Shadow Child Talks
In a sea of identi-kit bass/house producers, Shadow Child has always offerd something a bit more discerning. From roughing up the dance with the ubiquitous 'String Thing', to recalibrating UK Garage on his massive AlunaGeorge remix, to showing he can turn his hand to classic songwriting on recent single 'Friday', Simon 'Shadow Child' Neale dodges genre cliches easy as Max Payne ducking slow motion bullets. In advance of Neale's jam packed festival season, we thought we'd grab a few words on what to expect over the next few months…
Easy Simon, what’s going on with you at the moment?
I have no idea.. my wife just dragged me to the stationery store to get some folders, I ate an ice lolly and I'm now sat ready to watch some of the World Cup.
What have you got coming up on Food?
Next is my collab with Doorly called Piano Weapon.. familiar piano sample with stompy beats. Been waiting months to get everything clear and now we are ready. After that a new Kry Wolf EP and something tasty from Nick Olivetti
What do you look for when you’re signing an artist?
It's either got to be something that does exciting things on the dancefloor, or an artist with thier own sound, away from everything else. Someone you can identify. Too many records from different artists sound the same already.
Is there anyone who you regret not getting onto Food?
No.. we're doing this at our own pace and everything has come together how we wanted it to so far.. never have regrets.
The bassy house you’re synonymous with has been getting bigger and bigger, with a string of massive chart hits- have we reached saturation point? And if so, what next?
No idea whats next.. most of the chart bound stuff sounds the same to me.. but people love it and the guys doing that deserve it after putting all the work into it. I personally have a different vision for myself so if that kind of thing happens, it happens but i'm not interested in blending in with everyone else, even if what i do isn't 'popular'.
There’s even been some fucking horrible saxophone solos on a few house records recently – have you ever been tempted to splurge a bit of sax on a track?
What’s the strangest collaboration you’ve been offered? And is there anyone you’re fiending to collaborate with?
I got offered to hook up with John Legend.. and I did. It's not a house record and it doesn't have a sax in it either.
You’re playing a host of festivals – what kind of festival goer are you?
I'm the kind of festival goer that likes a hotel off-site.. no good at camping and I'm a light sleeper. Sleeping at a festival doesn't happen. Love the vibes, the food and people, but not the tent.
Are there any gigs your particularly hyped about playing?
Glastonbury this weekend is exciting, also Bestival will be great i'm sure. Very fortunate to be on some great shows this year.
Do you tailor your set to the festival stage? Like do you find yourself playing more ‘big’ tunes?
I have options.. a few old bits and also the greatest hits of Shadow Child.. I'm very fortunate that people come to hear me play my own stuff so I try to please in that was rather than the UK top 10.
And who’d be on your dream festival line up?
DJ wise – Bonobo, Midland, Sasha, Justin Martin, KiNK.. Live – Neneh Cherry's new project, Radiohead, Blur, Prodigy.. something like that.