“I am quite happy with not sticking with what things sounded like 10 years ago and being part of the evolution of this sound.” – Flashmob
Since its formation in 2011, Flashmob originally started out as a duo and their early releases on Get Physical and, most notably, Defected Records saw them quickly gain support from fellow DJs/producers and build up a loyal fan base. Their most recognised hit, ‘Need In Me’(Defected, 2012), captured the hearts of dancefloors around the world, and has now become a classic. As of 2015, the decision was made for Flashmob to move forward as a solo act, headed up by Alessandro Magani.
Flashmob owns and runs two records labels in the form of Flashmob Records and Flashmob LTD. The former imprint homes a more sonically modern style of House & House/Tech with LTD representing the underground side of the brand. The labels boast releases by artists such as; Terranova, DJ. T. Phil Weeks, Marco Resmann, Laura Jones, Paolo Martini, DJ WILD, Dj Le Roi and Alex Neri amongst others. These releases have won support from a wide array of DJs including Skream and Eats Everything, as well as key figures at BBC Radio 1, in dance press outlets like Mixmag and of course, with clubbers everywhere.
Alessandro’s career is his exceptional releases, and in recent times this statement is stronger than ever, seeing Flashmob’s sonic style expand into several avenues of Dance music, from Tech-House to light Techno rhythms, enabling him to simultaneously attain forthcoming offerings on two very different leading labels, Jamie Jones’ Hot Creations and Germany’s Kompakt – a unique achievement. As well as his debut releases for Hot Creations and Kompakt, Flashmob is soon set to release his first offerings on esteemed labels such as; Riva Starr’s acclaimed Snatch! Records, DJ Hell’s Gigolo Records, and Elrow Music. There is also several high-profile remixes for some of the industry’s most notorious names such as M.A.N.D.Y., DJ Hell and Romanthony in the pipeline.
I got the chance to speak briefly with Alessandro between his hectic schedule and right before he releases his new single “Drop the Bass” out today (Friday 19.01)
Hi Alessandro, thank you for chatting with us today, how are you?
I am great thanks… my new single “Drop The Bass” is out today so gotta a smile on my face!
I understand you have quite the busy year ahead with releases on labels such as; Kompakt, Hot Creations, Elrow and Get Physical amongst others as well as your very own Flashmob Records & Flashmob LTD imprints, do you find it difficult to juggle your touring schedule and finding time for the studio?
After a year and a half experimenting in the studio, I’ve found a new way of making music faster and being happy in the process. I used to get very frustrated not being able to finish things and especially when Flashmob was a duo it was even harder, I’d say I am comfortable now.
The style of productions you release are quite varied, from tech house to a somewhat melodic techno, do you find it conflicting when sitting down to produce, or is it something that just comes to you?
Well, house music is what I do and what I’ve been doing for a decade now although the more current house music has changed its face I have adapted to it. I am quite happy with not sticking with what things sounded like 10 years ago and being part of the evolution of this sound T he melodic techno sound is something that I’ve also loved doing, when I was producing as Egostereo I was doing it and I still do. It relaxes me very much. I also have a label called MCGroove were I do even more extreme stuff. Of the two styles, the melodic techno is probably the one that I find more easy to do, there’s no pressure so it’s very relaxing.
Many producers have a favourite piece of studio gear, what is the one bit of kit you cannot live without?
For a lot of up and coming producers who don’t currently have a well-known name. It seems the only way to progress is to keep trying to make music good enough to get on to the bigger well-known labels and then hope their demo is heard or be lucky they have some connections. As a label owner, what advice would you give to aspiring artists?
I feel they should love the process and remain hungry to learn more and more, rather than concentrating on the final goal (releasing). You need to be well rounded and prepared for this game and every game has its own rules, if the productions are not at the correct level then it’s hard. I also feel the approach in sending music is very important, like in all aspects of life and human interaction psychology is key; you cannot send a demo that is 5 months old with 100 plays on it or sends a mail with a mega introduction of yourself or even the track as an attachment.
