British DJ Logistics takes drum and bass and infuses it with the mellow sounds of liquid funk.
The melody meanders like a slow-running river; the beat keeps it clubby and danceable.
The keyword in any interview with him is "chilled out" — and he uses it six times or so in our conversation — but it's important to point out that he is talking about the music and not his work pace.
Since establishing himself in drum and bass in 2003, he has worked flat out, producing track after track.
"I'm always aiming for the next project. I'm kind of quite prolific. I get restless if I don't make music," Logistics (a.k.a. Matt Gresham) says from his home studio in Cambridge, England.
He adds with a laugh: "The attention span is not what it was with listeners these days! It's a fine line between giving them too much to digest and not giving them enough. I don't think too much about it, to be honest, if I feel inspired I write music and if I don't, I don't. But it's something I love doing so I tend not to find myself in that situation."
Signing exclusively to Hospital Records in 2004, Logistics quickly became known for bridging the gap between liquid funk, which, until then had often been a lacklustre subgenre and drum and bass.
His influence was picked up by major DJs in the U.K. scene such as Andy C and Friction, and his anthemic creations have contributed greatly to the modern Hospital sound.
Logistics calls his most recent album, Polyphony, a summer album in both sound and timing, and his current tour of North America is the last leg to support its release last July. There are 12 dates, including a gig at Tommy Africa's in Whistler on Thursday, Jan. 22.
"I thought it was really nice to put out an album in the middle of summer, which I haven't done before. It did really well, from the ground up in the U.K.," he says.
Asked if he could recommend a track from the new album to people who don't know his music, Logistics says "As Sure As Sunrise."
"There is some danceable stuff on the album but most of it is chilled out. 'As Sure As Sunrise' is somewhere between the two," he explains.
Logistics went through a stretch where his music "was less organic sounding" and more synthesizer based. He attributes this to Daft Punk's work on the film Tron: Legacy.
"And with Polyphony, I really wanted to get back to something that was more organic. I definitely wanted to make it really relaxed, really chilled out," he says.
Logistics has two brothers also working as DJs; the best known is Nu:Tone (Dan Gresham). All are signed to world-famous drum and bass label Hospital Records.
Logistics frequently works with his brother under the name Nu:Logic.
"The last time I was over, last year, I toured with my brother Nu:Tone. It was a lot of fun, but I am really, really selfish — I like to be able to play my sets and I'm really looking forward to coming out," Logistics says.
"When we were out there, people seemed to know the tracks, which was really nice. I think drum and bass has become more international over the last 10 years."
That wasn't always the case, especially in North America.
"When I first started playing abroad it was very different. The only place that was really clued up on the music, as clued up as England, was New Zealand. That's bizarre because it was pretty much the furthest country away. Drum and bass just happens to be one of the biggest genres out there," Logistics says.
"That's not the case in North America, you've got EDM running things over there. But there isn't a big difference these days, I find, there's just a long way to travel."
Asked if he was bringing much gear to Whistler, Logistics says that when he started, he could be knocked flat by the actual logistics of carrying a large bag of records through airports.
"When there were seven or eight gigs in a tour you'd wish there was another way of doing it. So it's really nice that there is a way to do it all digitally now. I miss playing vinyl to an extent, but it's a lot better for travelling," he says.
When it comes to the studio, he is mainly working on remixes at the moment.
"I've got a bunch of remixes on the way, some of which I can't tell you about," he says. "But one I'm doing is for Andreya Triana (who performs with U.K. DJ Bonobo). She's one of my favourite vocalists, so it's something I'm really happy about. It's really nice to do that at last."
Logistics has also contributed to a new Hospital Records compilation, due out at the end of January.
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