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Интервью с Future Funk Squad


 

 

There aren't many labels out there which have combined success and longevity like the UK's en:vision recordings. The imprint had its first release back in 2002, and its discography reads like a who's who of breaks, with releases from the likes of Chris Carter, D-Pimp, C83, PMT, and Kraymon, as well as newer artists like Loaded Fist, Analogeeks and Eshericks (coming soon!) who are already producing quality stuff on par with the veterans. Label head Glen Nicholls (above), aka breakbeat maestro Future Funk Squad, was nice enough to drop this Q&A (and throw in a free tune too) as we bring back our regular Label this! series.


What's the label all about, and who's involved?

en:vision was established in 2002. It was initially run from my Funk Vault studio in Wimbledon where I hand wrote all the promos, reaction sheets etc. I think this personal touch really helped people relate to the label. It quickly became a solid name in breakbeat circles and continues to go from strength to strength.

What's your take on the state of breaks these days?

I think at the moment it's a very exciting time. I never was a big fan of the house-infused breakbeat as I think it blurred the lines too much. I feel breakbeat should stay broken and generally have a more rolling feel rhythmically than a straight four to the floor thud. This to me isn't breaks.

Who are the artists on the label that are paying your bills?

My 30th release from Product.01 called Destrukt stayed in the Beatport top 10 for a few weeks and the top 40 for quite some time. This along with my Disorders of Skill album and the Reorders of Skill remix package are definitely the biggest selling releases in the last year or so. Luckily all the en:vision releases seem to do pretty well and tick over nicely over time. I have never been about releasing instant bangers for the sake of it as I want my label and its releases to have longevity and be something you will come back to in a few years' time to play.

Any promising up and comers on the label to look out for?

The debut release from duo Loaded Fist has just been released. I'm loving what these guys are sending me as its quite fresh - not in a technical ("look at what plugins I use!") kind of way but more melodically and simplicity wise. That's how breaks used to be and I feel it sometimes needs to go back to that. The French duo the Analogeeks have delivered a rather tasty two tracker which will turn a few heads! New signing Sketi is someone to look out for as he is fusing the classic 2000 sound with today's production techniques. I also have the massively tipped Eshericks' debut single dropping in the summer, plus new material from BWEI (Breaks Will Eat Itself) and C83.

In the label's eight-year existence, you've released music from a lot of different artists. Are there any from the past that you'd like to work with again?
 

Kraymon recently did a remix for me and I consider him one of the 'vintage' en:vision artists. Apart from C83 & my FFS material, it's all newer artists from here on in, with the odd remix and possibly the odd release from some of the previous artists.

As a label that's had quite a bit of success over the years, do you feel the need to innovate and "push the envelope", or do you try to stay the course and focus on the type of tunes that led to success in the past?

I don't really think about this, to be honest. To me if a tune is well produced, has something special about it and ultimately works on the dancefloor I will release it. I'm fully aware of the trends and new flavours going on around me but try not to get too involved in all that. Usually the 'envelope pushing' happens by accident anyway so there is no point in trying to be different for the sake of it.

If you could be one other breaks label, who would it be and why?

That's very tricky as I'm completely happy with en:vision! Haha, hmmm I don't think I can answer that one as I'm very anal about what I choose to release and that it remains in the breakbeat / broken beats arena. Most breaks labels out there are dabbling in the 4/4 thing which is perfectly fine if you're into that but I don't want to represent that sound on en:vision, so I will stick with my own.

What's your biggest pet hate, music-wise?

It would have to be bad production! I don't mind if I get sent a demo that isn't quite up to scratch sonically but the ideas and vibe are killer as I can usually offer some advise on the mixing or even sometimes offer to mix the track myself. This only helps the artist get ahead and my label release more quality music.

What are the label's plans for the future?

I've taken a little time off from my Future Funk Squad project to concentrate on en:vision this year, as I'm getting some great material and want to help get those artists out there and make people aware of them as much as I can. I'm even toying with the idea of doing a night to represent the artists on the label with a selection of DJs and the odd live act. But that is another load of work that I'm not sure I have the time to do!

Where can we find your music?

