In a recent Facebook post, Marco Shuttle cited Jeff Mills and Rei Kawakubo as his ultimate heroes. Which makes sense for an alumni of the St. Martins college of Art and Design and a fomer resident DJ of the fabled Süd Electronic parties in London. Marco Shuttle‘s brand of techno is obscure, dark, deep and brainy. The Londoner by choice (and Venetian born-and-bred) caught our attention with the excellent bass drama “Vox Attitude” last year. And with his recent record on S.O.S Clone, he delivered another smasher recently. What you can expect from this mix? A congreation of industrial soundscapes, darkish electro and Chicago ghetto house, with the odd bit of free jazz thrown in. Indeed, a very good-looking mix!
ROOF.FM: Marco, you grew up in a village outside of Venice. How did you get involved with club music?
MARCO: As a kid I was into Pink Floyd and The Doors, that psychedelic kind of music. During the second half of the Nineties I started working as a small promoter and going out. Those were commercial clubs, where they played really mainstream thrashy music. But even so, once in a while they would play a standout track like Paperclip People’s Throw. That helped me to define what I liked and didn’t like. It was a slow and gradual drift.
So, there were no alternatives to these commercial clubs?
These clubs where I started working were at the sea resort Jesolo But they had this cool club Matilda. It was the place where the bad boys went (laughs). The DJ played deep house, really good music and it had a fabulours crowd. That’s where I fell love with this music. Because the sound was really deep. I guess my own productions are also fairly deep, at least it’s something I try to achieve. (laughs)
Did you start deejaing around that time?
That happened only later, when this wave of Warpian electronica caught me, the time when these sounds became a danceable alternative to the more classic house sounds. That’s when I started deejaying in small bars. But it only started to get serious when I went to London. Also, electro was a big thing for me, the dark Detroish breaks-driven electro. Acts like Clatterbox or Aux88, DMX Krew or Drexciya really did it for me.
I’m GLad you think my Mix is radical. I always try to make something that is questioning my own taste.
You later became a resident for the Süd Electronic parties, hosted by Lerato Khati?
I was a resident for a couple of years. These parties definitely had an impact on my career. In my humble opinion, they were the most interesting parties in London at the time. DJing at Süd Electronic also built my relationship with Lerato, which was and still is important for me both at a personal level and also professionally, since I am on the roster of her Uzuri booking agency. What I shared through and with her in those days definitely shaped my musical taste and thanks to her I met a lot of inspiring people. I’m not sure if I would be the same producer today if I hadn’t met her. She is co-responsible. In a good or bad way! (laughs)
You originally moved to London to study fashion at St. Martins…
Yes, I did my MA at St. Martins in fashion design.
And nowadays you work in the fashion industry?
Yes, it pays my rent (laughs). I consult for a couple of companies right now, and a while ago I was working for J Lindberg in Stockholm. So at the moment I only work for other people and I don’t really do my own thing, at least for now. I guess because of this lack, a certain creative frustration is channeled into my techno productions (laughs). Well, I do feel that my approach to music is a visual one, so there shoud be a connection.
What do you mean exactly?
I always try to achieve a certain elegance, because that’s what my other job is all about. So, I try to make it look beautiful, yes, the music has to look beautiful.
Beautiful. And maybe angry. The mix you did for us is a radical one…
I’m glad you think my mix is radical. Because I always try to make something that is questioning my own taste. Here I was trying to mix techno, house, industrial, and even some free jazz beats, all in this deep and dark vibe, maybe angry. I wanted it all to fit together. You know, at the moment there is an interesting revival of detroit electro and industrial techno. Labels like 50 Weapons, Frustrated Funk, or artists like Actress, Morphosis or Anstam are releasing stuff which sounds really fresh.
You also included some heavy ammo, one track is by DJ Rush…
I like this kind of ghettoish Chicago vibe. It chimes well with the more industrial and experimental sounds. I like Steve Poindexter, labels like M.U.Z.I.K, that did this kind of slightly fucked-up, noisy sound. Chicago House which is actually Chicago techno. And it’s the funky side of the mix (laughs).
You have a new record coming out on Eerie, your own new label.
The record is gonna be out in a week or ten days.
Eerie seems a good fit for the sound you do…
It pictures nicely what I want to do. I like the sound of the word and the way it looks. Yes, it sounds nice and it looks nice.