Here at Nightclubber we have always been keen on following the hedZup journey, so when the opportunity arose to catch up with Mancini we jumped at the chance. His latest body of work entitled ‘Helluva’ is yet again more explosive material from the Frenchman, and sees a remix from prolific Swedish producer, Per Hammar. Let’s get in to it…
Hey Mancini, how has 2020 been for you, emotionally, work wise, personally?
Hi! As you can imagine, it has been a very different year on every aspects. The covid crisis has and is still impacting us a lot. With hedZup evolution, I was supposed to be touring much more in France and internationally but almost everything has been postponed. We can’t travel and party as much as before, this social distancing and curfews are affecting also our friends and family reunions… We have to stay strong, stay focused on what we love the most and let the storm pass on waiting for better days!
Did you use the extra time at home to learn new skills or get new hobbies or just chill and reflect?
I’m not the type of person that will chill without doing anything! I used this time to learn, I made an online training course on the software Pro Tools which is a beast in the post production sound engineering world. As I’ve always been attracted by graphism, I started to learn more Adobe Suite softwares. I made a lot of music, alone and in collaboration with other producers. I tried to stay in shape by practicing sports at home almost everyday! And obviously, on top of all this, I worked a lot on hedZup with Wlad on the development of the label.
What have been the proudest moments with your label hedZup so far?
It’s hard to decide as there was a lot but I will say the beginning with the first parties in 2015 in Paris, the first vinyl release in 2016 and the launch of the digital part of the label in 2018… Another very special one is coming in a few weeks with our 5 years compilation that we will release in double vinyl and digital. it sums up really well the label with key artists of the hedZup family! We’ve prepared also few surprises around it!
Why did you start the label, what was the main motivation?
Originally, the label was created by Wlad. We already knew each other at that time as I was resident at the hedZup parties, so naturally I decided to join him in this new chapter. The main motivation was simply to release the music we love and be showcase cool music of our scene!
What is the musical mission? What sounds do you want to champion?
It has to be validated as much as by Wlad than by me. I guess the results of the hedZup sound is a combination of our tastes! It’s hard to define this sound, we’re evolving between House and Minimal but it has to be class, and most of all make people want to dance on it! Maybe the best is to listen to our catalogue to judge for yourself.
Are you keen to help platform up and coming artists and give them a platform, or is it more just about the sounds?
We try to build the hedZup identity, building a family by inviting artists to work several times with us. We usually first release them on our V.A series, and if they confirm, we go for the EP, or asking them to remix another artist of the label.
Tell us what inspired or influenced your new EP Helluva?
Helluva is a mixture of tracks I made between summer 2019 and the lockdown period. Some inspirations comes from a recent trip I was lucky enough to do in Sri Lanka last winter right before the covid. Also, last year I developed new sounds by building my modular rack. It definitely can be heard at some points in the EP! I chose Per Hammar as a remixer simply because I love the job he is doing recently, his atmospheres, his sound… He doesn’t disappoint me as his remix is a bomb!
Has it been hard to make music for the club without being in a club and having those DJ experiences?
My main motivation is still to make people dance but maybe the longer this period will be and the most it will affect our music… maybe we’ll go into something more deep or mental.. I can’t really say yet and hope I’ll not get to this point!
What else have you got coming up/are you working on?
Quite a lot to come… I have a really cool collab EP with Alex Ranerro that will release on Djebali’s label. I also just finished a remix for the UK label Detic. I have original tracks and collab tracks with Jorge Savoretti, also with Wlad on a few special projects coming soon on hedZup…
Have you continued buying dance music and records through all this? Or other sorts of music?
Sure, it’s still my passion, and I love digging but maybe just not that often as we have less gigs. Sure, I also listen other genres, can be Hip-Hop, Rock, Electro… there is good in all genres and thanks to my streaming subscriptions I can listen back to the albums I used to play when I was a rebellious teenager!
Mancini’s “Helluva” Ep is out now on hedZup RecordsGrab it here – https://www.beatport.com/release/helluva-ep-per-hammar-remix/3130027