Joseph Malik started his music career in the 90ies as a producer and DJ in Scotland, Glasgow and Edinburgh. Joseph and David Donnelly first released an album under the name MF' Outa National on the label "Mo' Wax Headz'. In 1994, Joseph signed a to Stereo MC's label "Response" under the name "Black Anized" which was taken from a Hank Ballad record and from there, they released a series of EPs. After "Black Anized", Joseph Malik began a project called "Futuristica" which took him on the UK new wave direction and NuJazz scene.

He has just released the album "Diverse" under Michael Reinboth's 'Compost Records', which combines different genres of music and creates a new sound. He produced the album along with David Donnelly and together they recorded soulful and hypnotic songs such as a cover of Bill Wither's "Take It All In and Check It All Out" and "I Don't Want". One of the most original and unique releases of the year that has received praise from both fans and press.

Interview by Mauricio Saravia

ARTIST INTERVIEWS: The album has a very interesting combination of organic and electronic music.

Joseph Malik: I have been doing a lot of interviews recently and lot of people think I'm really number one for the fusion of organic and electronic music. I see myself as a DJ more than a singer, or songwriter. I have been a DJ for longer, playing all the modern music. Before that, I was a producer, but I wasn't really into singing. I was doing some stuff for a label called Hospital Records. After working for them, I concentrated on DJing which is my main thing, but I wanted to write and create my own songs. If you are going to sing and make a decent record, rather than: 'Baby, I love you, why can't you come back'. I sing about life, not about bullshit or about love stories. I wanted to do something more truthful and more spiritual.

AI: With the album 'Diverse', you are creating a different style of music.

JM: Well, there's no point in doing a whole style for an album. I think that would be quite boring! Specially for me because I'm quite diversified! I don't really want to start breaking the album down and see the different elements in it, I would rather see it as whole instead. I see it as music in a more organic and natural form. It wasn't influenced so much by music genres, but rather by a fusion of different countries, such as Africa, America, UK, and some Spanish countries, such as Cuba.

AI: I like how you combined acoustic guitars with such a quick groove.

JM: Well, I'm a big fan of the Cool Time Project, where they play a Spanish guitar, and an accordion. I think they are German, but they really like a lot of Argentinean, Spanish and Portuguese music, so they have a kind of warm, organic feel in their sounds. Musically, I like that for the modern age, but for the old age, I like Marvin Gaye. These are the people that inspired me to make the album.

AI: How did you and David Donnelly work together?

JM: David produced the album. For me, it was more important that I concentrated on writing and singing the songs for the album. He performed all the guitar parts in it. A lot of the people thought I was the one who played the guitar in the album, but he was the one who played all the acoustic music in it. He also encouraged me to start singing.

The programming was basically between David (Donelly) and "Son of Ugly" who is also known as Grand Unify. He is a great drum n' bass producer. Grand Unify has just done a remix of "Futuristica", with a kind of a electronic and Detroit feel. I really like electronic music as much as I like club music.

 

 


AI: Which system did you record the music in?

JM: We actually recorded in an eight-track tape machine.

AI: Speaking about the music business, you have been working in it for a while.

JM: Yes, I had a lot of experience. Well, I'm not going to be taken by a fool by record companies. I'm really happy to be working with Compost, because it is my favorite record label in the whole world. It's a bit like being a Football (Soccer) player that gets to be in a professional level by playing in a big team. That's how I feel about Compost.

AI: You organized club-nights and parties in Glasgow and Edinburgh, and won the "Club of the Year Award for two consecutive years at Café Graffiti.

JM: Yes. The name of the night that we played was "The Lizard Lounge". We had people from all over the world Djing and playing live, from Jazz Jamaica, Aqua Bassino, Joyce from Brazil, music from Cuba, hip-hop acts, MC Mellow. Each week we had different musicians performing, from all over the world.

I was there for three years and that helped me to really know what kind of album I wanted to make. I crossed the road musically, and also crossed different races musically as well.

AI: What's a day in the life of Joseph Malik like?

JM: Music, music and music!

AI: Thank you, Joseph!

Special Thanks to Brock Phillips.

You Can Read More About Joseph Malik at: www.compost-records.com