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Steve Anderson Learns Zoology

Reported by HarderFaster / Submitted 03-11-08 17:24

Label owner, production maestro, International DJ, Podcaster HarderFaster reviewer. Is there nothing this man can’t turn his hand to? Steve Anderson is currently riding high and is ready to break into the big time.

To help you get a flavour of his prowess before he takes over proceedings and proceeds to destroy the floor at this week’s Zoology 7th Birthday we sent up some questions. Let this ex boxer’s music knock you out – seconds out, round one!

Hi Steve, thanks for talking to us today at HarderFaster. How are things in Sunny Scotland?

Cold! Haha Thanks for having me over for a chat, I visit here regularly to catch up on things and of course I do reviews for the site.

Haha! Best get wrapped up then! You own and run DJSA Records, and since we last spoke with you there have been some great successes with the label. Can you tell us a bit about them?

The last 12/18 months have been really good at DJSA Records, the main successes would include various compilation licensing – most of them to Armada Music in Holland. We signed a track from HarderFaster duo Luke Warner & Mat Lock last summer and had my buddy Daniel Kandi do the remix, which turned out to be a great decision. His remix of Deep Psychosis became a fixture in Armin’s box from the word go and is still there, initially picking up both “Tune Of The Week” and “Future Favourite” awards on ASOT Radio just prior to release late in 2007.

Seeing the track land on the Armin Only 2008 DVD, Armin Only 2008 compilation, and more recently the Armin Only Special Edition DVD/CD release package kept me busy with paperwork for Armada(!), and also breathed even longer life into the track and release. A couple of my own remixes for the label also did very well under the Steve Anderson and A/B Project guises by hitting compilations, and overall I think everyone involved has been happy with how it has all gone.

What plans do you have for the label next year?

Next year will see the launch of two new labels, of which both will effectively take over from DJSA Records going forward. I had a look over everything I am now doing earlier in the summer, and decided that I needed to brand everything better and align it all with a common base. This included the label, my show, and a few other things that I have in the pipeline going forward. So from 2009 the labels SAME Recordings and SAME Progressive will get under way and at present I am looking at things like new music for consideration, possible formats for release within the market conditions, merchandise, promotion, and more.

The one thing I have decided is that we will only be releasing what we consider to be the highest quality in new music on both labels, and we will be making this the benchmark going forward.

Your Podcast seems to be going from strength to strength. For someone that hasn’t heard it yet what is the basis for the show – music, features, etc?

Yeah it always surprises me how many people actually love the show, I constantly hear from new people around the globe with positive remarks on it and what the show does for them – on the train to work, in the gym, in the car in the New York rush hour traffic, even the soundtrack in the bar or pub that they work!

Having set the show up as a podcast in 2006, it steadily picked up listeners since and this year amassed well over 12,000 listeners at iTunes alone. I decided then that in line with the new SAME labels it was time to take it to a wider audience, and renamed/relaunched the show as The SAME Radio Show with effect from September. The show is basically an hour each time and runs twice a month, showcasing my picks of the best fresh new trance music around – and early auditions of all my own new material too. As a special feature I have a phone guest on the show each time too, to chat about something topical such as a new release, album, or whatever else is happening for them at the time. It seems to be really well received, and adds another dimension to the output - rather than just having my Scottish accent filling the links every time.!

It’s now being syndicated out to more places that just iTunes. Where else can people catch up with the show and how did that come about?

The opportunity came up for me to take the show onto the Trance Channel at DI.FM from launch day and also a large FM station in Poland. Radio Kolobrzeg puts the show out twice a week on a Wednesday and Saturday evening. We are presently looking at further syndication to FM stations around the world, and of course it remains in the podcast format at iTunes for subscribers there. There is also a website at where people can grab the full tracklistings, subscribe at iTunes, listen again to the shows via the headphones feature, email into the studio here etc – so everything is in place for people to get a hold if it whenever it suits them.

Of course things are going great with your own production career, with “Neve” just released on Mondo Records. What gave you the inspiration to write a track about your Niece, and what does she think about it?

It’s been a good 12/18 months on that front too, I packed in my job of over 15 years at that stage to go full time with music – as I hated the job I had and knew that finally following my natural career was where I had to go. I wrote “Neve” in September 2007 whilst at the poolside on a sunny afternoon in Tenerife, I was over there playing for Tramps nightclub and penned the lyrics very quickly on it. The inspiration basically came from the way I’ve changed my outlook on a number of things in the last 5 years since she came along, and how kids sometimes think so simply in certain situations when adults overcomplicate matters. As my wife will tell you I’m the biggest kid at heart you will find really, and when Neve visits us - her and I just have a ball. She kicks me out of my studio seat, takes over the CDJs, shows me how it’s done and loves the whole fun of the setup I have. She saw my vinyl mounted and said that she wanted one of her own, which got me thinking about doing a track for her.

I like to try different things with my tracks and try not to repeat the same thing each time, but I must admit I wasn’t sure how it would go down being such a sentimental subject – and also with me singing on the track which I hadn’t done before. I do believe in hanging your balls out there a little in most things that I do though, “better to try than not to” sort of thing – and thankfully it all went well. Again big thanks must go to Armin who I passed the only copy to upon its completion, and who has been spinning it all year in the clubs and initially on ASOT – this kicked off a huge amount of messages from people who the track really touched. Neve herself is only 5 years old and so only has a basic grasp of what it’s all about at the moment – as she gets older she will appreciate more how many people loved her track which I think is quite cool. As you mentioned it saw a full 12” Vinyl/CD/MP3 release on Mondo Records recently and so I was able to give her the framed vinyl identical to mine last week – which I must admit I was quite proud of, as I was kind of able to deliver the promise that I made to her a year earlier. Generally all of my tracks/vocals have a personal meaning to me, though some are more hidden than others.

From the UK to Holland, you’ve also got releases coming out on High Contrast. Some producers can only dream of releasing on a Dutch label, what do you think it is that attracted them to your sound?

High Contrast is a great label, and the guy who runs it, Dick de Groot is a fantastic guy – I’ve dealt with Dick a few times in the last couple of years with various things and always get a friendly, professional response. The track that will be released with High Contrast shortly is titled Before Long, and is the follow up to Neve which I also did a vocal piece for. It’s a slightly more tech-based sound than in some of my other tracks – though still uplifting and with a nice twist in events at the halfway mark.

I think as far as what attracted my sound to High Contrast is that they are one of, if not the most forward-thinking label out there just now – they don’t have a particular set-in-stone “sound” that some labels do and their minds are open to everything that’s fresh and new. For me it’s about how well you are treated at a label, the promotion etc – and it’s all there with High Contrast/BeYourselfMusic. The track should be out in single and album form on High Contrast very shortly, so keep an ear out for it.

Will we see you at Trance Energy next year?

Well I’ve been lucky with some of the clubs and events/residencies I’ve played over the years, but having attended dance events in Holland before - then some of you will know that it’s a whole different ballgame over there. Their production of these events, passion, strength of lineup, and most importantly crowds are almost untouchable. Of all the places I’ve visited over the years, I can honestly say that the Dutch are the most genuinely friendly and fun loving people that I’ve come across.

Trance Energy is an event I would love to play at and for High Contrast, and I have relayed this to the guys over there in our recent chats. There are a lot of DJs who of course have also expressed a similar interest, and there are limited places on the line up – so I suppose we just wait and see. It would be fantastic to play for the Trance Energy crowd, spinning my new productions at the best event there is in my opinion.

What other big labels are you working with at the moment?

At the moment I have just finished remixing the forthcoming DT8 Project single As The Days Grow Old for Darren at Mondo and also completed two new tracks of my own. Closer is the new Steve Anderson single, though at present I am arranging the right home for this so don’t have a concrete answer for you on that – and the new track with Chris Breame under our A/B Project guise Adversity is in the same boat. Both are sounding really good I think and I will give them their first spins at the club next weekend for people to hear. Aside from that I have been approached by a few artists concerning remixes and also vocals for collaboration work – so I may have more to announce on that front shortly too. There are of course new Steve Anderson and A/B Project tracks under way as we speak as per usual too.

You sing your own vocals on a lot of your tracks. What made you decide to do this rather than get in a session vocalist?

The vocal with Neve was basically a tryout really, I had sung when I was about 6 years old in my Dads band at a charity gig in my then home town – though hadn’t performed singing since! I knew I could sing in tune, but didn’t really know how I would sound in the studio – so gave it a go to find out.

