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Ben & Lex pre-Glade Festival Interview and Top 10

Reported by Jack Bridges TID on May 25, 2011

The UK’s most forward-thinking electronic music event Glade Festival returns for 2011, revolutionised and stripped back to it’s shiny roots. Taking place at a brand new, as yet undisclosed, venue this year’s festival will feature a selection of the biggest names in cutting-edge electronic music. This years event sees the festival scaled down in terms numbers (strictly limited to 5000 capacity) BUT will feature the same attention to detail which saw the event voted Best Dance Festival 2008 at the UK Festival Awards. 

Glade Electronic Music Festival - 10, 11, 12 June 2011

Glade can confirm the new site for 2011’s event will be Houghton Hall in Norfolk. 

With only a few weeks till things kick off we caught up with Glade regualrs Ben & Lex.

Hey guys, how are you? Are you ready to rock Glade Festival this year?

We are very good indeed & Ohhhhhh hell yes!! Favourite time of the year now! DJing at Festivals, especially the Glade, is second to none as far as we are concerned.

Tell us a bit about what inspired you to become DJs and why you chose breaks?

Well…just the love of good music really….and the desire to play it to people! And we never really chose breaks. It kind of chose us haha! Breaks gave us the opportunity to play whatever you wanted across loads of tempos. We were both very much into what the Chemical Brothers were doing at the Social with the likes of Phantom Beats….just mashing up everything from the Prodigy to Jimi Hendrix to Ed Rush in one night. …Nu Skool Breaks was the genre that was born out of this love of many styles. See next question ;)

How did the hook up between Ben & Lex come about? Have you been DJing together since the beginning?

Not completely. Back when we were fresh faced teenagers I started off playing at hip hop clubs & Benny was more into his D&B & techno. It was the birth of Nu-Skool Breaks as a genre that gave us the possibility to meet in the middle, tempo-wise, and that was when we started DJing together…..well….actually it was about 4 in the morning in this squat-like flat we lived in and a 3 litre bottle of Strongbow that really started it all….

Besides getting hyped for festival season, what are you up to at the moment? Producing, playing gigs?

Generally being far too busy! But in a good way. We are in the middle of producing the tracks for our (about bloody time, it’s only been a decade) debut album and trying to confirm the ever elusive vocalists hehe. We already have some BIG names confirmed, including some of our musical hero’s, so keep your eyes peeled for the first single coming out on Functional, after the summer madness.

You’ve played festivals and gigs all over the world, what is your favourite festival to DJ at?

Well, gotta be the Glade no doubt! Everyone at the event is there because they all love dance music of one kind or another. You couldn’t ask for a more receptive crowd really! 2009’s Thursday night headlining set was a definite highlight. I (Lex) even got a black eye………nuff said.

You run your own record label ‘Ape Music’, are there any new exciting releases we should look out for?

Abso-bloody-looootly. We have a stupidly strong release schedule this year including releases by Freear & Ekaj, Snareophobe, Lethalness, a wicked 140 Jungle EP by 601 (who are on FYAAAH right now) and possibly the strongest release yet from the Freerange Djs. The label is just getting stronger all the time and our Ape fam-a-lam are doing us proud!

You’ve remixed a lot of tracks from exciting artists, is there anyone you would particularly like the opportunity to do a remix for?

Hmmm…hard one that. We love working with vocals tbh…most of the time when you get sent instrumental parts you end up writing almost a completely original track anyway.

We’ve had the pleasure of getting our hands on vocals from Quannum / Blackalicious’ Planet Asia for our forthcoming Dub Pistols remix which was awesome…..We’d love to get our hands on some Ghostface Killah, Raekwon or Mr Meth vocals….That’d be nice… Just anything with wicked vocals really!...MCs or singers!

What inspires and influences your music? Is there any artist that especially influenced on your music?

Most importantly I think is our love of so many different types of music between us that has the most influence. I think this has been evident in our tunes so far and certainly will be on the album. 

As for artists, Elite Force & Aquasky have to be heros of the scene, I don’t think there is a single tune by them that we haven’t played at some point in the production stakes Elite Force has always been a don.

What’s do you have to say about the breaks scene? Where would you say it’s most popular?

‘Breaks’ as a form of music is getting back to being as strong as it’s ever been, it’s just that it has such loose musical boundaries now. Huge DJs are playing sets that are almost entirely breakbeat based music that would never ever class themselves as ‘breaks’ DJs. This is a good and a bad thing I think as it means more people hear the music but the ‘scene’ has become a little fragmented into even smaller more cliquey sub genres when in fact the thing that made it great in the first place was its ability to encompass almost all tempos & styles at some point in the night. That said a lot of producers who stopped producing breaks at all for a while are coming back to it which has gotta say something I think! 

What can we expect from you in the future?

This year is getting pretty mad for us… As we said above the label is going from strength to strength, we have an album in the works and we have bucket loads of gigs coming up too, so come see us if we are in a neighbourhood near you!! …