Ray Mang's been a firm favourite at R$N towers for over a decade now, his productions are always on point. We caught up (with the help of Neil Thornton) with the man himself for a chinwag prior to his set at East Village on NYE…
Firstly how are things with Sir Ray Mang…has it been a good year for you?
Yes, a good year thanks! A fair few gigs and very busy in the studio with lots of remixes and production jobs. And plenty of fun times too!!?
?You seem to very busy in the studio at the moment what is cooking for 2013?
Well, I’ve been spending quite a bit of time on mixing / production jobs recently what with Los Amigos Invisibles and now Munk which has been great but I’m going to try and find some time in 2013 to finish new Mang material too. I’ve got quite a pile of tracks to look at now! Plenty more interesting remixes coming through too.??
And any big plans for Mangled for the year ahead?
More Mangled releases and special editions coming up for sure.? ?
Would you mind sharing with our readers an insight of the set up in your recording studio?
I’ve been mostly in the box for over a decade now. I even finally sold my big analogue in-line console a year or so ago having barely used more than four channels on it for such a long time! So I’m based around a fat desktop with lots of software. On top of that I have some very tasty hi-end converters, valve compressors and eq’s, various mics, synths and instruments. And a Dj set up too!?
You first come under our radar that great long player Mangled in 2002 on Eskimo you seem to have a great relationship with the Belgians and we hear your fondly known as the 3rd Glimmer can you tell us how did the special relationship with the boys start and any more plots?
I first met David Fouquaert when he was A & R with R & S. He approached me for a license and later an album. We got friendly on David’s work trips to London and before long I met Mo too! We worked together in my London studio on some compilation projects and had a laugh.
When R & S went down (glad to see it’s back and running now!) David and Mo got together with NEWS and Dirk to form Eskimo. David took the Mang album over to Eskimo too. At the same time things started to happen internationally for David and Mo as DJs. Remix offers started coming in and although the pair had been tinkering with some studio gear for a while they didn’t feel confident enough to tackle stuff alone. So as we had always enjoyed each others company and had similar tastes in music we thought we try a few things together. And it’s always been great fun!!
??Any more interesting collaborations in the pipeline Raj?
Yes, but if I tell you I’ll have to kill you!! But seriously, there are quite a few collaborations I’ve been trying to find the time to arrange for the last year or more. One of my NY resolutions will certainly be making some time for these.
??NYE your playing with Lasermagnetic and Simon Lee of Faze Action fame at East Village which should be a great disco. Any big bombs your looking forward to dropping on the big night?
Plenty Neil!! Quite a few special versions from recent production jobs to road-test along with new edits, purchases and forthcoming music from good friends!? ?
Gig wise where do you really enjoy playing outside of the UK?
It’s always fun playing away from home! Japan never disappoints. I had an enjoyable and interesting trip to China earlier in the year. Most of Eastern Europe parties hard. Recently Wonky in Madrid was an excellent night. ? ?
So Harvey finally made it back in 2012 to London, where can you see things going forward disco wise especially with 90’s house music having such a strong resurgence?
Yeah, that was a fun night indeed!! There’s plenty of great records being made still, new talent coming through plus brilliant clubs and nights all over the world. The future is bright.
For Disco, as with house music, techno, and the rest, nothing ever really dies.? ?
Also keen to talk about Look Into My Eyes. How did you ever think you could make Tangerine Dream's classic Love On A Real Train into a dancefloor killer. I have to admit I was pretty worried before I heard it but you turned it into the most sublime end of night record from the last 5 years in my opinion. It's beautifully sensitive towards the original yet makes me want to dance… a lot. Not something the original ever did! ?Also, what does the original mean to you?
Well, I wasn’t the first and won’t be the last person to play around with those forms. In fact neither were Tangerine Dream. More likely Steve Reich.
The first time I encountered it was as a teenager watching the film Risky Business. So for me it will forever be linked to teenage (tangerine) dreams of Rebecca De Mornay on the lap! Deep!! I was toying with the idea of trying something for many years and eventually got round to it in 2006. Then for one reason or another it took four more years to release it.
Thanks for the kind words!!
Would you mind sharing 5 Desert Island Discs with us ??
Stevie Wonder – Songs In The Key Of Life
Herbie Hancock – Headhunters
Bohannon – Summertime Groove
Fela and Afrika 70 – Zombie (or the boxset if that’s allowed!)
The Chic Organisation Boxset
And now the nonsense!:
??Complete the sentence: I'm proper techno because…..
I got all eight tickets! (I wish!)?
What's the most techno thing you've ever done?
It’s looking increasingly like this interview will be.?
Are you a kick drum, hi hat or a snare? And why?
Yes. All three and some. I play the drums.
?What are you obsessed with at the moment?
Walking. (make sure there are no typos there please!)
?What's your answer to everything?
?Do you know Deadmaus, has a mouses's head, for a head?
Yes! I heard it’s not just his head!!?
Should DJs educate or entertain? You're not allowed to say 'both'.
First and foremost entertain. But preferably through the music, not choice of rodent headgear or suchlike.?
Who's more techno and why; your Mum or your Dad?
Has to be my Mum. She’s no Delia Derbyshire but she’s still here!
?How many DJs does it take to change a light bulb?
Come to East Village on NYE and you’ll find out….
Check out this beaut of a mix Ray Mang put togther for your ears, a belter: