We recently had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Australian producer Jaytech. Only about four shows into a three week long tour opening for Super8 and Tab, and the seasoned DJ could not be more excited. Read through our discussion with Jaytech about his involvement with AnjunaBeats, his new collaboration, and upcoming tour schedules.
Edmtunes: You’re pretty affiliated with the Anjuabeats label. How did they first contact you at the very start of everything?
I was actually running my own label back in 2007, and we had done a few vinyl releases like that. It was actually a single of mine that I was putting out on my own imprint that they noticed. They had interest in putting it out on one of their earlier Anjuna compilations, volume 5, from Above and Beyond. So they initially got in touch with me asking if they could put out the track, and I said ‘Sorry it’s already taken.’ [laughs] They said, that in that case they would just help promote it, and after that I just started sending my stuff to them. Then at the end of 2007 they had a big stage back at the sunburn Festival in Goa.That’s the first time I warmed up for any of those [Anjuna Guys].
Was there any specific quality in your tunes or beats that they liked? Anything that they really latched onto?
Yeah, that was around the time that they were starting to do their other Anjunadeep compilations and albums, the more progressive house albums and all that. So I think they were on the hunt for new progressive house talent. And then after I met them over in India, they asked me if I had any interest coming over to the UK, and working over there.
Any interest in producing over there?
[laughs] No. I worked over there in the studios as an engineer, and all sorts of things. There was a while there were they were working on a live show type of thing in Beirut. We were going through a lot of their classic projects , and converting them into a live show.
You mean with live instruments? Live drummers and guitarists and such?
Yeah, it was really fun. The actual transferring it to a live band, I wasn’t really apart of. I was more apart of going through their older projects and reworking them into stems and different sections and such. It was a really interesting, since it really allowed me to see how they did all of their older projects. I got to see what sort of process they do to put their tracks together and the way they produced them.
Were there any kind of cool tips and tricks you hand’t ever thought of before that you learned?
It was cool to see that some of their beats had like, 100 tracks and different elements going which was pretty mind-blowing to me. Usually it’s like a ton of different instruments playing the same thing, and lots of small incidental effects. It was the attention to detail.
So after you got wrapped up into the whole Anjuna label, how was the whole Anjuna label? I’ve heard they have a very community feel about them. How does that community element come into play in your tracks? Do you receive a lot of group feedback from other members on the label?
It’s a process that everyone is involved in it, like the AnR process. And any of the artists on the label will tell you,u usually when we submit a track there’s always something that somebody will pick up on. It’s very rare that you will submit a track and it will be perfect. I’ve definitely helped with that process with others on the AnjunaDeep. So it’s definitely a process of having a couple people involved to basically stringently test the track in different ways, mixing, producing, whether it will sound good in a club or not, or in a big festival.
And there are specific people who do that? I’ve heard of artists doing the whole road testing process before releasing it. Is it a different feel that doing that? Having somebody else tell you what isn’t working, instead of your own hears hearing your own track in a club or something then going onto your computer and fixing this or that?
Well its a bit of both to be honest. I could play out a track at gigs and be liking it, and then send it to the label and I will get it back saying different things could be better in a different kind of way. Maybe it will be more DJ friendly mix down or something. Then I gave it a try, and it worked really well actually. It’s one of those things to have a select group of people. And all these people come from different spheres of influence which allows you to look objectively at your tracks, and making them better in ways you wouldn’t have thought before.
And so that’s how you linked up with Super8 and Tab? How’s it feel to be opening for them?
It’s been great. I’m looking forward to traveling with them. We’ve just wrapped up a collab with them, called ‘Code Red.’ We’ve been sort of unleashing that on people throughout this tour. It’s already been really fun, the whole production process and getting ready for this tour, and preparation.
You said on Twitter that you had a new track you were going to unleash on tour. Is ‘Code Red’ that track? Is it all ready to release, or have you still been road testing it?
Oh yeah, we’ve road tested it a couple of times. We’ve played it at Ministry of Sound a few weeks ago, and everyone really loved it. And Above and Beyond has been playing it in their sets and such.
Have they been playing it in all their sets and podcasts, or just sets or just podcasts?
All the podcasts and radio shows will be happening next month, as well as in my own podcasts which is coming out in a day or two.
How do you feel to have all this incoming hype about a track you just did? Are you nervous if it will do well, or are you excited?
I’m just really glad. I’ve been rather buried in the studio working on my next album that’s still a long way off. So I’m excited to have something very new and clubby out there.
And how’s writing just a single or a club song different than writing and album?
With an album you obviously have more room creatively, to say what you want to say. And this time around, I’m really trying to do something like a space opera type, and tell a story. So I think they are two very different things. When you do a club track, at the center and front of your mind you have to have what this is going to sound like if you’re playing it in a club or at a variety of different venues. But with an album, it’s more about the flow of it and how it will sound to the people listening to it at home. Of course with a dance album, it has to have a certain dance element or at least some good remixes.
On that similar note, you must be close to wrapping up on your new track ‘Code Red’ correct? is it totally over the road test phase, and sending it for feedback to the label and all that?
Yep, we’ve done that. We’ve tested it out a few times and run it through the circles at Anjuna and gotten feedback from it and some ways to make the builds a bit better and such.
So what kind of things have you changed from the original versions to what the label sends back to you? A different build or something?
I actually didn’t make those changes myself.It was Super8 and Tab who did the final mix down and stuff. I actually just learned of these final updates today. They are just very very small cosmetic things basically. Just things such as the pacing of the tracks, some sections are made a little bit shorter and such.
How does that feel as an artist, you make this super track and in your head you think its awesome, and then you send it off and give up the reigns on it.Then to get it back, and see how they took out chunks of your work.
At this point, it’s just such a part of it. It doesn’t mean you made something bad necessarily. It’s just very easy to overlook some things when you’re writing a track, such as the length of it. It might just go for 30 seconds more than it needed to to tell the message. Things like that, making things more precise or stick out more at certain points.
Switching gears a bit, I know you’re currently on your second show of the tour. How is tour life in general? Do you like playing gigs with more hectic schedules where you jump off the plane, and onto the decks without much time to psych yourself out? Or do you like to have an evening to sit back and mentally prepare for your set?
I’m happy to do the hectic schedule thing, since I’ve done it quite a bit. If the schedule is particularly hectic, then I don’t party too much. So I tend to be in a pretty good state most of the time. The one hard thing to do is jet lag. I know Super8 and Tab and myself, when we got off the plane a few days ago, the first few days were tough since there’s about an eight hour time difference. It’s like yours staying up to what feels like ten in the morning the next day to play a gig, and then you’re getting back to the hotel at four in the morning to get some sleep, and then you wake up two hours later, and you’re wide awake cause your body is already to go. So yeah, the body clock is the hardest thing to have to deal with. Apart form that it’s pretty good, especially in the USA with traveling around and flying is pretty easy. Nothing is usually more than five hours away, so the time difference is never too bad.
What cities are you most looking forward to on this tour?
I’m looking forward to Hawaii, cause we have a few days off there. I’m looking forward to that cause I’ll be here with these guys, and another Anjuna artists Boomjinx so it’ll be a cool experience there, gig wise, but also be fun holiday.
How much downtime will you have while on tour?
We’ll have a few days in Hawaii, and then again in LA and Minneapolis.
You have any fun plans while there?
I’m lucky to have some friends and places around North America where I can go and stay with people and just hang out.
Be sure to check out the rest of the tour schedule with Super8 and Tab and Jaytech here, and listen through Jaytech’s most recent podcast to peep a listen at their collab ‘Code Red.’