Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Craig McWhinney: 13 things to understand

Inducted by Schlock Tactile for the ‘Love Me Slender’ project, on remix honors, is fellow Aussie Craig McWhinney (Nightshade/HAUL Music), one of that country’s more talented current producers. He’s delivered up a way cool mix that we absolutely love: deep and dirty tribal-tech with phat grooves, backed by pitch-perfect, superb peaks and bassy troughs; precisely our cup of tea!

Here are 13 things you may or may not know about this Melbourne-based musician, proffered up by the man himself:

“I used to play the drums in a couple of bands, from my mid-teens to my early 20s – my brother and I were always fooling around with guitars and the like as well, so music was a part of my make up from pretty early. I guess as my tastes changed, coupled with taking up DJing, somewhere along the way producing came into the picture.”

“I've been DJing for about seven years all up now, I think, and producing for around five years, maybe? Not quite sure, lots of late nights have led to blurry memories... I'm motivated mostly by the music itself. I guess having solid friendships in the Melbourne music community helps to keep me going as well.”

“There've been a lot of changes over that time. Most notably, vinyl started being replaced by CDs, and then laptops. The whole DJing paradigm has been flipped on its head.”

“My wife is actually a huge part of my studio set-up. A second pair of ears, a second opinion – always right at the time I need it – helps me in more ways than anything else.”

Red cordial keeps me fueled when making music, mostly, though I tend to produce in spurts, not long marathon type sessions. I like to keep my ears fresh.”

Surgeon seems to be the main stayer for me; I buy pretty much everything he does. Also Phase, Function, and T++. But the big guy for me, at the moment, is Shed. Love everything he does. I think the common link between these artists is immaculate production, a dark aesthetic, and a great intensity without being over-cooked. Just quality music.”

“I make techno. Always have, always will.”

“I have a solid release schedule with my label HAUL music, which I run with my partners Christian Vance and Mike Callander – so look out for consistent original and remix work there. I also have an EP, 'Ensõ', in the works for American label Nightshade. I was in chats with another American label to release an EP, but at this stage that seems to be all talk.”

“I had a 12-inch released through UK label Notorious North, titled 'Antiquated EP', which kind’a slipped past unnoticed, but I'm pretty fresh with the whole releasing thing, so I look forward to what’s coming!”

“There's a certain amount of quality control when releasing to vinyl that can often be overlooked with digital-only releases. On the flip-side, many great artists are emerging because of the digital age we live in. Hopefully a balance can be struck, and vinyl can be kept afloat. I really hope that vinyl never dies. I have a love of vinyl that I’d like to be able to feed for many more years to come.”

“I fully embrace the digital age – I think it’s great! By moving into the digital download medium. labels make themselves available to another section of the market. Smart play in my book.”

“I have a lot of respect for a lot of the veteran old school Melbourne producers. I used to own a fair swag of Voiteck records on Truck Musik, and I currently really dig Christian Vance and Mike Callander, not only ‘cos they're my partners and friends in HAUL, but also ‘cos they're damn talented. Zen Paradox is amazing at what he does. I also like what I’m hearing from some of the newer Melbourne acts.”

“The remix I did for Schlock Tactile is a percussive burner, good in the mix – use it as a tool to build a set with. I liked the original and heard what I could do with it; it’s a no-brainer why I agreed to do it.”

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