Holly Senior went to February 3rd's Hospitality at 02 Academy Leeds and caught up headliner with High Contrast (aka Lincoln Barrett).
So loved the set tonight! How do you get yourself psyched up before a gig?
I'm usually very tranquil before I go on, I go a bit quiet. As I'm driving to a venue I'm listening to Radio 4, it's all very calm and then you open the door of the venue and then it all goes mental. So you know, it's the crowd that give me the energy. I can be in a chilled place but then as soon as I see how much they're going off it kind of hits me.
Do you still get nervous before you go on stage or is just another day in the office for you?
Well I've been doing it for 14 years now so I don't get nervous I'm just happy to go on.
Do you sometimes wish that you were in the crowd dancing around with everyone?
Well the way I DJ is I think of myself as just someone in the crowd you know and what would I want to hear next.
So you're so into it you're just kind of a part of it... you don't feel lonely?
Yeah, I don't like the whole popstar thing of DJing. The problem is it's great playing bigger venues and bigger stages but I don't like to be too far away from the crowd, sometimes you get that at festivals. Here it's fine, I can see the whites of their eyes on the front row so it's all right. I don't like the thing of making one man a rockstar.
So you prefer playing more intimate venues rather than the big festivals?
Well I like to alternate it, I wouldn't want to stick to one exclusively but as long as I can go back and forth it's fine. They've both got pros and cons.
Have you got any festivals lined up for this Summer?
Yeah yeah, I'm trying to think what ones... Global Gathering, Lovebox, Parklife and then quite a few abroad, as well.
Have you got a favourite?
As a punter, yeah I like going to Bestival and Glastonbury. But also I really like Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas. That is pretty incredible!
I can imagine! What was the last great gig that you went to?
I saw Amon Tobin a couple of months ago, yeah that was good. I mean I'm not that familiar with his stuff but it was interesting to hear the kind of crazy music he plays. He was doing like a 3D mapping thing on the stage so it's like a visual show as much as an audio show. A lot of people seem to be going that way in dance music, trying to find a way to incorporate the audience. I'm starting to think along those lines as well, not so much 3D mapping, but something.
I've heard you're quite into your films and film soundtracks, would you like to write film music yourself?
I'm not so interested in writing music for films - I mean if it was the right film, the right people and I was inspired I would, but I'd rather be making the film than writing the music.
So, the new album's coming out... how would you describe it? How is it different from your previous albums?
Well there's a lot more vocal tracks on there. I've written a lot of the lyrics myself and they're not sampled vocals on there or anything...
So it's a bit more personal?
Yeah it's more personal and I think the whole album is more cohesive than other things I've made. So I'm pleased with how it all slots together, you can listen to it right from beginning to end.
Rather than just single tracks...
Yeah I mean the tracks seem to stand on their own when I play them in DJ sets but I think it's an album you can really listen to like when you're driving at night on your own or something.
You can really get into the whole album.
I think so yeah.
So you've collaborated with some pretty amazing people, is there anyone that you'd love to work with?
The thing is with all the collaborations, they're things that just like happened naturally, you know?
It's not like 'I want to work with that person, I'm going to seek them out'?
Yeah I quite like that, it's kind of how I approach music. I think trial and error is a big part of it. You know, you kind of throw yourself at the mercy of the universe and just see what comes your way and then you've just got to filter that a little bit and then hopefully it turns into something good. So I don't know. I don't know if I've ever really sought someone out it was just in the right place at the right time and it just happens very naturally. But having said that, if Stevie Wonder wants to come round, my Mum will make tea...!
Nice! And finally, do you know of any up and coming Drum & Bass artists that we should be listening out for?
Well, there's two new guys off Hospital Fred V + Grafix who I really like and S.P.Y's just been signed, he's been around a long time but he's just signed with Hospital. And there's a guy called Metrik who I really like as well. Check them out!
The Agony and The Ecstasy is out in the UK on 13th February; if you can't wait pre-order it now from Hospital Records.