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With 2017 round the corner, it’s time to look back at some of 2016’s best bits! Notably, Chris SU and his Solar Eclipse EP on Eatbrain. Out last month (November) It has been constantly in DJ sets across dance floors and festivals Worldwide. Blending tech and breakbeat drums, with squeltchy Neuro bases and ambient synths, it’s one of the strongest Eatbrain releases (Which is saying something) And shows that this man is far from done with D&B, from his beginnings in the early 2000’s to now, he’s proved he knows what needs to be done to be a name in the scene, from heavy and polished tracks, to a slick live show, and he’s even got some YouTube tutorials for aspiring producers… What more could you want?
Ladies and Gentlemen… Chris S.U!
1 – So 2016 has been a pretty mad year for a lot of people, what would you say your biggest and best moment was?
I can’t particularly highlight one moment because 2016 was a good year for drum & bass and for myself, too, but I enjoyed playing at the 20 years of Hungarian drum & bass and Bladerunnaz Welcomes Noisia Invites parties in Budapest, also during the festival season I’ve played at VOLT Festival and Sziget Festival in front of thousands of people. Sun & Bass is always highlight of the year every single time, and the IDM Festival in Bologna in November was great fun, too.
2 – On that note, whats the worst thing that happened to you this year?
Not having a single release on my own label FATE Recordings (I wanted to avoid clashing with my Eatbrain EP, basically that’s the only reason).
3 – Describe your writing process for us?
When I’m making music I’m always trying to put the actual mood I’m in or the feelings I have, the vibe of the should definitely has to reflect this. Sometimes I do have a specific idea of a melody, then I start with that, when I don’t, then I’ll just try to begin with some sound desiging. When I’m catching a good vibe, I need to work on the track as long as time allows because next day I might wake up in a totally different mood and I won’t be able to finish that track to sound how I’d have originally imagined. There are some cases when I make a full length track but I don’t open the project for 2-3 weeks, and if I still like the tune after those weeks, then it’s probably a good track, so I’ll finish it with working on those small details which make things even more interesting.
4 – Are you excited for 2017?
Most definitely, I’ve got big plans for next year. My first ever drum & bass vinyl release came out in 2000 so I think my debut solo album is long time overdue.
5 – Anyone you wished you’d have worked with last year, and who you want to work with this year?
I enjoy making collabs because everytime you work with other people, you can learn something new. That’s not necessarily a techological or productional thing but it could also be his menthality and approach to certain things. So yeah I’d definitely keep on doing some collabs. I’d like to make a track with Optical one day, and also with Klute, they’re both my childhood heroes!
6 – Any new kids on the block we should know about?
I’ve nearly finished my new EP on my own imprint FATE Recordings which contains a collab with Nymfo, also a track with Fedora.
7 – What is your biggest professional fear?
Ugh, this is a tough one. I guess the worst is when I have to cancel gig for reasons out of my hand. That’s always a massive blow. Also I particularly hate when I show up in a club and there are some technical problems.
8 – Any tips for new producers?
I guess a lot of new producers put too much emphasis on the mixdown. My advice for them is to patiently try to do your own thing and the ideas you put into a track and the vibe of it is so much more important than how the mixdown and master sounds. You can learn how to make a decent sounding master later, or just send the track to a professional but a good mixdown won’t sell a bland tune.
9 – Favourite thing you’ve bought this year?
I’ve just upgraded the car stereo to one which supports USB sticks. It was about time, I know
10 – Tell us something we wouldn’t guess about you?
I really like to play football, we play five-a-side every tuesday. I like to watch it on TV as well but I don’t really support any team. I’m also a big FIFA 17 fan.
11 – Who has been your favourite producer/act this year?
Noisia are always spot on, Break, Mefjus, The Prototypes were on fire as well. Erb N Dub, Crissy Criss and Malux have been doing crazy things as well and I play some new Mindscape tracks which are top secret yet but they’re destroying dancefloors everywhere
12 – Tell us about how you got started with music?
I’ve been connected with music since my childhood as I went to the local music school and learned to play the cello there. I can’t imagine my life without music!
13 – What do you think the biggest challenge for producers when you started producing was?
At the time I started writing some music with my PC it was around 1996 or 1997. There was no YouTube for tutorial videos, no google to search for information and there was 56k modem internet only. It was very tough to find any sort of information how to do this and that. Also sending my music to people who seemed to be impossible at the time. My PC was very weak at the beginning as well, it was always dragging me back from creating something interesting.
14 – What is the biggest challenge for new kids now?
It is very hard to stand out these days, as there are so many people producing right now. It’s a bit like back in the 70s when then garage bands were in fashion and everyone wanted to be a guitarist. So these days new producers really have to work their ways to create something original.
15 – Who do you want to work with in 2017?
I’ve been part of the scene for a long time and I have my circle of friends who I’m on the same vibe with so I guess I want to keep on working with them. I also want to persuade SKC to return to producing drum & bass, I hope I can get him to come to my studio and make some new tunes together!
16 – What can’t you make music without?
17 – Plans for more stuff through Eatbrain?
Definitely, maybe in form of another EP or remixes, who knows. Jade is a very good friend of mine and all the Hungarian producers try to help each other in one way or another. We try to stick together.
18 – I personally am a massive BSE fan – is there a full length or more releases on the cards?
The Black Sun Empire guys are top notch lads and I hope we can make some new collabs in the near future. Also their label Blackout is doing really well which I’m very happy about.
19 – Anything new on FATE recordings we should be waiting for?
The aforementioned EP is next on my label, probably coming out late March or April. We’re planning to make a video for the Fedora collab as well, fingers crossed. I’m planning to release my solo album in the second half of the year.
20 – What does your ideal day off consist of?
Spending the day with the missus watching TV shows laying in bed, or going to the cinema with my family. I guess I’m not really a fan of doing lots of crazy things so if have a day off, I’m just chilling !
Many thanks for your time and all the best for 2017!
Interview by Milo Jones 2016