Hervé has been one of the largest and most prominent names in the UK dance music scene for the better part of the last 15 years. He's recently released a remix EP for his track "My Love," which sees remixes from KC Lights, Maximono, and Ryuken, and each new version of the song has been quickly acclaimed by the dance community.
We sat down with the legendary artist to learn more about making it in this rough business, his latest remix EP, and what 2017 will bring for the talent!
Hi Hervé, thanks for taking the time to chat with us! You’ve just released 'My Love’ and its remixes from your LP earlier this year. What prompted you to pick KC Lights, Maximono and Ryuken for your remix project?
Yeah, ‘My Love' is the latest single from the album and these are the remixers. Ryuken are on my label Cheap Thrills and have two strong sounds they do, 4/4 bass and a kind of speed garage vibe. For this remix, the vocal elements of the single drew them to their speed garage sound for the spin on it. I had been playing some Maximono tracks end of last year/beginning of this year and I liked their quirky take on things, so I thought they would be good to twist up 'My Love'. KC Lights did his for free and I thought that 90s retro house thing that a lot of people are doing could work for the track so that's how that one came about.
Hallucinated Surf was a fantastic project. Going into the release, did you have any major goals and themes in mind before you started consciously developing the LP, or did everything come together more naturally?
I put a lot of work into making it so thank you for saying that. I definitely knew how I wanted to sound. I also had it clear that it would be a double album. Part 1 being the more club orientated music and Part 2 a continuation of what I had begun with my previous album 'The Art of Disappearing' , a more downtempo atmospheric listening experience. It's also about establishing going forward the two sides of what I do as Hervé.
You've been in the music world for a while now, and you've most likely been through a lot. How do you continue to keep yourself motivated while weaving through the complicated industry?
It can be very, very hard in many ways and I think it’s only got harder to break through in recent years. I really love making/creating things and I’m always coming up with new ideas. Years of creating seems to have programmed my brain to churn out ideas all the time, so that is constantly motivating me. There are several times I’ve felt like I’ve had enough, but that is always related to the music "business" and some of the awful people involved, rather than having enough of actually making music, that's always enourmmous fun. Good friends and being around good people really helps too.
You are the creator of Cheap Thrills, a great mainstay of UK-based house music. For those looking to get into the music game, what advice do you have/what do you personally look for in the music you sign to the label?
Firstly, listen to the music on the label! Don’t blanket bomb 30 labels with your demo, it looks lazy and thoughtless and it’s a waste of everybody's time. Work at finding labels that might fit your sound and contact them individually. I get sent loads of EDM/prog house which we don’t release. It’s just lazy people scooping up demo emails and sending out their demos to them all. Personally, I’m just looking for great electronic club music, although I would happily put out a band or folk music if it moved me.
Finally, what can we expect from you in 2017?!
Some pretty cool Hervé club things and collabs coming and releasing the singles from part 2 of Hallucinated Surf will start, pretty excited for that. New Count and Sinden music after our 6 odd years break (have already finished about 1.5 eps)! Starting to pull together ideas for members of a Machines Don't Care 2 album. A new brother label for Cheap Thrills is coming in February with some heavy duty releases, alongside a club night of the same name. Also plans are afoot for a new mix album to follow on from my Ghetto Bass compilation album series (however it will not be called ghetto bass - it will have a new title for the series).
Thank you Hervé! Purchase the remix EP here.