Rob Spaceface is a DJ and Producer from Oxford who has been on the scene for long time. Both his tunes and mixes are equally as chaotic and is someone we’ve wanted to have an interview and mix with for a while so we’re delighted it finally came together.
What was it that first got you into making tunes?
I began mixing old skool vinyl in 1992. My tastes in music developed with the rave scene and over the years I spent my weekends DJing at clubs and on free party sound systems. By this point I was mixing a large variety of styles and I wanted to add my own ideas into the mixes, to put out my own sound. I enrolled on a Sound Engineering course in London where I learnt how to use Cubase, and at the time I was living in a community of people where there were no restrictions on time or sound so there was always music being played or produced. This inspired me to begin working on making my own tunes.
For those who haven’t heard you, how would you describe your sound? Was it a sound you set out to make or does it just come out that way?
I’d say my sound is somewhere between old skool, hardcore & breaks. Alternatively, I could liken it to a hoover being pulled through a fax machine! It is a sound I set out to make, to some degree. Tracks may not start off like that but sometimes end up that way.
Take us through your setup. Is it a mix of hardware or software?
At the centre of my set up at the moment I have a Livid OhmRGB, a couple of Novation keyboards and a Xoxbox. There’s also Yamaha MSP5 monitors and Technics 1200s. The software I use is Cubase, Ableton and a load of VSTIs. I also have access to a host of mastering hardware, such as tube compressors and analogue mixing desks, thanks to Soundworks Studio in Oxford.
What artists are major influences on your sound?
If I had to slim it down I would say Meat Beat Manifesto and most of the early breakbeat hardcore sound from the early 90s. The 1992 hardcore sound of Nebula 2 has had an influence on my music and, more recently, so has Michael Forshaw.
Are you a vinyl aficionado? Whats your stance on the whole vinyl vs digital debate?
If I had the choice it would be vinyl every time because I have always collected records. I think there is a certain warmth in the sound of a vinyl record but as long as there is music coming out of the speakers I am not too bothered what medium gets it there.
You’re based in Oxford. What is the scene like there?
In the 90s Oxford used to be very much about free parties as there is quite a lot of common land in the surrounding areas. Unfortunately the local party scene is no longer as active due to tighter policing regulations. As for clubs there are a few that hold regular underground nights but because of the universities in the city centre the councils are very strict on all night licences so most club nights will finish between 2 and 3am.
Besides making tunes, what else do you get up to?
I am also into graffiti and creating art work. I have an 11 year old son who is full of beans and a baby on the way so when I am not working or being a Dad I am making tunes, which keeps me busy.
What are the plans for 2015?
I will be mixing on the Jamalot stage at Cowley Road Carnival in Oxford. In June I am going to Symmetry Festival where I will be playing a B2B set with Mustard Gunn from Coin Operated Records. Other than that I will be working on a live set and continuing to produce tracks for release.
Tell us a bit about the mix you’ve put together?
Included in the mix are some tracks from Acme Bass Records plus some of my own unreleased tracks, mixed with some new and old breaks & techno variants .