After trouncing the bass house game last year and shutting it down with his debut album Destroy The Image, you could have forgiven Chris Lorenzo for having a slightly quieter 2017.
On the contrary; he’s had his busiest year as a DJ, with extensive US tours and serial appearances all over Europe. He’s launched his own Bass Mentality brand which has already established itself as a killer party and has just this month developed into a release series with some of Chris’s gulliest jams of the year. He’s also slapped us hard with a slew of major league collaborations; from reuniting with Kane for the OG Cause & Affect formation to Chris Lake (Nothing Better), AC Slater (Dope Slinger) Taiki Nulight (Horn Porn) and DJ Zinc with Gammy Elbow.
“If you’d have said to me 10 years ago that I’d be doing a record with Zinc I’d have laughed and told you ‘nah mate’,” he admits. “But there we were in the studio. I was trying to play it cool but that was a special moment.”
2018 could potentially have more special moments for the Birmingham artist. He hints at new hardware-charged collaborations with Friend Within, Holy Goof collaborations and plenty more Bass Mentality parties with a UK tour kicking off next spring (dates below) With plenty more to look forward to, we’ve asked him to look back over one of his best years to date…
“2017 has been another really amazing year and it all kicked off straight away with a massive two-month tour across North and South America and Canada. There were a lot of places I’d never played before and a lot of cities where I’ve come back and the crowd were quite a lot bigger. That’s a really nice feeling actually… A good way to show I’m on the right path, I guess.
The crazy schedule didn’t really stop after that really. So musically I’ve had to ease-up on the releases just little a bit. There just hasn’t been time! But that’s changing now with the Bass Mentality concept which I’ve launched as parties and now a series of releases. Bass Mentality actually started at Made Festival and they asked me to host a stage. I wanted to make it special, so I got back in the studio with Cause & Affect and reworked some classics.
Bass Mentality has been something I’ve needed to do for years; have my own brand and label. I think a lot of fans get pissed off with me because I make a lot of music but I don’t release half of it. The problem is that tracks get old quickly online. But if you make a track and only play it in your sets then it lasts a lot longer. If people want to hear it, they have to come to your sets. It makes it special. Some people understand that, others get frustrated, but that’s the way it is. It’s about finding the right balance but I think it’s about time to start releasing more things and Bass Mentality is for the heavier stuff while more house stuff will go on Sixty6.
I think I confuse people a lot. One time I might release a 130 BPM stinker, the next it might be a big organ house track. But that’s always been my vibe. There’s such an array of music between 125-130BPM it would be mad to stick to one sound. It’s much more fun to mix it up but what I’ve found musically is that bass stuff has gone very bassy and a few BPMs up while the housier stuff has gone more housey and tech. That gap is getting broader, and my favourite place is that gap – bringing it together and joining the dots between the two worlds. That’s been really interesting this year, getting both sides of house music right in the balance.
One person who gets that balance spot-on in my opinion is Redlight. He’s always in my playlist and consistently coming up with great ideas. There’s even talk of a Redlight and Chris Lorenzo collaboration next year. Other artists who I’ve been inspired by this year have been Holy Goof, Distinkt and, from a DJ perspective, Tom Shorterz. He’s one of the best DJs I know. Such a good record collector, his selections always impresses me.
Tell who else I’ve been inspired by? Eats Everything and My Nu Leng. Musically they’re obviously killing it but also the charity stuff they’ve done with their fees and ticket prices. That’s something I’d like to develop next year and would be great to see more of across the scene. We’re in such a privileged position and I know some fans have to scrape their pennies to come and see us play. That’s an honour. We need to give something back and use our position for what it is, especially when you visit every city and see how rife homelessness is. It’s terrible in every city I’ve visited and rising. We already do homeless runs every Christmas, giving out clothes, tobacco, warm hats and gloves and just talking to people. A lot of homeless people are lonely. They get ignored all day long. Even stopping for a chat and buying them a coffee can help. Especially this time of year.
What would I like to see less of in 2018? Internet trolling! It’s just nasty. You could be the ripest peach on the tree but not everyone likes peaches… But to go out of your way to abuse people? Just horrible, I hate seeing it. It’s the curse of social media.
What would I like to see more of in 2018? I want to see more people working together as a unit. Team work makes the dream work! It’ not about individuals, this is about something much bigger….
BASS MENTALITY UK TOUR
THURSDAY 22 FEB – PHONOX, LONDON
FRIDAY 23 FEB – COSMIC BALLROOM, NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE
TUESDAY 27 FEB – KOMEDIA, BATH
FRIDAY 16 MARCH – LAKOTA, BRISTOL
SATURDAY 17 MARCH – FACTORY, PLYMOUTH
SATURDAY 07 APRIL – THE ARCH, BRIGHTON
+ MORE TO BE ANNOUNCED JAN 2018