Wednesday, 23 March 2011
SR Mix #74: Zeppy Zep [Fortified Audio]
To be fair to Zeppy Zep, this mix/post/textual fellatio should have happened a long time ago, but whatever; things get in the way and needs must. It still doesn’t detract from the quality of his music and it’s nice to have our initial rush of interest cemented with more great music. - Ed
First popping out in a mix from Manc beardo xxxy, Zeppy Zep’s production moniker, is characteristic of the personality contained in his music - it’s just as animated, fully dosed up on high octane dancefloor workouts. Tracks like ‘Marillion’ emulate the snare work of the afore mentioned chromosomed one, hitting in a typically splashy way, glitching into frams over weird concoctions of reverbed chords, but it was the awkward drum fumble of ‘Rebis’ that first sent us into a headspin. Built around a true earworm of a leadline it flips through beat progressions ending up in a 4x4 strut that pounds over the descending vocal snatches with authority. It’s a bonafide show stealer and the tune that opened the door for us to a handful of original productions and his remix of former SR mixer The Phantom’s ‘Night Game.’
Long since the third producer in our Polish club music Bermuda triangle, he’s channeling the energy and rush of a sweaty dancefloor straight into his melodies and he’s just confirmed his debut solo release on Fortified Audio. Along with fellow countrymen The Phantom and Sentel he brings something fast and fresh to his releases, not afraid to ‘do a Canblaster’ and drop straight out of a rigid house kick sequence and run headlong into something completely different 8 bars later. It’s refreshing and duly exciting to dwell on the prospect of new music from him, so we pinned him down through his weeping, alcohol-soaked familiar, grabbed an updated version of his Sonic Router mix and shot him some questions designed to give him the platform to introduce his music properly.
SR: Can you provide those who may not know you with a bit of background info?
Zeppy Zep: Hi, my name is Michal and I'm from Cracow, Poland. I'm 21. Sometimes I make tunes and play parties.
Outside of music who are you? What do you do on the daily?
I do some graphic design, I should be in an art school by now, but things went out and I am not. Procrastinating. Playing Quake on dm17.
How did you first get into making music? What was it that infected you to do so?
I think I always wanted to make music, but this need kind of exploded right after primary school. I remember I bought Prodigy's Fat of the Land and Chemical Brothers Come With Us on a cassette. Damn, those beats sounded so fine I just wanted to do something like that. I knew my schoolmate was making hip hop beats and he told me about Fruity Loops. Then I saw a music magazine, with a CD attached, I remember Fruity Loops 4.0 had just been released so they've put a Demo version on a CD. I bought a magazine and boom, I was making music.
First it was hip hop beats, and then they slowly turned into more electronic stuff. My dad is a musicologist and he can play nearly every instrument, we had a piano at home but I barely played on that thing, I never took any lessons either.
What’s your production set up like? What’s your favourite bit of kit in the studio?
Funny thing is, it's still FL Studio. Yes, I tried Ableton and Logic but always ended up returning to FL Studio, it feels like home there. Nowadays, multiple display-pro-tools-uberproducers laugh at this but I don’t care, I love this piece of software. I got a MIDI controller but I don't use it, it’s kind of a shame that I play better on qwerty keys than on normal piano. I am planning to buy some superb monitors, right now I use typical computer speakers but I know them so well it's enough to make a fair-sounding tune.
Favourite bit of kit goes to Soundgoodizer, for this ridiculous name.
Where do you take inspiration from when making music? I mean it’s easy to hear the funky influence... something that Poland is getting something of a rep for at the moment. What’s the scene like in your native Poland?
The most boring thing is to look for inspiration in the same genre as the track you're trying to make. You should teach yourself to discover the great little things in places you'd never think of exploring. For example, I got this hardstyle sample pack and some sounds are just awesome. I am also a fan of early NFS games soundtracks lol.
Speaking of funky - yes, it had its big time in Poland but seems like the things are changing now, some people play more house, some others more of that "future" stuff. People are very open minded, we have plenty of awesome events going on, even in Warsaw which used to be a more fidget house oriented place. And of course brostep is getting dangerously bigger…
Zeppy Zep - Rebis
Are there any producers you rate that the world should know about?
Hoodmode, I saw his soundcloud lately - niceness. Lokiboi is a talented beast. Sentel are getting stronger every second. Also, from Poland - Vanatoski and Intreau.
We’ve heard a few production bits from you that’ve blown us away, ‘Menace’ in particular, plus there’s your remixes of people like The Phantom too. Does it differ for you, the way you approach remixes to normal productions?
Remixes have deadlines haha. I don't know, I feel that my The Phantom and Tom Encore remixes are polished just as I wanted them to be. I heard that you can somehow focus better on someone else’s track than on your own, but I don't think it’s true.
Have you got any releases have you got in the pipeline? I saw a bit about a 12” coming on Fortified Audio, can you tell us a bit more about what’s coming up?
Yes, ‘Menace,’ ‘Rebis’ and ‘Marillion’ are coming out on Fortified Audio but as slightly different versions. I did those tunes some time ago and want them to sound a little bit more fresh. Also my Tom Encore remix is out now on Concrete Cut.
Tell us a little bit about the mix you’ve put together for us…
There are some dubs from Superisk and Lokiboi plus Hoodmode’s ‘Everything’ - that guy I told you above. Two Blawan tunes, he's killing it right now, I cannot wait for ‘Getting Me Down’ to be released. There’s Jamie XX - so obvious but so damn good - some acid sounds - everyone already knows that 2011 will be year of tb-303 references right? The outro is John Roberts, with this sweet piano breakdown, really soft stuff.
Any words of wisdom, for our readers?
When in elevator, press floor number and close button at once - it won't stop on other floors.
DOWNLOAD: Zeppy Zep – Sonic Router Mix #74
1. Tom Encore - Spellbound (Zeppy Zep Remix) (Concrete Cut)
2. Gil Scott-Heron And Jamie XX - I'm New Here (XL)
3. Objekt - The Goose that Got Away (Objekt)
4. Superisk - Life is Live (Dub)
5. Ben Westbeech - Falling (Dark Sky Remix) (Strictly Rhythm)
6. Hoodmode - Everything (Dub)
7. The Hundred In The Hands - Pigeons (Blawan's bare bones Remix) (Warp)
8. Lokiboi - Marina Faib (Dub)
9. M.I.A. - It Takes A Muscle (Pearson Sound Refix) (XL)
10. Damon Wild - Aqua (Synewave)
11. Hackman - Made Up My Mind (PTN)
12. Martyn & Mike Slott - All Nights (All City)
13. Mount Kimbie - Mayor (Hotflush)
14. Hardrive - Deep Inside (ZYX Music)
15. Beat Pharmacy - Piece of Mind (Ramadanman Refix) (Deep Space Media)
16. Joy O - Jels (Hotflush)
17. Blawan - Kaz (R&S Records)
18. John Roberts - Ever Or Not (Dial)