Last summer brought us Etherwood’s return in the mixtape series from Hospital Records. Now comes the follow up from golden boys, Devonshire’s finest; Fred V & Grafix, aka Fred & Josh.
With the mixtape released within the last two weeks, what could be better than a chat with the guys themselves about all things Hospital!
Welcome along lads!
Let’s have a poke through the one thing that’s been justifying my Spotify Premium account this month; it’s of course the mixtape. (Top selections come via Cyantific, the huge single from Dimension ‘Whip Slap’ and a few more that we will mention later on…) Have you had fun putting the mixtape together?
“Yes it was fun, although it took a lot longer than we thought it would! Very often with radio mixes we’re under extremely tight deadlines, so we often only have a day or two to deliver them. This was completely different in that every transition had to be completely perfect and was based on a pool of about 35 tunes, as opposed to being able to choose from our entire record collection. This made the process a lot longer than we expected but we’re pretty sure everyone will love it and buy at least 3 copies. Get involved!”
With remixes under their collective belt (cheeky) of tracks by Skepta, Rudimental, Camo & Krooked and Netsky, the duo have been able to enjoy a wide variety of sounds to play with. Do we see them veering off in any particular direction any time soon? Do we hear a summer jump-up remix of Sam Smith anytime soon from you guys?
“A jump-up remix of Sam Smith sounds like it would be fantastic, his music is seriously lacking in ‘womp’ noises. We have actually done a few bootlegs recently, one of ‘Divinity’ by Porter Robinson and one of ‘Love Again’ by Ta-ku. We haven’t really given them out to anyone so you’ll have to come and see us DJ if you want to hear them.
“Would love to remix ‘Nirvana’ by Sam Smith, love the original!”
Although hidden well, you can find the bootleg to the Porter Robinson track below, which was premiered on Crissy Criss’ last radio show on BBC R1Xtra last year. If you listen closely, you can hear the chorus of wailing drum & bass artists singing his name…
Anyway, for Fortitude, it was the summer smasher Major Happy back in 2012 that cemented your names in the drum & bass world, but for you two, what was the big break?
“I think the very first time we got played on the radio gave us the best feeling. Crissy Criss was the first DJ to support us on BBC 1Xtra which felt amazing, we definitely thought we’d made it after that happened! Also, having an album released on Hospital was a pretty good feeling!”
Let’s delve into some of the artists featured, we are very happy to see the Bungle track ‘Looking Back’, which stood out as a fave in Fortitude Towers, but we’re big fans of Pola & Bryson, maybe we’re seeing the next generation of drum & bass duo’s stepping in! We crowbarred some exclusive words from Harry Bryson in;
“Both Jack (Pola) and I have been massive followers of Hospital Records for many years; some of our biggest inspiration for drum and bass has come out of that label so to have not only one but two of our productions released on the label is an amazing feeling, we feel very proud of ourselves.
Right now I must say I’ve been a big fan of Etherwood since I heard his release on Med School, and to have an official remix of his single ‘You’ll Always Be A Part of Me’ is a great honour!
Favourite track has to be ‘Africa’ by Maduk & Nymfo.”
Back to you Fred, we know this is a difficult one, but of the new blood you’ve featured, who’s really stood out and grabbed you?
“I really like the Despicable Youth track ‘Trolls’ which is a naughty little roller and also the Pola & Bryson tunes you mentioned are really something. One that’s been getting a lot of attention is Join The Dots by North Base who are good friends of ours and very nice chaps.”
Well we hope there’ll be some mingling as you continue your summer of festivals. From Cologne and Bestival to Brighton and Budapest, the bucket list must be getting ever smaller; so what’s the wackiest thing you guys have done in the last 12 months?
“Doesn’t really qualify as ‘wacky’ but we did get to play on the Arcadia stage at Glastonbury which was very cool! Certainly a bucket list thing, it’s literally the coolest stage in the world.”
Great catching up with you guys, any closing words?
“Come and see us DJ and we will get drunk with you. Let’s party.”