Our first interview of the night at the UnKonscious Gathering in Bangkok was with Sam Laxton, an artist with a whole lot going on from gigs around Asia to a recent FSOE release (not to mention joining Aly & Fila on stage with it). Read on to familiarize yourself with his music and hear what he’s working on next.
On the way here we saw you announced an upcoming show in Manila — tell us about that.
■ It’s a big deal for me because since Covid, the only places I could really travel to have been in South East Asia. I’m playing Manila December 17 and then we’re doing an island rave on Ko Phayam December 23-24. A Christmas rave on the beach that’s not just trance; it’s going to be like a vibe thing. I’ll go more underground.
I was just listening to your new FSOE track. What amount of your sets are your own music?
■ It’s always tempting to play a producer set because you’re there and people want to see you, but I like this thing about still being a DJ and looking for tracks the day before a gig and still trying to find something that’s going to surprise people. If I was to turn up to the club and play the same records every set, I would get bored and people would probably get bored if they came to see me multiple times. Tonight’s going to be about 50/50.
Were you a DJ or producer first?
■ A bit of both. I started getting into this world of dance music as a fan when I was 12 years old. I wanted to know how to make this music. I lived in New Castle in the UK, and at the time it was like 2007-2008 and there was not a lot out there. There wasn’t a YouTube guy telling you what to buy and what to use, so I DJ’ed a bit in my bedroom then realized I had to produce music so that’s when I got into it. I was really a producer and a DJ, then a producer for a long time until I started getting gigs.
We first heard of you from the UnKonscious boat stream. What are you working on now?
■ What was a remix is now being made into a collab to give the original producer a push — he sent his demo into the label and I saw massive potential and thought we’d turn it into a big anthem, so I’ll play that tonight. I’m mostly working on the third installation of my compilation series, Soul Contact. The third installation is going to be two CDs: the first CD deeper and progressive; the second will be what you hear in the club.
And preparing for next year. I’m playing the main [UnKonscious] event in February. A lot of the time in Asia, some of our gigs are rotational so I might be back in Myanmar and Japan again next year. This Manila thing is going to be good because it’s putting my foot in there.
What can we expect tonight?
■ I wanted to go in a but more laid back, but to be honest I’m in the mood to really blast it.