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This week’s artist-insight has been very cool for us to prepare. We had the chance to have a talk with three of the coolest artists that Viper Recordings has in their roster: Jack and Mike from Six Blade, plus Alex aka DJ A.M.C from himself. They answered our questions about their new EP Hardest to Love / Ova Dose and provided us also some insights about their coleslaw-based diet. Their new EP which you can buy here is a pure drum & bass distillate and ranges from the mountain-top clear and bright liquid sounds to the underground dark sounds of neurofunk. The opposing styles of the two tracks making up the EP is absolutely astonishing and deserve a listen. But first, discover what they told us!

 

amc6-500x245
Six Blade (left) & A.M.C. (right)

 

You three already collaborated many times. Do you plan to keep the Six Blade & A.M.C brand stable? Because that seems to work pretty good!

 

Jack: 100%! It’s really easy to work together and we have a lot of fun writing music. We have a good working formula, so it would be silly not to continue with it. You’ll definitely be seeing more from us in 2017.

 

I was almost ready to put my flip flops away and start thinking about which dark drum & bass to listen to this fall, but here’s Hardest to Love. Ayah Marar’s voice seems really perfect for the sound of Hardest to Love, was the singer a hard choice or did it just happen?

 

Jack: Alex is really good friends with Ayah so once we’d got the arrangement finished, he called her and fired the track over. She really liked the track and managed to write and record the vocals really quickly. Ayah is very professional and has a great engineer, so when the recording came back to us, there was very little for us to do, which was great!

 

Ayah-Marar
Ayah Marar

 

What I liked of the two songs is that they represent the two aspects of drum & bass: clean liquid sounds and dark heavy basslines. Who contributed the most in each track? Are there any ideas behind these tracks or did they just come out of creativity?

 

Jack: There was more or less an equal contribution from all of us on each song during the creative stage. Even if only one of us is working on a track, that person will be dropboxing clips of what they’re doing, to the others, for approval. The final mixes on both were done by Alex and I (Jack), as I had a couple of days off midweek and was able to go up to Alex’s studio to finish them off with him.

 

Do you think that more artists should work on both neuro and liquid? Your EP is massive and demonstrates that this can happen.

 

Jack: Of course. If an artist and into different styles of drum and bass, then definitely. It’s good to show your versatility to audiences. Plus, it’s enjoyable to step outside your comfort zone and create something new.

 

It took 2 years between Strangers and this new EP: what happened in between?

 

Jack: It’s just been a slow couple of years to be honest. We had a serious lack of inspiration through part of last year, which affected our writing but I think that was due to us not being happy with the level our music was at. That’s all behind us now though and we’re feeling very inspired and motivated at the moment.

 

One for the producers: which plugin or instrument contributed the most in the composition of these two songs? Do you have a favourite instrument or plugin you would never live without? Can you tell us something about your studio set up and gear?

 

Jack: I’d say the Slate Digital plugins have played a huge part in helping both tracks get to where they needed to be, and to be honest, these plugins are now used as standard in all our projects. We all have pretty similar setups, which helps when sending projects across to each other. We all have iMacs. Alex and I have Mackie HR824’s MK1 and Mike has the MK2’s.

 

What are your pre-live rituals? what are you afraid of when you jump on the stage? everyone has his demons, no matter how famous and experienced you are. What are yours?

 

Mike: We don’t really have any rituals; we just make sure we know what music we’re playing. I tend to get a bit nervous on the day of a gig, but once we get there I’m usually fine. I get a bit worried about the setup, if it’s easy to hear the monitors or not and whether the previous DJ may have selected different settings which I haven’t noticed.

 

Jack: Yeah, I find the most nerve racking thing about DJing these days is the setup. If the monitors a crap or it’s you’re using sketchy equipment, it can really throw you off your game.

 

You can have a free ticket for a football match, a concert or a trip. What would you choose and why?

 

Mike: I would probably choose a trip to somewhere I haven’t been before, unless it was the World Cup Final and England are in it.
Jack: I’d love to drive down route 66 in America, so if the ticket included flights, a car and accommodation throughout my whole journey, I’d do that. Unless it was the World Cup Final and Angola were in it scoring gola’s.

