We don’t mean to sound sentimental, but in the case of Alex Like it’s hard not to indulge in reminiscences. The countless nights we spent together: dancing, dancing and laughing. All the brilliant stuff we discovered through him. Alex Like has played some of the best DJ sets we’ve witnessed: over the years, this man has shown a real knack for keeping things fresh. Fifteen years ago, his uncompromising and innovative selection could easily irritate an audience. In hindsight, these DJ sets now bear a touch of the visionary. Alex Like, we love you.
ROOF.FM: It feels a bit weird to do this interview with you, Alex.
ALEX LIKE: True. We’ve known each other for such a long time, but we never did anything like this.
So, let’s start with the night we met in November 1999. There we were, at your studio, and I didn’t even know you were a DJ. You started your set with this enormous helicopter sound, going flap-flap-flap, followed by a massive boom-boom-boom. That blew me away. Do you remember the track?
Anyway, I was hugely impressed back then. Also, I remember you playing out a techno version of the Pippi Longstocking theme.
Yes, I remember that one. A Russian production. I later gave it to a friend.
What made you want to become a DJ in the first place?
I guess that was after I saw Derrick May played an amazing set in the early 90s. On a sidenote, Derrick actually tripped over his record crates that night.
So, that’s what got it going?
I had already bought records before, but, yeah, that was the ignition point. Later on, I got the chance to play at clubs like The Loft in Lausanne, Via Felsenau in Bern or the now legendary Dachkantine club in Zurich.
I remember a set at the Dachkantine that let everyone’s jaw drop…
Yes, what a fantastic night that was! Also, I consider myself lucky having played along side so many inspiring artists such as Carl Craig, Freddy Fresh, Roman Flügel or The Advent.
You were never afraid to include adventurous and experimental stuff in your sets, reaching much further than your average techno DJ.
I guess I also polarized the crowd a bit with this. But then again, that’s just me, I always liked what I liked, and I like to work with these different influences. It’s a game that you play: to find the right balance between what people like and what I like.
You’ve always been a huge record buyer. I don’t know many DJs who are always so up-to-date with new stuff.
It’s always been about discovering new and inspiring voices out there, hasn’t it? That game never gets boring!
But then again, that’s just me, I always liked what I liked. It’s a game that you play: to find the right balance between what people like and what I like.
What did you have in mind with this mix?
I tried to do a techno mix, atmospherical in spirit, with a twinge of electro. But always firmly rooted on the dance floor.
You’re also making tracks. When will we get to hear an Alex Like production?
Some projects are on the way, and hopefully they will surface soon. I’ll keep you posted, old friend!