Unknown to Known _ Interview with Casual Violence
Haha great stuff Steve and no worries about the length of the answers, they’re very informative and interesting to read! You’ve mentioned some quality music there that I listen to on a regular basis. Manchester has such a rich heritage music wise, Hopefully it will all come together there soon. I see that you played at Unseen in Edinburgh there recently and had a gig in Leeds the next day… how do you balance travel/ socialising / rest with dates so close together?
Yeah, Unseen was really very cool! Those guys are great, very welcoming, and with Unseen they have tapped into something that feels very unique. The crowd was up for it from the start of the night and just got more and more rowdy. There was a mad moment during my set where the place sounded like a football match with chanting and such. The set up is really good too. They have a huge DJ box up high, and there was netting draped down so that you pretty much can’t see the DJ from the dance floor, or likewise the crowd from up in the DJ booth… I only saw the crowd about 5 times when I was playing. The strobe would come on and I could see all these faces, then back into darkness. It’s actually awesome to play without the crowd concentrating on you, or being able to see you and what you are doing. Regardless of if you are playing or there on the dance floor you can just get into the music and feel the energy. That’s what it’s all about right?
Leeds the next day wasn’t as difficult as it could have been. Hanging with the guys in Edinburgh was fairly relaxing and then the place I was playing in Leeds is like my local. I’ve been a resident DJ there for something like 4/5 years, so it’s home turf and never any pressure. I was playing in the back room there alongside some of my best friends, and we basically had a small, dark room and a sound system to play some music in, and hang out while all the main action was happening in the main room. Anybody with any kind of taste was swaying around in our tiny smoke filled back room though of course! I was fairly tired by the end of the night but it’s not like I’m a stranger to a lack of sleep or staying up a few nights in a row so I survived. I crashed on some friends couch and headed home in the morning. It’s a familiar scenario.
As for socialising, I’m overjoyed to work in solitude and write music (that is primarily what I do after all) so it’s not a problem, or something that I miss. I hang out with my partner, our daughter and my dog (who really are my world) around the house every day, then with DJing, socialising comes with the job, so I’m far from starved of that. Playing gigs is pretty much the only time I get to see my friends these days, but that’s cool with me and it just adds to the excitement of it all.
The hardest part is without doubt the travel, its tiring and its rarely fun. Carrying around 2/3 hours worth of vinyl, being ripped off by taxi drivers, hanging at train stations and airports, paying 15 Euros for a stale bacon roll and bitter coffee, and not getting any sleep to top it off (all usually on your own). The easy and fun part is the playing, the people and being at the club, festival or whatever. The traveling I find can be tough going. It’s an adventure though and I love doing it. I do know how fortunate I am to do what I do
Wow, I think I need to check Unseen out, haha. Yeah, sometimes you gotta struggle for what you do, but you seem to have the balance well in check. I came across your music via the first TrusT Recordings release, could you tell me more about how you got involved with this?
Definitely, Unseen for President! They have Inigo Kennedy on next so well worth the trip. I should mention that in Neil Templar and Patrick Walker they have awesome residents who know how to steer the night. Yeah make the trip.
I got involved with TrusT as the label owner, Dom is one of my dearest friends. I’m also a resident at a night that he runs, Hemlock (which I think is now going to go under the name TrusT, but don’t quote me on that). He used to be involved in the now defunct Detatched night (a place I was also resident) back when it started and we just really connected. So yeah, he’s my mate. He was talking about it as an idea for a while and he made it happen. Dom’s a cool cat, he has all these great ideas and then makes them happen. With Trust he totally had this strong concept and ran with it. I’m proud to be his friend and proud to be a part of the project.