if you know of this pair already, apologies, but those who don’t need some sort of draw to get them interested. so, they’re an irish duo who hold a residency at belfast’s most discerning house and techno gatherings the stiff kitten and shine, had a track used on digweed’s latest transitions mix, are signed to steve lawler’s no nonsense Viva imprint, as well as house legends silicone soul’s darkroom dubs, and now here they are, the subject of teshno’s very first interview…
[the image you see is one the guys picked themselves...'being in the jet project is like being in a marriage - good days, bad days and loads of bickering.']
how and why did you get into this; what drew you to it?
we deejayed together on a good few occasions and realised we were extremely likeminded souls and there is a great energy when we both dj together. we had fulfilled all our ambitions on the local front and wanted to spread the vibe a lot further than home, so production seemed like the logical step to get ourselves heard on a worldwide platform. we had both dabbled in the studio before on various projects over the years, so we decided to throw everything we had experience wise into the jet project.
what are your influences; what music were you brought up around?
our influence’s are pretty varied everything from basic channel, ron trent, prince, adonis, depeche mode, radiohead, chicago house, dj sneak, derrick carter, metro area, traditional african & latin music, a lot of world music actually. we were brought up on motown stuff, the beach boys, blondie etc, then the teenage years brought the stone roses, happy mondays and eventually acid house.
do you still put your nights on? why?
we still have a monthly residency here in belfast at the stiff kitten. it’s good to keep some connection with our own hometown and also a chance to introduce guest djs we appreciate to the people here. it’d be cool to try and keep that going, even though the guest offers are now coming in.
how, if at all, does that inform your productions?
it’s great to have somewhere to road test works in progress, check levels on the club’s system and generally see how tracks perform before we commit them to an official release.
how did getting signed come about?
demos are generally always being thrust into guest djs hands. actually a good few years back, an initial demo we’d given to silicone soul bailed them out when a club’s turntable went down, as it was the only cd they had on their person they played between the tracks on it and one turntable for nearly an hour. they immediately took some material off us after that.
what sort of kit do you use live, and in the studio?
we are djs who produce so not so much of a live act as yet, we may develop a live show for next summer’s festivals etc.
so currently if you stick three pioneer cdjs, a decent working mixer and two good monitors in the booth and you’ll get the best out of us. in the studio we use ableton and cubase, a host of plug ins and we also take our tracks into a professional studio, which has a digital desk, outboard compressor, and a few killer bits of retro hardware to do the final mix and master.
have you come from any sort of vibrant sonic scene we don’t know about in ireland, or are you lone rangers?
there’s a lot of stuff happening on different levels with people like david holmes, phil kieran, scope and boxcutter all flying the flag.
within the electronic/house scene, we currently fight our own corner, although we have both been involved in studio projects and various club nights here in the past. we have a couple of side projects on the go at the minute (yankee zulu & bubba & t-bone) but on the jp front, we are very much a two-man team.
how’s the label doing, especially in the current climate? is it digital or vinyl?
two releases in and it’s going very well to be honest. it’s digital only though, as we don’t really play dance music in a vinyl format these days so we didn’t really feel could expect others to support the releases that way either. there are also fewer overheads involved in the digital only format, therefore also less pressure. it was meant to be a fun project for all three of us and so far so good.
this might sound strange, but to my mind the jet project doesn’t sound like a name i’d put to the sort of music you’re making – more an indie band or breaks duo or some shit?
i suppose names can conjure up allsorts of different images in different peoples minds. we wanted our name to sum up a feeling from our productions and dj sets. we aim to have a pretty powerful dynamic in both, so a mention of a jet seemed to fit well and both our first name initials feature in that word too, so it seemed the most apt at the time.
another contrast comes to mind when i listen to you guys… from ireland, but making – at times – tribal, chanting, bongo techno!? in fact, there are a ton of angles to your lp – none of which shout ‘ireland! – where do they come from?
well we are definitely proud of our roots but not so hot on every local tradition from here, especially the music and any celtic influences in electronic music usually come out sounding fairly naff. musically, our influences come more from europe and america, which is definitely more evident in our actual productions.
what would you like people to think or feel when they listen to your lp?
that they haven’t wasted 74 minutes of their life.
what are you trying to express with it? where does it come from?
i guess it’s a bit of us compressed down into 70 odd minutes and will hopefully give people a little snap shot of the jet project. if they like what they hear, hopefully they’ll investigate a bit further and maybe come to see us play somewhere.
where will you go now?
onwards and upwards hopefully, we’ve stacks more releases and remixes coming out over the summer months, loads more to do and some killer gigs lined up.
in the booth or in the studio?
booth first, studio second.
who’s an arsehole? why?
way too many to mention here and we are gentlemen so we never tell tales.
who’s a hero? why?
mr. weatherall, i suppose. i dunno about the word hero but he’s a bit of a living legend. a definite maverick who never fails to impress us musically.
what couldn’t you live without?
house music, our ears.
what would be your desert island discs?
the complete box set of the wire.
the best of basic channel
now that’s what i call jet project (our extensive back catalogue of dj mixes)
depeche mode – violator
also a laptop to play them on would be handy.
what’s the best thing about the industry?
all the fresh music being produced.
and, of course, what’s the worst?
all the fakers out there, in it for the glory and not actually moving the scene forward, usually piss us off no end.
finally, please leave me with a question to ask the next person i interview…
who is your favourite ghost?
buy the jet project’s ~ ‘heads in the clouds’ lp and experience a diverse sonic tapestry woven together with common threads of intricate house percussion, synthy techno and dark tribalism. alternatively find out more on their myspace or catch them at la terrazza, barcelona, on july 17th.