 

Many artists say that when they mix they try to leave an emotion, a message. What do you think is your message when you let the crowd follow your musical journey?

 

Mike: We just want to perform at the best of our ability and for everyone to have a good time. It’s always nice to hear from people who were there, that they really enjoyed our set, it means we did our job well and they had fun.

 

Back when you were still “dreaming to be”, who were your idols? Did you pursue other musical styles before drum & bass?

 

Mike: We looked up to all producers and DJ’s really, as they’re doing what we want to do. People like Andy C, Sub Focus, Brookes Brothers, Matrix & Futurebound… were who we were into, back when we first started out, so we’d look up to those guys. I used to mix Garage and Jack used to mix Hard House before we got into Drum and Bass.
Jack: Hard House…my secret shame.

 

@ Six Blade: I read that you two met in high school. Out of curiosity, can you tell us how? And why did you change your name back in 2013?

 

Mike: Yeah we met at school but didn’t really become good friends until after. Our friend used to have a mobile disco which Jack and I joined and then it started from there really. We changed our name from Mattix & Futile as Brendan (Futurebound) had got in contact and said people kept asking him what the deal was with us as the names sounded similar. We agreed to change it so there wouldn’t be any confusion and then he signed us to Viper, so it worked out well for both parties.

 

@ Six Blade: given your artwork for Strangers, do you have any special relationship with Once Upon A Time in America (one of my favourite movies of all time)? And what does the man with the suitcase present in two of your artworks represent to you?

 

Mike: To be honest we didn’t put have much input into the artwork for those releases, Viper took care of it so there’s no affiliation with the man from our end. Maybe the designer had a particular vision. We thought it looked cool though. We sent some ideas we liked for the artwork for Hardest To Love/Ova Dose which we’re really happy with. We’ll probably be sticking with the current theme from now on as it’s based around our logo.

 

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Six Blade & A.M.C. – Strangers / Punks EP, Viper Recordings, 2014

 

@ DJ A.M.C: Congratulations for your first place in the Czech drum & bass awards 2015. The top 10 includes also names like Andy C, Ed Rush, Audio, but you are the number 1. What is that one thing you do live that turns on the crowd? Do you spend more time on DJ technics or on the selection of the right tracks?

 

Alex:Thanks! It was a huge honour to win. Reading the crowd always seems to help. There are always certain sections that are after certain tracks so if you manage to cater for them all its going to work. I used to practice mixes all the time but now time is spent in studios and tuning the label and other companies so it difficult to find the time. A lot of any mix ideas come on the road with the laptop.

 

A.M.C Logo
DJ A.M.C. official logo

 

Let’s weird out with my usual last question: sometimes, when you’re alone, you… (i love to read the answers of this)

 

Mike: I like to eat coleslaw in my pants.
Jack: I like to watch Mike eat coleslaw in his pants.
Alex: Organise ‘we have coleslaw’ events.

 

(Coleslaw is this)

 

—-
We really hope that you enjoyed it, now it’s time for the track we selected for you! But to be honest, what is to select in a 2-songs EP? Let’s rock them both, for Christ’s sake. Enjoy! We provide also some of their links.

 

– Macspider

 

Buy at:
Six Blade Facebook:
DJ A.M.C Facebook:
Viper Recordings Facebook:
Six Blade SoundCloud:
DJ A.M.C SoundCloud:
https://soundcloud.com/a-m-c
Viper Recordings SoundCloud:
Six Blade Twitter:
Viper Recordings Twitter:

Viper Recordings YouTube Channel:
https://www.youtube.com/user/ViperChannel

Viper Recordings official website:
https://viperrecordings.co.uk

 

Matteo Schiavinato
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Matteo Schiavinato

Freelance Artist at Liquid Audio Network
Macspider is an italian Techno and Drum&Bass producer, living in Vienna (Austria). Spanning from Techno and Neurofunk to Liquid, the sound of Macspider reflects his polyhedrical interests and tastes, with a touch of epic soundtrack-like sounds. He is also a passionate guitar player and is a PhD in Bioinformatics in the daytime.
Matteo Schiavinato
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