Drum and bass musician Alix Perez headlined the Bass Camp Festival Edition XII on June 1, in the city. Kartiki Nitin Lawate chatted with him
Belgian-born Alix Depauw, more popularly known as Alix Perez, is widely regarded as among the most innovative and ground-breaking producers of his generation. Early last month, Perez released his brand new EP, U, on Exit Records, and it was met with much acclaim by fans and critics alike. Excerpts from an interview:
Q. When did you start playing Drum and Bass?
A. I discovered Drum and Bass/Jungle when I moved to the UK at the age of 14. My mum, at the time, used to play records, primarily Metalheadz/Certificate 18 stuff. That’s how I caught the bug. I started putting the records together myself and gradually became obsessed. That sound was something I had never heard before. It was much more advanced and intricate than anything I had come across before. From there on, it was a natural progression onto production which I guess has now got me to where I am now.
Q. Your album was a highly-rated Electronica album but it involved a lot of hard work behind the scenes; tell us about it.
A. The album ‘U’, for me, was a liberating phase of production and experiment. Working with Exit Records, I felt that I could be completely free and produce without compromise. I chose Exit because they are a label pushing boundaries the most in this genre, and in the direction that I see fit. I recorded the EP at my home studio, where I felt most comfortable and isolated from distraction. It came together through a lot of hardware gear (synths, Fx units and so on). It was a lot of fun and basically a lot of different machines working together at once over the space of three to four months.
Q. You have collaborated with the late DJ Rashad, as well as DJ Spinn; how was the experience?
A. DJ Rashad was a visionary, innovator and had so much positive energy when we were in the studio together. He brought so much fun to the place. I don’t think I have quite met anyone that was so passionate about their music. I’d been informed of Rashad’s passing by a close mutual friend before it was announced all over the social networks. Initially, it didn’t even sink in as it came as such a shock. I still haven’t quite come to terms with the news. Although it’s a very difficult pill to swallow, I am so glad to see how much he has touched the world through his music and infectious positivity. That’s something that will live on and on. He really was one of a kind.
Q. What do you think about the fans in India?
A. I loved India last time and I do even more this time around. It was definitely an eye opening experience but also very grounding and positive. I definitely felt welcome and appreciated. I was very pleasantly surprised that people actually followed my music and showed their appreciation so honestly.
Q. What is your take on Indian musicians?
A. I can see big things happening, particularly on the Electronic underground music side of things.