Exclusive Interview: Bas Ibellini discusses Fabric, and the future of underground music
“Sounds that seduce are those that are both warm and inviting. This generally loosens people up. I think it’s important to give people an opportunity to express themselves, and this is what I aim to do with my music.”
Bas Ibellini is well known in the underground dance community, with over 14 years of involvement in London’s house happenings, as both DJ and party goer under his belt. As his above quote shows, this is a man who prides himself on his distinct ‘seductive’ grooves. Over this time he’s formed alliances with some of our city’s most esteemed house artists – Damian Lazarus was the first to uncover his talent for production, giving Ibellini his first release on Crosstown Rebels’ label, RebelLion. More recently, he’s been picked up by Seth Troxler and The Martinez Brothers for their Tuskegee imprint.
With a talent for creating a certain entrancing energy within his sets and studio offerings, we were keen to get to know the budding producer a bit better, and it has been a busy few months for the Londoner, as he explained in this exclusive We Rave You interview.
“I’ve managed to see some new places this year. Verbier in the Alps for Polaris Festival in December and Bacalar for some down time after BPM festival. Those definitely stood out for me. On the studio front, workflow is better than ever thanks to a change in my setup which has allowed some serious magic to happen over the last few months.”
A mainstay of the Fabric family, Bas Ibellini is a name synonymous with the club, and the UK producer was eager to discuss the importance of the club reopening:
“Fabric has probably had the biggest influence in my musical education over the years. It is a place you can go to on a weekly basis and always be inspired by the music and crowd. At university I’d play regular gigs on Saturday nights and head straight to Fabric to hear something inspiring. It’s a London institution and at the heart of British music culture, so I was relieved when it reopened. It has helped to put the importance of music and nightlife into perspective. I’m really excited to be playing for the second time in room one with The Martinez Brothers and Craig Richards.”
And talking of prestigious clubs, Space Ibiza was always a venue that really gave dance music a platform to flourish. Bas believes these kind of institutions are pivotal in giving fans somewhere to go to express themselves.
“In the past ten years it’s worrying to see how many prominent venues have shut their doors for the last time. Music and culture go hand in hand, and it’s a testament to the way things are changing. That’s why it’s so important to stand up for #saveourculture and keep these venues alive.”
Being from London himself, Bas told us that the dance music culture in the capital is a fairly varied one genre-wise right now, which can only be a good thing for UK clubbers.
“London is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world, with a rich musical and cultural history. Different areas are renowned for different styles of music, typically East is more house and techno, North was more live Indie/Punk, South was more dubstep and West had a strong link to Afro-Carribean roots with the annual Notting Hill Carnival. We are spoilt for choice in London, which I believe has helped me to curate my sound.”
Perhaps one of the most important discussion points was on why Bas believes genres like EDM tend to thrive so well commercially compared to more underground genres like techno.
“In my opinion, underground music is more challenging, whereas EDM seems to be more approachable to the masses. There is also greater access to it as much of it is played on the radio. The investment in EDM production is huge, it is more of an experience. Whereas you could be in a dark underground carpark and you’d be satisfied with the quality of music.”
And not just what type of music we are consuming, but also how it is being played, may change, according to the UK producer.
“With the rate technology is developing, it’s difficult to tell where we’ll be in a few years. I recently experienced separating elements of a track in a virtual environment with RedPill VR which blew me away. That is just touching on the surface of what is to come in the future. It’s always important to look back as well as forward to see where we’ve come from, which is why I’m a big fan of analogue equipment.”
Having bubbled under the surface for so long, it seems like 2017 may be the year Bas hits the big time, with a jam-packed schedule, as he was quick to point out.
“I’ll be playing in South America for the 1st time in a couple weeks with the Social Festival, the opening party of Hï Ibiza and Nordstern in Brazil for a few outdoor parties. On the production tip, I have tracks coming out on Secret Music, Grand Ville, 20/20 and Rumors in the next few months, so catch me if you can!”
It is clear from our chat, that Bas Ibellini is a DJ with such burning ambitions, that his rise to the summit of this industry is only a matter of when, rather than if. With big sets coming up at the likes of Fabric, and Hï Ibiza, you’ll be sure to hear much more of Bas in the coming 12 months, so make sure you get yourself down to one of his performances.
Catch Bas at the Winter Social Festival on 11 March for a day full of quality tunes from Bas and colleagues like Alan Fitzpatrick, Andrea Oliva, Eats Everything, Hot Since 82 and many more.