Hello there! Please introduce yourself. Who are you and where are you from?
Hi I’m Pete Murtagh, I produce and DJ under the name Slaine , I’m from Birmingham, England and make mainly drum and bass/170 music.
How long have you been producing?
I have been producing seriously for around 8-9 years and djing for a few more.
Where did it all begin for you? What was the main influence on you in terms of drum’n’bass music? What were the very first tunes that stroke you most?
I guess my first real introduction to drum and bass were the classic virus, ram and Metalheadz releases from the late 90’s/early 00’s. Tracks like Adam f’s ‘metropolis’, Moving Fusion’s ‘Turbulence’ ,Ed Rush and Opticals ‘wormhole’ album, and I remember being really into the Origin Unknown + Ram Trilogy stuff. From there I got more into the techy side of things, discovering Konflict, Bad Company and Teebee along with stuff like Photek.
Are you working in any other styles, if yes, please specify?
I play guitar and bass so I do make things in different styles, usually ambient post rock type tracks. I have also just finished a 140 track that will be coming out on Atmomatix records in June, so might end up making some more stuff at that bpm.
Do you have already any vinyl releases? Or are they just planned?
It looks like I’m going to have a vinyl release pretty soon, but its not all finalized yet so can’t say much about it at the moment.
What is the most significant release of yourself? And why?
The release I am most proud of so far would be Hilltop, that got featured on the Rawganics various artist e.p. That whole e.p was made up of some of the most interesting new producers around at the moment, so I was really pleased to be a part of it. CURIOUS and ASANYEH at Rawganics really know their stuff so that label is destined for good things.
What are you working at right now?
At the moment I have a few tracks to get finished for releases later in the year. I also have a couple of remix projects I’m working on for some other Birmingham based producers.
How do you like the idea of a collab working? Have you ever worked on tunes with any other producers?
I am definitely open to collaborating with other producers. I have worked with people before but nothing has ever really got finished to a releasable level. It’s something I am really going to try to get done over the next few months.
Are you using only digital or analog hardware as well? What musical software are you using at the moment?
I am currently using Logic pro 9, and a few choice plug-ins. I don’t have any hardware at the moment. I have a couple of guitars and a pretty decent mic but that’s all.
Please, describe you sound? What’s special about it to capture listener’s attention?
I find it quite hard to describe what my sound is, I guess its a combination of things really. I tend to lean towards a more cinematic atmosphere, with elements of ambient and post-rock music showing through at times, as well as using a lot of classic dnb reeses and breaks. I like to think i make music that is close enough in spirit to the music I grew up with, without being too generic and unimaginitive. I really just make whatever i feel like making though, and try not to have an overall plan or theme. I also try not to stick to one particular style for too long.
What attracts you personally in the sound you’re working at?
At the moment I seem to be attracted to the more atmospheric style , with a lot of halftime drum tracks. I guess i just like the space it gives me to do more things with the melody, and incorporate more elements of other music i am into, that wouldn’t really work as well at a traditional dnb pace.
Will you name 3 drum’n’bass producers who stand out for you at the moment?
There are too many to mention but I really like what CLIMA are doing at the moment, I like RUFFHOUSE and BREDREN are smashing it at the moment. Actually I’m gonna have to say TRANSPARENT too, their tracks are seriously good.
How long did it take you to realize that you were ready to step out with your very first release?
I guess I wasn’t really sure at the time. I just sent out some tracks to a few people and got a message back from Adam from Rotation records, and he wanted to sign Epic and Brothers. I guess it was only then that I started to realise the stuff I was making was actually getting up to a releasable standard.
Your dream or wish – what’s the label you want to see your release on?
I would love to have a release on EXIT or AUXILIARY one day. They are consistently good and it would be great to put something out with either of them.
Have you heard anything about the podcast «Vykhod Sily»? http://www.mixcloud.com/SpecialRequest/
How do you see the future of the half step sound in the drum’n’bass scene?
I only recently discovered the podcast but I’m really feeling it! The tracklists are all very forward thinking, and showcasing the best of what the deeper sound has to offer. Keep up the good work! I see the future of drum and bass music as a whole being a lot brighter now that it has opened up a bit more in terms of drum patterns, tempo and structure. I am loving the stripped back, dubby aesthetic that a lot of the halftime stuff is taking on now, with people like Loxy and Gremlins really leading the way in that style. It is also making more things possible within DJ sets especially, with people being able to switch between styles and build up tension a lot more than you could when everything was galloping at 174bpm for a whole hr.
What are positive and negative things you have observed in drum’n’bass music over the last couple of years?
I think some real positives are the way the scene has opened up in to a range of different things now, with people presenting their own take on the 170 sound rather than churning out generic dnb. I love the way that you can have people like OM UNIT, DJRUM, SAM KDC and SYNKRO making some really unique styles within the dnb framework, but bringing in elements of music that would never have fitted in to this scene a few years ago. As for negatives I guess I miss the days of going to a rave with a truly varied crowd of people in attendance. In Birmingham especially, if you are going to see a line-up of decent new music you can usually guarantee the crowd will be a bunch of chin-stroking bass music connoisseurs, rather than an up for anything party crowd.
What will drum’n’bass be like in the nearest future, any ideas?
I think the scene will continue to fragment into other things. The commercial dnb sound is all over Radio 1 during the daytime in the UK so I think there will continue to be a move against that style in the underground, with things getting darker and more experimental. I would personally like to see a bit more sampling and musical elements coming back to dnb, but these things go in cycles so I’m sure that will come back around soon enough.
What’s the most important thing for the beginning producer? Will you share an advice?
The best piece of advice I could give is to keep making more and more tunes. Don’t dwell too much on one tune if it isn’t really going anywhere. I have spent months trying to get a tune right and ended up completely ruining it, or losing track of what I actually wanted to make in the first place. Then sometimes a tune just naturally flows and you can get it finished in a day, those ones always seem to work out better in the end.
And the final words here?
I’d just like to say thanks for the opportunity, I really enjoyed doing the mix and showcasing a few tracks I’ve been working on. I need to big up a few of the other people featured on the mix, especially M-PATHY, CLIMA, D-RIDGWAY,CURIOUS, ELKIE, J-DOK and YILAN who are making some amazing music at the moment and showing me a lot of support.
Thanks for the answers.
Keep it going and good luck with the new releases!
The Guest Mix from Slaine in Podcast “Vykhod Sily” is on air on the May 29 @ djstation.ru 8 p.m (UTC +4 )