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Autocycle Interview: 'The Apocalypse is coming for Soundcloud'

We caught up with Liverpool's sleazy disco three piece Autocycle to talk about their new residency, Soundcloud's downfall and fellatio in the studio.

Jimmy Coultas

Last updated: 9th Sep 2015

Image: Autocycle

Elusive disco triumvirate Autocycle have been one of the best kept secrets of the North West club scene for a hot minute. As DJs they’ve brought their unique brand of funk to the likes of Freeze, Chibuku, Love Dose and El Diablo's Social Club, whilst recently securing a residency at Disco Glitter Love.

Their production prowess has been at the forefront of what they’re about for a while, with a slew of killer edits earning them disco chops as well as productions for the likes of Selador and ISM records.

Their rerub of Anita Baker’s ‘Sweet Love’ has been a perennial favourite of the legendary Greg Wilson for a while now, whilst cheeky versions of Ben E King, Matthew Wilder,  and more have kept them at the forefront of anyone with a love for the groovier history of dance music.

 

 

Hands down this is still our favourite dj promo pic. #autocycle take a bow 🙌🙌🙌 #djfails #swiperight

A photo posted by Skiddle (@skiddleuk) on

 

They’re also what can only best be described as oddballs, usually covering their faces yet little else in their press shots (see main shot and above) and having a penchant for veering off topic in interviews (when we last spoke to them they discussed getting naked in the studio). 

Disco Glitter Love returns on Friday 18th September with Dicky Trisco and Pete Herbert, so we spoke with the trio about what they’d been up to this summer – ending up veering off topic to the state of Soundcloud to Nate Dogg surviving death via fellatio.

So first things first, how has your summer been?

It’s been great actually. We went as punters to the last ever Garden Festival after playing there the past two years, and we did a little daytime party in Tisno with our mates from Makes No Sense and Truth Be Told which was boss.

We’re playing with them again soon actually at their party Av Verde which is at a venue we’ve DJ'd at before but years ago, so it'll be great to go back to there. We’ve also been part of the Disco Glitter Love shows at Constellations.

You’re residents there, right?

Indeed we are. It’s boss having a residency in our home town, and great to see things really kicking off disco wise for Liverpool. We’ve lived and DJ'd here for decades, and disco has never really been a nailed down sound.

It’s always worked at afterparties but it’s hard to build a clubnight that consistently delivers, and there’s been some great ones over the years but even they will tell you they’ve had mixed fortunes. The likes of Archive were fucking amazing to go to, but we can’t imagine it was a financial joy to run.

So it’s really good to see Disco Glitter Love make a decent fist of it, and Constellations as a venue is perfect. The outside part is so well suited to our kind of sound in the sun, and indoors is a lovely sized space. All the best clubs are around 500-600 capacity so for us we’re just into it.

It was great warming up for Late Nite Tuff Guy there at Discoteca Poca too (listen to that set below). Big up Constellations and the Baltic massive.

 

Skiddle Live 001 - Late Nite Tuff Guy @ Discoteca Poca by Skiddle on Mixcloud

 

Can you tell us about any other good gigs?

Gig wise we’ve had a good few months. We’ve been part of the Love Dose vibes in Manchester which is a proper off the chain rave, as well as DJ'ing for El Diablo's and Doodle (who we've got a party coming up soon with). Two of us live in Liverpool (although one of them is a proper bad wool) and the other lives in Manc, so it’s been good to spend time in both cities playing and we’ve got plenty more gigs lined up there.

Other than the Constellations parties we’ve also played for Freeze, warming up for Crazy P and Pyschemagik in the Bombed Out Church. Maximum respect to Freeze, that was probably their quietest show at the church and it was an absolute belter of a party. We’ve signed about 987,875 petitions as well hoping that the venue is preserved as a community space, but sadly looks like the dark forces have got their way on that one.

Individually, aside from the Autocycle project ,we’ve had a couple of festival shows which has involved us DJing to people playing mental games - undoubtedly off their heads. Think spaced out people on space hoppers while we played the Benny Hill theme tune, and then tearing it up with a disco rave in between them all. 

Ha, sounds great. So what about the studio, productive in there?

We’re always productive in the studio. Whether it’s discussing the issues of the salmon farming community, quoting obscure hip hop lyrics or occasionally making some kind of dance worthy music, we always get shit done in that space.

We’ve got a remix out now on Yam Who’s imprint ISM of ‘Hard Times’ by Alena, and later on in the year we’ve got another remix coming out with them too. It's a track called ‘Born Again’ on The Drive’s Diamond in the Rough EP. One of our edits of a big eighties pop record is also about to drop – we can’t go into too much detail but we’ve reworked it a bit more and it’s even better than the version you’ll have heard us playing out.

On the topic of our edits we lost our Soundloud account which was a bit of a blow, but it looks like the apocalypse is coming for that format so it’s probably for the best we’re out sooner.

What’s your thoughts then on all the issues people are having with soundcloud then; guess it’s not a good viewpoint?

Well it’s helped a lot of people get heard and been a brilliant way of discovering new music. But they’ve obviously fucked up with whatever deal they’ve had to cut to avoid themselves getting their arses handed to them by every major record label going.

If people are losing their accounts left right and centre and tracks getting suspended and removed it’ll ruin what it’s about. The legality of it’s all is up for debate but it’s undeniable that losing that side of things with make it less useful for people.

We’re big fans of Mixcloud anyway, that’s been a legit method of running mixes since they stared and be good to see them do well out of it – all our mixes are heading there.

And the music you’ve been into this year?

There’s been so much good music in 2015. West Coast hip hop has been at its finest point this millennium, both Kendrick and Dre’s albums are absolute fire. We’ve been crip walking and telling monkey mouth mutherfuckers to get away from our throne all summer. And the NWA film was good too, fantastic few months for anyone who loves LA hip hop.

Dancefloor wise there’s been some brilliant house and disco. Fedde, Bicep, Romare, Richard Rossa and Marcus Marr have all made stuff we’ve been into, and we know it’s not from this year and every other bellend under the sun has loved it, but that Fatima Yamaha record is just brilliant isn’t it? We’re made up it’s got the wider acclaim it deserves this summer.

Lijadu Sister’s ‘Come on Home’ (above) has probably been the best record we’ve had for our more laid back sets. It's an absolutely brilliant slab of the mellower side of afro disco, a sound we’ve been in love with for a couple of years now. Also shout out to Todd Terje going back to his re edit roots with that amazing version of ‘Jolene’ – slays the floor every time.

Who are the people you look up to then for edits?

Oh so many. Making re-edits is where we have come from, and whilst we’re happy with the stuff we knock out there’s so many absolute dons in this field. Terje was maybe the finest when he was really in the zone last decade, that Chic ‘I Want Your Love’ rerub and his version of Micheal Jackson’s ‘I Can’t Help It’ still get an airing every now and again from us.

We’re also fans of Fingerman, The Reflex and Kon. They all know how to beef a track up without overdoing it. One of the best though we’ve discovered in the past year has been the Lacroix edit Wings classic ‘Let em In'.

Encapsulates everything about what a top edit should be, basic production and just elegantly showcasing what is good about the record with no tricks. Such a tune, but hurry up getting it as it's bound to fall foul of Soundcloud (listen below).

We also can’t talk about edits without bigging up Greg Wilson. He’s deffo the father of the scene in the UK and getting his support for our work is always a big milestone. He still plays our version of Anita Baker ‘Sweet Love’ now.

Final question, you get to assemble your ultimate studio dream team of five members (who can be dead or alive) to make an album of any kind. Who do you go for and how does it end up coming out?

Dead or alive? What fucking use will a corpse be in the studio?

If we’re speaking hypothetically though, we’d probably go all out for the funk. James Brown would have to be in there, and then someone to deliver on the rhythm section. The Swampers would do us proud, we watched the Muscle Shoals documentary about that unreal studio and they were unbelievably tight as a band, so we’d definitely need them regulating our shoddy timing.

We’d get Johnny Guitar Wilson in there just for his insane wizardry and raspy voice, and then also the Pointer Sisters and Nate Dogg for their vocal talents. Are we cheating by picking two groups in the five? 

We’d all go on a massive bender after our silky smooth super tight funk album is recorded and there’d be no question about whether we’d be dead or alive then as we’d all overdose on speedballs or something. Nate would have slunk off early to get sucked off by all three sisters though so they’d all survive, the bastards.

Like this? Try Skiddle Mix 047 - Autocycle (El Diablos Social club).

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