Jaytech: “Trance has become more clever and tactful”
Multiverse marks another step in the evolution of Jaytech. The producer’s second album sees him leaving the Anjunadeep ship in the capable hands of James Grant (who’ll be mixing the Anjunadeep 05 with Way Out West icon Jody Wisternoff) and joining Above & Beyond on Anjunabeats. It’s a natural step, as he told inthemix from his new home of Berlin.
You’ve gradually been seduced by the ‘bigger’ side of things over the years, and it seems to be a natural evolution for you.
My approach to my career, and the music that I’ve been writing, has been a lot more gradual than for some. I started releasing this kind of music over ten years ago now, so it’s been a gradual transition. For me personally, I felt that was necessary, in order to keep the following I had from the people who liked my music.
When I released my first album, there was this suggestion I could shift into trance music, and that if I took a more trance-orientated approach then it might do really good things for me. But I always felt that if I just woke up one day and started writing records the same as the other trance guys at the time, it just wouldn’t have been very graceful. I think a lot of people would have hated it.
So basically, I was always sort of floating in that direction, and then I spent the better part of three years doing the warm-up set for Above & Beyond. After basically spending half my life at trance parties, it’s kind of hard not to be influenced. I grew to really like that scene, and I also feel that trance itself has throttled it back a little, moving back in my own direction as well. So in order to arrive at that trance genre, I didn’t really have to move all that much, because in a sense it came to me.
So are you getting to the stage where you’d label yourself as a trance DJ, or would you still situate yourself in some kind of in-between zone?
Multiverse is a stepping stone in that direction. Rather than something that is wholly a trance album, it’s more made up of a of broad range of styles, not only in the trance direction, but also in some other directions that are quite new to me, and quite different to anything that people have heard before. The main statement I want to make with the album is: it doesn’t really matter what sort of classification or genre it is, ultimately it’s still my music, and if you’re a fan of my sound, and the message that I’m sending, then the genre thing isn’t going to be so important.
Multiverse is about me spreading my wings a little bit, and broadening the scope of what people expect of me musically. It’s not so much a trance album in and of itself, but it puts me in a better position to move in that direction.
As you make your evolution, are you conscious of staying true to yourself, or is that something that comes naturally and you don’t really have the think about?
I’ve always stayed true to myself, and I’ve never really felt anything less than positive about the music I’ve written. To be honest, I actually felt quite nervous about some of the new directions that I was taking with this new album, and whether people would be able to keep up with it, or whether it’d be too much for them. I didn’t want to scare people away, but I think the response has actually been pretty positive.
For all the bold steps I’ve taken, the new directions with vocals stuff and slightly trancier stuff, people have generally rolled with it pretty well. People’s responses have been pretty good, and it’s definitely brought in some newcomers to this sound that otherwise might not have been fans. So it’s been nothing but a good thing really.
Anjunadeep has always been your territory as the label’s star producer. Do you feel conflicted in any sense by making the jump over to Anjunabeats?
If anything, Anjunadeep is sort of like the nest that I’ve jumped out of now. It’s been a really amazing platform and training ground for me, but it’s also something that I’m happy to move on from, and to broaden the scope. And the direction of Anjunadeep will actually be going back a little towards its deeper roots; in the past few years I’ve sort of inundated the label with these almost progressive trance records, so I think my move to Anjunabeats will also allow Anjunadeep to shift back towards the sound it originally started out with.
That might make it a little easier to differentiate the two.
We were definitely hitting a point where we were having trouble deciding whether some records should go on Anjunabeats, or Anjunadeep. For a while there it was even discussed whether it would be worth creating another proper progressive house label somewhere in-between the two, but then the issue was that we felt it might be splitting things up a little too much, and might make classifying music even harder in the end.
And I think the way that trance has moved, in terms of slowing down in BPM a little bit, it’s a little bit more clever and tactful in its approach than it was say five or ten years ago. I think that works really well for the kind of records the label is releasing. I think that’s a really good fit.
Multiverse is out now through Onelove Recordings. Jaytech will be back in Australia soon for a club tour – stay tuned for the full dates.