Monthly Archives: December 2012

Interview with TEED & Jack Savidge, Friendly Fires

Last month we had a right laugh at the launch of W Hotels’ Boiler Room series in London. Disclosure and Skream played a blinding headline set, but earlier in the evening we were also treated to this from TEED and Jack from Friendly Fires (check out the cheeky phone theft at 02:10):

It’s been a massive year for both of them, and we caught up with them afterwards to discuss their year, their approach to success, and what new music they’re listening to.

HD: So first up. Boiler Room works quite well in this kind of scenario, but is it quite weird playing to a camera rather than a crowd?

Jack: I think what’s good about Boiler Room is that they do, you know. When I first came down I was expecting it to be more of a camera-centric kind of thing, but they make it a real party. I’ve been down to see friends play and it’s always been great.

TEED: Also I think for me and for most DJs I grew up with, it’s basically like having a mix in your bedroom. You never had the decks facing out to the room, unless you were aiming at superstardom. You had them facing the wall.

HD: And what about playing in London? It’s a bit of a cliché, but do you notice differences in attitude and enthusiasm amongst London crowds as opposed to elsewhere?

TEED: Yeah, on the whole this is my least favourite place in the UK to play. But you can have a great night, of course.

Jack: It kind of depends when and where. From club to club it really differs. I don’t think you get the same reaction playing in Kensington & Chelsea as you would in Hackney, for example.

HD: In terms of locations generally, does anywhere really stand out in 2012?

Jack: I’ve had some good DJ gigs in Bucharest. Romania’s really good.

TEED: I want to go there…

Jack: Istanbul’s great. I suppose in Europe there are traditional centres of ‘having it’ which are London, Berlin, Paris – they’re still obviously strong but I don’t know if they’re as strong as they were five years ago. I think it’s moved elsewhere. I’ve had great gigs in St Petersburg, Moscow…

HD: I heard Machinedrum talking about playing on top of the old presidential palace in Bucharest and said it was insane…

TEED: Eastern Europeans are great.

Jack: Absolutely.

HD: Something else we wanted to ask you about, which you have no doubt been asked many times before, is potential tension between mainstream success and some kind of perception of authenticity. With the Nokia ad and the huge success of both your albums, you have become extremely well-known artists: does this affect the way you make music?

TEED: I think people have varying ideas about what it is to keep it real. And I’m not going to diss anyone’s ideas, but just do your thing, make music you’re happy with, put it in places you’re happy with, and present yourself in ways you’re happy with, and there can be nothing wrong with that. It really is your shit so you make the choices. How people take it and run with it is something you can’t really control. I made an album and some people like it who are really into deep house, and some people like it who really like pop music. Whatever, I really couldn’t give a fuck.

HD: So what’s next?

TEED: Continue to make stuff that I like. You can’t predict or worry about people’s reactions. The issues there get heightened by the internet. There are lots of people who like to spend time writing about what a real DJ is, and what’s cool at the moment, and it’s not helpful for anybody at all and it doesn’t produce any good music. The people making the music, I promise you, don’t care.

HD: What about you, Jack? Has your music changed as you guys have become super popular?

Jack: I don’t know. When we were making our second album, that was the first time we had any kind of expectation about either what it was ‘meant’ to sound like or how we wanted to progress it. Before that we didn’t have any kind of agenda. With the stuff we’ve been doing recently and will continue to do next year, I think we’re going back to that kind of ‘no agenda’ feel to it.

HD: Finally, enjoyed the set tonight. What kind of music are you into at the moment? Any favourite up-and-coming artists? Slightly agenda from us in the sense that we are planning our next party for February/March [we are, you know] so we’re on the lookout for young, UK artists to book…

TEED: Young people that I like at the moment? Some guys called Casino Times [whom we had posted about that very day, as it happens] and there’s a guy called fLako, who I really like, who’s putting out an EP on Five Easy Pieces. It’s kind of endless. And of course there are people who aren’t young who are making great music, more importantly. I’ve been thinking recently how weird it is that people now write their age next to producer profiles. They’re like, “I’m a 19 year old producer from Basingstoke”, and it’s like, “Dude, I couldn’t give a fuck how old you are. How does it sound?”

HD: It’s a good point. When we say young, I think what we actually mean is cheap.

TEED: No-one I hang out with is cheap.

Quite right. Whilst you’re here, why not listen to some music from the pair? This remix of TEEDs’ ‘Trouble’ from Montreal man of the moment Lunice is a nervous voyage of tense energy, while Tensnake’s remix of Friendly Fires remix is a much more straightforward disco rework of what was already something of a dancefloor-bothering crowd pleaser. Splendid stuff.


Brolin – Another Year

Hotly tipped Brolin just upped our expectations of what 2013 will look like for him. He’s uploaded new track ‘Another Year’ onto his Soundcloud and it’s as fragile as it gets. Check it out and remind yourself of the genius ‘NYC’ below. Moody blues.

