Interview with SASS
When did you get into the Hardcore Scene?
I didn't, the music I've loved since I was a kid just become hardcore. Confused??? you should be!!! Seriously though, the first ever record I bought when I was 12 was an album by some guy called JOHN KEATING it was an album with no music on just loads of very wierd noises, these noises I now know as techno, they were very early synth sounds and I used to try and put my head inside the speaker to find out where these noises came from. I was fuckin' hooked on these, looking back, very crap synth sounds, in fact my mum who was ever so supportive of me (not) said I'm gonna grow up to be a devil worshipper listening to that stuff, nearly right eh??
I was then drawn to VANGELIS, JARRE, early HUMAN LEAGUE, VISAGE, SILICON TEENS, FLOCK OF SEAGULLS basically all the new romantic synth bands, then because my becoming a DJ I progressed into the Chicago house sound the pre-Acid house stuff. It was the late 80's early 90's when the Belgium new beat stuff started coming over that I really came into my own, in fact this is where the Dutch got there now famous sound from, I'm gonna get killed for saying this but the "new" dutch gabba is very like the old Belgium new beat. It was around '91-'92 that I used to play certain clubs up north, my most famous venture was as the promoter of the LOVE SHACK in Blackpool, where I remained for 1 year, I was known as DJ SPACE FACE, back then I used to do 10 hour sets.....fuckin' excellent!!!!! I used to book guests like STU ALLAN, SEDUCTION (who won't book me now the tosser) and other key DJ's and boy could I tell you some stories about them. It was this time that techno started to gain the hardcore tag and I was getting sucked more and more into the Dutch sound with labels such as DANCE OPERA, BEAT BOX, BYTE and loads more........all very pre PAUL ELSTACK. So I've just progressed through the years really, as the music I love has just ended up being called Hardcore I didn't follow any trends it followed me HAHAHAHA!!!!!! The only break I had from playing the stuff was when I moved to London in '93 and started playing Drum & Bass at venues like The LAZERDROME, ASTORIA, MARQUEE, The famous PARADISE CLUB and loads more I also used to play on pirate radio...PULSE FM.....excellent days.
Tell us about your labels Hardcore Mafia and High Octane?
Well basically I was getting pissed off at the amount of dutch stuff I was buying and just thought that we could do just as good if not better so I set up the Mafia thing. The first releases sold good, lost money, but sold OK. Then I stopped the releases for some time and everyone went mad for the stuff so I kicked off again and now it's fuckin' ace with sales just about breaking even for the first time.....ace!!!!
HIGH OCTANE is my outlet for my love of well 'ard drum & bass, the jump up shit is so fuckin' boring man, no disrespect to those producers making the shit but please get some underground in yer tunes guys. Producers like ED RUSH, OPTICAL & TRACE are tearing it at the moment their labels are so fuckin' hard man, awesome hardness, you people into to techno should listen to this stuff, don't dismiss drum & bass altogether there is some fuckin' hardcore drum & bass out there that makes some gabba tunes look fragile man!!! This is the first time I've made this public so here goes.........the artists on HIGH OCTANE are not who it says on the label the real artists are THE DJ PRODUCER, HELLFISH, DOLPHIN, DARE, MASTERVIBE and yours truly all recording under alias's..........now fuck off.........next question ya heathen!!
Whats this UK HardheadZ project you've got under wraps at the moment?
Basically it's just an extension of my head again but very much with Holland & Europe in mind. The music will be slower and darker, very fuckin' dark actually. I suppose it's intelligent hardcore techno in a way, the kind of sound I've been getting more drawn to lately, similar to the AREA 51 & S4 stuff........top bollux tunes with no cheese just bags of strength and power. There is a bit more to it than that and I'm not telling you so shut yer Putney.
Music wise what are you into at the moment?
