The magnificent Mat.Joe return with their brilliant Hip-Hop infused style of House music this week on German super label Mother Recordings and the duo took time out of their busy schedule to chat with us at Decoded Magazine.
We know all about their fascinating routes, from their passions of rap, break-dance and skateboarding to their development into House music superstars. It is an alluring journey that you can trace all the way back to the start. A story of friendship, determination and pure talent. It is a story that is still fledgling, still developing, one that keeps us intensely gripped and constantly looking forward to chapters to come. Join us in finding out more about Mat.Joe’s plans for the future and gaining an insight into their work process.
Hi guys, thanks very much for taking the time to speak with us at Decoded Magazine today. It has been an action packed 7 months since we last spoke with you! How have you been?
We’ve been great! Just finished our Asia tour in Thailand and Malaysia which means we’re relaxed and tanned.
We will start off by talking a bit about your latest release ‘Blow Your Mind’ on Mother Recordings. It certainly blew my mind! What would you say inspired you most during the creation of Blow Your Mind?
In every production you can hear our background of Hiphop, Soul, Funk and R’n’B. “Blow Your Mind” is inspired by some big tunes we loved in our skateboarding teenager times. It was a really tricky one, because it’s not sampled, we replayed the lead synth and did the vocal inspired by Flavor Flav. It’s a track for the heads, who know this from back in the days and latest by P.Diddy.
Speaking of inspirations, is there any one individual, or maybe a group of artists who you can look back at and say, “they had the biggest influence on our sound”?
We’re inspired by so many different kinds of genres and music. You can hear it in our sets and in our productions. A travel through all types of music but you can always hear that it’s got something crispy and something urban. That’s why we call it CrispyUrbanHouse. But to be honest we just love N’Sync! Haha
‘Blow Your Mind’ is such a groovy fun EP. Would you say your fun groovin records are a true reflection of your production process? It sounds like your studio sessions are full of great vibes.
Haha it’s good to hear that, and yes it’s totally like that. We both are always going crazy in the studio, I guess it’s also our big friendship for years and the same sense of humour. Mostly we’ve the same ideas and maybe too much candy in our club mate.
Do you think we have a 3rd Beatport Tech House number 1 to look forward to in ‘Blow Your Mind’?
Haha it’s cool when the record is successful, but it’s more about the love for the tune. Tech House is the toughest genre on beatport at the moment so any charting is a good sign. But as we said it’s also a heads record.
Your Hip-Hop background has obviously gave you a great edge in sampling techniques and layering incredible grooves, but, since your switch into the realm of House music, what edge do you think you have gained from House?
It’s good to bring your influence, but it’s mostly totally different to Hiphop beat productions. We learned a lot in the last years about mixdowns and what’s important on the dance floor, what you really need or not, but when it comes to the soul, House goes hand in hand with Hiphop, R’n’B etc.
So, fresh off the back of your February WORKIDT tour, what was your absolute favourite night on the tour?
Oh hard question. So many good places, cool people and vibes everywhere. Let’s say everything had something special. Asia is incredible.
We know that touring comes with it’s highs and lows. What was the strangest night on the tour?
Hahaha strange but in a good way was the trip to Eden Bar on Koh Phangan. You’ve to take the boat to this place and we’re talking about a small boat, which is really bad with the waves. When you arrive (completely wet) you go to this wonderful place called Eden and dance as long as you can. But don’t forget to take your shoes off! After 12 hrs of dancing you might have some wounds on your feet. And then you’ve to take the boat back (not sober for sure).
With such a busy schedule, how much time do you get to actually sit in the studio and create? Do you do a lot of writing on the road?
Yes, we also try to get some time and do music. But since this year we also pimped our equipment to make music while on tour.
Obviously, a lot of massively iconic clubs around the world are suffering at the moment, with their fate being decided behind closed doors and sometimes, with sinister means. Is there any venue in particular, of past or present around the world, which you look at as the club or venue you would most like to play at? Could you also share your views on the iconic closures such as Space and Sankeys?
We already played in a lot of cool clubs. It’s really sad to hear what happened with a lot of clubs. Since we listened and went to the first parties, it was always like that. Clubs like Stammheim in Kassel or Tresor or Hanomag in Hannover were sooo good and then one day the party was over. Would love to have played in Stammheim but this is history. For the future places like DC-10 would be wonderful. We never played at Space, but we did at Sankeys and that was a lot of fun. Let’s see what the future brings.
Obviously, a career in music can be very tough at times. Has there ever been a time in your career when you felt like the struggle was too much to bare? If so, how did you break through it?
You have to find your time in between with friends, gym and everything else you love and need. Being only music-focussed can be really dangerous. It’s a learning process, so sometimes maybe less party and more sleep.
If you could sit down with yourselves from 2006, what would be your number one piece of advice that you would give?
Everything is a learning process. When we started the Mat.Joe project in the end of 2011, it was just for fun but it turned into a serious business after some years. So maybe we would take it more serious from the beginning.
With a massive fan base of well over 100,000 passionate people, just how does it feel to know that your music may help all those individuals to get through their day?
Oh man that’s one of the best feelings. Especially when you produce your own music and people react like that. On a party in Miami, a lady came up to the DJ booth and said, that “Heart To Find” was her wake up song for two years. That’s so cool!
If you never took up a career in music, what do you think you would be doing today instead?
Haha…working as strippers!
Well, thank you very much for talking to us today, it was an absolute pleasure! Anything to add?
Yeahhhh was good to catch up and hopefully see all you guys on our next party. One love!
Mat.Joe’s ‘Blow Your Mind’ is out now on Mother Recordings
Grab it here