Interview: Alex Technique
DJs are not rockstars, not to DJ Alexander Technique they aren’t anyway. Cutting his teeth as a record store owner back, the mash up artist and Princess Superstar collaborator has crafted a reputation for slick beats and tight sets that blitz punk, electro, hip hop, classic rock and 80s standards into mind blowing madness. In the city for the SpeeedZone Tour, JUICE had a word with the DJ/producer/remixer.
Why you’re named after a discipline to improve physical functioning?
That’s a good question! I used to take that class ‘cos I used to walk around with a strut, so my friend was like ‘You know what? You should just call yourself Alexander Technique.’
Did it work?
Yeah it actually did! Yeah, it helped with my posture.
What was growing up in Brooklyn like and how has it shaped the music and style you rock today?
Well originally I grew up in Jersey. Yeah, it was a crazy experience. When I first started DJing I DJed hip hop, and I was into DJ battles and stuff like that. Then it escalated into dance music. The city had a huge influence on it.
Here at JUICE we love mashups. They are the music version of sneaker collaborations. What’s your favourite mash up that you didn’t produce?
There are so many! I like all the Solo Acts’ mashups along with DJ AM as well.
Where is Princess Superstar today?
She’s home, taking care of my kids…. No, I’m playing. She’s home. Back in New York.
Why do you think you guys make a great pair and who would you like to work with in the future?
Well when we started this off it was … how can I answer that? Well, we made a good pair ‘cos we dated for like three years and we just got to know each other and musically it was incredible. In the future I’d like to work with some more hip hop artists, some of the old-school guys.
If DJs aren’t rock stars then are rock stars over rated?
Rock stars you know, they’re doing their thing. DJs though, I think DJs are over rated. ‘Cos we’re playing other people’s music. We should just have fun and be grateful that we’re able to do that and get good money for it.
If you could be a rock star for a day who’d you wanna be?
Oh god. I’d be Blondie. I’d be a girl. I loved her – I love her actually. She’s a real rockstar.
What are you working on right now?
I got my record label coming out and I have artists like Junior Sanchez, Lauren Flax, Van Scott, Sia, who’s pretty much a pop star in Australia. And then I have a ton of remixes coming out by Bloody Beetroots and more.
Who are you listening to right now that you rate?
Well, right now I’m playing lots of stuff by Trouble & Bass, who are like these guys from Brooklyn – Drop The Line, The Captain…. I’m playing a lot of their stuff, it’s more like grime-type beats. It’s really awesome and I think you should really look into them! As well as Junior Sanchez, he’s gonna have a new album coming out and it’s gonna be incredible. It’s gonna be like stuff that you’ve never heard before.
What was the last album you bought?
Damn. That was like 6 years ago. I mostly do a lot of downloads. I guess I haven’t really bought anything in like 6 years! The last album I downloaded was a Sia album. Check her out. She’s not dance music, she’s more of like mellow. Have you heard of her? That was the last album. And it was a pleasure to work with her, she’s a really awesome person.
Yeah we really like Sia! How many pairs of Reeboks do you have? Describe your favourite pair.
The ones I got on right now (gold, chunky Reeboks) are my favourite. They’re worn out, that’s how much I wear them. I got these in Korea and I have about 6 pairs of Reeboks right now. I love Reebok. They’re awesome!
The end of the year is nigh, what was the best thing to come out of 2008, and how do you hope to be spending NY?
Well the best thing to come out of this year was my record label, of course. We’re gonna end this year with our first release so I’m really excited about that. And hopefully I’ll spend my New Years in Barcelona. Or here maybe in Malaysia! J
Alexander Technique turned it out at the SpeedZone Tour 2008 at Zouk in October. More from him on Myspace.