Craig Bratley is a name we’ve had an eye on of late. What with Andrew Weatherall picking up his awesome “Birdshell” track for inclusion in his masterpiece album (reviewed here) and with the launch of his Magic Feet label. So we thought we’d ask him to put together something exclusive for Secret Life. We managed to have a chat with Craig who was busy preparing the next release for the label.
When did you first get into making music?
I first messed around with making music years ago when I was a teenager. A few friends had bits of kit and would let me go round and have a go. It was a good while after that I started getting my own set up together and then went on to study Music Production.
It was at the end of that course that I had my first 12″ signed. After that I had a few more releases on various labels but then lost a bit of interest due to various reasons and my interest in other pursuits taking over. Then these past 4 years or so I’ve concentrated on the music more again.
How you describe the music you make?
That’s a difficult one. I just try and make music with feeling and depth, hopefully something with longevity and that doesn’t sound like it was knocked up in a couple of hours. As I’m getting older, it also seems to be getting slower!
You’ve worked with quite a few labels already, how did working with Instruments Of Rapture come about?
I sent Birdshell to a couple of people, one of them being Craig Smith from 6th borough project. He’s brilliant and listens to everything he gets sent. He passed it onto Graeme (Clark) and then Graeme got in touch asking if he could release it.
Can you tell us about your studio set-up?
These past few years I’ve gone full circle and have returned to hardware. Just a return to more tactile gear and away from the computer. It’s a lot more enjoyable than using a mouse.
I use Logic and Ableton as my main sequencers and then I’ve got Native Instruments Maschine, a couple of analogue synths and I’ve just bought an analogue step sequencer which is lots of fun. Fortunately I’ve got a very understanding girlfriend. To be honest I’m just a geek and a complete gear slut : )
How important Is DJing to you?
I love it, I’ve been DJing and collecting records since I was a kid. Even when I was at school I would always be the one that would carry tapes around in my pocket and force people to listen to them.
You’ve just launched a new label Magic Feet what have you got lined up?
The next release is by two really talented guys from Sweden who record under the name Tommy Awards. It’s been getting really positive feedback from the people I’ve sent it to and is a Balearic bomb. It should hopefully be hitting the shops as people are reading this (June 2012).
I’ve then got a label sampler lined up and then an E.P. by Timothy J Fairplay, which again is amazing. It’s a proper sound track, disco, italo type of affair. One of the tracks is included on the mix actually.
Can you tell us about the mix you’ve done for us?
It’s a representation of the records I’m into at the minute and the sort of vibe you can expect to hear if you see me DJ. It starts off around 100bpm and slowly builds, everything from Balearic, electro and Italo really.
1. Pharaoh Black Magic – Amulet (Begin remix)
2. Lets Get Lost Vol 15
3. Aplollo Heights – Sad Cabaret (Phil Mison remix)
4. Kwanzaa posse – Wicked Funk
5. Phoreski – Shellin Out (Pete Herbert Remix)
6. Robotic Drum Band – Robotic Hypnotic Adventure
7. Naum Gabo – Dimitris Darkness
8. Timothy J Fairplay – Their Trade Is Treachery
9. Djuma Soundsystem vs Kolombo – Cherimoya
10. Bottin Presents Cristalli Liquidi -Volevi Una Hit
11. Army Of God – Salvation (Spaventti O’azzurro Remake)
12. Moon Runner – Cultural Track One