A Sit Down With DJ Spectre
SPEKTRE weaves an intrepid, complex web amongst underground dance musics elite. The techno brainchild of DJs/producers Filthy Rich and Paul Maddox, the dark duo was formed through a shared passion for driving electronic music and a mutual desire to push sound boundaries using the most cutting edge technology available. The fusion of their combined experience in the studio allows them to construct dark, sinister sounds mixed with twisted, haunting vocals and unnerving, atmospheric foundations.
As performers, Spektres unique sound has taken them to some of the biggest and most highly regarded venues worldwide, with frequent bookings by the likes of Space Ibiza, Exit Festival, Pacha Buenos Aires and Burning Man. On stage, their long-standing chemistry and constant desire to experiment always results in an exciting spectacle. Their live exploits are also documented alongside guest slots from esteemed cohorts in a fortnightly Mutual Respekt Podcast, which is syndicated across the globe.
"Weve both played different genres of music along the way but I definitely think this has benefited us."
Could you please tell us how did you meet each other at the beginning of your career? Is there any story behind it?
We were introduced by a mutual friend - despite having spent many hours on the same dance floors wed somehow managed never to cross paths. But we moved in similar circles and it was very easy to hook up and start a project together. I (Rich) in particular had reached a point with my music where I really wanted to experiment with something new and start a project that was a lot more underground than the music I was known for. Paul was the perfect partner for this project and as soon as we started in the studio the chemistry and flow of ideas we had together soon became apparent! We knew we were on to a good thing when our first three tracks got signed to Oliver Huntemanns Dance Electric label.
Are there any artists that you feel have had a particularly significant influence on you as producers?
Going back to my earlier days, BT was always the benchmark I aimed for in terms of production quality and inventiveness. I never got close, but its good to have goals!
You live in Sheffield, what are your thoughts on the club scene at the moment?
Its got a lot better. Around 2 years ago it was absolutely dead but now theres 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.
Let's talk a bit about your sound, which is pretty distinctive. Did it come together naturally or was it part of what you wanted to establish when you started releasing as Spektre?
Yeah we try not to limit ourselves to a particular direction. We love to experiment with vocals, melodies, percussion, synths etc. but always aim to give it our own stamp.
Concerning the music youve done along the years since 2006, which track do you think help you to win credibility and open some doors?
Our remix of Marc de Pulses PS, You Rock was the first time we managed to hit the top of the beatport charts, which gave us a lot of exposure we hadnt had previously. Then we had our first Beatport number one with the Uto Karem Remix of our track Cheyenne. Despite this being another artists remix this got a lot of support from the big techno artists and gave us big boost! The other big moment would have to be getting the chance to remix Fever Ray Triangle Walks we always like opportunities to fuse our music with other styles so getting a full track of Karin from The Knifes vocals to work with was a dream come true!
Whats 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.
Whats going on in the world of Spektre?
The new album which is out at the end of the summer. Its all done now and were in the process of sorting out a launch party, probably in London. Its 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!
Whats the craziest gig youve 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.
Do you have any tips for people who are just starting to DJ or produce?
A top one for producers would be to always sit on your tracks for a while before sending them out; having a bit of a break from them, then listening again will usually reveal at least a couple of things you could improve.
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