Spotlight focuses on the DJs and producers who are making waves in the dance music underground
Each edition features an exclusive mix and interview with an artist who has been handpicked by the team at Ministry Magazine.
For our 20th Spotlight Mix, we have exciting new producer, Network aka Oli John. Johns has bee n producing music since a very early age and has found support from the likes of Mary Anne Hobbs, Bondax and Karma Kid.
The eighteen year old has just released "My Body" on HK Records and has turned in one of the most exciting and varied Spotlights yet. Have a listen and read our exclusive interview below.
First of all thanks for doing an exclusive mix for us, what did you go for in the mix? Is this a representation of what you play out now or more what you listen to at home?
Hello! Pleasure. The mix for the most part reflects what I would play out I guess, which is outrageous, mostly 4/4, bass heavy songs. I thought I would include a couple of the more easy listening songs I’m enjoying right now at the end, as well as three more exclusives within the mix. I also sample the movie Network a few times no prizes for guessing why…
For those who may be new to your music, how would you describe your sound?
Dance music mixed with the roar of a liger.
How did you first get in to music, when did you know you wanted to be a DJ?
I began making music when I was 14, and didn’t really know anyone else who was interested in production. Although I was pretty terrible, I spent an excessive amount of time on Reason and practically learnt it inside out, which helped me create the sounds/songs I was happy with. I got interested in DJing after gaining some exposure and realising the music I liked to play worked best in the club.
What have you got coming up on the horizon?
'I've got a whole load of unreleased songs that vary massively in genre, although I’d love to get most of it out. Hoping to play out a lot more in the coming months also and develop my sets.
You’re track “My Body” has just been released on HK Records, how did this track come about, what was your inspiration?
I originally made the song a couple of years ago when I was 16, sampling Lucy Pearl’s "Dance Tonight". My inspiration for the bassline came from Kolombo’s "My Own Business", I tried to make a note pattern reflecting that of the vocals, similar to that tune.
You’re still very young, is it at all intimidating to enter a scene as competitive as dance music at such a young age?
I don’t feel at all intimidated by the fact I’m only 18 because many of the people in the scene are as young as me, or sometimes even younger. Ultimately I try and block the competition out and focus on my own sound.
What do you think of the state of dance music at the minute?
I love it! purely because of the volume of music there is, certain aspects of some scenes seem very pretentious.
Who are the most exciting underground artists that our readers might not have heard of but who you think will be big names to come?
I bought an album buy the Former Employees and it’s absolutely amazing, and there are other young artists local to me like Kyogi who I’m sure will blow up very, very soon.
Who are your biggest influences?
I used to listen to a lot of Ed Banger and Daft Punk style music, obsessing over Siriusmo’s unique sound, which is noticeable in my song “Take It To The Floor” and a lot of the songs I have stored up in the bank. Recently I have been listening the labels like Dirtybird, which massively inspires my live sets.
What do you like to do on your day off, what’s a typical Sunday like for you?
It would consist mostly of base jumping, being a professional skateboarder/snowboarder/surfer and living in a massive mansion it’s something I do a most Sundays.
How do you prepare for a gig?
I would usually get a rough tracklist and try including some hidden gems that would get the crowd going mental, but would leave some flexibility to play to the mood of the night.
Who are your dream collaborators, past or present?
Sean Paul and Sean Kingston, preferably together.
Tell us something we don’t know about Network?
I’m a bit of a film geek.
29 Oct 2014