Originally from Glasgow and now residing in Melbourne is the DJ and label owner, David Keane (Batton). In terms of nocturnal life, he’s made numerous appearances at the super crispy Bunker parties here in Melbourne as well as playing along side DJ’s such as Rebekah and Clouds. During the daylight hours he operates his label, One4sevenone, a label that’s aimed at allowing up and comers to have their music heard.
Check the Q&A below the mix for a further insight into Batton.
How would you describe the differences between the Melbourne nightlife/Techno culture and the culture in Glasgow?
I think both cities are pretty similar in relation to their respective techno scenes. Due to the geographical location, club nights in Glasgow tend to have several international artists playing each week, and sometimes on the same night. Slam’s club night – Pressure for example usually has between 4 – 6 well established artists playing on the one night. My last Pressure (March 2013) before coming to Melbourne had Len Faki, Nic Fanciulli, Nina Kraviz, Paul Ritch, Slam and Silicone Soul all playing on the one night. In Glasgow, clubs will close at 3am unless on a rare occasion a late license is applied for and the club will close at either 4am or 5am.
As a result of packed line-ups and 3am closing times, I don’t think local artists are given the opportunity to play at these types of nights in Glasgow. This in itself is a massive contrast to Melbourne’s scene as bigger nights will have one or maybe two internationals playing, and clubs don’t have that ridiculous 3am license. This opens up opportunities for local talent to play at these events, and in turn support some of their favourite artists in the scene. I myself have been given the opportunity to support Rebekah, Clouds and more recently Answer Code Request … Which has been an extremely rewarding experience.
How have you noticed the local scene in Melbourne grow since you first came to the city?
When I first arrived I was immediately aware of the established promoters such as Stable Music, Melbourne Techno Collective and Novel. But I quickly became aware of the newer crews such as Bunker, Stranger, The Public Works Department and Pleasure Planet.
I can’t really comment on the scene pre-2013, but seeing these newer collectives bring international artists to Melbourne is really exciting. I’ve been closely associated with the Bunker crew and have had the pleasure of seeing them grow each month and booking internationals like Xhin, Mary Velo, Developer and Norman Nodge, the fellas are going from strength to strength. Quick mention on the work of PWD of The Public Works Department, bringing the likes of Rrose, Milton Bradley and Kr!z to Melbourne as well as being involved in various other nights across the city.
The newer collectives are breaking the norm and offering Melbourne an exciting alternative to their clubbing experience.
What made you decide to move to Melbourne? Was it techno related or lifestyle related?
It was lifestyle related, however I made sure I did my research before moving here. Melbourne’s scene seemed to be more active than anywhere else in the country and as a result, I don’t think I could live anywhere else in the country. I definitely consider Melbourne my second home.
Did you ever travel to different countries and consider living there instead?
I have been to various countries in Europe and it should come as no surprise that I’d love to move to Berlin one day. I visited the techno capital in 2010 and absolutely fell in love with the culture, the lifestyle but most of all, the underground scene. I recall visiting several clubs over the course of the weekend and seeing talent such as Jerome Sydenham, Bloody Mary, Alan Fitzpartrick and Robert Babicz. Didn’t make it to Berghain on that trip though!
The temptation to move back to Europe is obviously strong as there is a much higher concentration of artists, in a continent the size of Australia. Thus making it easier to book artists to play your night, or have a weekend clubbing in Berlin or Amsterdam.
What is it about Techno that makes you love it so much?
I can’t describe it. It’s that feeling of hearing an absolute belter of a tune for the first time and being completely immersed in it. A tune that you can’t help dance to.
I also love the sense of community within the scene. I have met some of my best mates through my love of techno, and we all connect through that same love.
What is it about artists such as David Byrne and David Bowie (aside from all sharing the same name) that inspires you and does this influence make its way into your DJ sets?
They’re both great producers and make fucking great music. Although I don’t believe they have a huge influence over my DJ sets, both artists have definitely made me appreciate different musical genres. I think it’s important to remain open minded and not to limit yourself in terms of what you choose to listen to – perhaps that’s what influences my sets and is why I have been known on occasion to close my sets with something unexpected such as Talking Heads or Arthur Russell.
