Spektre on new album 'Against A Dark Background' | Soundspace

Spektre on new album ‘Against A Dark Background’

Interview: Spektre

Rich Wakley and Paul Maddox have spent years refining their craft as techno producers, and are now recognised globally for their output under the Spektre project.

Alongside their Respekt Recordings label, which has seen music from industry veterans and emerging new comers, the pair have released tracks with Drumcode, Noir, Filth On Acid and other leading techno imprints.

Recently, the duo broke the news that they will release a brand new long player in 2020, titled Against A Dark Background. The record will be their first studio album since the 2013 release of Cyclic Operations.

We got the chance to speak with Paul and Rich about the forthcoming album, the current state of Respekt Recordings, how they consider a label for a release and who they’re backing to make a statement in 2020.

You’ve announced the release of your next album, Against A Dark Background, what’s the inspiration behind this one?

As we started work on the new record, we found ourselves in a place where we were a lot more comfortable with our early influences than perhaps we have been in the past, so we decided to make an album that was a tribute to those formative sounds of trance, hardcore and prog that we grew up on.

It follows Cyclic Operations, which came out in 2013, why is 2020 the right time for Spektre’s next long player?

The process of putting a big project like an album together can be quite draining, so after Cyclic we took a bit of a break, then decided to focus on singles and EPs for a while. That period culminated in some really big releases for us, but in the process we’d also had some ideas that didn’t really work as EP tracks, and it was these that formed the start point for Against a Dark Background.

Can you describe the album in three words?

Emotive, atmospheric nostalgia.

It’s set to arrive on Pleasurekraft’s Kraftek, why not your own Respekt Recordings?

Once the album was at a first draft stage, the obvious next question was where to release it, and as you say, Respekt was obviously an option. We’ve been working with the guys at Kraftek for a couple of years now though, and have a great relationship with them as well as being well aligned creatively. After a few early discussions they were excited about the project, so we decided it would be the right call to combine our powers on this one!

On the topic of Respekt, the label has released tracks from Harvey McKay, Gary Burrows, OC & Verde and Juliet Fox, can you tell us who might be coming to the label in the next few months?

We have some amazing releases in the pipeline for 2020. Brennen Grey follows up his monster remix from last year with his debut EP on the label. Rising talent and Respekt regular Origin Riddim makes his return with a rave infused release, and we welcome another Respekt debutant in the form of one of our aforementioned early influences; Oliver Lieb.

And we have seen your own music on Drumcode, Noir and Filth On Acid, what do you consider when thinking about releasing with a label?

It boils down to three key things really: The quality of the label’s output, their reach and fanbase, and how they are to work with. We’re in the fortunate position of having our own label, so we can afford to be selective with who we work with outside of Respekt.

Apart from Kraftek with the new album, what other labels might we see you on soon?

We are going to take a break from releasing music for a while following the release of the album, and have shifted our focus onto the development of our new live show. We will still be writing and working on new material, but it will all be exclusive to our live and DJ performances for the forseeable future.

Thanks a lot for taking some time to talk to us, before we go, who’s your pick for 2020’s top prospect?

Tricky one but we have to give a mention to Spencer Dunning from Toronto whose talent has shone through over the past year. We have been supporting a multitude of his releases including a rather tasty single on Respekt. Expect big things from him in 2020.

Spektre’s Against A Dark Background LP will drop on Kraftek in 2020.