Currently en:vision releases start on www.Beatport.com for a four-week exclusive spot and then go on www.Addictech.com. From now on every release (and the back catalogue) will be made available on pretty much every digital site (about time eh!?) 

Download
 Breaks Will Eat Itself - Resistance (Breakspoll Mix

Источник: http://www.thisisbreaks.com/profiles/blogs/label-this-envision-recordings


With releases on several different respected labels, including his own en:vision imprint and two highly acclaimed artist albums, Future Funk Squad has been all about innovation and quality, always making a point of pushing his sound further than those in his artistic peer group.


I have always admired his stripped down approach - with just the right amount of quirk in the melodies - to big room breaks. He is a firm favourite as a remixer, having reworked tracks by pretty much everyone in breaks at
some point, and also utilising his skills to switch up tracks by artists on the indie and pop scenes.

For those who don't know much about your past, can you tell us a bit about the history of Future Funk Squad history - where did the name come from?

FFS was born in 1998 with myself and Neil Briggs (AKA High Eight) involved. It started as a big beat production/DJ outfit and as you can see from the name it wasn't mean to be taken too seriously We went our separate ways in 2000 when I moved to London and Neil stayed in Somerset. I haven't looked back since, apart from trying to change the name as I don't think it really suits the sound now. But I guess once something sticks it just works.

Would it be fair to say that you are a bit of a lone wolf, often pursuing less obvious paths and
being a bit manic when it comes to your own albums?

At the end of the day I'm really into the idea of making something for myself, the fact people like it (sometimes!) is always an added bonus. You definitely can't please everyone, so no point in ever trying.

You have previously taken a break from recording as Future Funk Squad, and were close to doing so again recently. What was the reasoning behind that decision and what changed your mind?

After releasing a whole new album's worth of breakbeat material and sourcing a full (pretty much double album's worth) of remixes, I think I have fulfilled my quota of FFS material for a year or two. I have also just completed remixes for the likes of The Crystal Method, Karton, Kid Digital, Buckfunk 3000 and a couple more, so I wanted to ease up on the FFS output. I'm going to get back on things towards the end of the year and possibly release a string of singles starting from February 2011.

I also wanted to take some time out to focus on building up the roster of artists on en:vision, as I have been fortunate to receive some amazing material from the likes of Loaded Fist, Eshericks, The Analogeeks, Sketi, C83, Breaks Will Eat Itself and more. Look out for some solid releases from these throughout this year.

You come across as someone who thrives on technological evolution but still are a bit of an analogue geek. Is there a middle ground or do you just love gadgets?

There is most definitely a middle ground for me, I love plugins and the technology of new computer-aided software but also love the hands-on vibe of classic synths and outboard equipment. Therefore a combination of
the two both physically and sonically is totally essential for me.

Since starting to do a full band live act, has that changed the way you write songs?

It did for a while after the release of Audio Damage back in 2006, but after departing from my label in 2008 and not really pursuing the live angle I have gone back to the raw underground way of writing songs, as I feel that is the best way to capture something special and unique - especially when it comes to an underground club track.

What is the process of writing an album from scratch?

Long ... haha. I usually just mess about for a few months initially with sounds, synths, melodies, grooves ... whatever I can come up with, until I have a platform from which I can develop into 20 or 30 tracks, and then start focusing on the ones that stand out the most and developing them.

Once something is shaping up, I will send out to a handful of singer/songwriters I respect and love working with and see what they cancome up with. Nine times out of 10 they will do something that excites me enough to develop the track further.

This process continues until I have a solid selection of around 15 tracks that I can pick 12 definitive ones from.

Even though you are a prolific songwriter with a lot more than just the two successful albums under your belt, it is as an outstanding remixer that you have really made your name. Describe the different approaches to writing from scratch and remixing.

I think the fact my remix output far outways my original output says it all really! Remixing is something I have always been fascinated and excited by. It's that process of hearing the original, directing it in your mind and picking out the elements you know will work with the style of music you are producing at the time (well for me anyway, as most of my remixes - although they remain in the breaks genre - are quite random in style).

Источник: http://www.thisisbreaks.com/profiles/blogs/left-of-centre-the-future-of

 






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