First Time / Last Time: Marcus Intalex

marcus intalex

Sage selector, Soul:r bossman and a man who runs a fine line of techno as Trevino. No matter which way you approach Marcus Intalex, serious salutes are essential.

Spending much of his youth in Manchester record shops, Intalex has been entrenched in beats from the very beginning. Ahead of his Room Three takeover at Fabric this Friday, we caught up with him to rewind to some of his earliest and freshest memories of his career so far…

Get to know Marcus on a whole new level as he reflects on how a rant at a cheesy DJ scored him his first gig, how the Hacienda changed his life and how he and Calibre can create five tracks in two days!

Get down to Fabric and salute the man yourself this Friday. You’ll have plenty of time… He’s playing for the full six hours straight. Full details.

One night I decided I’d had enough of it so tried to switch him off, but got caught by a bouncer who kicked me out.

First Performance

This came through being a bit of a cheeky shit to be honest. At my local club, The Angels in Burnley, there was one DJ who played about 20 minutes of decent house every night and another DJ who played cheesy party rubbish. One night I decided I’d had enough of it so tried to switch him off, but got caught by a bouncer who kicked me out. That then led to me having a huge rant at the club’s owner where I basically told him I was a better DJ than the bloke I’d tried to switch off, despite the fact I’d never mixed in my life. He wasn’t happy with me but knew I had an idea about music so instead of barring me he gave me a pair of crusty old decks to learn on and then to my surprise gave me the Tuesday night slot, which was pretty big back then. The decks at the club were so different to the ones I’d learnt on so I ended up clanging the hell out of that night! But I still loved it and after that performance it all took off from there pretty quickly.

Last Performance

My last performance was on Friday at Soul:ution – on CDJs, not crusty old Technics like at The Angels. I played an hour just before Doc Scott and it was a really good night. Doc Scott’s set was probably the best I’ve heard for quite a while, he was brilliant. I love playing Soul:ution, I’ve done it every month for the past 10 years now so I now what the crowd’s going to be like and they know what I’m into which means I can just play what I want. It’s just a case of building it up, keeping it nice and deep before the headliner comes on and yeah, it’s always a good night.

First Record I Bought

I remember going shopping with my mum and buying a Madness 7″ single when I was about 10, or maybe even younger than that. The tune was called Embarrassment and I bought it without even hearing it beforehand. In the early days I used to go into record shops not to buy things but just to mill around for hours listening to what was going on, I was ‘one of those people’ I guess. Then I got a job in Eastern Bloc and became one of the people I used to hate! But that’s where I got my music education from; spending time in those shops hearing tracks out loud for the first time with no intention of buying them. Working in record shops from around 1990 meant I rarely had to go out buying records which was pretty handy.

Last Record I Bought

The last record I bought was a techno record called The Singularity by Yaxteq on Underground Resistance last week from Eastern Bloc. I really like it because it’s got that original Underground Resistance sound which is so synonymous with the early 90s Detroit style of techno. It can’t really be replicated because they know exactly what they’re doing and they do it the best. It’s like when people try and replicate that Ed Rush & Optical sound in drum & bass; it’s not bad… But it’s never going to be as good as the real thing.

First Clubbing Experience

I’d been to The Angels quite a bit in my teens but in the late 1980s I went to The Hacienda to watch New Order who were my favourite band at the time and that’s what I’ll always remember as my first proper experience. It was my first time seeing New Order and my first time at The Hacienda, so it was killing two birds with one stone really. Walking into that club changed what I wanted to do with my life; it was just such a special place that looked like nothing else, especially not a fucking club! But because I’m such a shortass I didn’t even see the band, I just spent the whole night walking around checking things out with my mind completely blown listening to this incredible music. That memory will always stay with me.

Walking into that club changed what I wanted to do with my life; it was just such a special place that looked like nothing else, especially not a fucking club!

 Last Clubbing Experience

I don’t necessarily have clubbing experiences any more; I’m just there mainly to work! I’ve been doing it for so long now that I’m kind of over clubbing in a funny way – I enjoy performing still but I wouldn’t say I love ‘going out’ as much as I used to, especially as I used to be the first person in and the last person out without fail. If there’s a certain DJ in town I haven’t seen in a while I’ll go and check them out but I’ve been in so many clubs over the years that it doesn’t seem that exciting any more. That probably makes me sound like a miserable old fart… maybe I have become one after all.

First Musical WTF?! Moment

I remember the first time I heard Chime by Orbital on Radio 1 about a year before it came out and being absolutely blown away by it. I went to the shop every week after hearing it in the hope of getting my hands on it and eventually did so about 6 months down the line. It didn’t sound like anything else I’d ever heard before when I first heard it and that’s what made it stand out; such clever use of synths and so unique. I’ve still got it lying around on vinyl somewhere, although I used to absolutely batter it so it’s probably not in the best state.

Last Musical WTF?! Moment

The best drum & bass album I’ve heard in ages is the new Cern album on Dispatch. I really like the angle he’s coming from; it’s very underground and he’s done it in his own way, plus it doesn’t sound like anything else which is a good thing. It’s very against the grain of what people think they need to do with a drum & bas album; he’s treated it as his own album and not let current patterns interfere with it which I really respect. That’s been the biggest surprise in terms of drum & bass releases for a while.

First Release

That would be What Ya Gonna Do by Da Intalex back in 1994. All I ever wanted to do at that time was get a tune into Doc Scott or Fabio and Grooverider’s box and this tune was played on Grooverider’s Kiss show within two weeks so we were buzzing. I went over to L Double’s studio in Huddersfield, produced the track with him and it was all uphill from there; people starting asking us for music, lots of good stuff was being said about us and it all happened a lot quicker than we expected really.

Last Release

My latest release is the Calibre collab: Runaway / Something Heavy. We don’t see each other as much these days but whenever he’s playing Manchester I kind of make sure he stays around for a few days afterwards so that we can have a bit of studio time together. Last time he was down we produced five tunes in two days and we decided to release Runaway and Something Heavy, both with Fox on vocals. The other three tracks will probably be released on Soul:r later on this year. In some ways it’s good working with Calibre because he’s such a talent but on the other hand there are times when you feel that you’re not worthy of being with him because he’s that good!

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