stayed with me up to this day. It helps because if things go wrong I can fix it and my production can continue. It’s a very productive knowledge to have.
What are your thoughts on releasing more DnB in the future? Funny you should ask that, I recently made a 170bpm track which has been getting some great feedback. I am going to make it part of my next release. It’s only really DnB in terms of the tempo as to me it sounds like what I usually do with dubstep, but just with a different groove to it. I really enjoyed making it and will definitely be putting it out next year.
In your opinion, what’s been the album of 2013? Again another biased answer, but I believe Live From The Future is the best album this year. We are a group of up and coming relatively unknown (outside of the scene) producers who smashed every underground dance music chart in the land and were awarded ‘Album of the Month’ in MixMag. We all put our hearts and souls into making it what it is. Not just the artists, but everyone involved in the project – I feel so proud to have been a part of that. We covered all the bases and gave 110% effort towards it. We succeeded in doing what we set out to do, giving people who support us something special for their music collection whilst connecting them with art and fashion.
Which city or country or city is top of your hit list for playing out? Moscow – I’ve always wanted to visit. I have only ever seen photos and stuff on TV about it and it’s always been high on my list of places to visit. The architecture is incredible and they have a lot of history and culture there. The raves and events look amazing, usually with thousands of people in attendance. That’s definitely something I would like to go and experience sometime in the near future if I’m lucky enough to be booked.
Any shoutouts to conclude the interview? Love and appreciation to Verity J, Joe Raygun, Cimm Mann, Seth Grym, Peter Turvey, WeSC, Rico Mike and Daniel at SRD, Beau and Suzana at Ten Eight Seven, Wil Benton, Alastair Thompson, Tyler Kinman, Giles Urband Vault, Olaf FKOF, Brett FWDSound and Seb Wheeler,Youngsta, J:Kenzo, Vivek, N Type, Icicle, Distance, Chase and Status, Truth, Asylum, Chewie, Wayfarer, Dubtek, Nanobyte, Taiko, Klax, Stealth and Altair, Geoff Nicon, Lee Darkside, BunZer0, Olly Bassweight, Paul & Farj, Jon Calico, Erik Browne, Drew Best, James Loomis and fam, Gary Eric G and Rene, Steve Adler, Joe Nice, Toast and Rat…
There are literally a hundred more people I could thank and still think of more after, so sorry to anyone I didn’t directly mention.
Last but not least though, thank you to everyone that supports Uprise Audio and follows the dubstep scene.
It’s been a few years coming, but the debut FKOF mix from Seven is finally here.
And given it’s been a pretty good year for the producer and label owner, his FKOF mix is entirely comprised of Uprise Audio productions – both releases and dubs…
Click to DOWNLOAD
- Wayfarer – Zeg
- Seven – MediEvil
- Seven & Dubtek – Stratosfear
- Dubtek – Plus Ultra
- Asylum – Zero Gravity VIP
- Dubtek – Extension
- Taiko – Spray Can
- Wayfarer – Nomad
- Quantum Soul – Underworld VIP
- Wayfarer – Azuma
- Asylum – Salvage
- Stealth & Altair – Lost Highway
- Wayfarer – Afterlight
- Wayfarer – Reflections (Acapella)
- Taiko – Flummox
- Seven – Go To War
- Asylum – Bad Habit
- Chewie – Untitled
- Seven – Walter White VIP
- Asylum – Always Love
- Klax – Lost Souls
- Asylum – Blindfold
- Seven – Oasis
- Seven & Youngsta – Masai Mara VIP
- Taiko – Relapse
- Klax – Link To The Past
- Seven ft. Joe Raygun – Live From The Future