Badgers, Monkeys, Mr. Bean and the UK's favourite Interracial back to back act?
Reported by Dean Zone
Submitted 12-01-09 12:57
OK, so as far as sensationalist headlines go, I admit I may have outdone myself on this one. But seeing as this is only the third interview I have ever done for HarderFaster it was never really going to be difficult. But if the headline above didn't give you an inkling of the randomness and chaos that seems to follow Firesky promoters James Corbin, Mitch Ayers and Ricky Jordan (hereby refered to as DJ the Corbz, M.N.K.Y and Ryki) around clubland, then something tells me that you've never been to one of their parties. As the old saying goes "If you cant beat them, join them". I have, and I think you should too!
A lot of DJs have claimed to be the maddest, craziest or the biggest on stage lunatic around. In with a shout would certainly be legends such as Mark EG, Alex Kidd or Proteus, all of whom are notorious for their unrivalled antics and stage presence. But away from the big stages that the aforementioned DJs get onto on a weekly basis in front of thousands, this is where you can find the truly wrong, random and strange.
For over a year now, both Magnetix and Firesky have been throwing events in different parts of the country to a completely different set people, but with the same ideal; to play good music, to go a bit mad and to have as much fun as possible in the process. With the much anticipated Magnetix vs. Firesky event set to take place at the newly refurbished Club 414 on Friday 30th January 2009, we thought the HarderFaster.Net clubbers might want to know exactly just what we're unleashing onto their favourite club.
So lads, tell us a bit about yourselves, starting with where you come from; i.e. Weymouth! What’s the scene like down there?
Ryki: You can answer this one Corbz, seeing as you were the "King of the Cheese" for the best part of last year, ha-ha!
Corbz: Thanks for that Badger (that's what we affectionately call Ryki by the way, due to his pretty gay hair style. You'll see on the 30th!). Weymouth has picked up a lot over the last half-decade. I've been DJing in my home town since I was 15, so for about 6 to 7 years now. Originally there were not that many clubs playing hard dance, but I held residencies at The Metro (now Dusk) and The Kiva (now Domino's Pizza!). They were the only clubs playing proper underground music at the time.
A few years down the line Ryki and a guy called Tom Marksman started doing a night called Hard Trancelation at Harry's Nightclub in Weymouth. They gave me a set at the third event and the rest is history! Since then we've put on the majority of the town's hard dance events including Firesky, Trashed & HD@H.
What are your experiences of London clubbing? Are you regular visitors to the capital at all?
Ryki: I've only been clubbing in London a couple of times. I went to the very first Tidy London and also Lashed in London many years ago now. I loved it, really liked SEOne although it was a bit sweaty and I got a bit squashed. I played in London for Nu Religion last year at Mass which was epic as it was on my birthday!
Corbz: I've only ever been to Magnetix! I came down to the birthday party with Jon the Baptist back in August.
M.N.K.Y.: Well, me and London don't get on that well. The only time I went clubbing in London was with Ryki to Lashed and let’s just say I had a bad experience. I got mega fucked and ended up hiding in some corner all night. We did do Nu Religion last year though and really enjoyed it, so there is still some hope for the love affair to continue.
DJ the Corbz
What made you decide to start up Firesky?
Ryki: I did this charity event in 2005 called Harder Help vs. Hard Trancelation to raise money for Cancer Research and I asked Jon the Baptist to play, which he gladly did for free. I didn't know him at the time but had heard him play from my Country Club days, plus he was a friend of a friend. Anyway, that night went really well so he and Corbz (Jon’s bum chum) approached me and asked if I was interested in hooking up with them and starting our own night. I gladly said yes. We then hooked up with 4 other lads (Dezzi, Dan J, Lamps and Phatt Boy) who were all interested in having a crack at this promotion malarkey too and it went from there really. We just wanted to put on a big party with acts that we would want to see in Weymouth.
Corbz: What Ricky said. Ah the good old days!
M.N.K.Y.: I managed to get left out of that group. Too many chiefs and not enough Indians for my liking!
Ryki: Yeah it does get hectic at times!
Who are your influences, both musically and non-musically?
M.N.K.Y.: Musically I used to play hard house so in the "days of old" it was Lisa Lashes and Paul Maddox. I do still admire them both for what they have achieved and done for the scene as a whole, but these days it’s Cally & Juice. They are the dogs’ bollocks! Non-musically it would have to be Homer Simpson.
