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The Juice with Subb-An

Hot next level bad boy juicing with Subb-An.

The Plug

Your 1Trax mix arrived last month. How did that happen?

“Well I was speaking to Dave at the label, and he mentioned about Mat Tolfrey, who had done the first one, and after talking about it a bit he invited me to get involved and do one too. So we took it from there, and in the end the project involved a couple of remixes and the compilation.”

Latest tracks by subb-an

Yes, the Maya Jane Coles and Shenoda remixes on the CD. Were they a product of you being briefed, or the label leaving decisions to you?

“It was a combination really. They mentioned I could do anything off the label, and then we chose the Maya Jane Coles and Shenoda tracks, so really it came from both sides.”

How does the mix compare to one of your club sets?

“It's a bit deeper than when I play out. I'm not harder in a club, but there's certainly a lot more energy involved. That's just a difference with being out in a club environment, and me wanting to play to that energy really.

“A compilation, in comparison, is something people will listen to maybe in the car, at home, at the gym, or before they go out. Towards the end it gets a little closer to what I might play but it begins a lot deeper, and I probably wouldn't do that in a club, even though it's all music I love.”

And in comparison to your live sets?

“The live show is different every time, and there needs to be more vocals, a bit more of a party vibe I guess. But at other times, depending on when in the night it is, the live thing can have parts of it extended or whatever, if you're in the right place, with the crowd into it.

“Then you can take it deeper, but not in terms of dropping the tempo, just playing loops out longer and stuff. Alternatively you can make things happen faster, and that's cool because the way I've got the setup means I can easily take it in different directions.

“I've been playing a lot more DJ gigs recently, just because I wanted a bit of a break from the live thing, and while I enjoy doing the live shows I think DJing is more fun. I guess I can relax a lot more, whereas live you need to concentrate all the time as there's a lot more going on that you need to be aware of as a performer.”

The Issues

You first emerged through Below, the Birmingham party set up by Adam Shelton, Ross Trepleton, and Lee McDonald. That was about five years back, how does the UK scene compare with then?

“I guess when I first met Adam and Lee I remember there were very few Sunday day time parties. I think Secret Sundaze were doing one, but below was one of the main ones to go to in the UK.

“Since then there's been a big movement in small parties and events just going on in spaces, not venues. Now there are a lot of small nights and events in places you wouldn't expect them to be.

“It says a lot about the scene- it's only getting bigger, and in the UK right now it's just really strong, with a lot of good, successful parties, and popular styles. That can't be a bad thing for techno and tech house. I guess really then over the last five years I've seen a lot more grow.”

Traditionally in dance music the DJ was the focal point. Do you agree that culture is on the decline?

“I think the DJ is still a huge part of people's night out. You can see the difference in atmosphere in a venue when certain artists are playing. I mean you mentioned before about the difference between DJing and playing live, and I guess to put things in perspective it's just branding.

“It could be a band, a live act, a label night, or DJ- whatever's got buzz around it is where people seem to be drawn towards. So I guess it's just now there are other focal points apart from the DJ, but a DJ is still up there with the most important things.”

There's so much new music now. Are younger people in danger of not getting educated about old records?

“I think it's important, and a lot of the younger generation that are being introduced to dance music at the moment I guess maybe aren't looking back. But that comes with time.

“It was a while before I educated myself and got educated by others on old music that still stands up today. I think it's the sort of thing that people who like what's current now maybe won't mature onto, but a good percentage will. It's one of those natural things where people get into the music and their tastes mature, then they start digging deeper.

“I guess that's the beauty of the whole thing. I remember when I discovered a lot of music from 20-30 years ago, it was a great experience for me. But there is a need for older people to play a role, and pass things down too, so the more that happens the more young people will pick up on it.”

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