In his first interview for 5 years, the old skool legend took time to talk about his involvement in the scene and about his single, Dirty Raver.
How did you get into the scene?
My mates just started dragging me out to all the shady warehouse raves in & out of london - this inspired me to get a sampler & try to relay what I was hearing inside my brain.
How many "parts" are there to Trip II The Moon including the original version that sampled the actual Bond music and the different version of Part 2?
Well - there was actually 3 parts - pts 1 & 2 contained james bond samples & pt 3 ( Kaleidoscopiclimax ) which kinda brought the pianist out of me. Pt 3 was actually the most satisfying record I made at the time - both " Obsessed II " & " TTM 3 " just seemed more personal & self indulgent. The aftermath of pts 1 & 2 - I think was expressed in pt 3. I was on a huge high after 1 & 2 as they nearly didn't happen due to the huge samples.
Which is your favourite bond film?
This is hard - I like quite a few equally - the spy who loved me ( that lotus ) & moonraker for the look & since nobody does it better than connery - probably goldfinger followed by you only live twice .. . possibly
Are there any tunes on production house that you didn't produce or have a large influence on?
There are tons of tunes on PH I didn't produce - I arrived on the scene around 1990 & PH were putting out vinyl since 87. As for influencing - thats not for me to say - you would have to ask the others - if on the other hand your talking about having a hand in production - then yes I was involved in most of the tunes throughout 90 / 93 either remixing or production etc etc...
Have you any plans to get producing on the newly resurrected old skool scene?
Sure - I guess I will keep an old skool theme running thru most of my tunes in the near future but I don't plan on trying to get with any scene really - I just express what I feel at the time - if it sounds old skool then - so be it. Music has taken a back seat to my filmmaking interests at the moment - so its hard to know where Im heading musically - I just create whatever I get off on.
How did it feel to get sued by the Beatles for sampling "Here Comes The Sun" in "Close Your Eyes (Optikonfusion)"? Do you feel it's a better track with or without the Beatles sample?
Oh - much better with. I love huge blatant samples - I will never tire of samples - after all thats how I got into music - I was just a kid who loved sampling James Bond. As for how I felt on getting sued - quite honored that the late Mr Harrison had to listen to it & comment on what he thought of it - which was nice. He hated it but I thanked him for appearing on the record anyway.
What other producers/sound engineers inspire you?
This changes everytime I hear a record I like but for consistency - names like Dre - LFO - Felix da housecat - Chemical Bros - Quincy Jones - George Clinton - Liam howlett etc too many - I Listen to film score's & classical mostly - John Barry & Ennio Morricone as composer's are huge inspirations also.
Favourite tracks from the golden era of raving
Again too many to remember let alone mention mmm .. . Slightly earlier from the golden era - tracks like The Bee & Exorcist - Scientist, L.F.O - LFO, Mr Kirks Nightmare - 4hero and We Are E - Reel to Reel. A bit later would be The Horn Track - Tim Taylor, Charley EP - The Prodigy, Dominator - Human Resource and Anthema - Nebula 2, these are tracks that spring to mind now - but there were lots of great tracks being made at the time - my brain cannot keep up with the titles.
Whose house was No.1 Herbert Gardens? Did u used to go in the Bucaneer pub? (From DJ Moody who lives now lives in Herbert Gardens).
80's throwback Phil kon artis' Fearon was the owner. The Bucaneer - probably for the odd beverage & a pool game but hardly, I do remember heading to the Harlesden bakery a lot of the time - those chicken loafs where murderous.
Are there any plans for old Acen / Production House tunes to be released again.
Maybe??? .. Never say never ..
Do you see any of the royalties from the "white label promos" of Trip II The Moon that are sold on some of the on-line record stores?
No - but I guess most are selling what they brought in the first place - so its theirs to do with what they please. Anyhow - I am too involved in what Im doing nowadays to even care - I'll have free downloads / full quality mp3's of the moon trilogy soon on my forthcoming site & a few unreleased edits - its all in the matrix anyway - might as well download them from source.
Where did you get the vocal 'You send me take me higher, in my brain' ?
I got every accapella vocal I ever had one day & stuck them all on a dat - in no order & untitled - I cannot remember at all who originally sung that - but Jim morrison takes credit for the latter.
In a lot of your older music (including 75 minutes) I feel a great deal of emotion. That makes me wonder what things in live inspired you at the time? I know you made a lot of those tunes during a deep relationship (and a breakup) with a particular girl, did this influence you in your work?
Yes - everything influences me when being creative, in any form - so I guess that girl plus alot of other things where involved in sparking the emotion you talk about. I was 18 when all that was happening - my lifestyle was centered around the scene which took its toll on me sometime - this must have been expressed through the music in some way. My tracks where very much from the soul I guess.
What other styles of music do you listen to?
Mainly classical - film scores & big band jazz - indian - middle eastern etc but grimey hip hop has never left me.
What's your favourite smell?
A wood burning fire & a close second would be fresh summer rain ..probably
What equipment do you use in the studio, and what synth or sampler do you use the most?
This varies with what type of track - at the moment a G5 mac with logic 6 / pro tools / reason & a whole bunch of soft synths & plugins is my main weapon but I have always been a sucker for the mpc drum machines coupled with pro tools & the odd vintage monosynth - I have used mpc's since the moon days & have been through most of the series - the 60 mk 2 & Roland w30 were my weapons back was & the mpc1000 is tempting me for some new shit but - its hard to stay loyal to hardware when you experience the power of soft !
Is there any tune you've heard and said, "I wish I'd written that"?
Probably something like " cars " by gary numan or tubular bells by mike oldfield .. maybe
How surprised are you that 10 years on a new generation of ravers and clubbers are still digging your old tunes?
Im not as surprised as people would like to think - the younger generation will always be curious for music before their time - as I was. Hendrix - the doors - parliament - curtis mayfield - a whole heap of 70's cop show themes etc etc - all these where big influences growing up.
Who would win a fight altern8 or smart e's?
If I had to then - altern8 for sure - wasn't feelin' that children's tv rave thing at all except for charley.
What projects are you working on now?
I got into film about a year & half back & started editing / shooting a few short films etc - I have always been fascinated with film & the process - I learned a little about film & directing just before music took over & the curiosity always stayed with me - so now I am pursuing what seems to be a new passion for me.On the music side - I plan to finish an album later this year & possibly a short film to go with it - almost like a soundtrack.
You shot and directed your own video to Dirty Raver. Where was it filmed and how long did it take to do?
Dirty Raver took a while to do - as I was cutting my teeth on the film editing software for the whole project - I filmed it at a few underground tubes in the city - it really wasn't meant to be anything - but kinda of just grew into this whole concept I have now with a vol.2 coming soon. I never ever thought the tune was worth releasing as a single but I started piecing together the video which gave the tune some character. Mtv dance have just started airing it but you can check it out @ http://www.dirtyraver.co.uk - you can add plugger to my list of talents now also. Stay tuned for the forth trip...
Thanks to Acen for taking time out to answer the questions.