Interview: Alan Fitzpatrick
Buoyed by the whirlwind success he has achieved since emerging as the new kid on the techno block in 2008, Alan Fitzpatrick is at the top of his game and brimming with the confidence you would expect of a talent acknowledged as one of the most influential techno artists of the moment.
A universally respected and in-demand producer, Fitzpatrick has succeeded in carving out his own musical niche within the ever-expanding genre of techno, earning him the reputation of a seemingly unstoppable source of hit music. Tracks such as ‘Truant’, ‘Skeksis’, ‘For An Endless Night’, ‘Always Something For Nothing’ and ‘Reflections’ (a BBC Radio 1 Essential New Tune) all topped the charts over the last six years, drawing high praise from peers and tastemakers across genre divides for the vibrancy, originality and inventiveness that has come to characterise Alan Fitzpatrick’s music.
A regular guest at a long list of high profile clubs across the globe and an alumnus of the coveted BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix, Fitzpatrick has a global profile. Fans, who now can be counted as more than one hundred and seventy five thousand, from all over the world, fuel an increasingly busy and broad-ranging tour diary that has the man from Southampton headlining events across Europe, North America, Asia and South America.
Anticipating Alan’s latest release ‘Tribe’ on his own (alongside Reset Robot & Rhymos) “Whistleblower” imprint, we caught up with the man himself to discuss the house sound incorporated into the track, experiences in the city of Amsterdam, house music favourites, and much more. In his own words, ‘Tribe’ is “simple and energetic with an old school flavour,” which starts with the uplifting chord progression that soon starts to take shape when the hi-hats fade in to introduce the drums. Led by the thump of Alan’s trade mark kick drum, the track has a tribal feel created by the conga loop which wraps itself round the lead synth part to push it forward. Deeper than Alan’s average output, the track still has a Techno flair, but will no doubt also be popular with House DJ’s.
Be sure to catch Alan in Torino, Italy for the 10th anniversary of Movement Torino Music Festival on October 30th. Find all details below.
“[That]…drum beat…is like the beat of the heart, and something I have always drawn inspiration from. It is why we dance when we hear music. It is an instinctual thing we do.”
The concept of the “Whistleblower” has been in the news a lot over the last couple of years. Is the fact that you named your label “Whistleblower” a political statement?
It really isn’t. It’s run by myself, Reset Robot and Rhymos, who have been very good friends since high school. We always wanted to start a label when the time is right we could experiment with new stuff, put out stuff we were into, and have a shared vision.
We couldn’t really come up with a name though. We tried so many ideas but once Whistleblower came up, with the logo looking like a whistle, it seemed right. It has no link with politics. It’s really just a coincidence. If anything it is more of a link to the music we grew up listening to..the old rave music. It’s a tip of the hat to the old whistle crews.
As you mentioned, the label is a co-venture between you, Reset Robot and Rhymos. Going back in time, when were the first conversations amongst you where you decided you would want to go into this kind of venture together?
We’ve always been playing music and going clubbing since we were really young. All three of us were in the same group of friends when we discovered dance music on the South coast of England. We also got turntables at the same time. The concept of starting a label together was probably always there but with the profiles myself and Reset Robot have right now, we thought now we would be able to maximize exposure and not fall on deaf ears. We’ve always enjoyed each others music and supported each other so it just made sense to collaborate on the label.
The track “Tribe” you have coming out on “Whistleblower” is your first solo track on the label. Obviously, it has a much more housey sound than the techno approach most people know you for. What was your inspiration behind this track? What was the first element of the track that occurred to you?
The fact that is is my first track on the label is a result of timing around all the other stuff I have going on. I don’t want to flood the market with music so it turns out this is how long it took me to get around to this.
With regards to the track itself, again, being on my own label it is something I can experiment with so I wanted to make something a bit more housey. That is also the basis of how the track came about. I had the tribal loop with the drums on the track, and it grew from there. I had just done a photo shoot a few weeks before, which involved some projections that looked like tribal warpaint. The whole thing matched together at the right time to call it “Tribe”.