What is your name and role within Silicone Soul?
I’m Craig and I’m one half of Silicone Soul.
Where are you currently based?
In a small village in the Montagne Noire, near Carcassonne in France.
How do you usually decide which artists will be released on your independent record label Darkroom Dubs?
Basically if I come across a really great track when I’m searching for music to DJ with, either a release I’m sent on promo or that I buy, I delve a bit deeper to find out more about the artist or what they’ve released. Then If I find more music I’m really in to, we contact the artist for a release. To be honest, in recent years the artist usually contacts us with a ready made release as maybe we’ve supported their music on other labels.
How and why did Darkroom Dubs start?
We release our first 12” back in 2003, there was no digital then obviously. It was a Silicone Soul production under a different alias, more white-label style. We’d had our own label, Depth Perception, before we formed Silicone Soul and signed to Soma Records, so it was a situation I was keen to return to. It’s probably hard to imagine now in 2017, but at that point the whole dance music industry seemed over commercialised and so far removed from the original roots and ethos that inspired us to DJ and make music. So starting Darkroom Dubs was largely reactionary, allowing complete control and to support and nurture the music we loved.
What are the greatest challenges of running a record label now?
It’s always finance, putting out records is expensive and you lose money all the time. Not that it deters us but it’s always on the mind. You can imagine a Dragon’s Den situation.. “This is a hobby, not a business”.
How has the record label industry changed since Darkroom Dubs started 20 years ago?
It’s incomparable in every way, everything has changed, especially the technology and social media. It’s crazy when you think about it, Internet, Email, Facebook, Instagram, even digital releases, the list of changes is endless.
What were the main criteria to be met when putting together this latest mix release Darkroom Dubs Vol IV?
Just selecting the best tracks since the last compilation, it’s as easy as that. I guess naturally you have a better understanding of the music on your label so you know what works and what doesn’t. It’s always a massive pleasure putting together a new compilation.
How did Silicone Soul duo start?
We were still at Uni when we started, in our early 20s. Graeme and I were great friends at school and shared the same musical tastes so it was an easy progression. Clubbing together at Slam at the Arches was definitely the catalyst to start DJing and producing and it’s where we heard electronic music for the first time.
What programs / equipment do you use?
We both use Logic as our DAW so it makes it easy to swap ideas. I guess we use a mixture of plug ins, soft synths like Trillian and hardware like the 202 and Juno 106.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
My main listening and probably influence comes outside electronic music. I listen to a lot of rock, soundtracks and disco.
What influences your sound?
I guess it’s the random things than influence you the most, something from an old record or even something you’ve recorded on your phone. Inspiration is everywhere.
Where do you think dance music will head in the next 20 years?
Crazy to think, maybe things won’t change to much or maybe it will be more of an individual experience, a progression from live streaming. I really hope clubbing doesn’t become too virtual reality.
When and where are you playing next?
We’re pretty busy up to the New Year. Bogotá, Turkey, Buenos Aires, Slovenia, Glasgow of course, Montenegro & Bali.
Favourite food and place to hangout?
I’m gonna plump for some traditional French. When I have a weekend off there is nothing better than getting a plat du jour and a great bottle of red wine at a local auberge. Although deep down, I probably miss fish and chips the most. As far as hanging out, I’ve been enjoying Bogotá recently, there’s much incredible music and clubs. Great vibe.