Mad Mats & Tooli are the head honchos of house music label Local Talk, which has been releasing fresh new music on both vinyl and digital format since 2011, reviving classic tracks through their sister sub labels as they go. At the end of the month they will be hosting a label showcase as London’s Lightbox and we got the chance to ask them a few questions all about Local Talk and their coming adventures.
For those that don’t know, and just in case you’ve forgotten, you’re both the label heads of house music label Local Talk! Could you give us a bit of a rundown on how the label was started and what part you two play in running the label?
We started Local Talk in 2011 with a clear vision of how to start fresh. We wanted a house label with an open-minded approach to all angles of 4/4 inspired underground music… that’s it basically! We both do most of the label work together but with some key tasks assigned to each other. But there is always a discussion about everything, its democracy! Until to this day we actually managed to agree on most things… so far!
Local Talk’s style is greatly akin with the sounds of New York and New Jersey’s early 90’s sound. Your music is infectious and I personally don’t think it is heard enough these days, as there are only a handful of labels putting it out. Do you relish being a niche sound or in an ideal world would all great clubs be fronting this style of house?
We release house music, nothing more, nothing less. There’s been a little bit of everything from deep to more raw, vocal, instrumental or sampling infernos. If you want to tie it down to a certain year or area, fine but to us it’s all house music.
We take a lot of pride in the fact that we’ve never been afraid of going in different directions, never said “ok, we need something that sounds like this and that”. The aim has been the same since day one, release house music that we like. Both of us listen to a lot of different kinds of music and house is certainly not my first love but rather one of them. In an ideal world all great clubs would play music they love.
Looking towards recent releases, you’ve had new music from HNNY and Merrick put up on your socials in recent weeks. Is there anything else coming up you can tell us about?
We got loads! Our release schedule if packed all the way until summer with new singles from Corrado Bucci, Atjazz, Kiko Navarro, Art Of Tones and Esa. We also have the debut album from Crackazat (and a new single) in March and a compilation album from HNNY in the spring.
Notable features of your label are the 1NCE AGAIN and OneOffs EPs you press aside from the main string. With the 1NCE AGAIN series you have re-released some great music from the likes of Mateo & Matos, DJ Duke and Circulation. Do you think re-pressing classic tracks is more important than keeping original presses exclusive, which usually renders them impossible to find or afford?
The main reason for releasing Circulation was both of us consider it to be a killer track and we thought “what would a remix sound like”. Same with the other in the series.
Personally I’ve never understood this “super exclusive, limited edition” thing. Sure, it’s not cheap to press records and you do not sell that many copies, not like it used to be – but we believe in good music being available to as many people as possible. That’s why we support all formats and releases both on vinyl and digital. If we wanted things to be super exclusive I guess we wouldn’t even sell the Local Talk releases, just keep the test presses ourselves and make sure no copies where available in the stores except one copy on discogs. But that is as stupid as it sounds, so it will never happen.
Very excitingly, Local Talk is being showcased at Berghain and Panorama Bar’s Klubnacht towards the end of January. Have you been to this notorious Berlin party spot before or are you looking to be in for a few surprises?
We actually played P-bar in Feb 2013 but then it was just us two on a solo gig. This time it will be more fun as it’s a full Local Talk showcase with Kyodai and Art Of Tones on board as well. But needless to say we love this space and have been there as guests many times also.
Although keeping older sounds alive in new exciting ways is your main forte, do you have your eye on any upcoming producers that you’re excited about? Possibly local to your home country?
Crackazat will be the one to watch in 2015. His debut ‘Crescendo’ album drops on Local Talk in March and every track is a hit. No joke.
Finally, the week after your night at Berghain you will be hosting a showcase at London’s Lightbox, with fellow label mates Kyodai, Chesus and others. Are you looking forward to being let loose in their technicolor club?
Again, it's our second time at Lightbox. Last time was so good they invited us back again for a re-match so I guess we’re doing something right, ha ha! Oh, and we love the main room with that mad light system… Crazy!
Mad Mats & Tooli at Shuush x Local Talk Records - Lightbox London (2nd August 2014)
Tickets for Shuush x Local Talk, which welcomes Mad Mats & Tooli to Lightbox London alongside a number of other label mates can be purchased here.
Interview by Josh Plews
Images courtesy of Local Talk Records and Lightbox London