This Friday, Le Bain is joining forces with Bespoke to present Waifs & Strays, probably the hottest House duo from Bristol. Think deep house with some intelligent dubstep and garage influence à la Todd Edwards, and you have, well, another great thing happening to modern dance music. We met one of the Waifs & Strays, Amos Nelson, for a Standard Q&A.
Waifs & Strays
The Standard: You define yourself as ‘two guys of Bristol making house music,’ which is quite a simple introduction. Would you say house music is a simple thing?
Waifs & Strays: House music started as just simple drum patterns and grooves. Back then, the people making house music didn’t have big studios or loads of equipment, so the music itself was very simple. It was all about a groove and the feeling the music inspired. I think that still reigns true today, and is definitely the case about a lot of our favorite tracks.
Do you remember when and where you fell in love with House?
I fell in love with it at school. Everyone else was into rock and indie music, but it didn’t do anything for me. Then I heard house music one day on Pete Tongs famous Essential Selection show, and was like ‘wow, this is amazing. I have to get more of this.’ Twenty years later, I am still just as passionate.
Your partner Rich has been a dubstep producer. Would you say your productions are post-dubstep house - house music with a futuristic sense of bass?
He definitely takes influence in production technique from his background in dubstep. We are working on some tracks definitely based more heavily on these sounds for later in the year, so watch this space!
Waifs & Strays Body Shiver (Hot Creations)
What do you think makes Bristol a great city for inspiration?
It always has been a very creative city, with a great musical heritage. The main thing is that the city – and especially the dance music scene – is quite small so we all know each other, and supporting each other. Seeing what your mates are doing is totally inspiring. We get together and work on new bits, pushing each other creatively.
If you had to pick your favorite artists from Bristol, who would you pick?
The list is so long! Massive Attack, Portishead, Roni Size are all amazing. More recently, one of my best friends Eats Everything has been simply amazing, both in his music and his DJ sets. One to watch go all the way to the top. I am a big fan of street art as well. There’s a Bristol artist called Inkie. I have a few pieces of his at home. He has such a cool style.
You have been organizing parties in Bristol with a bunch of friends, called Breakfast Club. We love the tagline: ‘Interesting Parties in Interesting Places.’ What is your favorite memory from those?
They have all been pretty special, but I think my favorite one was as an after party to a an event called ‘Just Jack’ in Bristol, which started at 6am - hence the name. There were a lot of big parties in the city that night and the main DJ’s came down to the club, and we all ended up playing. We had Claude Von Stroke, Dyed Soundoroum and Julietta all come play. We hadn’t planned any of this, so it must have been crazy for the 150 people on the floor of this tiny club to suddenly see these really big name DJs turn up and start playing. I think we went until 11am that day…
Waifs & Strays Yeah Yeah (Leftroom Records)
If you had the power to live in someone else’s body for one day in the past or present, who would you pick and on what special day?
I strongly believe in not looking at other peoples lives and wanting to be there, you make your own way in this world. But I guess it would have been pretty insane to be Neil Armstrong first stepping on the moon and being like - ‘I am on the fucking Moon!’
Who are your all time favorite duos?
Peanut butter and jelly - totally addicted to it right now.
Waifs & Strays Be Patient (FutureBoogie)