Organ Donors: It's a Work In Progress
Reported by Pete M
Submitted 17-02-10 21:16
15 years in the music business is an achievement for any production outfit but in those 15 years, Matt & Scott Harris, aka the Organ Donors, have developed a niche for producing hard-edged dance music; whether it be hardstyle, tech-dance or hard trance. Now though, they introduce a new concept. Well, its not really new cos its three releases old but Audio Surgery Records promises to showcase the best in genre-bending hard music.
The first release, Tranceplant, signalled the label’s intent: to take hard dance into the 21st century and promote up and coming talent like Neal Thomas, A*S*Y*S, DJ Wragg & Log:One and Mac & Taylor. The second, produced with Kidd Kaos, was a cover of Delerium’s legendary Silence. Following this, the third release came along entitled PyroTechno, produced by Liverpudlian Neal Thomas. The track was also voted Mixmag’s Hard Dance Tune Of The Month.
Apart from running the label, DJing and producing, the Organ Donors know that spotting, and nurturing, new talent is essential to help the hard dance scene, indeed any musical scene, grow and as music production software develops, encourage more people to produce their own sound. Which is why, in addition to the new label, they opened the Audio Surgery DJ & Production training course, coupled with the latest cutting-edge technology, to further encourage budding producers. With that in mind, I intend to delve into the lads’ psyches and find out their plans for the rest of 2010, the label and the DJ and production course. But first, a (brief) history lesson.
Throughout these past 15 years, Matt & Scott have built up quite a repertoire of productions and remixes on various labels including Nukleuz, Tidy and Kiddfectious. Their tracks include 99.9, Tear Drop, Boot up the Jam, Wave Guide System, 4 Tribes, In Power and Rhythms Divine. They’ve also released two artist albums; Plastic Surgeons on Nukleuz and Oldskool Autopsy on Tidy . After that, they released the concept Under The Knife remix album which took in new versions of tracks from the first album.
Right. That’s it for the brief history lesson. Now fast forward to 2010. The Audio Surgery imprint has taken shape, the studio is ready and the first three releases, mentioned above, have graced the charts of Beatport and Trackitdown all making No 1 chart positions. Let’s see what their plans are and just why they’re called Organ Donors.
Hi, guys. Thank you for joining us at HarderFaster. I’m gonna start with a light-hearted question before we get onto the serious stuff. Why are you called Organ Donors? Are you actually registered organ donors?
Firstly, no we are not registered organ donors haha! Trust me no one would want our vital or reproductive organs! Years of partying abuse - its lucky we are still alive!
Its quite a simple answer really, Many years ago we sampled a Hammond Organ in one of our tracks, we had been going under various guises at the time and decided it was time to build a proper name for ourselves, We came up with the name Organ Donors for that track, it was the catchiest name out of all of them so it just stuck, was either that or one of our other guises including, Dirk Diggler & Chest Rockwell or Clark Bent & Clitoris Lane!
Lets talk a little about the label itself. It’s called Audio Surgery Records as we know but can you tell us where you came up with the name for it? And who designed the logo as its a very distinctive one?
When we first started our “DEX n FX’ show, the term “DEX n FX’ was very unique and relatively unheard of, However every man and his dog began to brand their sets as “DEX n FX’ so we realised we had to come up with something totally unique to us, we realised, the actual “DEX n FX’ we were doing, was totally unlike anything anyone else with our real time samplers and other bits of technology, so we invented the concept of Audio Surgery, ‘The cutting, splicing and manipulation of music, our new purpose built recording studio and DJ / Production school is called ‘The Audio Surgery’ We want to build up the brand so we called our label “Audio Surgery Records’, simples! The identity of our graphic designer is top secret unfortunately!
Hardstyle and the associated genres have become massively popular throughout Europe and the UK. Are you guys responsible for that or at least partly responsible? And is the scene in danger of becoming too big?
All I know is that we were playing harder sounds, now branded as ‘hardstlye’ across the globe from its inception. I can remember playing in America at hard house clubs nearly 10 years ago we hammering out hardstyle, with people just standing there looking like they were thinking, “What the f*ck is this music?!’ Then we’d go back a few years later to the same clubs and everyone was playing hardstyle! Yeah, I think we have definitely been one of the many pioneers of the harder European sound across the UK, We cleared many a dance floor in hard house clubs along the way, haha, and look at it now! Crazy! How could the scene become too big? The bigger the better I say.
Moving on now and the Audio Surgery DJ & Production course. Firstly, what prompted you to open up the new purpose-built studio and secondly, what are the aims behind the course?
I think you touched upon this very well in your introduction to this interview, we strongly believe that embracing and encouraging new talent to emerge, will really help stimulate and drive the scene forward in a fresh and exiting way, no scene can afford to become stale, this new talent not only stimulates the scene with its new look on the old, but it also keeps all us old timers on our toes.
We’ve been in the business now for long time and remember all too well the help we never had and opportunities we were never given. For us, it’s a very exhilarating feeling to be in a position now where we can help others and use our success to better our beloved scene.
(PS: If you’re interested, here’s the link for the e-flyer)
I know we’ve only just arrived in 2010 but what are your plans for the rest of the year?
Well, we have just had our business workshop this week and have set out our clear goals for the future. Our long-term plans are very ambitious including multiple record labels and events. Putting things into perspective for 2010, this year is going to be about raising our awareness, building our brand, online community and PR platform, something we have lacked all these years. It’s our new business premises that is now changing everything and is going to take us to new levels within the industry.
Okay, serious stuff over. Now to the funnies. How would you feel if someone came up with an Organ Donors-themed version of the game “Operation”?
I’d find that pretty hilarious. Seriously! A few years ago someone came up to us in a club and gave us ‘Operation’ the game as a present, haha! I still have it somewhere!
Has Scott got over that embarrassingly haunting incident yet? (Scott thought a raver wanted to take his picture with another DJ so instinctively jumped in the frame only to be told by the clubber that he wanted Scott to take the picture instead!)
“I’ve never, nor will ever, get over it, haha.”
What’s the daftest thing either of you have ever done in the studio?
Well it wasn’t so much us, although we were to blame, About six years ago we had our studio in Scott’s flat above a big pub, we used to hammer the sounds out all day long until the people upstairs got fed up with us and emptied an entire bath through the ceiling by removing the outlet pipe. This was when we had loads of hardware, racks of FX, compressors, big mixing desks and keyboards all around the room, it literally starting raining! All down the walls, through the light socket! All over our equipment as we tried to pull it all out the way. It was actually quite surreal at the time - we had no idea what was going on.
If you could invent a new game to conquer boredom, what game would you invent?
Matt would invent, Redtube the portable pocket game!
Finally...Under The Knife or Under The Table?
Well Matt has already told me in confidence he’s in urgent need of penile augmentation! So it’s under the Knife for him!
Its been a pleasure talking to you guys. Good luck with the label and everything else.
Thanks to Matt, Scott and Stuart Jackson @ Audio Surgery Records
Photos courtesy of the HarderFaster archive and the Organ Donors. Not to be reproduced without permission.
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Other Features By Pete M:
Pharmacy: Phase One Trance Mission
BK, Whitby and the tidyDJs Mash It Up!
Nukleuz gets PHATT: Pierre Pienaar explains
The views and opinions expressed in this review are strictly those of the author only for which HarderFaster will not be held responsible or liable.