Guy J [a] deserves a medal for his services to progressive house, so innovative and crucial have his productions been to the genre. His tracks stand tall and proud in a field of dying poppies, unafraid of their melodic heritage yet respective of the need for change.
Bedrock Records latest wonderkid Guy J has been the talk of the town lately, with a recent Big Interview with Pete Tong, a new album ‘Esperanza’ and a slew of tour dates on the back of it.
Hear what this up-and-comer has to say about all of his recent successes, and his feelings behind ‘Esperanza’ in the interview that follows.
What was your overall approach to constructing the album?
My overall approach was to deliver a project that gives the listener a clue about my sound and my thoughts and my point of view about music.
The album says a lot about who I am and what my sound is… it’s meant to pleasure the ears.
Bedrock holds a legendary status in house music. How does it feel having your artistic debut released on such a label?
It’s a huge honour since Bedrock has always been a massive inspiration for me as a producer and to actually be part of the huge list of artists that release their music on Bedrock – it’s a real big deal to me.
How would you describe the sound of the album?
The sound of my album ‘Esperanza’ is very warm.
There a lot of melodies and depth to the album, it’s not just a dance album – it also includes new versions for ‘Geko’, ‘Underpressure’ and ‘Save Me’.
Would you say your musical policies as a DJ are accurately reflected?
Yes, what you hear in the album is the vibe I’m trying to deliver in my sets.
You can hear lots of different styles of house music in my sets but it’s all connected by the same sound and that is what happening in the album; each track is very different but they are all connected and it flows, it’s still consistent.
Was musical diversity an important concept to address for you while making the album?
It was. I tried to make each track very different in one way but also grab elements from each track to and incorporate them into other tracks to make them flow and also maximise listening pleasure.
Numerous DJs and producers have emerged from Israel in recent years, such as Guy Gerber, Chaim and you. Would you say that there is a signature sound that can be associated with Israeli dance producers?
I don’t think our sounds are similar at all.
There is lots of music coming out of Israel but sound wise we are quite different.
It is just coincidence that we all started to get noticed around the same time… I don’t think our sounds are dictated by our postcodes.
I really like Chaim & Guy Gerber and think they are great at what they do.
What do you feel about the house scene at the moment in terms of the quality of musical output?
I really hope that it makes a bit of a u-turn and goes back to some great house music. More melodic and more tracks that are memorable – I really feel the scene lost that ‘big’ track feel this year and people have missed that. I say bring the melody back!!
What styles of electronic music would you site as being the key influences to your productions?
I would say in my production you can find elements of house music,with minimal, progressive, deep and techno… you can also hear snippets of ambient, dubstep, really leftfield stuff.
On the back of the album release, how packed is your DJ schedule?
At the moment it’s getting more and more packed. My manager James is doing a great job on the album tour.
Are there any upcoming shows that you’re particularly looking forward to?
I have a gig at Ministry of sound in London on the 19th September which I’m really looking forward to as it’s my first club gig in the UK after Global Gathering, which was my really first gig in the UK!
I find each gig exciting as it’s going to new places and meeting new crowds and different people.
Preferred method of mixing: Vinyl or CDs?
I would love to use vinyl but I am using Ableton at the moment so unfortunately no place for the vinyl.
All-time favourite club to perform in?
Ageha – Tokyo. It has the best vibe I’ve ever witnessed. Amazing people in an amazing club.
Favourite producer of the moment?
Jimpster. He is very different from what I’m doing, but the sound and the groove of his tune is something you just want more and more.
Secret weapon in your record box?
My weapon is unreleased remixes I have made for few tunes.
From time to time an old tune comes into my head so I go and try to remake it.
What’s your worst experience behind the decks?
My Mac crashed in middle of a gig. I can’t even talk about it.