So, Neil, tell us about the core Stripes crew. How did you all come together?
Stanza (True Tiger): Stripes Records has been going for two years now and we've had releases from Mystry, Monkey Wrench, Spoils, True Tiger, Big Narstie, Sukh Knight, Kinzy, Bill & Will and Chimpo to name a few. We are from all over the UK but Stripes is based in London. I started the label releasing music from artists and producers I knew but last year we found some really cool acts like Monkey Wrench, Spoils and Mystry. We also have a management roster that includes some of the Stripes Records crew as well as DJ Barely Legal, Klose One and Kurupt FM.
What was the basis behind starting the label?
I started the label after I realised True Tiger as an "act" was bigger than True Tiger as a label and people were getting confused so I decided I wanted to start the label afresh pushing new sounds from exciting new producers and artists. And that pretty much sums up what we are about, just putting out exciting music and putting on sick shows with our acts and special guests who support Stripes.
“The main thing we are focusing on is putting out exciting music across different genres…”
With so many quality labels already out there what do you think makes Stripes stand out?
The main thing we are focusing on is putting out exciting music across different genres, I get bored of hearing just one genre so I want to put out whatever feels right.
Can you tell us a bit about the artists you’re releasing and why you feel they best represent the Stripes ethos?
At the moment we have releases on the way from Mystry, Monkey Wrench, Taiki Nulight and Spoils. It's all about fresh exciting sounds and vibes for us.
Mystry's debut Pulse 8 EP has had an amazing reaction, we were chatting about it the other day and we can't believe how big ‘Pulse 8’ has got so we're really hyped to start promo on his next EP which we've just finished. We wanted to sign someone who was making sick grime and hip hop and Mystry was exactly that. Check out JME's vocal of ‘Pulse 8’, it's been on repeat for us…
Monkey Wrench are duo from Bristol who are just completing their next EP. They've had heavy support from EZ, My Nu Leng, Monki, Oneman, Rob Da Bank, Klose One and loads more so we can't wait to release their next EP. I really think it's their strongest yet. Monkey Wrench really merge the lines between house, garage and bass music in general, as soon as I heard their tracks I was so happy to hear some tracks at 130BPM which weren't like everything else.
Taiki Nulight is someone I've known for a while and we had him as a special guest at our first Stripes party, his set was so tight and before he went on he said he wanted to release an EP on Stripes so we were really happy/shocked/hyped about that and he's really pushing the boundaries when it comes to UK bass music.
Spoils are a trio from Brighton who were one of our early key signings alongside Monkey Wrench as their collaborative EP, Enemies In The Dance really put Stripes on the map. Spoils have had great support over the last year, their track 'Silence' which was on our Red Bull Studios EP got massive support from Zane Lowe on Radio 1 at the start of this year. They've also had big support from EZ, Hannah Wants, Gorgon City and DJ Q. We just released their Temptation EP and now are working on the follow up.
What do you look for in a record that makes it feel like it fits into the label?
We're always looking for fresh new producers and artists that are pushing exciting sounds, whatever the genre. If the record has that feeling we are interested.
What’s coming up next on the release schedule?
Next up is a new EP from Mystry which will be getting first play in Mystry's set this Friday at FABRICLIVE. We are just finalising the date for the Taiki Nulight EP and we've nearly finished the next Monkey Wrench EP so listen out for that. After that we'll be releasing a new Spoils EP. For autumn/winter we have a couple of new projects on the way which we're really hyped about. Keep an eye on our pages.
And finally with only a few days away can you hit at what we can expect from the party in Room Three on Friday?
Expect to hear a lot new dubs and forthcoming tunes on Stripes being dropped, everyone is looking to test out new releases on the system. We like to keep the lineup varied & fun so expect everything from garage, grime, house, dubstep, hip hop and jungle across the night.