Dutch producer Signal is currently helping to further the Critical collective's formidable sound with his second output for the label, Systems Vol 4. As deep as it is tough, Signal's darkside sound is not only representative of Critical's penchant for dancefloor focused drum & bass but it's also a damn good first shot of what will no doubt be a heavy arsenal of future forward and technically meticulous d&b with Signal already already working on new projects due out later in the year.
Joining the Critical crew right here in Farringdon a week Friday (22nd April), we lined up to discuss his background and what he has planned for inside the booth - something that he's also illustrated sonically by way of a brand new promo mix.
Tell us a bit about Signal – how best would you describe your sound?
Signal: I don't know, to be honest. I've made liquid, deep, techy and heavy drum & bass. I love combining the deep and tech stuff though!
How did you first get into music? What were your early influences?
I used to produce house and dubstep when I first started but after I heard Noisia's remix of Skrillex's 'SMNS' I got into their sound which led to drum & bass pretty quickly. My main early influences in drum & bass were Noisia and Phace, but they're still my main inspirations. Their techy and deeper stuff is just so good.
And how did you get to where you are now in the world of electronic music?
Awesome label owners and managers such as Badger and Kasra from Critical and the Noisia crew really helped me get out there more. The guys from June Miller have also supported me from the start.
How do you feel you’ve progressed as an artist? Do you think your musical direction and the music you’re producing now is different to when you first started making music?
I think I've improved quite a bit lately. I'm finally starting to kind of like what I'm making [laughs]. The direction is completely different as I started out with house and dubstep.
What’s happening in the studio at the moment - what releases have you got coming up?
I've got more stuff coming on Critical Music and Xtrah's Cyberfunk. I've got features on Arkaik's Dispatch EP and a Various Artists EP on Methlab/Bad Taste. I'm also working on stuff for Noisia's Invisible imprint.
Can you tell us a bit about your label Fumei? How did that come about?
It's just something that I set up with my friend Justin Skadi to push some really unknown artists. We're kind of taking a hiatus right now though as we are both focusing on school (final exams soon!) and our solo careers for a while.
Finally, you've recorded us an exclusive mix can you tell us a bit about how you approached your track selection? Is it an indication of what we can expect on the night?
I wanted some classics mixed with some completely new stuff and switch between heavy and deeper drum & bass. You can definitely expect a similar style on the night!