Trick Music Interview

So there I was, sat in a Greasy Spoon at 5am in the middle of Coventry; glow sticks under one arm, wondering why my bacon sarny had winked at me… when a rather more sober fellow arrived.

“Psy-Tranced out?” he says, as he shakes my hand. “I’m Mike, from Trick Music”.

“Mmm…” I say frowning, hoping the sarny doesn’t notice him. “So how did you get into Psy-Trance?”

“Well, I met this guy Ady at a Psy-Trance night about 10 years ago in Leicester, ironically for someone that runs that kind of label, I’m not really into Psy-Trance. I like old Halucinagen, Perfecto, and Man with No Name-type stuff, but I’m more into the Dub/Breaks Psy-stuff.”

“Yeah, it can be pretty intense” I say, carefully placing my glowsticks on the table.

“Well, Psy-Trance tends to reach a peak then plateau – the people in the scene really feel it : becoming a part of it, fully immersed, and on a level of intensity. We did some parties around 2001-2004, with  a selection of labels including Ambivalent who we became good friends with, but decided that setting up Trick Music on our own in 2006 would mean that could have more control. We’re not just about full-on Psy-Trance though, we’ve always had both the full-on stuff, and the slower side which is less fierce.”

“Seems a bit… Psychadelic for Coventry..?” I say, but he seems at ease with the eyeball in the sandwich.

“Well, take Scorb for example” he says “…he’s not playing many UK gigs really. His focus is on making the music as good as he can, but when gigs come through they tend to be in Italy, or Japan, or South Africa, or Canada; at festivals or big parties.”

“So the label’s going well?” I ask, slowing pushing the sarny towards the edge of the table.

“Well as a label our aim is to sell records so it funds itself, and we’re not paying to do it, but Psy-Trance is a genre many people don’t know of. You find there are little pockets everywhere, so we go to an event, maybe start writing a track with a DJ or someone, maybe it will keep going, maybe fizzle out, maybe we’ll bump into them a year later, but it’s all good cross-pollination.”

A guy in a tron suit wanders in and orders some chips. I use the distraction to topple my eye-ball sarny over the edge, onto the floor and it skids under a table. I breathe a sigh of relief.

Mike continues “A good label needs a solid foundation and a strong identity. You create a sound that becomes your signature in the genre and people tap into it. It’s taken a long time, but it’s all been made worthwhile from the feedback that we have had, despite never really hammering social networking. We found that so long as there are regular gigs and good quality music, you don’t need to release stuff every second just to seem like you have a presence.”

“Yeah, I suppose these days it’s all too easy to make throw-away connections with people and seem busy without actually doing a lot.” I say feeling a little guilty about the sandwich, and the fact I had no idea where I’d been in the last 24 hours. I sip my tea.

Mike explains : “Being mates (which is how we started) is good, and we’ve found it important to find people you can work with. There’s been loads of loose ties, but most have been friendship-based, ‘cos it doesn’t matter how much you like the music – if someone’s a complete twat you won’t work with them.”

“So did you get my demo?” I ask.

“Err.. yeah…” he says, “But running a label is difficult sometimes because ultimately your own creative interests are completely intertwined with the business interests of the label, but if your really good and you stick around for long enough, you should get the credit you deserve.”

I get the feeling I should maybe upgrade from my Atari ST for my next track. The sandwich under the table just rolls it’s eye at me…

Mike has been working as Youth Media Tutor teaching music and audio production in a studio in Coventry at Woodend [blog.trickcreative.co.uk] , and also doing an MA in Creative Enterprises at Warwick University.

Future releases on Trickmusic : December 20th – Prism ‘Arrival EP’, , February 2011 – pH1bian vs Antispin ‘Dangerstrips EP’.

Future gigs : Scorb Live – December 18th – Portugal (boat party), Scorb Live – December 31st NYE – Montreal, Canada.

For more on Trick Music go to: www.trickmusic.com or www.trickmusic.com/blog or orzelsmachine.podbean.com (trick podcast)