Meet: Mark Blair - Fast Beats & £10 Sweets EP
Get to know the Belfast-born, Barcelona-based producer making some absolutely banging, atmospheric techno
After years of playing clubs all around the world and fresh from making his debut Boiler Room appearance in his home-town Belfast’s acclaimed AVA Festival is producer and DJ Mark Blair, who today drops his new EP of banging, in-your-face techno, the Fast Beats & £10 Sweets EP.
Garnering attention with his intricate dance music edits (including the now iconic I Miss The Old Kanye), Fast Beats & £10 Sweets EP sees Blair upping the ante quite a bit from that sound, with fast beats definitely the order of the day and all manner of screeching synths, rolling basslines and big, booming drums.
Give Fast Beats & £10 Sweets a spin and get to know Mark below!
Tell us about yourself?
When and why did you start producing?
Whenever I was 16 years old my girlfriend dumped me and I wanted to make her jealous so I decided I was going to become a superstar DJ. This got me into DJ’ing for about 3 or 4 years before I finally made the jump into Ableton to start making mashups and edits. Then it just snowballed from there.
Tell us about your creative process?
My creative process usually revolves around a sample I’ve found or an audio clip from a video etc. I find it super hard to produce tracks from a blank Ableton project but once I have something to work around, even if it’s a 2 second clip, I find things start to flow a lot more easily. Usually my tracks involve a theme (e.g police) and I’ll use SFX, samples & sound design around that theme.
How do DJing and producing complement OR compete with each other for your time and attention?
They are basically essential in this day and age. With the amount of digital assistance DJ’s get nowadays it’s possible for literally anyone of any skill level to become a DJ. This means it’s close to impossible to sustain a career in DJ’ing alone. You pretty much NEED to make music to push alongside your DJ’ing. And at the very least, making edits and private remixes of tracks so you can stick out from the crowd.
Tell us about your new EP?
This EP was the first track I made whenever I first moved to Barcelona. I moved from my studio in Belfast which had quite a lot of hardware and a great audio set up to basically only having my computer and a pair of headphones. I was worried at the start that this would hinder me but it ended up giving me a new lease of life. Stripping back to the bare essentials and just focusing on the sounds coming from the final exported track, instead of focusing on how you’re making those sounds, definitely boosted my creativity.
How can fans best support your music?
Come to my shows & dance.
What's coming up for the rest of the year?
I have a lot of edits that I made for my boiler room that I am currently working on getting released. I don’t think it will be possible to release all of them but hopefully I can get a few released!
What have you been listening to lately?
Pop, grime, techno. This is probably my favourite track at the moment: