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H2 Interview: We’re hoping for a huge second half of 2013!

We caught up with Manchester DJing and production duo H2.

Jimmy Coultas

Date published: 3rd Jun 2013

On the huge conveyor belt of rave talent that Manchester consistently turns out, H2 have been one of the most promising of recent years to turn up. They came to prominence in their home town with a residency at the legendary but now sadly departed Sankeys, before delivering beats to a selection of top labels, Cecille, Nervous and Get Physical among them.

With their new EP out now on the mouthful of a name record label Klangkultur Schallplatten (we’ll stick with KS from now on), we caught up with them to discuss their new Manchester residency at South, with the conversation inevitably turning to Sankeys and their Ibiza plans.

Your ‘Just Bounce’ EP is out this week on KS, is this your first release on the label? And are you happy with the remixes done by DJ W!ld and then the label founders ?

DJ W!ld is someone who has inspired us for a while now.  When the opportunity came up to sign to KS, straight away we wanted him on the remix. It’s a huge deal for us. It’s our first release on KS & hopefully not our last.

We read in another interview that you used a busker who caught your ear as a vocalist on one of your EPS last year, which represents something of a constant commitment to sourcing ideas for music. Have there been any other unusual sources of inspiration for you?

Yeah Alex Carrington has been a part of numerous H2 projects recently. It’s great getting someone like that involved who’s talents aren’t exposed that much doing the streets of Manchester. We’ve done vocals on some of our own tracks too! I’d say the TRON movie had some inspiration on some of our album tracks for Get Physical, which is due out later this year. 

You’ve released on a lot of other high quality labels such as Cecille, Get Physical and Nervous. Do you ever conceptualise the label’s sound when you’re creating a record?

You have to. You’ve gotta have a grasp of the direction a label wants you to go with an EP or remix, especially from the beginning. The key to having a chance is knowing what the label wants. Sending any label any piece of music is hardly gonna get you anywhere & will probably, if they listen, lose you your one & only chance of getting them to check out your sound.  You’ve got to be patient, something we’ve learnt for sure.

Do you have any plans to start your own imprint in the future?

Definitely; I’d hope in the next 2 years. We wanna hammer things for the next year now and then see where we’re at. We’ve got some ambitions we want to achieve over the next 12 months before we can then move on and think about our own imprint. 

You were a big part of the Sankeys crew for five years as residents. How much will Manchester miss the club and are you at any of the events in Ibiza?

Sankeys was an amazing, iconic venue for Manchester. It will become the same over in Ibiza over the next few years too. They might have shut down Manchester, but all the main people that made it a success are still there working on the Ibiza project. Besides, we can’t see it being shut in Manchester for too long. The people won’t allow it!

You’re playing at South in June. Are you looking forward to the show and where else over the city will you be playing this summer?

As far as Manchester goes, now Sankeys is shut we will only be playing at South over the summer. It is the home of our own event LIMBO and it’s on at South on the first Friday every month. We’ve got some cool events coming up and it’s our third birthday in October and we’ve a really good line-up ready for that!

What makes Manchester such a special place for house and techno?

Manchester is a city steeped in musical history, probably even more than most cities in the UK. Clubs like the Hacienda and Sankeys/Sankeys Soap will go down in history. But away from the iconic super clubs we have so much more. There’s the Warehouse Project and then a whole host of smaller club nights in venues below 500. South, Gorilla, Joshua Brooks and loads more places across the city with regular house & techno parties.  I’d say the music scene here is still very healthy!

What producers and DJs are you digging at present?

Adam Shelton, Phil Weeks, Lotus Seven, De Sluwe Vos, Marco Carola (still), Bicep, Montel, Detroit Swindle. These are all people we’re feeling right now.

And finally what lies in the future for you both?

Get Physical album later this year and then another big label; we can’t say much yet. Hopefully be doing an album tour, many more gigs worldwide and a date in Ibiza is almost confirmed at Privilege.  We’re hoping for a huge second half of 2013!


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