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Fieldtrip Festival is right around the corner now, and Leeds native Denney is one of the major players in the festival’s program. The DJ and producer has been on a rich vein of form recently, putting his touch to releases on the likes of Resonance, Saved and Hot Creations in addition to signing with Steve Lawler’s esteemed VIVa Music outlet. He’s done all this while befriending the legendary Oscar G from Murk Records, and working with the house stalwart has proved an influential creative process that’s seen the producer emit his best work yet.

We knuckled down recently with the Back to Basics resident to chat about his pending performance at Fieldtrip, his current release schedule and why Leeds is still the place to party in the UK…

Your latest release with Digitaria has just dropped. Can you fill us in on that one a bit? Ja, it’s just come out as part of their new album on Hot Creations. Last year Daniela [from Digitaria] approached me as we had become good friends and always got on well, and asked me if I would be up for writing a track for their album. She said she’d write the lyrics and do the singing, so I was extremely honoured and jumped at the opportunity.

I put a rough idea down and sent it to her and [Digitaria’s] Daniel, then she sent me a load of vocals back and told me to cut and choose what I wanted. So I did that and then created the track around them. It was finished a year ago and has just come out recently. I am so happy to see the finished product, as I know the amount of work that went into it. I never have any expectations but It seems to be doing well, the feedback has been great and it’s already been played on Radio 1; which is good going considering it’s still early days 

You’ve been doing a lot of remixes of late too…

That’s right! On Resonance I have a remix of Waifs & Strays called “Keep Pushing” and on Sidetrak I have remixed Hempolics ft Maxi Jazz called “In My Brain”. Busy! Busy times. Am I right in thinking you’re also due to release on Nic Fanciulli’s Saved too? Yeah, that one is a collaboration with my good friend Ste Guthrie and more a techno-styled track which will be out in October.  I have known Nic for a long time now as we were both Mixmag Future Heroes stars about 10 years ago, so we are old friends. Weirdly enough my first ever track got released on Saved in 2005 so it’s great to be releasing on there again. The label has gone from strength-to-strength since my last release and Nic has established himself as one of the biggest DJ/Producers in the world in the days since. So very exciting for me! I’m also hearing rumours about a friendship with Oscar G…

[laughs] Well ‘friendship’ is maybe overstating it a bit, but I have got to know him a bit over the past few months thanks to a track/remix I have done for him. I have so much respect for what he has done over the years with Murk and a solo artist so it is great to actually be doing something for him.I gather he’s been influential then? Massively! Murk’s productions are incredible and they have made some timeless seminal records. Plus the thing that always got me about Oscar’s music was the drums. That man can’t half make a beat!What do you have coming up with him? It’s a bit of a long story, but basically I made a track that sampled a vocal from one of his old tracks and was trying to license it. I was able to but basically there were some politics that came into it with the labels involved so now it is coming out as a remix of the original track. I’m just really pleased it is going to see the light of day as it has been going off whenever I play it. Plus it’s now coming out on Nurvous which is obviously a legendary label.

denney2.jpgTell us about festival season, how has it been for you? Where have been your favourite places to play? So far it has been amazing, this year is my first proper year of staying in the UK for the festival season. Over the last few years I’ve been in America or in Ibiza. I’ve popped my festival cherry at Glastonbury, Secret Garden Party & Gottwood festival over the last few weeks, all of which are totally different but all amazing experiences. The highlights have to be playing Secret Garden Party as I closed the Pagoda stage on Saturday night which was magical and Gottwood festival as I played with the Back to Basics crew and we all had amazing sets there. I’m actually really excited already to go back and do these next year.Do you prefer it to the more intimate shows? It is impossible for me to choose one over the other. Festivals are loads of fun and obviously you have the whole being outdoors vibe.  Intimate club gigs can be incredible and quite intense, plus usually you play longer sets so can dig a little deeper and twist the crowd a bit over the course of a few hours. Tell us about Fieldtrip on your home soil, what can you tell us about the festival? It is a new festival that is built on love, friendship and good times -which I think is a winning formula. There are a lot of local club nights and artists involved which I think is great as it shows that everyone is coming together and working with one another so there is no rivalry.  Also they have booked some fantastic headliners with artists like as Dub Pistols, Todd Terry and Ben UFO on the bill so there is genuinely something for everyone. I’m really excited for it and think it could be the start of something amazing for Leeds.Leeds is a major factor in the UK clubbing market, why do you think its still at the centre of the industry even after 20 + years of hedonism? I will probably rub a few people up the wrong way when I say this, but I honestly think the reason Leeds is such a major factor in the UK is down to Back to Basics. It is now into its 23rd year and still has no sign of stopping. It has to be one of the most solid teams of residents and most importantly has never sold out and puts the punters and the music first. It has never stayed at one venue for too long and has continuously evolved by bringing in new talent and embracing musical development. People around the world know what Basics is and everyone in the industry respects what it has done. Dave Beer also gets called the unofficial mayor of Leeds for what he has done for the city. Basics is in the Leeds museum so that is saying something in itself!Finally, where else can we see this summer? I have upcoming gigs over the next few weeks at Fieldtrip Festival in Leeds, Ceremony Festival in London, VIVa Warriors in Ibiza, Toronto, Fabric, Back to Basics and Motion in Bristol. A really exciting few weeks ahead!

Now signed to VIVa Music you can catch Denney playing at VIVa Warriors events throughout the summer in Ibiza or back in the UK at Fieldtrip Festival in Addingham Moor August 15th -17th – fieldtripfestival.co.uk

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