Interview: Metrik

metrikAhead of his set at Hospitality on February 1st, Leeds Student’s Sam Aki caught up with drum and bass DJ and producer Metrik…

LS: Whats your musical background and what would you say are some of your earlier influences?
I was first into rock music and was in a few bands in my early teens playing drums and guitar. I also used to run a radio station from my bedroom, mixing vinyl and hosting a show. I was introduced to D&B by a regular in the chat room who sent me a buch of CDs through the post. I started going out to raves and then not long after stayed in to do music production.

LS: You’ve burst onto the scene in the drum and bass world and had a pretty hedonistic rise to fame. DnB kingpin Friction pegged you as a “Future Star” and you had the honour of appearing on BBC Radio 1’s Essential Mix. Has all of this sunk in or are you still starstruck?
It’s a great feeling to have received this level of support. It was a big honour to be asked to do the Essential Mix by Friction given that the mix is almost like a national institution and signing to Hospital was a great way to end 2012.

LS: How do you approach your productions, do you get an idea in your head and lock yourself away for days developing it, or do you take a more relaxed approach?
It entirely depends on the style of track I’m writing. Some tracks start with a clear concept in my head which will then translate onto the computer, other times it might be a bit more experimental. For example, my track ‘Drift’ came about around a time when I was listening to a lot of techno and experimenting with synthesisers. I’d say there are two different approaches to how I make music, there’s the more song-based approach and then the more experimental approach.

LS: Are there any artists you’re dying to collaborate with?
I’ve got a lot of musical admiration for Eric Prydz, I’d love to get in the studio with him, moulding house with drum and bass.

LS: Cool, what genre would you work on?
Probably some hybrid between the two. Another artist would be someone like Sub Focus. I’ve always had a lot of respect for his productions.

LS: You’ve recently signed to Hospital Records. What does this mean in terms of your future releases? Will it change your sound at all?
In terms of my sound, I’m going to stay true to it. From the beginning I’ve set out to be diverse – I want to follow that through and continue to produce styles across the board. My aim is to develop my sound even further and now that I’m working with Hospital, I have an amazing platform to release my music on.

LS: Your tune ‘Technicolour” was featured on Radio 1’s coverage of Barack Obama’s victory speech and High Contrast had songs featured in the Olympic Ceremony. Drum and bass originated as underground music but is now more and more popular in the mainstream community. Where do you see D&B progressing in the near future?
I think there will always be a place for drum and bass, it’s always had such a strong following and roots in UK music. I don’t think it’s going to go away any time soon. It goes through phases of having popularity in the mainstream and I can definitely see it getting more popular.

LS: Away from the bright lights of your sets, what do you enjoy doing to unwind?
I like to watch films, read, cycle, go out for drinks with friends. I live in London so I like to go out and get involved in the city – it’s such a buzzing, vibrant place.

LS: You’re playing in Leeds at the Hospitality event on the 1st of February. Do you get nervous before you play a big set? And have you got any weird superstitious things you like to do the day of, or even the day before?
I’d be lying if there wasn’t a slight feeling there. I put a lot of time and energy into my sets, so it’s quite a potent mix of nerves and excitement before I go out, but once I’m up there it’s pure adrenaline.

LS: Hospitality events are known for their dancefloor and euphoric feel. What can we expect from your set?
Similarly to my productions it’s quite diverse. I tend to play a lot of big tracks ranging from rave-inspired to melodic and vocal driven. Anything with a big sound and a strong melody will normally find a place in my set and the energy is usually high throughout.

LS: My girlfriend will me if I don’t ask this question, so, what’s your favourite snack or biscuit?
(laughs) At the moment it has to be a Kit Kat Chunky Peanut. But that’s just a special treat though.

LS: Finally, you don’t watch Desperate Housewives do you?
I can’t say I do, no.

LS: Well theres a character in there called Andrew Van De Kamp and you are the spitting image of him.(laughs) Andrew Van De Kamp. I’ll have to check that out.

LS: Yeah, he’s played by Shawn Pyfrom.
Well it seems like I’ve got a doppelganger

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