With releases on Blackout, Eatbrain, Bad Taste, Invisible and C4C in the last 12 months to name a few. Anyone who follows the harder, heavier end of drum & bass in any detail will already know who the hell Redpill is.
For added detail, his name is Remi Jorquera, he’s from Toulouse, he was a former member of Bl4ck Owlz. This summer has seen him drop a single and an EP on Blackout, not to mention an appearance on Invisible’s Solids 2 collection, and he’s got plenty more tablets for us to take in the near future, including a collaboration on Billain’s first EP in three years.
So here’s your choice. Take a blue pill and this interview ends. You put your phone down and believe whatever you want to. Take the Redpill, you stay on UKF.com and Remi will show you how deep this rabbit hole goes…..
Toulouse representing! You’re in quite an inspiring place for drum & bass right now!
It is indeed a very inspiring place. We have Le Bikini which is a very nice venue and has regular drum & bass events across all the genres from neurofunk to deep drum & bass. We have a lot of established artists from the scene like Monty, Signs, The Clamps and also promising newcomers too. It’s a nice place to make drum & bass.
Are you all mates behind the scenes?
Yeah we see each other at the club and on tour but we don’t have the same connection collaboratively like maybe the Italians do at the moment where they are all jumping on tracks together. We could do more I guess but Le Bikini connects a lot of us. We are evolving in different styles of D&B too.
I’ve lost count of how many DJs have repped Le Bikini in interviews. Everyone from Marky to Phace has bigged the place up to me.
That’s nice to know. Maybe it’s the swimming pool.
There’s a swimming pool?!?
Of course why do you think it’s called Le Bikini? It’s not like pool parties every night, that would be too dangerous, but artists can have a swim before the show and there is a restaurant for dinner before the show, too.
Man that sounds perfect. Take me to your first night there as a Toulouse youth
Yeah maybe 12 years ago, for a metal band probably. I was a big rock and metal head and played bass and guitar a lot. I played there as a bass player too in a band called Roze. They still exist today, music can be similar to Muse. These experiences still inspires my sound a lot.
Did you tour France with them?
Yeah we played a lot of places. But it’s hard to break through in France as a rock band. You have the historical big artists who tour everywhere but there seems to be much less opportunities for smaller bands because of the cost of it. Playing small pubs and bars is one thing but stepping up when you have so many people in band to pay and even transport. It’s way more expensive to book a professional rock band than a DJ.
I’ve read Pendulum were your first inspiration D&B wise. Standard for a lot of people but even more so with your background…
Oh when I heard Slam and Hold Your Colour it was a revolution. It was a gamechanger and sounded like music from the future. Like everything I loved about rock music but done with an electronic point of view. Yes that changed my life.
I know you started producing years ago but only broke through years later, right?
Yeah sure I practiced maybe around four years before I even sent anything to a label.
You’ve found your sound and you’re not wasting label’s time.
Exactly. I couldn’t send anything unless I was happiest as I can be with it. Then of course the first things I sent to labels was part of Bl4ck Owlz. We had our first big break on UKF. We were on your 2015 Dubstep compilation and 250k youtube plays on our Evol Intent – Middle Of The Night remix.
Ah of course. You’ve left them now, right?
Yeah I did when I started Redpill two years ago after we made an EP on Eatbrain. It was for the best. When you’re in a collective you have to make compromises. It was best for me to leave after three years.
You’ve gone from a band to a duo to finally working on your own?
Ha! No, I clearly don’t like people very much! (laughs)
Labels like you, though. When you came through as Redpill you came on the likes of Eatbrain, Invisible, Bad Taste and many more…
Yeah I’d developed some very nice connections at these labels and released on some of them as Black Owlz. Gigantor from Evol Intent was one of the first to support and helped us making great connections, big up to him!
Was it scary going alone or exciting?
Both in fact. I was very happy because I could do anything I wanted and it’s a new way to work. You are not sharing projects every time and losing time on the process. I had to rethink my own production process. It was really scary to start from zero though and not have any gigs or anything like that. I was already full time in music and production since the middle of the Black Owlz project.
There’s no other job in the background keeping you alive?
Exactly. I had to find new ways to find income and full my gig diary. But that made me work as hard and as fast as possible. That gives me pressure and pushes me in a good way though.
Let’s talk about Blackout, this is your second release with them this summer…
Yeah I met them at The Bikini long time ago. I sent them things through Facebook and luckily they liked them and wanted to release them.
Tell us more about the process behind these releases….
They are the first thing I’ve done almost entirely with my hardware synth. The Dave Smith Pro 2. It’s changed everything for me, I’m not using anything like Serum or any popular soft synths. I am trying to develop a kind of signature sound and have always used traditional equipment like guitars and basses so having hardware in hands to play with makes sense for me. It’s cleaner, rich and beautiful sound. I love it. I am not a big fan of using too much distortion too, I like raw, not too much processed and sometimes degraded sounds.
You’re also working with Billain on his new EP, right?
Yeah I am so happy about that! I sent him a project proposal and he liked it, which was very complimentary then he turned it into something next level. It’s evolved into something I couldn’t have imagined. I am really proud of this collaboration.
Nice, what follows that?
After Blackout I’m working on a new EP for Eatbrain. I know Jade played one of the tracks recently at Boomtown but it’s too soon to show. So that EP will be here by the end of the year. I’m also getting a lot of bookings which is great. From September I have shows almost every weekend. I am pretty happy of my booking agency GRAM, they are doing an awesome work. It’s a very exciting time!
So you’re staying in the rabbit hole for now….
Totally man. That’s what Down The Rabbit Hole on Invisible is all about.
How deep you gonna go?
Too deep man. There’s no way back… I can tell you a story about the ‘’Redpill’’ name if you like.
There was a very mainstream French rapper who released an album years ago. He had written on the CD cover red pill tunes that were the hard ones and blue pill tunes for the soft ones. I don’t like his music at all but liked that idea and it’s always stuck with me.