I recorded down the first draft of Neve and kept it, I still have it even now after the tracks final version and release. It’s quite funny hearing how far I’ve come with the vocals, as the first draft is really awful – I wouldn’t let anyone outside of my studio ever hear it, haha! As for the decision over other vocalists, I like to test myself really as I mentioned earlier – and this was another way of doing that. I could have been slated for it, but I liked the track and thankfully others did too. When I let my two close friends Chris Breame and Terry Ferminal hear it they both gave the thumbs up, so that was my green light to run with it. I’ve also been contacted recently by a really great female vocalist who would like to do a track together with me, and I’m very interested in taking that forward soon if we can arrange something.

Where do you hope to go from here with your solo production career?

As mentioned I gave up my full time day job 18 months ago to do this 25 hours a day now, I don’t really know how to do much else – and I don’t much want to. I’m the guy who works till 4/5am each night on music, then sleeps a few hours and immediately starts again the next morning. I’m extremely lucky to have my wife Ellen understand how much it all means to me, and I have her full support in it all – this makes such a difference.

For my production career I suppose I want to keep improving, I believe you never stop learning and there is always something else to develop – it’s something I love about my work in music. I would ideally like to keep my sound varied, though always emotional, melodic and uplifting I think – whilst hopefully bringing something new each time. My career consists of production, running the labels, radio work and of course my first love – DJ work. I love it even more today than I did when I started out in a small club 15 years ago.

As you mentioned before, you are also one half of A/B Project. How are things going with your partner Chris Breame and what have you guys got in store for us?

Apart from the new track Adversity, of which release details will be announced in due course, we’re also working on a new track at present too, which has a different slant than the last couple and is taking good shape. When I met Chris in 2004 it was at one of the club nights I was running in Edinburgh at that time and we decided to do something under A/B Project which we have been working together under ever since. No-one will know much about Chris as he isn’t a club DJ or on MySpace etc, but there is no-one I respect more in this industry than him.

This guy’s kowledge about music production is extensive; I’ve learned loads from Chris on the audio engineering front since we started working together. He’s an IT boff/software tester by trade (read: “Geek” Chris haha), and so there isn’t much he doesn’t know about on that side either - the guy is a genius in my book. We’re a great team in the studio, and even when I’m doing my solo tracks he is the only guy to hear them before they leave my studio desk – he’s super picky, so tells me when he thinks something is crap! Haha But as for next year I will be having Chris present the odd episode of the SAME Radio Show on occasion, and A/B Project will also be mixing a Double compilation CD on SAME Recordings - therefore having an “A-Side” and a “B-Side”! As for our tracks going forward, A/B Project will hopefully continue to be well received, and we will have more for everyone again very soon. Meanwhile look out for Adversity which will be the next single.

You’ll be taking over the reigns at Zoo Birthday After Madness. What can people expect to hear from your set?

I was on the phone to Darren Tate a couple of weeks back, and he told me he had a great night at the venue – so I suppose firstly I’m looking forward to the same. As for my set you can expect to hear quality uplifting and driving melodic Trance, a few of my own new productions which will be getting their first airing, and no fillers. Feedback I regularly get from people regarding my radio show is that I don’t follow the trend and necessarily play what everyone else is playing at that given time – and they often hear great new tracks that they haven’t elsewhere. If it’s good and hits the spot with me, I’ll support it.

I suppose I would like to say to everyone at HarderFaster to please come along and say hello, grab a beer and a chat and have some fun while celebrating the 7th birthday. I will also shortly be launching the SAME TV Channel by way of a video podcast at iTunes too, and so we may be filming some footage from the club for inclusion on this next weekend too. It should be fun, so I hope to see some of you in there!

Thanks for the chat Steve, and we look forward to seeing you at the Zoology and Zoo2 7th Birthday celebrations!

Definitely – thank you guys, it’s always a pleasure.


Win yourself a signed copy of Neve. Check out the competition exclusive to HarderFaster here!

Photos courtesy of Steve Anderson and the HarderFaster archive. Not to be reproduced without permission.

Send an eFlyer for this event to a friend Include this Event in a Private Message Direct link to this Event
On: Saturday 8th November
At: CLUB 414 [map]

From: 6:30am till 12:30pm
Cost: £5 Before 7am (After Party Price from 5am) £8 After
More: With the 7th birthday festivities’ continuing on till god knows when it’s only right that you should know which choice DJs will be keeping you going all morning long!

With top class releases on his own label, DJSA Records, UK based Mondo Records and top Dutch imprint, High Contrast alongside a Podcast with 100,000+ subscribers, a new show on and FM stations around the world, it’s no wonder 2009 looks set to be the year that Steve Anderson finally breaks through to the mainstream. Make sure you catch him here first opening up the afterparty madness with some of his unreleased trance monsters.

Pairing up with resident Adam Symbiosis this month for some back to back nonsense is understated DJ Sarah Goodson. With a taste in music that spans genres, this set looks to be as diverse as it danceable. Make sure you save your energy for this one.

Finally completing the line up for this month and closing things down for us is HF Ibiza runner up, Matt H. Having shown his skills on the beachfront at Kanya, we get him back to the 414 decks after a cameo appearance a few months ago. Remember, sleep is for Sunday!
Region: London
Music: Trance. Acid Trance. Euro Trance. Hard Trance. Tech Trance. Psy Trance. House. Bouncy House. Deep House. Funky House. Hard House. Prog House. Tribal House. US House. Vocal House. Electro House. Acid House. Soulful House. Electro. Soul.
DJ's: Steve Anderson
Matt H
Adam Symbiosis vs Sarah Goodson

Who's Going? (6) : Adam Symbiosis, B.S.E, Daniel K, Sarah_G, sexyminx, ~deleted1390 

7oology's 7th Birthday
Send an eFlyer for this event to a friend Include this Event in a Private Message Direct link to this Event
On: Friday 7th November
At: CLUB 414 [map]

From: 10pm till 6am
Cost: £8 Paying Guestlist £12 On The Door
More: Club 414 is, and has, been home to some defining parties on the Dance Music scene. With parties such as Milk, Nuclear Free Zone and Just Groove long being remembered for their music, DJs and full houses.
Maybe in years to come Zoology will be viewed alongside those promotions as part of the 414 legend. Maybe we already are and we didn’t get the memo.
Over the years we’ve had everyone from DJs straight out of their bedroom to chart topping acts, DJs flown in from Europe and team ups with some of the biggest Hard Dance promotions on the scene. We’ve done quite a bit, but we're not done yet.
For 7oology’s 7th Birthday (do you see what we’ve done there) we decided not to cram the line up with the biggest DJs we could find. Instead we’ve opted for our usual plan of finding a DJ that is extremely well respected and someone who will do more than just bang out a load of anthems one after the other.
So we are pleased to announce that James “Sterling” Moss will be delivery a special 2 hour set of genre spanning, musical mayhem with multiple decks, FX and possibly more.
James has played all over the World at events and to crowds that most DJs can only dream of. It’ll be a great chance to see a master up close and personal.
As usual we like to back up the star guest with a DJ who is bubbling under and for that we have Rick Deacon whose fantastic taste in Tech Trance has see him earn sets at some fine parties including The Gallery and Spangulation.
The residents make up the rest of the line up with a huge 3 hour, 4 Way b2b set with Latex Zebra, B.S.E., Jim Wild and returning resident RedCaT. We’ll also have Markus Buhmann and Matt Dahl warming things up in their usual fashion.
The club will be nicely dressed for the occasion, we can’t say the same for the DJs though.

We hope to see many of you there to help us celebrate.
Region: London
Music: Trance. Acid Trance. Euro Trance. Hard Trance. Tech Trance. Psy Trance. Nu NRG. HardStyle. Hard House. Acid Techno. Funky Techno. Techno. Club Classics.
DJ's: Sterling Moss
Rick Deacon
Matt Dahl b2b Markus Buhmann
RedCaT b2b Latex Zebra b2b B.S.E b2b Jim Wild

Who's Going? (25) : Adam Symbiosis, B.S.E, Barry Harding, BOPPER, crazy-frenchie, Daniel K, Dean Zone, Didoo, GloomCookie, Hitch the Knife, JackB, Lam, Lorenzo Barrero, Matt Church, Matt Dahl, moggyy, nav006, Not Marcus, phil lankester, rogerbj, sachin22, sexyminx, T-bag, Zem, ~deleted1390 

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The views and opinions expressed in this review are strictly those of the author only for which HarderFaster will not be held responsible or liable.

From: ~deleted1390 on 5th Nov 2008 19:35.01
Great stuff!

From: Darz on 20th Nov 2008 23:59.57
Cool interview! Very inspiring!

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