I could go on for a while with frantic emails that my A&R tells me about. Everything needs to be done in respect of the other side and also don’t forget giving things in hand is not a bad idea at all, that’s what I did with my first Flashmob track “Brick House”.
Last year, Jon Rundell declared he will no longer sell his music and give it away. He said “Most people in our industry are stuck in old mindsets, in denial about what’s going on. Downloads are niche now just like vinyl and they have to accept that for what it is. What’s the point in keeping it all to yourself when surely the point of music is for it to be heard and enjoyed?” How are you finding the record label industry heading into 2018?
I see where Jon is coming from and I respect his point of view and love his music; I personally feel this industry is so fascinating for two reasons, it’s always changing and it’s totally unpredictable so it’s hard for me to make predictions. I feel there is also a loving way to do the label thing. I actually really enjoy feeling part of the evolution in that respect.
A lot of people don’t understand the level of work that is involved in running a label, with Flashmob Recordings fast rising in the world as a leading Italian source for credible House / Tech House, can you walk us through what it takes to release an artist’s work?
Thanks for the kind words. The amount of work is huge yes, especially because there is a very important ethical aspect to always keep in mind; we are dealing with people’s dreams after all.
Having said that I have a team of three people, not 30 so I have to make decisions in order for us to be able to make progress in respect of everyone but also to reach our goal. The amount of demos we receive is really huge and often (as I was mentioning before) the emails that come in aren’t well presented; nevertheless, we give it our all to select the best music and the better people to work with.
When we receive a demo Marco (my A&R) has a first listen and prepares a folder with all the possible signings, we then listen together and then again, one must not be in a bad mood to select music or he will not be objective; after that what I like gets road tested and only after that we decide to finally sign it. It’s not easy or fast and often artists get annoyed because it takes us some time to get back to them but there is no other way to do it properly.
As we soon will roll out of winter in the Northern Hemisphere and Ibiza slowly awakens, what are you looking most forward to this season?
Being on the road is not a bad thing in the summertime so definitely Ibiza and the Festivals. I am at the beginning of a new period in my career so I am really excited to see all the music come out and what doors will open, especially with Kompakt, Hot Creations, and Sola.
On the topic of DJing, touring can definitely take its toll on the mind and body, what are some tricks or routines you swear by to make sure you make that flight the next day?
I’ve never missed a flight, as boring as that might sound; I’m quite disciplined but I do take a break every 3/4 months or it does get to you.
It is not all serious though, can you share with us a funny story whilst on tour?
It’s 6 am out of the O2 arena, I’d just finished playing a really great party and the organiser takes me to the entrance where he tells me a driver from Addison Lee will join me in a minute to get me to the airport. There were many drivers around with different signs all looking for their passenger and I was relaxed because I had plenty of time on my hands and at that time on a Sunday you reach the airports fast.
After some time a funny little man that had been standing in front of me understands I am irritated, he’d been standing there as long as I had.
He decides to approach me.
His sign had FAST BOB on it
He then asked me if that was me, I said Flashmob… he replied FAST BOB… I decided it was me!!!!
Thank you once again for speaking to us today, is there anything you can share with us for 2018?
Thank you for having me. 2018 is looking really good.
01. Luca Guerrieri – Hear Me (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]
02. Di Chiara Brothers – Love Me (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]
03. Flashmob – Drop The Bass (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]
04. Alaia & Gallo – Gomorrah (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]
05. Flashmob – Drop The Bass (Max Chapman Remix) [Flashmob Records]
06. Chris Main – Move You (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]
07. Luca Guerrieri – Something Wrong (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]
08. Miky Falcone & Fabio Morello (AlanNieves Remix) [Flashmob Records]
09. Tolstoi & Andsan – So Many (Russ Yallop Remix) [Flashmob Records]
10. Raf Parola & Bohemien – Erotic City (Original Mix) [Flashmob Records]