Q&A 005 – Perseus Traxx
“I once found what appeared to be an interdimensional portal.”
For our fifth interview we are joined by one of the most interesting producer in the UK but also one of the nicest folks we had the pleasure to speak to: Perseus Traxx. We asked him to let us know what were his plans to sort of introduce him and he explained himself way better then we could have ever possibly done. “I am about to release an edit under the Sir Leon Greg alias coming out on NOHO Records from Italy’s Brenta region hopefully this side of Christmas, and a track on new Glaswegian label, alongside Helena Hauff on Contort Yourself, which is also hoped to be this side of Christmas; I have an EP on Dutch label Photic Fields called Harmony Of The Elements, coming out in mid January 2015. Additionally January sees the release of Dr Burisch on Crimes Of The Future, something I’m extremely proud of, and on the 23rd I’ll be playing live at Bargain (not Berghain – but fingers crossed one day) in Rennes, France.” He also obviously answered our questions.
First of all, as we will be talking about ‘downstairs’, what’s the first thing that comes in to your mind when you hear that word?
It should really be about cellars and basements, closed areas, but it isn’t quite that for me. I live on the top floor of my building and overlook York, I can’t see the moors as clearly as at my last flat, but can make them out between buildings and spires. As such, for me downstairs represents the real world outside the bubble of my flat. For me, everything is downstairs.
Talking about music and your work, tell us about your favourite downstairs venue you’ve played / been to, whether in London or elsewhere. Why was it special?
London has quite a few which I’ve been lucky enough to experience, but Griessmühle in Berlin is one I love. I played upstairs at the Magic Waves festival there earlier this year, but last year after playing at Tresor, I played in the basement for my friend’s birthday. It was brilliant. A concrete room, smelling slightly of cattle, with a metal walkway and stairs at the side leading down, and what appeared to be two large silos in there. Everything was set up on a set of stacked pallets. It was grotty and I felt like death after the previous night, but being there last minute for my friends birthday was amazing, and the whole place was incredible. Having a space where people are packed in is great, and when it’s relatively small you can see the walls and remember where you are and that feeling adds to it all. On halloween I went to see Legowelt at Meat Free in Manchester, and that was in a cellar. The place was rammed and sounded immense. I really liked that for the brick arches and again, the feeling of being in a cellar.
What differences would you make to your set for a basement gig compared to an outdoor / terrace / festival one? Do you get a different feeling whilst playing in such different venues?
I think you can get harder in a cellar. Noise behaves very differently to how it would at a festival. There isn’t anywhere for it to go, so you can really build up the pressure although the e”ect doesn’t really make a di”erence to how I play. I also like the idea of being on the same level as the crowd, rather than above them a bit, which often seems to be the way at festivals or terraces. Being on the same level allows a greater degree of connectivity.
Do you get a different feeling whilst playing in such different venues?
I think I may have answered that above…
Could you tell us about three of your most essential ‘downstairs’ tracks?
That’s a bit like asking someone to choose their favourite o”spring. It’s likely to change from week to week, but at the moment I’m really digging these and think they’d be awesome in a concrete or brick arched sweatbox:
Unit Black Flight – “One Hour Before Dawn” Giallo Disco
Gay Marvine – “Frozen Faces” Bath House Etiquette – BHE 4
Squadra Blanco – “The Night Must Fall” – Holosynthesis
Talking a little bit more about yourself, what’s the most unique or interesting experience you’ve ever had while below ground level?
I once found what appeared to be an interdimensional portal. I saw a person walk up to a mirrored wall, there was a shifting of light and reflections and then the person was no longer there. I went up to the place where they had been and searched and searched, but there was no door.
If you had a basement, what would you hide in it?
I’m not certain. At the moment I have a boiler room, the water boiler is in there, but as a space it can easily manage a small live set up or decks and a couple of people. Instead though I keep my chainsaw, spikes, climbing tackle and outdoor kit in there. I’d probably keep those in a cellar if I had one, along with wine possibly, and sloe gin and home made products. I’d probably cure ham too and make my own salami/chorizo. Vegetables would also be kept down there, plus cardboard boxes for synths etc. I’m quite practical really.
And finally something that involves your creativity. Could you draw anything that comes into your mind when you think about ‘downstairs’?
I said downstairs is everything below me, so my bedroom which is now big and on the corner of a building above the houses is also my studio so I can escape to the living room if need be. This is the view from one of them looking over Holgate bridge, with York Minster on the horizon. I uploaded a mix via wetransfer and then played it back while I painted. The last track has come on as I type this. Now i’ve got a fuck load of gold leaf to clear up. Sometimes not having a carpet comes in useful (smile) ….