Enei: Machine Talk!

Enei: Machine Talk!

How amazing has 2012 been for D&B albums?

Spectrasoul, S.P.Y, Audio, Octane & DLR, DRS, Calyx & TeeBee, ALL the Drum&BassArena collections now THIS: Machines by the enigmatic Russian roustabout Enei. We’ve been waiting for this for a long, long time. Coated in his gritty but funky armour, it’s every bit as alluring and addictive as we’d hoped.

We’ve also been waiting to interview him for a long time. But because of the distance and language barrier we’ve had to call in Drum&BassArena’s own Russian translator to make it happen. Great albums call for great measures, right?

It turns out he’s pretty much blind, hates microwaves and, like most of us, has been affected by The Terminator.

Here’s how it went down…

Great album… How long did it take you to create?

“It took me around 2 years to get all the tracks together into one album, largely because much of the material I was writing at the time was flying out on singles and EPs, although truth be known in the days running up to the sending off of the archive for mastering, several new tracks were composed including Trainchaser and Thin Line.”

There’s a great mixture of vibes – from gritty underground to lush soul – are you pleased with the balance of styles you’ve created?

“Yes, the album is indeed quite diverse, although in the early stages I planned on including a few heavier Ram records style of tracks in there, but after discussing it with Kasra we understood they would have been a bit out of place.”

If you had to pick one highlight which would it be?

“I think the title track is the highlight of Machines, but I also like the mood and my own musical vision which shines through in Trainchaser.”

And if you had to pick one tune that was particularly tricky, which would it be?

“A lot of time was spent tweaking Saligia because I really wanted to make it a truly shocking track! I made about 7million variants before Kemo and I finally managed to pick the best one.”

I love the title. Tell me about your relationship with machines…

“In fact the only machine I really use is the computer and other various hardware for making music, but in my life machines like the kettle and other kitchen appliances are just as important!”

Which three machines have made the biggest impact on your life?

“That would be Terminator, Technics 1210 and Playstation3.”

And which three machines do you think mankind might have been best to not invent?

“The microwave and that’s about it.”

Tell me three life changing machines which haven’t been invented yet….

“Definitely a teleportation device of some kind, a device that can stop time and a device that lets you go back in time.”

Enough about machines. Tell me something about yourself that you’ve not told any interviewer before…

“My name is Alexei, I am 24 years old and one year ago I sat on my glasses and now I can’t see a thing when I play my sets!”

Finally. What next? 

“I will be preparing a new album and in fact I have already written a couple of new tracks including one with Kasra! It’s definitely going to be something fresh!”


Machines is out now on Critical. Listen and download

Drum&BassArena Editor: Dave Jenkins has documented beats for over 15 years working with the likes of UKF, Mixmag, DJ Mag, iDJ, Bandcamp, Resident Advisor, Radio 1 Xtra and many more.
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