Senzala – London based Techno DJ//producer; originally coming from the dance floor, expect to hear a range of influences in his production and DJ sets.
Strict vinyl enthusiast, his own work clearly demonstrates a raw and edgy sound formed through years of digging through wax. Senzala’s darker side has been evolving over the years; with releases on Art Department’s No. 19 as well as Dubfire’s SCI+TEC. 2021 is looking bright for Senzala with a release on Damian Lazarus’ ‘Rebellion’ Label and a follow up release to come on Dubfire’s SCI+TEC label, as well as a few other unique projects and remix’s. Senzala has been responsible for two major collaborations with Jansons: ‘Take Me Away’ and ‘JNZ’ on Richy Ahmed’s FOUR THIRTY TWO label; both gaining respectful places in the Beatport chart. Senzala has receives consistent support from all his respected peers in the scene; as well as featuring on BBC Radio One with many of his releases. Senzala is planning to release white label vinyl only dubs on an imprint SNZ – expect these to be stripped back raw, dubby, dance floor friendly edits.
With lot of exciting releases on the horizon, expect to see the continued growth of the Senzala project.
When and how did you get into dance music – was it in Brazil?
I got into dance music from a super young age. As you can imagine having Brazilian heritage and living out there I was exposed to samba-style music since I was born…
Electronic dance music I would say I developed a liking to it when I was in my teen years. When I was young I’d always be involved in something musically, whether it would be a different genre or even MC-ing.
When have you moved to London and how did that change things?
I’ve always been a Londoner; born & bred. I’m only half Brazilian so nothing really changed there. I think going to Brazil and having that heritage is more what changed me and opened me up to a completely new culture, from such a young age.
At the time you kind of think these things are normal – having two cultures, which you’re fully immersed in. Only once I’ve grown up and I started speaking to other peers has shown me how much having a second nationality shape both me and my sound.
How do you evolve your own sound while staying true to your roots and signature, not jumping on new hype bandwagons?
I’ll be completely honest here – I don’t really get too involved in the “scene” so much. I really just like a niche sound when it comes to products which I like to think comes across in my production. I don’t listen to tracks and try to emulate them. I hardly really listen to much music that’s easily accessible these days… a lot of my sound tends to come from hours of digging wax in record stores and listening to a crazy variety of vinyl.
Do you make music that suits certain labels or do you create first and worry about that later?
Making music for a specific label is dangerous – if the label doesn’t like it and it’s very catered for them, then you’re kind of half stuck with a track that has the sound of a specific label…
I tend to just make music I like and just send it to labels when I think they’re right.
I was speaking to my manager the other day, and we were going through all the unreleased stuff, and there’s definitely a good 15/20 tracks that labels will want.
None of which were made to a specific label. I think 99% of the time, the music can do the talking.
What are some of the key bits of gear in your current music production setup?
Roland SH101 – I don’t think I could live without this synth in the studio. Probably one of my most iconic bass sounds. I use it in almost every track.
Omnisphere- this plug-in is just the bee’s knees when it comes to anything synth-related.
Technic 1210 – to rip and sample from vinyl
Where is your best environment as a dj? A small dark club or a huge outdoor festival stage? Late at night for the weirdos, or early so you can play slow and eclectic etc?
Outdoor open-air festival, somewhere in the jungle, something quite spooky but also trippy. Someplace where fans can just get loose, forget about the world and let me take them on a journey of emotions.
How do you work, do you have an idea in your head you work towards, or do you just experiment, jam, and see what happens?
I’m not so regimented with my workflow. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I’ve been producing music for a long time now, so I kind of just get in the studio and start playing around. I’ll be honest – a majority of the things I think sound sick are normally a mistake that’s happened whilst producing and I’m like naaaaaa that’s DOPE !!!!
Tell us about your new “Zone” EP for Stereo Productions – what inspired or influenced it, where and when, and who was it written for?
I’m not really inspired by much music that’s out there at the moment. The scene to me has taken a huge turn and changed drastically.
So with this EP I’ve just kept it simple and tried to bring back the music that made me fall in love with this genre. Nice grooves, with good vibes! Tracks that people feel good listening to!
What else have you got coming up/are you working on?
At the moment I’m just writing loads of music. I’m in a really good place and on a roll with finishing tunes.
What hopes and dreams do you have for 2022?
Everyone in my circle stays healthy, positive, and productive.