Forget Me Not have been on our radar for some time now, after a series of top releases this year for Hypercolour’s sister imprint Losing Suki, Bristol cohort Lukas’ Alfresco Disco imprint and a collaborative EP with iO Sounds for Diamond & Raw Records.
A slick blend of melody meets mayhem was their method for a two track release they put out with Fat! Records earlier this month. Tear Up and I Want You earned support from the likes of Dubfire, Maribou State, Tensnake, Maya Jane Coles, Richie Hawtin, Foamo, Jody Wisternoff, Justin Jay, Maxxi Soundsystem, Waifs & Strays, Shadow Chid and Ben Pearce among others.
This week they’ve put together an hour long mix of tunes they’ve been feeling lately, as well as a couple of forthcoming numbers for ourselves and Losing Suki to look out for. We also caught up with Geoff and Alex this week to talk about the past year they’ve had, and their ambitions for the project looking forward. Catch the mix at the bottom!
How did you both get into DJing and production and how did the project itself come about?
Alex – I started out nearly 20 years ago with an old Roland sound module and a hardware sampler. Working with Notator on the Atari seems like such a struggle compared with how we work today, but it was a really good grounding in how to program and be patient. It was acts like Orbital and The Chemical Brothers that originally got me into production, and I’ve been writing ever since with increasingly sophisticated tools.
Geoff – I came to be making dance music via the DJ route. I used to idolise the likes of Jeff Mills, Josh Wink, and Laurent Garnier back in the late 90s, as well as the vibrant DnB scene that existed in Bristol at that time. A few years later the two of us actually met working in a pub, but we ended up playing in a band together. Then around the time that dubstep, techno, and garage first seemed to be overlapping with artists such as Joy Orbison, Kode9, and Disclosure making waves and creating a really fresh sound, it was a natural step for the two of us to go from rehearsing together to making beats in the studio.
We’re all big fans of the Alfresco EP, a lovely set of tracks that work really well together as a full EP, which is something that’s becoming somewhat of a forgotten art these days when it comes to curating releases. Is that something you’re consciously aware of when approaching production or would you say you approach tracks with a more singular mind set?
Geoff – It’s interesting that you pick out the Alfresco EP for its continuity of sound. In all honesty the curating credit in this instance goes to Lukas and the Alfresco crew. Over the years they’ve carved out a really strong reputation with their legendary parties, and we were thrilled when they asked us to deliver their debut release as a record label. From the off they had a really distinct idea of the sort of vibe they wanted from the record, and although two tracks (Only You & Club Shaker) were already written when we agreed the release, we actually wrote Tower House with the Alfresco sound in mind.
Alex – In general though we tend to just see what happens each day in the studio, rather than writing to a specific formula. It’s tempting to rely on habits or make music with a certain label in mind, but generally we find that it’s best to keep things as fresh and spontaneous as possible. For example, the two tracks that just dropped on Fat! were actually written at different times and have a different sound to them, but the light and dark nature of the two tunes actually balances out nicely and you get a different journey with each one.
Are there any artists in particular who have really inspired you and the project over the past year?
Geoff – Well first up when thinking about musical influences in the last 12 months, you just can’t escape the mighty Dusky. They’ve had a huge 2013, and every time they drop a new EP they smash it. I’d also say that Mr Beatnick has set the bar really high this year in terms of his versatility. His productions are always bursting with music, and he knows how to spring a surprise with his DJ sets. Plus Paul Woolford AKA Special Request has also been killing the game with some of his recent material, bringing back that rave sound with a modern twist.
Alex – Geoff introduced me to some of the Todd Terje stuff over the summer, and the way he builds melodic ideas has definitely crept into some of our latest tracks and remixes. The other artist that springs to my mind is Shadow Child. All year his productions have been relentlessly annihilating dancefloors for us!
Talk us through the mix for us, any distinct theme at all behind it?
Geoff – With the mix we were looking to showcase a few of the labels that have really influenced the way our sound has developed to date, such as Dirtybird, AUS Music, Hotflush, and Applepips, whilst throwing in a few new bits and pieces of our own. Other than that, the general idea is 60 minutes of tunes that make us smile and dance. We hope you like it!
What can we expect from you guys over the next few months, any remixes or upcoming original material planned?
Geoff – We’ve been on remix duty recently, with a couple set to drop on Fat! before the year is out. One is a rework of Origins Sound’s SSL Soundtrack, and we’ve also put a different spin on the massive Isla from Felon. Meanwhile, we’ve just finished up another remix for the guys at Chasing Toulouse, so that should be dropping very early next year.
Alex – In terms of our own stuff, there’s another EP on Losing Suki set to come out in the spring, which we’re really excited about. Right now we’re also putting the finishing touches on a brand new EP featuring some live vocals, so we’re looking forward to getting that one finished up. All in all, plenty of work to do and lots to be excited about!
You’re both from the party city of Bristol, which has been responsible for some of the UKs biggest underground exports in recent years. Is there anyone else emerging at the moment that you think could go onto big things in years to come?
Alex – The southwest has long been famed for its rich musical heritage with the likes of Massive Attack, Portishead, and Reprazent making international waves back in the 90s. With artists like Julio Bashmore, Eats Everything, and Breach making such a strong impression on the scene right now, it feels like the next generation coming of age! But Bristol has always been banging, and beneath those artists there is a really strong foundation in the city with lots of other interesting labels looking to push things forward as well as some superb parties.
Geoff – Yeah, you have artists like Pev, Kowton and Hodge currently putting stuff out on Livity Sound and Idle Hands who are creating a really unique vibe. If you want straight up dance floor smashers, the My Nu Leng boys look set to blow up in a big way next year. Then you also have Jus Now, who are bringing a whole different vibe with their Caribbean-infused Soca rhythms. Plus I’m really looking forward to hearing the debut album of ALSO, which is a collaborative live project between Appleblim and Second Storey (formerly known as Al Tourettes). So, watch this space!