Interview: Altered Natives

Altered Natives, aka Danny Native, aka Danny Yorke, is a name that has been bubbling away on the dance music scene for a while. Making a drum heavy mix of broken beats, house and hip hop, in 2009 he released the massive “Rass Out”, which crossed genre boundaries to end up on Ministry UK Funky compilation, DJ Zinc Essential Mixes, FACT Magazine’s top 100 tracks of the year and a lot of DJ sets around the world. Based in London, I managed to catch a minute to ask him a few questions.

ALTERED NATIVES - BELIEVE IN ME (FEAT. SACHA WILLIAMSON) (stream)

ALTERED NATIVES – DIGITAL WATCHES (320kbps)
ALTERED NATIVES – GANGURO THREE THOUSAND (320kbps)

You’ve been incredibly prolific this last year, with a couple of albums, and numerous singles and remixes – what would you say is your main inspiration for making the music you do? Prolific, thank you. Honestly, i just love making music whatever style it is. It’s an obsessive compulsive thing mixed with all the weed i consume which makes it terribly addictive; remember in New Jack City, when Chris Rock’s character Pooky is trying to avoid Crack? That is me and Logic Pro. Really, I should be banned from Logic or any music program for that matter. As for main inspiration im inspired by personal shit, ups and downs, downs mainly the ones in my life.

Apart from your releases, what else have you been up to, and what have you got coming up? I’m doing a quite a few gigs this October, there’s a few remixes due out soon for Deep Teknologi, Intimacy, Moreaboutmusic plus a House EP on Bosconi Records in Italy.

When you are making music, are you generally aiming for the dancefloor, or home listening? Bit of both I guess. It can be a conducive process at times. I pretty much know what i want to write before i write it. I imagine a lot of it before i even begin to make it. Or I get what I call “the feeling” at 3.30am and write the proverbial “Banger”. Half the time, i start things then they end up being completely transformed from how they initially started. But as of late I would say my production has all been 90% dancefloor orientated.

You’ve been part of the broken beat sound for a while, why do you think it has grown into so many different areas now, with even mainstream house producers embracing more syncopated beats?Firstly, I’ve never felt that I’m actually a part of the Broken Beat scene. More apart than a part. I’ve always been a rogue element in that scene, i never felt a part of that scene or actually felt i was ever a part of it despite my beginnings at its birthplace. As for its spread, I think people are more open to hearing more interesting drum rhythms. It’s not unusual to like heavy syncopated drums and giant basslines. I love how a lot of newer producers these days are adding Broken onto their existing genres of production.

ALTERED NATIVES - RASS OUT (stream)

ALTERED NATIVES – SNDBWYKLLR2007 VIP (320kbps)

Who do you consider an influence on your music? Stevie Wonder. It begins and ends with him for me from being a baby to now. I like how you can feel his joy or sadness through his musical expression its very personal. He influenced me to put all my joy & pain into my own work, which is a task with electronic music.

Who out there is making music that excites and inspires you? You can find them all February 2010 on the EYE4EYE compilation.

What sort of setup do you use to make your music? Do you have any favourite synths or plugins you’re willing to namecheck? I use Logic Pro. Really Native INstruments should fuckin’ sort me out a deal, or an exclusive plug-in. I love the PSP plug-ins, the Vintage Warmer is a favourite. The Korg plug-ins are nice.

How do you feel about the gradual demise of vinyl, and as a result the loss of so many record shops, to be mainly replaced by digital downloads? It fuckin’ sucks. I’m happy to actually have a few physical releases in my career on reputable established labels despite its demise, but yet there still is a demand for quality vinyl. Digital downloads have disembodied the music industry to sell fuckin’ iPods. Who really profits? Not only that, it’s made our time and effort as producers more and more disrespected by generation after generation of illegal music downloaders.

As well as producing, you’re also responsible for some excellent DJ mixes – where are your favourite clubs to DJ, and what DJ stuff do you have going on at the moment in clubs or on radio? Thank you, I’ve only played a few London clubs so far, none of them I can say is a favourite yet till I play them again. I would love to batter Fabrics Room 1 one day, fingers crossed. This month I’m playing Corsica Studios for Trouble Visions 2nd birthday on the 22nd, then I’m off to Austria the next day for the Elevate Festival on the 23rd. Then, I’m at Eve in Warwick Thursday 28th, Subloaded 6th birthday at Motion in Bristol Friday 29th then next day Tactile’s 2nd birthday at the Horse & Groom & Renegade Hardware at Area.

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