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Vondelpark – Dracula & Ango – True Blue

Couple of new vids to offer some working day distraction here.
We’ve posted on Vondelpark’s thoughtful ‘Dracula’ before, and they’ve now complemented the tune with a melancholic, filtered mélange of clips of London life:
And one of our favourite, which is saying something these days, Montreal-based producers Ango has put out a remarkably self-centred video for the his latest RnB offering, ‘True Blue’. He struts around, pining after a red-head minstrel (not the chocolate) in the manner of some his more mainstream influences.
‘Serpentine’, the EP the above tune’s taken from is available to download for free here. You also want to be getting your hands on the latest compilation from Jacques Greene’s Vase label, featuring Ango and others, also available a gratis here.
With some home-made CD case art, I can feel a cheap Christmas present coming on…
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Vanilla Ace – Hide & The Magician’s Magic Tape 28

Back in September the wonderfully quirky summer hit ‘Vanilla Sky’ put Vanilla Ace on the map, in quite spectacular fashion. Now he’s back with new single ‘Hide’, which glides effortlessly along for six and a half disco-themed minutes, boasting a couple of tasty drops and some nice atmospherics. If you’re after something a little bit longer, this track was featured on The Magician’s recent Magic Tape 28, which is, as ever, a lot of fun. Both are below.

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Maya Jane Coles – Easier To Hide EP

Quenching our thirst just fractionally until she releases her full length debut next year, here’s ‘Easier To Hide’, the new EP from Maya Jane Coles. Released on her own interestingly-named label I Am Me, MJC reinforces her rep for making laidback yet infectious deep house music. Stream the whole ting below – great to have you back luv.

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The Hydra: Bugged Out Pres. Night Slugs @ XOYO, Saturday 15th December

Good club night alert!
We’ve affectionately featured Broken and Uneven’s Hydra series before here & here, and the final instalment is no different. This time it’s big-hitting promoters Bugged Out and South London staples Night Slugs, teaming up to add to newly revamped XOYO’s impressive Christmas run-in.
Night Slugs label bosses Bok Bok and L-Vis 1990 are joined by Berlin-based disco aficionado Soundstream, Jam City and Girl Unit. We expect low-end frequencies brightened up with some disco classics. Did someone say soundclash? L-Vis 1990 has crafted a preview mix to whet the appetite:
We’re most hyped for Girl Unit, whose work we’ve been following closely since the rightly ubiquitous banger ‘Wut’. Here’s said tune and another recent highlight:
All this fun is taking place Saturday 15th December and for a chance to win a pair of tickets to the night, email us at with ‘Night Slugs Allstars’ in the title, letting us know which of the above mentioned DJs would/will Santa listen to. Hopefully see you there…
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Bondax – Gold

Likely lads of twenty thirteen Bondax are back with their new single ‘Gold’, released on their own label Justus Recordings in January. They’re in their teens, they’re making great music and they’ve got their own label. Hats off to them.

‘Gold’ is as impressive as previous releases ‘Baby I Got That’ and ‘It’s You’. It’s bouncy, it’s soulful, it’s, dare we say it, sounding fresh. While you‘re there, why not delve into their recent remix of Rudimental’s ‘Not Giving In’. These guys are going places, good places.

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Beyonce – Check On It (XXYYXX Remix)

We love an RnB rework. XXYYXX makes top drawer RnB reworks. Therefore we love XXYYXX. It’s logic.
The teenage Floridian has treated us again here with his take on ‘Check On It‘, a Beyonce track from 2004 recently re-released on Destiny’s Child’s greatest hits album ‘#1’s’. He expertly deploys his simple, bass-heavy approach, stripping out Slim Thug (who?)’s verses and emphasising the clicks and throbs.

After the inevitable whetting of your appetite, here’s a couple of the boy wonder’s own concoctions (with a cheeky Bey sample on one, for the eagle-eared amongst you):

Want more? Try FACT’s top ten ‘underground pop-R&B remixes’ from the last six months.

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Bit Funk & Black Magic Disco Mixtape 003

This latest offering from Bit Funk has been swirling round HD HQ for a while now, we hope you’ll agree it’s heaps of fun. Steeped in nostalgia, the funky vibes should drag you kicking and screaming into the weekend. In a good way. It’s featured on many a mix of late, including this one from Black Magic Disco. Armed with hot tracks from the likes of Waze & Odyssey, Moullinex and Tensnake, and all yours for free at the click of a button, you’d be foolish not to download it right this second, it’s top.

And, speaking of top mixes, SlothBoogie released a new one this week. It’s a very different proposition from Black Magic Disco – with all manner of vocal samples and a nasty, ghetto house thing going on. A nice antidote, if you fancy one, to the festive cheer rapidly approaching on the horizon.

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Flock @ Apothecary, Friday 7th December

FlockIf you’re at a loose end in London this evening, you could do much, much worse than heading down to Flock at Apothecary in Kings Cross.

Flock is the first night to be brought to you, the public, by the excellent Mister Biscuit blog – and they’ve assembled a line-up which boasts Ethyl and 2020Vision’s Jonny Cade, amongst others. They have an interview with the former right here. Did you know that Ethyl and Huxley were at school together in Tring? Or that Ethyl is bringing out a remix on ManMakeMusic soon? No, exactly. Go and read the interview then.

Tonight promises to be a good one, and tickets are available for eight of the Queen’s pounds, right here.

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