An Interview With Versus

Following on from the guest mix we recently received from Manchester based duo Versus, we also caught up with them to see what they have been up to recently. Lots of new music by the looks of things, big labels and gaining support from some of the worlds biggest DJs!

What was your first track signing and what record label did it come out on?

David: Our first signing was ‘Jibba Jabba’, this was signed to Ki Creighton‘ Under No Illusion Recordings, it was Luke who suggested sending it Ki as a demo for Under No Illusion, I did and he said he wanted to road test it at Circus in Liverpool, a few days after the Circus gig he sent us a message asking to sign it for their Sonar Festival VA.

We were at Solardo Sessions in Manchester when Mark Jenkyns played ‘Jibba Jabba’ on BE AT TV (shout to Mark for that! you legend), it was amazing to hear this being played in the Albert Hall in our own home with all our friends there… Can I also add, we made this tune before we had a studio, it was made on the oldest laptop in the universe on my dining room table with no Monitor speakers using a pair of broken headphones held together with sellotape (true story!)

Who’s been recently supporting your latest tracks? 

Luke: our latest tune “1988” has been getting a lot of support recently, we sent it to Gorgon City three days before Glastonbury, they emailed us straight back and said ‘this is awesome and perfect for our Glasto set’ we didn’t expect them to play it, but they did….THREE TIMES. They have played it at every Gorgon City show since we sent it them.

MK has been playing it, Lee Foss played it at Repopulate Mars party in LA and also in his B2B set with Jamie Jones at Hot Creations Party at Burning Man, Danny Howard played it on Radio 1 as a world premiere. Patrick Topping has also supported tracks of ours too, he played “Stick It” a few times in his sets, Skream played another called ‘My Jam‘ too… Solardo played a tune of ours at The Warehouse Project here in Manchester, it’s a shame we never witnessed it , David and I were at the bar doing shots when they played it ha ha!

What have you released up to now and what releases can we expect to hear from you for the rest of the year? 

David: Out now we have a tune called ‘Mentality‘ on the Elrow Album, ‘Lucid‘ on the Todd Terry & Mark Brown’s Ibiza 2017 CR2 Records Album, ‘Funky Feeling & Creep‘ 2 track EP on Swerve Digital with remixes by Ben Ikin, Revlow and Gorgon John, we also had a tune out on Criminal Hype called ‘The Shit

Luke: Forthcoming we have a tune coming out on Hippies. Something with Cutting Edge too in October, two more we can’t say yet. We have the EP dropping on Under No Illusion, 1988 is the lead tune on this. We’re really excited about this being released.

Versus, why did you name yourselves this and how long have you two been a duo for?

Luke: I met David in a Manchester club he was DJ’ing at one night,  I grabbed him and basically forced him to listen to my tunes on that shit old laptop in the middle of the dance floor. We’ve been active under a year.

David: I was sending Luke random names one day ‘brazen’ , ‘renegade’ , ‘regulator’ , ‘trojan’ proper random weird names, the type of names you would find in a Star Wars film ha ha!

Luke: Let’s be honest, those names we’re shit mate…I can tell you love Star Wars you geek.

David: I was sat in a restaurant waiting for my food to arrive, I was looking out the window starring into space (mind the space star wars pun!) and a delivery truck was parked up in front of the restaurant, it said something -VS-….I was looking at it and said ‘VS….Versus….Versus, Versus’ and shouted “THATS IT…VERRRRSUS”….the bird on the table next to me looked at me like I was a lunatic.

Any advice you can give to new producers who are looking to start out?

Luke : For producers just starting out i would advise you to get your favourite track and use that as a template…. try to make a track similar but also experiment with different VST plugins to come up with your own sound… I would say its essential to have your own sound… you need something different that stands out to get noticed.

David: NETWORK NETWORK NETWORK NETWORK AND NETWORK….you could have the most amazing tune but it’s no good if you don’t have the contacts to send it to anybody. Go to raves and network, go and see your favourite DJ and get their promo email address, message their Facebook artist page asking for a promo email address, get to know the promoters in your city, these are the people who will book and bring the big established DJs to your home town that CAN break your tune. Also…surround yourself with a group of good like minded people, none of this would be even possible for us without two friends of ours, Ben & James.

Where has been your favourite performance over the years? 

Luke: My personal favourite has to be the Social Festival! It was my first biggest gig in front of a HUGE crowd and the atmosphere was unreal! Before that i was only DJ’ing small venues in Manchester and I was lucky to be getting those gigs as I was only starting out. It was also one of the most messiest weekends of my life! I also chewed the CR2 Records label owners ear off at the bar and managed to get his email address…. if it wasn’t for that, we wouldn’t have 2 tracks signed to CR2!

David: Mine has to be when we did the last ever DJ set on NYE in Sankeys Manchester before the club closed a week later, to think we were the last ever people to do the NYE 12:00 count down set is special, the event was unreal, it was so busy and the vibe was electric! Something I’ll never forget.

What’s your favourite piece of studio gear you are currently using in your productions?

David: Mine has to be the Kettle, I make a belting brew.

Luke: Our Moog Sub Phatty, we make all our baselines on it plus a lot of cool secret VSTs!

September 11, 2017