Interview: Edit Select

Edit Select

Altstadt Echo: I think that one of the techno scenes that has gone relatively undocumented (at least compared with scenes like that of Berlin, Birmingham, etc) is the Scottish techno scene. But of course during the early years of it you must have also been visiting Birmingham or London on occasion – how did the scenes compare?

Edit Select: Great question. To be honest, the Scottish techno scene is not that big, especially in my field. We have artists like Alex Smoke, myself, Marco Bernardi, and of course Slam, but many other artists including Funk D’Void have went down different paths since the early days, working on experimental music, house music etc. The main clubs for techno was PURE in Edinburgh and The Sub Club in Glasgow but it was nowhere near the extremes of Birmingham or Greenwich. These guys like Regis, Surgeon, Mark Broom, Baby Ford, and Steve Bicknell were living and developing a much bigger culture that’s still alive and thriving today. I’m the last man standing in the specialist department…

Was the style of the music very different between them?

Not really. We had Promoters / PURE in Edinburgh who were the purists and brought in great acts from all over the world. Slam also imported these artists, so we did here the same music but we didn’t have the amount of choice that our southern neighbors had.

So, you and the Slam guys are both from Scotland; how was it that you came to know each other and ultimately release on Soma under your alias Percy x?

It’s hard for me to answer this question, because at this time I wasn’t really 100% focused on where I wanted to go with my music. The Slam thing came about as I had loads of techno tracks lying about but no home for them. The name was never meant to be Percy X, but I was reading a book at the time and gave them this name as a fallback, and all of a sudden I’m getting offers to play in Belgium, France, etc. so…

And you’ve had a lot of other aliases too – like Moon, Recycle, Abyss; what’s different about Edit Select? Is this the alias you’ve finally settled on, or should we expect more in the future?

Edit Select is the first alias I have been 90% pleased about what I’m doing and where I’m going, though I still have along way to develop this project. So I don’t think I will try anything new, apart from a collab LP I’m working at the moment with David Foster from Teste – maybe we will use a new name.

What does “edit select” refer to?

It refers to my preferences in the studio; I’m the worlds best (or worst) muter or editor. I finish a track, then leave it, listen again, edit the layout, mute the unnecessary parts, and then do it again the next week. Usually there’s nothing left! I’m OCD in music and in life… if it doesn’t fit, leave it. Rhythms interfering, or empty toilet roll lying around, both do my head in in the same way.

So, your most recent release was on Prologue, a Munich-based label. How did the relationship between you and Prologue form? Did you have your eye on the label for a while?

From the beginning, and before Prologue started, artists like Cio D’Or were connecting with me because of my label and sending tracks for releasing. One of my biggest regrets is not following these things up, it was an extremely difficult time for me in the beginning .Anyway when Prologue happened I was blown away. At their peak I regarded it as one of the best labels in the world and still do although there is a lot more competition now and things have moved on. Tom from Prologue kept asking me to remix this and that but I had really lost my form and I told him wait till it comes back… the rest is history.

The album is on Prologue is called “Phlox.” What does phlox mean to you? Does it refer to the plant?

Yes. I was trying to plant some herbs and trees etc. It was the summer, so I was bored and tried it. Anyway, the best thing to grow was the name (or the only thing to grow).

You’ve also been working with Dino Sabatini lately, both on the album and then also on an EP you released on Outis Music. How does that collaborations work? Is it via the internet or are you in the studio together?

My relationship with Dino Sabatini is based on trust and similarities as a person. He’s like my twin brother but more technical, if I had one. Our working style depends, sometimes via the Internet, sometimes I visit him in Berlin, really anything goes with us. As for new material, Dino and I have a new collaboration on my friend Gianmarco’s / Motoguzzi label based in Zurich. It will be released December. Also, Dino has remixed Teste for my Rewipe project and is remixing a track I made, “Loop Continue,” for a new german label called Dreiklang. So we’re never too far away from each other.

Additionally, you’ve been working with the duo known as Teste on a two tracker EP on your own label, which includes your own remix of their 1992 classic “The Wipe” as well as a fresh collaboration, “Ascend.” Given that Teste really hasn’t been very active since the 90’s, how did you get in touch with them and collaborate on a new track? Should we expect more work with Teste in the future?

The Teste project came about after I made an edit of “The Wipe” for myself to play and we met in Berlin. The good news is that we are collaborating on a new LP. Myself and David Foster are working via the internet and various locations. The album will incorporate both sides of our diverse but similar musical taste. We have 3-4 tracks near completion and hopefully we will release this project spring 2015 on my own imprint.

Looking at your gig schedule for this year, there are a lot of Prologue label showcases you’ve been playing in. Prologue of course prides itself on the deeper sounds, the type of stuff you’d play early in the night. What’s it like to have an entire night of Prologue? How does the progression of those nights go?

My gig schedule is looking better now, as I have recently moved on to another booking agent. This in no way is a reflection on Prologue, I just needed a full time agent. As for Prologue nights, yes the music I play fits in with the ethics of the label and the other artists all have a similar understanding so we gel easily. These nights usually are amazing as the artists are all good at their thing so there’s no holes to fall into.

And finally: which up-and-coming artists and labels are you excited about right now?

I really like SNTS. They have some fantastic new material coming soon on my label, as does Toki, SHXCXCHCXSH, Tozzy, Alberto Rustico, Arcing Seas, and the long awaited return of Steve Bicknell and Lost to name a few. New labels like Hypnus are interesting. I’m sure it will develop into something big very soon.