Oh christ, labels....DEATHCHANT, the new AREA 51, the new S4, VIRUS, NO-U-TURN, ACID ASSAULT, BRAIN, FIX, the new HARDCORE MAFIA, the new HARDHEADZ. Artists......HELLFISH, DIPLOMAT, THE DJ PRODUCER, MASTERVIBES new shit, ED RUSH, TRACE, OPTICAL, my new shit, DOLPHINS unreleased never gonna get released unless he wants it released shit. I'm just into to techno man, any music that pushes forward and has the right bollux is good for me, I'm not into that gabba nonsense and don't wanna get into the whole "what is gabba???" argument. I don't understand gabba or speedcore and it's not musical enough for me. I recently put on a night in London called RADICAL TECHNOLOGY with LENNY DEE, MANU LE MALIN, SCORPIO, PRODUCER, Me, TORGULL, JAPPO, SUICIDE SQUAD, NEBULA II & TEMPER TANTRUM and it was the dogs mate, proper night, even CLARKEE was dancing AND going round hugging people, swapping fone numbers and generally going nuts (he was steamin' basically.....completely nutted), anyway we only promoted the night two weeks before the event and we got a very healthy turn out, we had some gabba's and new age punks in there who were very wary about what to expect from us "cheesers" but all of them were bouncin' man, fuckin bouncin' it was excellent, a few of 'em said that the night was far better than they expected because they'd never heard any of us play before and expected cheese from us................don't ask why!!!
So what do you think of Happy Hardcore?
Thats it get me into a corner..........OK Happy Hardcore has a place just like every other music BUT when every event has the same old DJ's playing each others dub plates and the punters are hearing certain tunes 10 times a night it gets boring. Personally I can't stand the happy hardcore thats around now it's a poor copy of good hardcore that had an uplifting feel to it a couple of years ago, don't get me wrong there are still good tunes that do it but they're getting very rare now. Those DJ's MUST realise that the kids are getting bored shitless, thats why the parties are getting quieter because people are bored now. It's another reason why I'm so into techno as it's always moving forward. Finally I draw on a comparison of two closely related scene's, on one side you have the happy hardcore, put a happy event on and it's same DJ's playing the same tunes over and over again, put a hardcore techno event on and what you get is a selection of DJ's all playing in a completely unique style, there are no techno DJ's that sound the same....go figure????
Any other wise, what alse?
Yeah one last thing 'cos I've gone on too much is..........EVERYONE STOP FUCKIN' WINGING ABOUT HOW CRAP YOUR SCENE IS AND GET OUT THERE PARTY JUST SHUT THE FUCK UP AND DANCE. It's not even about the drugs, although there nice, it's about dancin', thats it, bottom line......dancin' to music period!!!!!!!!!!! I'm very fuckin' tired of hearing about the old days and how good they were.............fuck off!!!!!!!! Music's never been better.............check out us few who are working our nuts off to bring you a new breed of hardcore..........if your tired of the cheese try supporting the ones who are pushing forward and getting no help from magazines etc; the ONLY true underground dance scene left is hardcore techno so support us. All people seem to do is go on about how crap things are right now......well why don't you just get married and die........most people have really lost the plot of what this whole scene is about about..............simple = going out and partying, listening to music you won't find any where else and 'avin it........DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR??, just get the fuck off your fat winging arses and come out and party, don't talk to anyone about the old days tell 'em to do one, listen to the new tunes, they are so good they give me a hard on, don't wait for anthems, wait to hear that new tune with the new noises that makes your fuckin' head explode..........this is what the "rave" scene was born out of, the new tunes dropped by underground DJ's.......see my point.
AND WATCH OUT FOR THE NEW DEATH CHANT ALBUM ON THE STREETS EARLY JULY...........DON'T DISMISS IT, IT MIGHT OPEN YOUR HEAD TO THE NEW STYLE!!!!
Respects to CLARKEE (wanka), LENNY DEE (30 now hehe!!), SCORPIO (the palm tree king), THE DJ PRODUCER (currently representing the UK around the world), BASS VIBRATOR (Ugly geordie bitch), SMURF (Arsenal strip on the way as requested), THE GGM (a dying breed), MASTERVIBE (Surf arse), DOLPHIN (North Wales VD king), VORTEX (Stessed 2 phuk), MANU (French twat), OLIVER CHESLER (officially fuckin' top party dude), JOHN IS-NY (tall fucker), JAY SPASTIC, JAPPO (pierced italian dude), SHELLFISH, DIPLOMAT (Never Gonna Give You Up - Rick Astley), SHARKEY (my arse!! George Michael fan club) and all party HardheadZ
Interview by Al Twisted, May 1998
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