Interview with Benny Benassi
Mathias Haegglund talked with Benny Benassi about his upcoming Toolroom Knights album as well as life, music, and bicycles.
Hi Benny, thanks for taking the time to talk to us. You have your new Toolroom Knights compilation out at the end of the month, tell us about it?
I'm really happy to be working with Toolroom. It's a label that speaks for DJs and it feels right. It's a 2 CD mix and I tried to imagine a club set that progresses from an electro house vibe to a more nu-disco, electro-punk vibe. At the same time, I tried to make it appealing to people wanting to listen to it in their cars and at home.
Which CD do you prefer?
I love both, although I'm leaning more and more towards the nu-disco sound like Japanese Popstars, Shinichi Osawa and Boys Noize.
What gigs have you got coming up?
I've got lots of gigs coming up including: Sankeys in Manchester, Middlesbrough Error! Bookmark not defined., Ministry of Sound in London and a tour of the USA.
Do you have a specific concept in mind when you are preparing for an album?
When I prepare a mix CD, I try to use the same concept I use when I do radio mixes. I try to bear in mind that it's for listening to as well as dancing to. At least that's what I think when I start working on it, and then instinct takes over!
It features a couple of your own productions on there – tell me about those.
They are two tracks that I love, one which samples Iggy Pop and the other David Bowie. I love contaminating old school pop-rock with electro beats.
Do you think there is a limit on how much you can interfere with someone else's music?
Where remixes go there's no limit!
Who would you like to remix your work?
Right now… Shinichi Osawa, Yuksek and Japanese Popstars.
As an artist you are extremely diverse, do you think that hinders you as a DJ or enhances it?
Everyone says I'm eclectic but the truth is I'm confused.
What makes you groove?
If you mean what gets me dancing… I'm really into the Kitsuné, Edbangers and Gomma Records etc.
Have you ever had to take a massive risk musically?
No, luckily my cousin, producer and studio partner Alle Benassi, takes all the risks!
If you could write a score for any film from the past, which would it be?
Can you write film music using samples?
Who do you think is going to blow us away this year?
The economic downturn :-)
What piece of kit can you not live without?
What was the last book you read?
The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch
What's your most treasured possession?
My fixed bicycle... It was made in 1946 and I did it up.
What's in store for Benny Benassi in 2009?
A new studio with Alle, a new company called Basic Music and intense touring. I also want to get fit to ride my bike as I wouldn't mind touring on a bicycle.
Toolroom Knights mixed by Benny Benassi is being released on the 16th February 2009 on Toolroom Records.