The music of D’Julz’s Bass Culture Records is a far cry away from the tear it up ethos of the Ed Banger-esque sound that’s been one of the loudest voices in French dance music over the last decade. Drawing audible references to Detroit as much as UK rave D’Julz is onto something and after 15 years experience DJing he’s created his own niche in house music with a mix of meaty bass lines and his arrary of analogue machines garnering a classic but modern sound.
Today we present you with this mix from D’Julz; a promotional celebration of his Bass Culture Records unique Parisian style which features tracks from Arnaud Le Texier who’ll be joining D’Julz in the booth alongside live performances from Anonym and Lemos this Saturday.
Hi D’Julz, Please can you introduce yourself to our readers?
My name is Julien Veniel, I was born born in Paris and I have been spending the last 15 years in clubs, studios and aeroplanes ...and I love it!
What’ve you been up to so far this year?
As well as some very good DJ gigs here and there I’ve released my first EP on my label Bass Culture, which wasn’t an easy task being such a pain in the ass A&R. I also finished bunch of remixes for label such as Minus, Robsoul, Bpitch, Soma. In general on a life tip I’ve made a concerted effert to get into doing more exercise, cutting down the drink and healthy eating. Am happy to report I have miserably failed!
With a career that began in 1992 - was it always house/techno you were listening to and playing?
I was listening to funk ,soul, disco, hip hop, jazz , dub... But it s House music that made me want to become a DJ.
Did you grow up in Paris itself? What was the music scene like when you were growing up where that was?
Disco was huge in France in the late 70's so it must have had some sort of impact on my baby ears. Later I had access to a lot of different music through some quality pirate radio stations. Early hip hop was very big back then, many kids from my generation got exposed to it through dance or graffiti. On the contrary house and techno remained very underground, almost unknown, until the mid 90's but i got lucky to be at right place at the right time to have access to it nearly a decade before the French touch happe happened.
Who were your early musical influences?
When I was around 7, I was listening mostly to the film scores of my biggest heroes like James Bond and Bruce Lee only to realise later that John Barry and Lalo Shiffrin weren’t bad music teachers. As a teenager I became a huge Prince and Minneapolis sound fan which quickly led me towards funk ,soul and rock. Then came hip hop, reggae / dub and more recently jazz and classical.
How did the UK acid house and rave revolution affect you? I'm hearing some influence come through in Bass Culture's output
It was English promoters who brought acid house to Paris in clubs such as Rex or Palace in 87-88 but I was still too young to get into clubs at that time. When I was old enough a couple of years on I started to go out to those clubs though, and to the first raves.
In 1991 I went to London as well, I remember going to Rage at Heaven and a also to big hardcore party at the Astoria. I kept going regularly to London for the next 10 years mainly for record shopping to places like Fat Cat, Black Market, Tag or Swag. The London deep house and tech house sound circa 1998 was also a big influence on m .
Did you start DJing or producing first? How did you become to be involved in electronic music?
I started DJing first for the first time around 1991 after having spent all my weekends dancing in clubs and early raves. It became my full time job in 98, then I started spending time in the studio studio, starting off by collaborating with producer and engineer friends. Then, after having learned from them I started producing on my own in early 2000's
Bass Culture Records started putting out tracks in 2009 - why did you decide to do your own label?
It was the right timing in both my career and personal life plus I had a team to help me to start it and I was receiving very good unsigned tracks. It all came together at that point in time.
What do you list out for when signing tracks to Bass Culture?
I follow my DJ instincts and ask myself theses simple questions: Do I want to play this track in my sets more than once? and most importantly - Would i still want to play those tunes in five or ten years? Which is definitely harder to say, but I try signing tracks that are as timeless as possible. Some would say old school...but I’m not sure about that it’s more about referring to my roots rather than jumping on the latest trend that will probably last a 6 months the disappear again.
And finally, please fill us in on what releases and other fun things you have forthcoming this year?
There are new EPs coming from Mr G, Anonym, Joel Alter and remixes from Dj Qu and Agnes. We will also be doing more label nights abroad including this one at fabric, which needless to say, I’m really excited about.
1. Joel Alter - Rules of Love (Bass Culture)
2. Zenker Brothers-Berg (Ilian Tape)
3. Mondo - Work Me - Rootstrax Remix (Deeply Rooted)
4. Arnaud Le Texier - Rue Oscar Roty (Bass Culture)
5. Tomson - Tap The Core -Delano Smith Remix
6. Rush? - Japan Ice (Bass Culture)
7. Arnaud Le texier - Blunted Edge -Mr G remix (Safari Electronic)
8. Moodymann - It''s Too Late For U & Me Edit
9. Unknown, ??
10. KW - Detroit to London (Boe)
11. Jus -ed-? (UQ)
12. Mr G - New Dayz (Bass Culture)
Get free entry this Saturday with a friend paying half price and both jumping the queue with fabric first. More info here.