Felix Martin Of Hot Chip’s ‘That Was The Year That Was’ Ransom Note Mix
When we were approached with the chance to host an end of year mix by Felix from Hot Chip we were very happy. We feel it is a very suitable way to round up the 2015 calendar which has seen mixes from a vast array of great producers, dj's and heads. Hot Chip remain ever relevant to the world of club music and continue to push an oddball sound which somehow still works as well at a gig as it does in clubs. We caught up with Felix, their electriconic mogul, to reflect on the year that was and listen to his selections from 2015: Listen and Read the Interview Below:
Please introduce yourself, Who are you? Where are you? What are you?
Oh hello there – I’m Felix. I’m at home on my sofa half watching “Empire of Dreams”, a slightly crap documentary about the making of the original Star Wars Movie Trilogy. I’m a fairly normal human man. If I was a character in Star Wars I would be the exact mid-point between C3PO and Chewbacca.
What does your music sound like?
My own music is mostly electronic, although I like sampling old records and using bits and pieces of live recordings to add different textures or to inspire a new composition.
Can you draw what you think it sounds like for us?
This is a picture that Andy Martin, my Dad, drew which I used on a 12” with some music by New Build, a band I play in. I think it sums up something of what I try and do.
So as this is an end of year mix, not to sound cliched but what have your highlights of the last year been?
I had a pretty busy year of touring with Hot Chip and I wasn’t DJ-ing much so I’ve been a touch out of the loop with that side of things. What I did find I’ve tried to represent on this mix. I enjoyed the Kendrick album, various releases by Donato Dozzy, the DJ Richard album was up my street. I liked Holly Herndon’s album and the Laura Cannell album “Beneath Swooping Talons”. Also the Pearson Sound album. It seemed like lots of good music was knocking about in 2015.
Am I right in thinking Hot Chip have spent a large amount of time touring the UK this year? How was that, oh and that Glastonbury show with covers and all looked amazing!
We haven’t been in the UK that much – we played a few festivals, including Glastonbury which was lovely, and a couple of shows at Brixton at the end of a club tour in the UK. We spent a fair bit of time in the US, where Americans continue to be weirdly drawn to Hot Chip music. Just got back from South America where it feels like there is a big enthusiasm for our live show – fantastic crowds and a very fun place to tour.
So the new album came out early 2015, and since then a few remixes have surfaced here and there, that alongside yourself DJ’ing, is there an interest in moving into the world of clubs a little more? More DJ sets, remixes, to come in 2016 perhaps?
Pretty much since the start of Hot Chip years ago we’ve all been very into clubs, putting on nights and so on, and DJ-ing a lot collectively and separately. We’ve done things like a DJ Kicks mix, a double CD for Bugged Out & a couple of Essential Mix. By this stage we are all more or less veterans of the turn tables and one of the best things about a year off from touring is that it means lots of fun DJ gigs.
How do your own personal music tastes align within Hot Chip?
It’s hard to describe, it’s kind of grown symbiotically over the years – I’ve been very influenced by some of the music that Joe & Alexis and the other guys are really into, and I think my own obsession with more electronic and techno things has probably fed into the Hot Chip sound a bit more over the years, especially in the live show.
Who do you look up to as a DJ yourself, have you spent any incredible nights on the dancefloor lately?
There are so many very excellent DJs out there and I spend loads of time listening to mixes online as well as in clubs and so on. My friend Pete Fowler is a great DJ who plays lots of good disco records and flies deep under the radar most of the time, so I would like to give him a personal big up.
And now to Mix Questions:
• Where was the mix recorded?
The mix was recorded at home and at my studio.
• What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?
Be active. It’s kind of got beats all the way through. So you should probably be dancing, running, or at the very least walking quite briskly, while blasting it through your headphones.
• What should we be wearing?
Full size Jabba the Hut costume, could make the above suggestion difficult.
• What would be your dream setting to record a mix: Location, system, format?
Probably somewhere very remote and misty, preferably some kind of Iron Age circular site. Technics and some kind of big ass dub sound system. I’ll play some appropriately ambient and deep techno tunes.
• Which track in the mix is your current favourite?
I really like all of them but for good times it’s hard to beat the Kolsch tune. It’s just so…euphoric.
• What’s your favourite recorded mix of all time?
I think THIS ONE is pretty great.
• If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?
I’d be pretty awkward if it was anyone I really love, due to fear of messing up. Actually I can’t think of anything worse. Can I just go back and watch Ron Hardy DJ instead?
• What was your first DJ set up at home and what is it now?
My first DJ set up was a crap mixer and two 1210s that I bought from Loot magazine. I don’t really have one right now, I just listen to music and make mixes using Ableton. When I DJ in clubs I use CDJs and USB sticks. Can’t beat ‘em.
• What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?
Definitely the starter. By the end it’s either gone really well or really badly and one track isn’t going to change that one way or another.
• What were the first and last records you bought?
The first record was a cassette single featuring the Super Mario Brothers music in some form (can’t remember exactly what). The last record was an Untitled EP by someone called Renato P.
• If this mix was an edible thing, what would it taste like?
Bread and butter.
• If it was an animal what would it be?
• One record in your collection that is impossible to mix into anything?