Keep it 100. In this day and age, it’s hard to keep that mantra intact. We live in a country that prides itself on political correctness and not offending ANYONE, sometimes at the expense of our own personal happiness. Yet, there are two subcultures that historically go against the grind: skateboarding and techno.
When skate rats, like myself, talk about the roots of skateboard culture, the California surf scene, Pacific Ocean Pier (POP) and Dogtown come to mind. Meanwhile, you can’t discuss the basic history of electronic music without mentioning Chicago house, Detroit’s Belleville Three and underground warehouse parties. Yes, there was a time when legitimate “raves” really did exist in the U.S. of A., way before I even knew how to spell the word.
Octopus Recordings‘ owner and producer SIAN teamed up with pro skater Aaron “JAWS” Homoki to create a rad short skate documentary, OCTOPUS100 compilation and simplistically steezy skateboard merch celebrating Octopus’ 100th release. SIAN‘s OCTOPUS100 mix features Pleasurekraft, Juheun, Shelley Johannson, Carlo Lio, Loco & Jam, and the list infinitely continues.
1) Which skate video of all time do you think has the best soundtrack?
I would have to say Lakai´s ¨Fully Flared¨ video, Especially the part where they use the M83 track ¨Lower your eyelids to die with the sun¨. Epic indeed.
2) What is your view on skateboarding and techno’s recent increase in popularity?
I think it’s inevitable that anything rebellious and counter culture will eventually become adopted into the mainstream in some way, it’s a really cool common ground for a lot of people.
3) What do you love about hosting “Octopus100” pop-up events? How will you select concert goers with the limited attendee list?
It´s a fine way to give something back, Fans love being right up close and personal with their favorite DJs and we will give a bunch of them a chance to party with us, like we are raging at home. We are running a serious of giveaways online to win entry to these events so stay tuned to our social pages!
4) Other than Octopus Recordings’ 100th release, what do you feel is your most significant personal and professional achievement thus far?
I feel like creating this weird little family around my label, and watching it expand into a proper business and creative endeavor has been mad rewarding. Also just being able to tour all around the world because of the music I make on a computer is pretty surreal.
5) Can you give us a rundown of a typical set you’d play at U2’s techno club “Kitchen” in Dublin during your early days?
That was my first real gig, I was playing everything from downtempo dub techno to drum and bass, it was a pretty eclectic time. Later in the night would go deep into murky late night techno stuff.
6) How does the Octopus100 Compilation embody the current state of “classic modern techno” globally?
I feel the technical skills and inspired ideas in the tracks we selected define the label and our crew well. We chose artists and tracks that had something new and raw, instead of going for the typical chart topper type tracks, to keep us fresh and always moving forward.
7) How does your new and exclusive Octopus Recordings merchandise fit into your brand vision? What’s the commonality between the two besides skateboarding?
We have been working with our friends fouroverfour in Canada on some t shirts, caps, totes and now the skateboard with Jaws Homoki, It´s really just about combining the things we like and felt were needed in our circle, so we design and produce everything in house and maintain control over our output, exactly the way we run the label.
(Check out the Octopus Recordings merch here.)
8) Was there ever an instance where you were unsure of Octopus Recordings’ future, and how did you overcome that self-doubt?
Every single day I doubt my judgement, question everything and wonder wtf I’m doing. I feel that is the only way to really understand what we do, there is no perfection, just evolving and I try to keep that in focus.
Check out the brand documentary below and pre-order the Octopus Recordings compilation here.
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