Ryki: As gay as this sounds, Corbz is actually one of my influences! He really is a wicked DJ and is seriously under rated. We went back to back the other night and I was in awe of his technical ability. Me and Monkey are nowhere near as good as he is (I want my fiver now James!). He got me into European hard trance and he's also my filter for banging tunes and shit tunes. Non-musically my influence in life is my partner Heidi. She supports me in everything I do and puts up with my crap, like constantly having to listen to "boom boom boom" music as she likes to call it.
Corbz: Aw geez badge. Thanks mate (slips him a five sheet). But seriously, I'm stoked, I live my music, and comments like that make it all worth while.
Anyway, enough of that shit now, I feel dirty! My influences in my music are very widespread, but my main love is well engineered 4 beat dance music. Anything from electro to breaks, or trance to schranz. I take a lot of time studying all genres of dance music and spend at least 15 hours a week trawling through MP3 sites and DJ mixes. But through all the years I've stuck with hard trance, the love of my life. My main influences within that genre are: Jon the Baptist (without this guy I seriously doubt I'd be anywhere in this scene), Iain Cross (my idol when I was coming of age as a DJ), Marco Guardia aka Reverb, Christoph Menzi aka Wavetraxx, DJ Passion, Meri, Beneye, Mark Hashimi, DJ Abyss, Ultraform, Vandall and those Mark EG back to back M-Zone Helter Skelter Tapes! I also want to give a big shout to my girlfriend Katherine; she's the best raver missus ever!
M.N.K.Y. and Ryki, I am told that you get up to quite a lot of mischief both in front of and behind the decks. Are we talking Mark EG type mischief, or more like Mr. Bean?
Ryki: Hmm, probably both! We try not to take ourselves too seriously when we play out and we like to have fun with it too. We never do the "serious DJ" thing of turning up to play 10 minutes before our set and then f*cking off straight after. We like to make a night of it as we are clubbers too, not just rubbish DJs! Plus we like our beer a lot which is probably the reason why it all goes a bit wrong! And it’s ironic that you mention Mr Bean as me and Monkey actually both think he's a legend. Have you seen Mr. Beans Holiday? It’s funny as f*ck! Maybe I should have put him as an influence?
M.N.K.Y.: Yeah we do like our beer and we have an awesome collection of shapes to throw on the dance floor too!
Corbz: "The UK's favourite interracial back to back act". Can we say that?
Ryki: That’s a new one! We sound like porn stars now!
Collectively you’ve also been involved in lots of other projects, most notably Hard Trancelation, HD@H, High Fish, Trashed and more recently Frenzy. What’s next for you guys and what can we expect from you in 2009 and beyond?
Corbz: At the moment Firesky events are on hold. Harry's was being used too much by us and other promoters so we decided we wanted to find a more special location for it. We have been scoping out new venues to use and we think we have found just the place, so hold tight on that one!
The last few years I have focused on promotion, giving new DJs a chance and working very closely with Harry's Nightclub. I'm still going to carry on with Trashed which is now the only event I run at Harry's. That will be bi-monthly and feature the best in the South West's local up and coming talent, but this year I intend to be a bit more self-focused and get back in the studio with S.F.M, whilst getting myself out there a bit more with some sets further afield.
M.N.K.Y.: I'd like to see us achieve some high profile gigs this year. We've already had a taste of it from our recent booking with Slinky at The Opera House and we wouldn't mind some more. A festival set would be nice too but we'll hold onto that dream for now!
Ryki: I will be working closely with Frenzy for 2009 to help push the brand on to bigger and better things. We also want to get some of our own tracks made as it’s been a bit of an ongoing joke with us, so hopefully we'll eventually get round to Mister Baptist’s studio one day, but I couldn’t tell you when as Jon is a bugger to nail down a date with!
Corbz, you’ve got quite an impressive production portfolio with both S.F.M and Jon the Baptist. Do you have any releases planned?
Corbz: We did a remix for Dave Joy’s mate DJ Majesty from Switzerland last year called Silver, that should be coming out on Phoenix Recordings Digital fairly soon. Plus our remix of Subversion's Free Love is due out on High Fish Digital too. S.F.M has also got a solo release called XTC coming out on Compulzion Records shortly, that'll be out on vinyl and then digital three months later. We will also hopefully have our second album out within the next 6 months.
