Just before their set we grabbed 10 minutes with one of the biggest DJ and live electronic acts in the world 2ManyDJs aka Soulwax – super nice guys in super white suits.
We are excited to talk to you especially as our new theme is ‘when worlds collide’ – how do you find new inspiration for all those songs you mix together?
For DJing we have to sift through thousands of records, for performing, it’s important to believe it and just feel it. And for inspiration we are always traveling which is very inspiring.
How do you know when two tracks will work together?
It could be a melody or just a sound – it’s actually really easy to find. Not to boast but we have been doing this a while now and we are almost psychic within the band, we don’t need to explain things to each other.
What’s been the most interesting group to remix?
Actually remixing the Sugarbabes was interesting, ‘Round Round’ was like a live sound, and then we did Kylie’s ‘Cant Get You Out Of My Head’ that was more electronic but we play it as a band – that’s coming out on our remix album this month. We like sabotaging these songs a little bit; we never do what people expect us to do.
Does it ever bother you how many people have jumped onto what you guys started?
No, because once you put something out there, it’s just out there, and there’s nothing you can do about it, and it’s fair enough. I have no problems with people using the term mash-up or bastard pop or bootleg because I hate these names. I would call it DJing or mixing, it’s just guys putting two records together.
What was it like at the very beginning?
Well we came from playing in a band, we know what it’s like to set up your own equipment, we listened to Zeppelin you know? But then we got into electronic music and started joining these worlds together. And then for some reason what Erol was doing, and what Dave and I were doing, it all of a sudden blew up. And then the minute that happened, and I remember cause we used to go to Rough Trade record shop every fucking week, and we loved to see all these A+R guys walk in going, ‘where’s that new mix, with er…., with where they mix up ‘I Am The Walruss with what’s-it-called,’ and we used to stand there and go ‘wow they really have no clue’, and so me and Erol and Dave would hide at the back pretending to look through records and trying not to laugh. We felt a bit like the Trojan Horse you know, we had done something, which was about an attitude, saying fuck you, we can do it, we can do it at home, and it went out on the internet, and I’m really proud of that, but the minute that something like that gets branded, like MTV saying we give you 2ManyDJs and we give you a Mash-Up hour, you realize that can never be right, that will always be wrong. So that’s why we did Soulwax and stuff like that.
How do you view what you do now that you guys have got so big?
I’m not going to sit here and pretend to be like Richie Hawtin or something, where like I believe there is a theory and a whole thing, I think a DJ is a guy who plays music that people can dance to, and usually you are playing other people’s music, sure your technique sets you apart from other people, but we are not that special really. It’s about fun. It should not be taken too seriously. All my heroes who were pioneers of electronic music had a great sense of humour, think about Kraftwerk or Aphex Twin or Daft Punk, all these people have applied humour and humility to what they do and how they present themselves. I can’t wait to jam with The Cuban Brothers, they are really funny.
INTERVIEW BY LIZ MOGRATH