From bodyguards in Mexico to all day chess matches in Russia – Paul Maddox from Spektre certainly had some funny old tales to tell when TBC met up with him earlier this month. Read on for the lowdown on all things Spektre related from the local techno hero himself:
So Paul, what’s going on in the world of Spektre at the mo?
The new album which is out at the end of the summer. It’s all done now and we’re in the process of sorting out a launch party, probably in London. It’s coming out on Toolroom who I guess are best known for their more mainstream and house stuff, but they recently released a techno series called Rhythm District which has become kind of like a sub label. Umek also released an album on there but I reckon our new album will be the most full-on techno album on Toolroom so far!
What can listeners expect from the new album? Is it similar to Casting Shadows Without Light, or have Spektre changed their sound since the last album?
The new album is more clubby than Casting Shadows Without Light. For that album, with it being our first, myself and Rich had a lot of ideas and influences that we wanted to incorporate. Some of which were quite diverse, ranging from The Chemical Brothers to BT. The new album is a lot more focused.
What’s your favourite track off the new album?
Probably “Forerunner” cos its a good mix of doing something adventurous but keeping that dancefloor-friendly quality. It has a bit of a Prodigy, ravey aspect which I really like.
How have Toolroom been to work with?
Really good! I knew Matt from Toolroom from my Hardhouse days as he was also a DJ on that scene. All the guys who we deal with there are really sound too. We’re not selling CDs this time, just selling the album as downloads of all the tracks plus a mix. We will be doing some CDs as giveaways though.
So does this mean you will be touring?
We’re currently putting some dates together yeah. In the UK we’ll definitely be doing a London launch but we don’t tend to get booked that much to play in the UK. We did play at Collect in Sheffield a little while back though ………….
Yes, how was that?
Really good venue, I enjoyed that night. Loved it!
What about the crowd? How do Sheffield clubbers compare to other placed you’ve played? Wicked crowd! I knew about a third of them, haha. The pressure was on cos I knew they’d tell me if I messed anything up!
I also played a set at Mixed In Sheffield down at The Washington during Tramlines last year. It was rammed!
You live in Sheffield, what are your thoughts on the club scene at the moment?
It’s got a lot better. Around 2 years ago it was absolutely dead but now there’s quite a few people putting nights on. In Leeds and Manchester you get a lot of people putting on nights on the same night as each other and it creates competition which makes people strive to put on better nights. A bit of competition is definitely a good thing.
What’s the craziest gig you’ve ever played?
Probably Juarez in Mexico a few years ago – the then murder capital of the world! We had bodyguards walking us to the dj booth from the car and sticking around afterwards while we were playing and we saw armed police on the back of pick up trucks on the way to gigs. Nothing kicked off though and the crowd were really up for it. We actually went back there more recently though and things have calmed down a lot.
What about music, what tunes are on your iPod at the mo?
Techno wise – NAPLES! We have guest mixes on our podcast and it’s become a bit of a joke between us at the moment because they’re all from Naples! Recently we’ve had Sasha Carassi, Roberto Capuano and Luigi Madonna. We read a biog about them at the start of the podcast and it seems that every time they’re randomly from Naples! There’s loads of young producers from there as well like MDS and Hollen. Naples is the new Berlin – you heard it here first!
Other than techno – all sorts I’ve started a new side project doing slightly more musical stuff, with a more garagy influence. It’s called Human Development. We’ve done a couple of tracks so far and I’ve been talking to a couple of labels about a release, so watch this space. https://soundcloud.com/humandev
What’s your favourite techno tune?
Of all time? Anything by Hardfloor, Acperience being one of the best. Difficult to fit into any of our sets because the sound is so old school. When we played Space we dropped Golden Girls “Kinetic” which is one of the guys from Orbital and another of my favourite ever tunes.
Your record label Respekt what’s new for that?
We’ve just had a single of ours called Erase the Tapes doing well on beatport top 100 much as i’d like to ignore these things. It was a track that was going to be on the album. Jon Rundell has done a remix which has done really, really well.
Finally Paul tell us a funny DJing story……
We did a little tour in Russia and in between gigs the promoter said he was going to take us to his friend’s house. We envisaged going round to someone’s place, drinking a few beers, chilling out before the next gig. We drove 2 hours into the countryside and I was thinking – “where the hell are we going?”. We turned up at this massive, old house right out in the sticks and were greeted at the door by this big guy in a vest. I didn’t know what to think when we went inside but he had a bbq on the go and then bizarrely insisted we play chess with him – sound bloke, but that kind of thing only ever happens in Russia!
So TBCers look out for the new album from Spektre and book those tickets to Naples! Bonjourno new techno haven! Check Spektre out at http://www.spektre.co.uk