We talk synths and guitars with the influential UK artist.
Erol Alkan has spent the past 20 years making the case that guitar music and dance music aren't so different after all. It's a creative stance that's made him a highly influential figure in UK music, his work as a DJ, promoter, producer and label boss inspiring countless people across two major music scenes. The most famous and best-loved example of this was Trash, the cult party he ran in London across the late '90s and early '00s. It was at these wild Monday night sessions that Alkan's DJ sets and bookings created a new type of musical dialogue, one that took the style and swagger of rock music and fused it with the sleek electronics of dance music. The blinding flash of hype surrounding the party could have sunk a less considered artist, but by the time Trash wound down, in 2007, Alkan had long become a busy international DJ and an in-demand producer, known for his bold and imaginative remixes of acts like Hot Chip, Justice, Daft Punk and Franz Ferdinand. (Many of these have now been collected on a forthcoming compilation, Reworks Volume 1.) Earlier this year, Alkan took up a three-month residency at London's XOYO, a series of events that encapsulated his career so far. It featured acts from his label, Phantasy Sound, his old DJ friends like Boys Noize and 2ManyDJs, and live acts like Ride and Peaches who showed that Alkan's attitude towards melding scenes has never wavered.