There have been a lot of big announcements within drum and bass in the past year – from beloved duos splitting to new aliases forming – but a particular announcement perking people’s ears recently has been the news that Technimatic are launching their own label, Technimatic Music.
After being signed to Shogun Audio for eight years, and releasing three albums in the process, it was never going to be an easy decision for the duo to start self-releasing music. But it’s a necessary one allowing Technimatic to grow.
The decision may come at a time when the pandemic has forced a lot of people’s hands, especially music artists, but this is not a venture born overnight. Technimatic Music has been on the cards for a long time, but recent events have helped pave the way for its fruition. Whereas many producers struggled to find inspiration during the bleakness of 2020, Technimatic found themselves feeling more inspired than ever to create. They’re now sitting on a war chest of music, ready to unleash it on their new label…
Technimatic Music officially launches tomorrow with the release of the duo’s new single Still Miss You featuring Charlotte Haining. Ahead of the debut release, UKF rang up Pete and Andy to gauge more details about their new label venture.
The launch of Technimatic Music! This is exciting…
Andy: We’re feeling good about it. Ironically, before we signed to Shogun we were having conversations in a pub talking about starting a record label. So this isn’t something that has just happened. We’ve always talked about it, but now we feel like we’re ready. It’s the right time. So it’s a strange feeling of nerves and anticipation towards the unknown, mixed with a sense of excitement at the challenge.
It’s one thing talking about starting a label, but actually doing it is something else.
Pete: Yeah. We‘ve mulled this for a long time. Andy and I don’t make fast decisions. We probably overthink things to be honest. But once we came to the decision, we got our heads down and dived into it. We knew there would be a lot of work involved. For the past eight years we’ve been signed to a label, so everything has been done for us. We’ve never had to worry about PRS, PPL and ISRC codes…
It must feel strange considering Shogun have been such a big part of Technimatic over the years.
Andy: Definitely. Shogun have become a spiritual home to us after being with them for so long. It’s weird we have music coming out but we’re not having the usual conversations we would with the team. We have so much love for Shogun. Without having them as a springboard starting out, then we may not have been in a position to do this right now.
It’s coming up to 10 years since your debut SGN:LTD single, back in the days when you were Technicolour and Komatic…
Andy: 10 years… Wow. It’s a very cliché thing to say, but if we were to pause and look at those 10 years from the moment right now where we’re on the verge of releasing a single on our own label – all of the shows, releases, people we’ve met, experiences we’ve had – then it’s absolutely insane. It has been a crazy journey so far.
It’s a real full circle moment for you guys.
Andy: Totally. Also, one of the things to mention is that aside from putting out a single with UKF last year, Lakota, and an album prior to that, we haven’t really put any new music out. So that adds another dimension to this, because the real joy of music is when you share it with others. I’m excited for the first single to drop.
You’ve always been known for your extended breaks after albums, which I think is rewarding as it gives you time to fully plan everything out.
Pete: You’re right. We’ve never been ones to rush music out. When there has been a large gap, we’ve debated at times asking – are we not relevant anymore? Are people forgetting about us? But once we put something out it never seems to be the case. I think it benefits us that we don’t constantly stick out tunes. It’s quality over quantity.
Andy: Even though we do have big gaps between our releases, behind the scenes we’re pretty prolific in terms of how many sketch ideas we’ve got and how many finished tracks are ready to go. It’s constant. The actual time we take off not looking at the screen is pretty short. Even though we have all of this material ready, it takes us a long time to get to the point where we’re ready to share it.
So with everything that has been going pandemic-wise, did that give you the final shove to launch the label?
Pete: I think if it wasn’t for the lockdown then we wouldn’t have had the time to get this label off the ground, or write music in the way we did. I know some people have felt creatively paralysed by lockdown, but for us it has been the opposite as we’ve had ideas pouring out. We’ve had the opportunity to spend the last six months learning what it takes to make Technimatic Music a reality. If we were working our normal hours then it wouldn’t have been possible. In terms of making the decision though, that was decided before the pandemic hit. Then when lockdown happened we were like – now is the time.
Andy: Yeah that’s right. We had reached a real crossroads after our last album came out. We were like – we’ve done three albums now. What’s next?
Technimatic Music! Kicking off the label with Still Miss You featuring Charlotte Haining is a very strong start.
Andy: It’s a beautiful thing because we’ve known Charlotte for years. Every time we were at a show together we’d say we need to do a tune, but then nothing would happen. As Pete mentioned, right in the early depths of lockdown when everyone was feeling particularly anxious, ideas were flowing for us. We couldn’t write the music quick enough. We literally made three or four tracks each week. And then this one idea, which are the chords you hear in the single, just flew out. It took literally 20 minutes…
That’s very fast!
Andy: Really quick. Over the equivalent of an hour we had the instrumental ready. So we sent it over to Charlotte and the next day she sent a sketch back with her idea. The maddest thing happened. She listened to it, her lyrics poured out, the song poured out, and there it was. As a producer, that’s what you dream of when you start a track.
Pete: It felt like the track wrote itself. Anyone who makes music will know that feeling. They’ll also know the opposite feeling where you’re stuck in a track, feeling like you’re trying to push a rock up a hill… Asking yourself – but what if we change the snare? Eventually you’ve got to move on.
Definitely. So what else can people expect from the label release-wise?
Pete: We’re going to release six singles digitally over the course of 2021. Then at the end of the year they’ll all be released on vinyl.
Andy: We’re calling this project the Everlasting EP.
Pete: We’ve picked six singles representing a broad range of the D&B we like. There’s a bit of everything on there. As we’ve written a lot over the past year, we had a large pot of what we feel is really strong music to pick from.
I saw you mention the music you’ve been working on recently is some of the best you’ve ever made.
Andy: Yeah. As we mentioned, something very weird happened to us at the start of lockdown where we couldn’t write this music fast enough. Not only that, the depth of the ideas we had were not just one type of idea, so this project reflects that. Yes, we’ve got a track with Charlotte representing the style we’re well-known for, but there are others that will hopefully surprise people…
I’m sure everyone will be glad to see the label launch, as when you consider your Wardown project Pete, there are most likely people who worried what it meant for Technimatic.
Pete: Yeah, and because we do take larger gaps than other producers, that can lead to people questioning where we’ve gone. We’ve also had multiple sad announcements in the past year of duos not making music any more, such as Spectrasoul and Ulterior Motive, but that’s definitely not the case with us!
Good to know. There’s clearly a lot of Technimatic excitement to come…
Andy: For sure. One of the maddest things is we’re putting out all of this music, but we won’t get the chance to play it in a club. Let’s be honest, D&B is designed to be heard loud on a sound system, so we have absolutely no idea how this music will translate into that environment. It’s very weird.
Pete: Yeah, the whole paradigm has changed. Can you really say your tune blows up at the moment? Is it down to how many comments you get online? It’s going to be really interesting for us, as we have no idea how to gauge the success of this venture right now, but we are excited to get it going as we have so much music ready.
Technimatic Feat Charlotte Haining – Still Miss You is out now on Technimatic Music