Electro impresario Kissy Sell Out first launched his label San City High back in May, and now he’s taking the show on the road with a 16 date nationwide tour that kicked off in September. San City High artists and friends Hot Pink Delorean, Zed’s Dead, Lazy Flow, The Squatters, Urchins, Blamma! Blamma! and the inimitable Union will all be joining Kissy on tour, but you can also expect to see special guest appearances from the likes of Jack Beats, Graffiti6, Does it Offend you, Yeah?, Lee Mortimer and Fenech Soler (who Plain and Simple are interviewing this week) amongst others.
The Squatters’ productions & remixes have received airing by BBC Radio 1, Kiss100s Galaxy as well as support from a countless list of radio & club DJs, and they have remixed and produced for a string of labels including Universal, Champions, SanCity High, Simma, Elektrik Playground and many more. Add that to sets racked up at events such as Global Underground, Ministry Of Sound, Mixmag Warehouse and Reclaim The Dance Floor (Voted Mixmag’s 1 Night Worldwide) at Eden and you have a pair of rising stars on your hands. Their music caught the ear of Radio 1’s Kissy Sell Out and so he snapped them up to do the tour, alongside releasing their ‘Monsters EP’ on his label. We caught up with Alex from the duo to find out how the tours been going.
How has your year been?
Yeah really good, we’ve had a really good year so far. We’ve done more this year than we have over the past couple of years. So at the moment we’re the busiest that we’ve ever been, which is good!
What have been your main achievements?
Well we’ve have just been signed to Champion Records, the home of Faithless, Robin S and Dido. Then we’ve got The Kissy Sellout tour, been supporting him, and also we’ve had a couple of tracks out on his label too. They’ve done well and have been supported by some of the big boys. And just generally we’ve getting around a lot more, and playing all over the shop. We’ve done quite a few shows abroad, we’re doing a little mini tour around Korea, and we’re playing in Zurich, Switzerland on New Years Eve.
How did you get involved with the San City High Records Club Tour?
Basically what happened was, we sent Kissy some tracks and he really liked them, and he got in touch with us a couple of days later and said that he wanted to sign us to his label and that he wanted to release the tracks. So we kept sending things his way and he just really enjoyed what we do, so he asked us to come along on the tour and support him.
How do you fit in with the other acts on the bill?
When we’re all together, we actually get on really well like a house on fire! All of our styles vary but that’s what makes the line-up work so well. We all perform well together so its a nice mix of artists and people.
Do you hang out with Kissy much?
We spend a lot of time with Kissy, because we’re on the tour bus with him. The first time we actually met him was when we played with him at the Warehouse in Huddersfield. And then we met him again when he invited us down to London for MixMag and we supported him down there. We see him about 4days a week, he’s a really nice guy.
How much will you change your set up between gigs? Is this something that you often do?
Well we never plan our sets. We’ve both come from sort of commercial backgrounds and when we were younger we used to play a lot of cheesy gigs just for the money so we’ve got a good idea of reading a crowd, and I think that’s one of the good things we’ve got. Depending on where we play we change our set accordingly, we never plan anything, but we always make different remixes and re-edits to play while were out and about and on tour.
Do you feel pressured to play a certain way as a part of the tour?
No, not really. Its always going to be a challenge because you never know what to expect but we just do what we do. And people love it and that’s why they’ve put us on the tour. So we never try to be anyone else and we never try to do what someone else is doing. We just do our own thing and we’re proud of that.
What has given you most inspiration musically? How has your sound evolved?
Well when I was younger I used to listen to more Hard House and Ollie’s always been into Funky house. There’s not really things that have inspired us, but its more about the stuff that we’ve grown up with. So there is the music all through the 80’s, and 90’s and even the stuff we listen to now all inspires what we do. Its just basically a mixture of what we both used to like really, a lot of our tracks have got some Baseline in, sometimes there is Hard House, just everything that we used to like we put into our tracks today.
What can people expect from one of your DJ sets?
Just expect crazy cool mash up basically! We just try and mash up as much as we can. I was explaining to someone the other night that the style we have is ‘cool mash up’. Mash up is usually associated with cheesy DJ’s but it’s defiantly not cheesy at all. We like to bring the party where ever we go.
How much time do you usually spend looking for new music and where?
Well we spend more of our time making music than we do looking for it. But obviously if we get cool tracks sent to us or if we come across good tracks we’ll play them, but we are really selective about what we play. There is so much out there at the moment, hundreds of tracks are released every day, and we are quite picky and choosy. We would much rather make and play our own music then sit for hours on Beatport searching for things to play.
What else have you got coming up?
This year we’ve got a couple of mixes coming out. We’ve got one release coming out on the 25th of November on Champion Records, it’s called Superfly, it’s a track we did with a guy called Dutch Courage who we’ve done a couple of tracks with before. It’s going to be quite a Dutch House track, but obviously it has got The Squatters influence on it too, and that’s been remixed by Alex Schmidt and Will Bailey. We’ve got the mini tour like we said around Korea as well as playing all over the country. So yeah we’ve got quite a lot coming up this year, all very exciting stuff!
Check out The Squatters website at http://www.the-squatters.com/
The remaining dates for the San City Tour are:
22nd Oct Motion, Bristol
23rd Oct Stylus, Leeds
29th Oct Club 360, Reading
30th Oct HMV Institute, Birmingham
5th Nov Stealth, Nottingham
6th Nov The Junction, Cambridge