What can the Magnetix crowd expect from the Firesky boys on the night then? What will you be bringing to the table to make it a better party?
Ryki: Pure, phat, unadulterated European hard trance from a line up that includes a Badger, a Monkey, a holy water fan, a spiky haired leg end and of course a Corgi registered installer!
Corbz: How about two of the finest hard trance DJs in the country who were both residents at the legendary Country Club, have played abroad as far as Australia and have a discography as long as the Great Wall of China? Add that in with "The UK's finest interracial back to back" and some d*ck called Corbz..
Ryki: Which is basically what I said!
M.N.K.Y.: I am not a Monkey; I'm a Silver Back Gorilla!
M.N.K.Y. & Ryki
Magnetix and Firesky both share a resident DJ in Jon the Baptist. Why do you think he’s so popular, both in the South Coast and London?
Corbz: Stab in the dark here, but isn't it something to do with the fact that he's probably the best hard trance producer in the country and that we all love him?
Possibly! Corbz, you have the honour of going head to head with my good self on the night. What have you got planned for this, or do you want it in the true vein of a “vs.” set and be totally off the cuff with it?
Corbz: I can see shenanigans. I can see hard trance and I can see a very drunk M.N.K.Y & Ryki dancing like complete arse lovers whilst incorporating a game of 'Rock, Paper, Scissors' into their moves.
Ryki: Some advice for you Dean: watch out mate, this Corgi bites!
And finally, we hear there are plans to bring half of Weymouth up for this event. How are the invasion plans coming along, and what can we expect from your lot on the night?
Ryki: Well I don’t know about everyone else but I'm walking!
Corbz: Yeah Ricky is leaving on the 24th to get there in time for his set. The rest of us are coming on a mini bus fuelled by loud music and excessive booze. Three hours in there and I doubt many of us are going to be able to see by the time we get to you!
Ryki: Hold your colour larndarn!
Lads, it’s been a pleasure as always and I shall see you at Magnetix vs. Firesky on Friday 30th Jan @ Club 414!
The Magnetix vs. Firesky flyer
Photos courtesy of http://www.ravenworks.co.uk/, DJ the Corbz, M.N.K.Y & Ryki. Not to be reproduced without permission.
Magnetix vs. Firesky
Friday 30th January
CLUB 414 [map]
22:00 - 06:00
Paying Guest List: £8 before midnight, £10 after.
OTD: £10 before midnight, £12 after.
After a well deserved break following our massively successful 1st birthday event back in August, Magnetix is proud to be back at the 414 again. We’d like to thank K90, JTB, Jurrane and of course, all of the clubbers that attended for making it by far the best Magnetix yet! And as usual we have recorded the sets too, which can be found available to download or stream on our brand new website, www.magnetixuk.com!
Since the 1st birthday back in August, not only have we had time to fully recharge our batteries before returning to our beloved (and very soon to be refurbished) Club 414, but this time we’ve also brought some friends with us. Hailing from the South Coast the FireSky boys have been rocking Weymouth for over a year now, during which time they have seen the likes of Cally & Juice, Dave Joy and Nick the Kid to name a few, as well as hosting their own vs. night with the biggest hard dance night in Wales, the one and only Bionic!
So it is with great pleasure that we can present, for your listening and dancing pleasure, Magnetix vs. FireSky @ Club 414 on Friday 30th Jan 2009!
Leading the South Coast invasion is none other than regional hero Iain Cross. He’s been in the business for over 10 years, during which time he’s pretty much done it all. From running record shops to record labels (both digital and vinyl), to being a revered Hard Trance DJ and producer across the country, there’s not much that this man has not achieved. A welcome recent return to production has yielded some excellent material, with recent single “GOD” receiving rave reviews and follow up “Cracka” set to do just as well, both featuring on Iain’s new digital label audio:tech. We cannot remember the last time this guy rocked London, but we’re betting that no one will forget this man in a hurry.
Next up is a man who is stuck somewhere in the middle of all of this; Jon the Baptist. Holding residencies at both Magnetix AND FireSky makes Jon the only link between the two, but having consistently rocked both in the past we wouldn’t want to ask him to choose. Instead, this is one DJ that we’re happy to share, as people with his talent for not only DJ’ing but also producing are rare indeed. An out and out legend in his native south coast, Jon is fast becoming hot property in and around London ever since he was made a Magnetix resident, with Frantic recently having them at the prestigious Brixton Academy back in October; a sign that he is being noticed over this way too.
