With the release of a remix for Bobby Tank's “Catalyze” and many tour dates in the near future, Metrik is a busy man. We were fortunate enough to get a few minutes of his time to answer a couple of questions.
What draws you to a song enough to want to put out a remix of it?
In this case, I had been a fan of Bobby Tank’s work for years. I was drawn to his ability to create emotive jazz chords and virtuoso synth leads with powerful, intricate beats. So, I reached out to him over the internet and we started talking music and discussing ideas. Eventually, I asked him to remix my track ‘We Got It’ which he absolutely smashed out the park. It was only polite to return the favour so when he asked me to remix Catalyze, it was a no brainer. The track has a super cool 80’s vibe and I’m all about that right now.
I’ve read that you pull inspiration from your roots in 70’s & 80’s music. Was there any specific inspiration for this track?
My sound is predominantly inspired by the synth music of the 80’s and electronic / dance music of the 90’s with elements of synthwave, film and neo-soul. I also used to be into rock / metal so there’s a raw energy from that which I carry across into my productions. Drum & bass is all about high impact and drama for me. The Catalyze remix more or less wrote itself. I knew it had to have a synthwave intro then a high impact drop, something that would match the epic scale of the music Bobby had created.
You’re playing Hospitality In The Park again this year. Do you think this year will be bigger after the release of “We Are 21”?
I have to say, everything just keeps growing year after year with Hospital. After the sell-out success of the last Hospitality In The Park, I have absolutely no doubt this one will do the same. I’m actually playing a back-to-back set with my good friend TC for this show. We always put a lot of love into our DJ sets and work hard to create something special. We spent about 2 weeks putting together our EDC set. This time we intend to raise the game even more.
Did you have a favorite track from “We Are 21” (aside from your own, that is)?
It only seems like 5 minutes ago I was sending off the final version of my collab with Friction ‘Legacy’ for the 18th birthday compilation.. how time flies! I had a lot of fun working on ‘Tension’ with Fred V & Graifx. Those guys are super talented and some of my best friends in the scene so a collaboration was long overdue. We are planning on making another tune together as soon as possible. In terms of We Are 21… my favourite track on the album has to be Makoto ‘Speed Of Life’. Makoto is one of those guys in the scene who’s been making consistently great soulful DNB for as long as I can remember.
It is exciting to see you on the line up for the first year of Middle Lands. How do you feel about the theme of this new festival?
I love it! I’m a Game Of Thrones fan and have recently picked up Horizon: Zero Dawn for the PS4 so the ‘olde worldy’ thing sounds super fun. I might even have a few medieval themed tunes prepared for my set up my sleeve – wait n’ see 🙂
Do you feel your audience differs from the US and the UK? If so, how?
I’m always blown away by the level of passion and enthusiasm my US fans have. I also love the fact that there is a very thriving drum & bass scene in pretty much every major US city. Every time I play a show there I get to meet people who love the music as much as me, whether it’s the crowds at the venue or the promoters who work hard to put the events on throughout the year and give drum & bass a platform. It’s quite a blessing to be able to come out and do these shows and I’m always excited to come back.
Do you prefer performing solo or b2b with another artist?
I like to tell a story with my DJ sets, with a distinctive beginning, middle and end. I’ll open with a huge intro then play a lot of my own stuff as well as other current tunes I’m into, with a few classics along the way. I'll build it until I finish with a epic outro. The core of my DJ sets are diverse but always very high energy and euphoric. My sound covers a lot of musical bases so this means I can play a lot of styles within drum & bass, keeping it textured and interesting.
Playing a back to back set is a very different experience from doing it solo. I like to approach it from a completely different angle. It’s very fun to come at it from the ‘battle’ approach where you enter in a contest of ‘one-upmanship’ with the person you’re playing with – so one person will draw a tune, then the next person will raise them with a bigger, badder tune. It’s very fun and spontaneous! Here’s a 5 minute taste of what you can expect from a Metrik DJ set…
You had great success with both your records, releasing them almost exactly two years apart. Can you tell us if you plan to keep with that pace or what you have working at the moment?
I think 2 years is a good work rate for me. I tend to work in cycles… I’ll release an album, hit the road and tour for a bit then get my head down in the studio and work on my next batch of music. I’d say there’s a good chance you’ll see another album from me in roughly two years. I’m also really excited to be working on a bunch of collabs… there’s another one in the pipeline with Friction and I’m also jumping on a track with Muzzy very soon. If you haven’t heard his music yet, then I highly recommend you go and check it.
The “Catalyze” remix is available on several sites for download. If you have a chance, catch Metrik at Middlelands in Texas this coming May! He will be sure to have you dancing along to the beat.