To what degree do you read the crowd compared to just playing what you feel like?
In February I was billed to close Bunker Open Air 5 at Railway Hotel in Brunswick. My good friend D-REX was playing before me at around 133BPM/134BPM. I had an idea in my mind of playing a lot slower than this however quickly realised that that wasn’t an option as D-REX had the punters goin’ roon.
I think it’s important to create an experience for the crowd that is consistent with the vibes, and DJ’s need to be versatile when it comes to these types of situations.
Have you thought about producing music yourself?
In August 2013 I purchased Reason. I wrote around ten rough demos but soon after that founded One4SevenOne and quickly realised that with working full time and managing the label, it wasn’t realistic for me to invest time in producing while I’m so busy. It’s something that I’m definitely interested in pursuing when I can give it the time and commitment it requires.
Do you have any particular favourite elements in a track that you love to hear?
I’ve been absolutely loving chords featuring within tracks recently. Coupled with a strong kick, and hats … Christ. I’ve been hammering Johannes Heil’s track ‘Transition Six’, which was released on Len Faki’s ‘Figure’ imprint for over a year now. The way the track completely breaks down at the mid-point to introduce the sound of chords is so powerful and effective. You’ll also hear Gary Beck’s brilliant track ‘Wren’,released on his own label ‘BEK Audio’ in my Bomphcast mix, which is another example of chords being used very effectively.
What made you start your label One4SevenOne?
Through my absolute passion for electronic music. It’s something I had been thinking about doing a few years prior to founding the label, however felt I never had the time to properly get things going. Before starting my current full time job in November 2013, I had a few months of being in-between jobs, which gave me the perfect opportunity to come up with the concept, direction and design etc. I then contacted my connections within the Glasgow and Melbourne techno scenes and began releasing podcasts on a fortnightly basis to generate some interest, leading up to the label’s first release in April 2014.
I knew I wanted to put my stamp on a scene that had given me so much to over the last 6 – 7 years.
How do you go about accepting requests/choosing who will appear on the label?
One4SevenOne has always been a platform for striving artists to get their music out into the world. I’ve had the pleasure of releasing debut EP’s for some of Melbourne’s finest talent. In relation to my selection process, it is definitely a mixture of artists contacting me with demos and me actively seeking out talent via Soundcloud or Facebook etc. The label has always been ‘techno-focused’, however at the beginning of this year I signed a really diverse EP from Melbourne’s Spilt Silo. The EP contains techno, experimental dub and ambient tracks. After hearing Stew’s ambient track ‘Meringue’, I knew I wanted to sign it to the label. >>>https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4D12ivaNQIY
As I mentioned previously, I don’t think artists or labels should be limited to one specific genre and it’s always encouraging to keep an open mind.
Aphex Twin – Xtal (Original Mix) [R&S Records]
Recondite – People Wouldn’t Believe (Original Mix) [Dystopian]
Rødhåd – Like Tears In The Rain (Original Mix) [Dystopian]
Bodyscrub, Pascal Nuzzo – Believe (Keith Carnal Remix) [Amazone Records]
Kyle Geiger – Rewind (Deep Water Edit) [Cubera Records]
Roberto Clementi – Thorn Birds (Original Mix) [Soma Records]
Jonas Kopp – STP (Original Mix) [EarToGround Records]
Pfirter – Procyon (Original Mix) [MindTrip]
Niereich – Ventricular (Kessell Remix V1) [Nachtstrom]
Gemini Voice Archive – Transparencia Opaca (Original Mix) [Soma Records]
KiNK – Cloud Generator (Original Mix) [Running Back]
Gary Beck – Wren (Original Mix) [BEK Audio]
Carl Craig – At Les (Christian Smith’s Tronic Treatment Remix) [Tronic]
Daft Punk – Alive (Original Mix) [Soma Records]
Arthur Russell – This Is How We Walk On The Moon (Youth Return To Base Edit)