Sat Jun 15 2024  

atome, centrale digitale
Max Duley interview 

1998 saw his first release on Oliver Ho's Meta label, one year later he started his own project Arcart, incorporating two labels Arc and Arc(ane). Best known for his dark edged sound on Arc and Arc(ane) imprints, Max also had releases on Cosmic and Knee Deep, as well as doing remixes for Ben Sims and Hardcell.

- Atome : How did you get into the electronic music ? What are your roots and what artists influenced you the most ?
- Max Duley : I came into listening to electronic music after a few of the bands (Godflesh, Head Of David etc.) I was listening to at the time started experimenting with electronic sounds. This led me to other people who were making purely electronic music, people like Psychic TV, early Shamen. It seemed a natural progression, as the music was all very intense, and that's what we were looking for.

- A. : What do you think of the current techno scene in the UK ? Don't you think that techno has been in a inferior position over the years, since all this hype about D'n'B and UK Garage ?
- M.D. : I don't know if it should be called an inferior position. Techno has never been popular in the UK. The scene in the UK has not really grown or shrunk over the years, it has not seen the fluctuations in size that the D'n'B or UK garage scenes have gone through. This is partly because techno has never had the media treatment that these other styles have. Techno has never been taken up by radio, TV and the printed media. The main reason for this is that techno is not as accessible as the other styles. There are no "songs" to latch onto, no choruses. It is too alienating to most people, especially to the younger kids that popular music is targeted at. This is probably a good thing as it allows techno to largely follow it's own path, rather than being dominated by commercial trends.

- A. : Nowadays, I see that producers like yourself, Nils Danielsson and Johan Bacto to name a few, are slowly distancing from the usual 4:4 rhythm. Is this the way techno will be going towards in the future ?
- M.D. : I would hate to try to predict how techno will move, and I wouldn't think that anything I did could shape the future of techno. To me, techno has always been a natural thing that grows it's own branches. It's nice to be part of the progression.

- A. : Back in 1998 when you released your first record on Oliver Ho's Meta label, a lot of people believed it was Oliver Ho's alter ego and that he was actually the guy behind that record. Why were people being so sceptic about it ?
- M.D. : It was my first release, so nobody had any reference to my material. Also it was on Meta, which, although it was only the third release on the label, was quite obviously Oliver's project label. Also, back then we both sounded different to how we sound now. In those days our styles were individual but were much more similar than now. Oliver, Tommy (Gillard), Dan (March) and I would meet up every day and we'd listen to the music we'd been making each day. That meant that we were influenced mainly by each other, and eventually there came a point when all four of us were making music that was very similar in style. It was quite funny really, there were several people that refused to believe me when I introduced myself !!! Since then we have both developed much more individual styles.

- A. : Where do you find the inspiration for creating music ? Is Max Duley really as dark person as his music is ?
- M.D. : (Laughing)… Actually I have had e-mails from people asking me if I am OK after they heard a new record. Particularly after I released 'Body Conscious' on ARC(ANE), people were asking if I was depressed or had suffered some kind of tragedy. Also, once when Oliver played in Ireland, some people asked him if I had recovered from whatever had happened to me. I hope that I am easier to deal with and more friendly than my music. I don't think I am a dark person, but I am attracted to music that is dark in nature. It doesn't necessarily mean that because some people perceive the music to be dark that it is negative in some way, or that it reflects the way I am as a person. I can be quite nice sometimes !!!

- A. : What are your plans for the future, any new projects ?
- M.D. : I am not entirely sure. I always just take things as they come. My only fixed goal is to spend more time DJing. With respect to production I am still in the process of musically defining my labels. I have other things in the pipeline... my work for Cosmic, and some other labels. ARCart will progress according to what I do in the studio. At the moment I don't know what direction that will go in, but we'll see...
Joso, 27/09/2001

Max Duley


Arc 04 : Bliss with agony