The owner of Moscow Records, Moss. Co and Arkityp as well as being a DJ in demand, Archie Hamilton certainly is a busy man. A regular for London’s FUSE crew and a selector whose bumping brand of tech-house has taken him to parties all across the world, Hamilton doesn’t seem to stop going, so we felt very fortunate to have tied him down for our latest episode of In Conversation. Here’s how things turned out when we chatted warehouse parties, overtime on label duties and the changing face of dance music.
Hi Archie, how are you? It looks like you’re having an exciting month!
I’m doing great thanks! Yes, I certainly am - it’s been amazing so far and the grand finale is this weekend…
You’ll be playing at two huge warehouses in April, at both the FUSE night in Birmingham and for system. in Leeds. How does playing at a warehouse compare with smaller, more intimate venues?
Different game altogether! I really love both for different reasons. We had an amazing vibe at The Rainbow Warehouse - the venue and sound are fantastic and it was full of people who have been partying all day and were really in the mood, so it went off. I have only played on the Terrace at Mint Warehouse, so it’s a slightly different vibe, but last year was one of my favourite gigs of all time and I’m expecting this year to beat it.
When you stop off in Leeds you’ll be playing out at MiNT Warehouse again. How have you enjoyed previous visits?
I have been going to the Mint venues for years as a punter so it’s a real honour to play there. It’s such a special venue in a city that has so many great memories for me as a clubber. Last year I played on the terrace before Apollonia and the vibe was absolutely electric. The venue has a real rave feel to it - just a raw space with great sound. It’s always great to see the Mint team as well!
The lineup for that one is pretty big, with Nastia, Dan Ghenacia and Varhat b2b Janeret also on the bill. Are you well acquainted with the other selectors?
Yes Nastia and Dan I have known for several years - Dan was playing at the same party last year with Apollonia funnily enough. I met Varhat in Birmingham very briefly the other week and I haven’t met Janeret yet so I am looking forward to that.
You run a few labels now in Moscow Records, Moss Co and the new Arkityp project. Do the labels demand a lot of extra work? It seems like your touring schedule must be pretty tiring in itself.
It’s proving to be quite a big workload, yes! Luckily I share the work with Rossko on Arkityp and I have a good friend Aston who works with me on Moscow - I certainly couldn’t do it alone.
2016 was a big year for you, and even saw you enter the RA Top 100 DJs poll for the first time. What are the highlights looking back?
That was certainly one of them, as well as being a big surprise. Closing Amnesia’s main room with Rossko has got to be up there too. Some great festivals like Sonus and Gottwood, as well as Sonar. Two amazing tours of Australia and Asia, the Mint Warehouse Terrace Party…the list goes on!
It’s been around 8 years now since you launched Moscow Records. How much has the UK dance scene changed in that time?
It’s changed a huge amount, for better and for worse. It’s great to see vinyl make such a resurgence, as the market was on its knees when we started the label. The underground has become more popular, but at the same time Ibiza’s underground scene has been overshadowed by the mainstream. The UK government has made it really difficult to put on parties, but there’s been huge backlash from the public and we’ve seen results so every cloud has a silver lining!
Who would you pick out as the biggest influences on you as a DJ and producer?
The Fabric residents were incredible influential when I first started clubbing to house and techno, and the classic tech house labels and producers of the late 90s and early 2000s still inspire me today. I am lucky to be surrounded by some incredibly talented and hard-working people and I am lucky enough to go to different parties and see amazing artists play around the world every week so I draw a lot of inspiration from them these days.
What plans have you got for the rest of the year?
I am very excited about Ibiza. FUSE and Hyte are joining forces at Amnesia again, and I am playing for Carl Cox’s party at Privilege so there is a lot to look forward to there. I’ve got a load of great club gigs and festivals coming up in Europe, as well as some really nice tours planned further afield too. Release-wise I have an EP coming with Enzo Siragusa on my label Moscow Records mid-May, as well as an EP with my cousin Benson from Voyeur with a very exciting remix. We have a new Arkityp EP on the way and I have remixed Noha on Moss Co. as well as Cosmjin on Abartik. Lots of plans basically!
To end things on a musical note, could you offer us a track that you’ve been listening to a lot recently?
Referring back to my influences, I have dug out ‘Spent Up’ by Inland Knights and have been playing that a lot recently - serious fun!
Archie will be making noise at MiNT Warehouse on Sunday 30th April as he plays out for system. and Set One Twenty at their terrace party. Nastia, Dan Ghenacia, Archie Hamilton and Varhat b2b Janeret are among those also set to perform.
Photo courtesy of Archie Hamilton