No FireSky event would be complete without it’s main promoters, DJ the Corbz and M.N.K.Y & Ryki. Together they have played alongside just about every DJ worth a mention in their respective scene (Technikal, Lisa Pin-Up, Vinylgroover, Uberdruck, BK, Amber D, Kutski, Alex Kidd, Mark EG, Organ Donors to name a few) for some of the largest parties the UK has to offer (Slinky, Nu Religion, Resonate, Frenzy) Young, full-throttle and madder than a bag of ferrets, they ooze energy and mischievousness everywhere they go. You cant miss these guys even when they’re not behind the decks, so prepare to party hard as they bring the sounds of the south coast to London, for one night only!
Fighting for Magnetix however, is a young man by the name of Andy Forse. Andy has been part of the Magnetix team for a while now and has been impressing many people with his infectious Psy Trance sound. Essentially taking the place of Ashley James who is currently on an extended holiday in South Africa, we’re confident you wont be disappointed. A recent guest slot for Anti-world radio and some very well received promo mixes have started to create a buzz, which we intend to keep flowing. Still a relatively new DJ to the scene, we’re banking on him to truly make his mark not only on clubbers, but promoters and other DJs too at this event. After showing us what he is capable of at the last Magnetix after party we felt it was only right we unleashed him with a peak time set that is a sly bet to be the best of the night.
Our final guest for the evening will be Kevster. An ever present for the Magnetix after party we felt it was only fair that we gave one of the original Magnetix members time to shine on the main stage, and as he will be delivering the first set means he’ll do the traditional 2 hours, giving him a chance to really progress the evening and easy you into your groove.
Backing up Andy Forse and Kevster from the Magnetix stable will be the ever reliable residents. Firstly is Phil Lankester aka Libra 9, whose recent Ableton Live sets have been making some major waves. Phil’s already impressive technical skill has crossed over to Ableton amazingly, and even for those who are sceptical of DJ’s who don’t use Vinyl or CD’s it’s hard to actually care what medium is used when you hear a DJ of Phil’s calibre tear a venue a new fire escape!
Dean Zone also returns, this time armed with some very recent studio productions and even more gigs and venues under his belt than he had before, only this time he will be playing a very special vs. set with DJ the Corbz of FireSky, in a clash of the titans that will leave Brixton feeling the after effects for days to come!
As per usual we’ll have 50 copies of the latest Magnetix Promo CD, with Vol. 5 this time being mixed by our very own Phil Lankester. And remember, if you missed out on any of Volumes 1 – 4 then you can download them all, along with lots of live sets from the previous Magnetix events from our website, www.magnetixuk.com!
And for those of you who don’t want to go home come 06:00, the Magnetix After Party will be running from 06:30 till late, with DJ Sebastien, Timmy Whiz, Lorenzo Barrero and Sati!
The Magnetix Promise:
Please note, we here at Magnetix are not content with just turning up, putting up set times, switching on the decks and playing some music. Oh no. It is our mission to give you, the clubber, a much more personal clubbing experience.
On the night we will be decking out Club 414 to the max.
Expect psychedelic décor, vinyl give aways, free mix cd’s courtesy of our special residents for the first 50 people through the door, free glow sticks and bands, free tickets to other events and lots more.
Couple that with the best chill out room of any club in London, dedicated club Photographers, a roof terrace for the smokers and of course, the legendary 414 café (what other club in London can you get a Cheese Toasty from?) and you’d be mad to miss out! We are also doing our best to support new talent and push new DJs. With a strictly any type of Trance music policy, we are always open to receiving demos. Just hand your demo in at the door when you arrive. All demos will be listened to by a member of the team and you will receive feedback.
Friday 30th Jan 2009
22:00 – 06:00
414 Coldharbour Lane
Jon the Baptist
DJ the Corbz
M.N.K.Y. & Ryki
Paying Guest List: £8 before midnight, £10 after
OTD: £10 before midnight, £12 after
For guest list Email names to firstname.lastname@example.org
Tube = Brixton (Victoria Line)
Rail = Brixton mainline station
Buses = 2,3,35,37,45,59,109,118,133,159,196,250,322,333,345,355,415,432,P4,P5
Night buses = N2,N3,N35,37,N133,N159,250,689,690
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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.