The End, London on Wednesday 24 May 2000

LayoWe caught up with Layo (of Layo & Bushwacka) at Musik's 5th Birthday @ The End, just 3 days before Homelands England.

You're doing practically every single festival this year...

In this country I'm doing three of four, and then some around Europe. Festivals are a very nice thing; in clubs, it's 'just another Saturday night', but with festivals, you have the whole coming together of different strands of music... you have all different kinds of music, different kinds of people. Everyone's a long way from home, and all their stresses and baggage of life is left there. Festivals are very free, they create a very good atmosphere, I think it's a rites of passage for a lot of people. At the end of the day you just see loads and loads of really cool artists.

Do you spend time at the festivals you're playing at?

Yeah, usually. The only time I'm in and out, is if I play during the day and have to be elsewhere. But usually I stay, because there's at least 2-3 other acts that I really want to catch. There's also loads of DJs there that I'd never meet on the club circuit. It's a nice thing- I can lose myself as if I was going there just to watch everyone and relax... as long as the sun's shining!

Well it could be pretty wet at Homelands this weekend...

Yeah, but at least the tents rock. Everything's in tents, rather than half in half out, so there's always something.

What did you think of Homelands Ireland?

I thought it was wicked! I thought it was a really really, REALLY good festival. Considering it was freezing, it was pouring with rain, it was a mudbath, the Irish crowd are so good, the whole place rocked, it was a great atmosphere from the beginning right through to the end... I thought it was really good.
(....and we thought YOU were wicked! Ed.)

Who do want to see this weekend? (at Homelands England)

I want to see Reprazent play - they're playing in our drum n bass tent-simply because I've only heard a few snippets of material, but because they're in with the club, The End and Roni Size is a good mix. I like them and am very interested in what they do so I'm looking forward to that. In some of the other tents, I want to see Moby live, very interested to see how that works live. I always like to hear people like Sven Vath and Carl Cox, some of the other drum n bass people... I'm not that into trance so I won't go into that. I know Sasha, so I'll go and see what Sasha does- I love watching the whole... hands in the air...

What do you think of the 'superstar DJs'?

I think it's very hard in life - in music, film, literature, art, to be hugely popular and not in some way compromised. Some people achieve it- I'm not saying no one achieves it, but it's a very hard life. However, I think that all forms of everything are relevant. When you're young you try to be as revolutionary as possible. As long as they haven't got the superstar attitude then it's cool. Carl Cox is a superstar DJ -and he's got a great attitude, so the two don't have to be separate.

Layo @ The End

What's your crowd pleaser going to be?

Matthew B [Bushwacka] will be playing that. We've been in the studio over the past few weeks making an album, and we've made a tune, which will be a very big crowd pleaser. Apart from that I'll be playing a drum 'n' bass track by a band call Kosheen - who are in the charts at the moment. They'll be doing an impromptu, unannounced set at Homelands on Saturday.

What else is out there that's grabbing your attention?

There's some really good drum n bass: Peshay and Photek... The new Richard Dorfmeister 'Suzuki', album, and also some house tracks... a very good remix of Knights Of The Jaguar: 'Revenge Of The Jaguar'.

Best festival moment?

We did Lowlands last year- the Dutch equivalent of Glastonbury. We played to 8000 people- that was fantastic.

What do you think to the difference between British festivals and those in the rest of Europe?

They're funny in this country. On the one hand they're very relaxed, and on the other, very uptight. It's weird.

All time favourite moment?

When I was a clubber and I was 17, I used to go to Clink St. It really changed my life. It was eye opening. I'll never have that feeling again, I know that, but I've had loads of great moments. The first time- when I started to DJ, when I first played well and I felt I'd actually achieved something with the audience... Other things like Roni Size playing here [The End], Norman Cook going to number one. Or sometimes, just going to parties. The first Tribal Gathering was a great party. I'm very lucky in what I do.

Thanks to Andy and Matt from Plug for their help.

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article by: Butterfly

published: 25/05/2000 13:39