18-years deep and counting: Hospital Records continue to break boundaries and push the limits of what a drum and bass label can do.
Monday saw the release of Hospitality 2015. After a two year hiatus from the Hospitality compilation series it boasts 60, yes 60, tracks that demonstrate Hospital’s knowledge of the ever evolving times. Intricately hand-picked by London Elektricity and the Hospital crew, the album, which also includes two full CD length mixes by Nu:Tone and 22 previously unreleased tracks, is a blend of new artists standing side-to-side with the scenes more illustrious names such as High Contrast, S.P.Y and Hazard.
You can buy and experience the album on MP3, WAV and vinyl format over on the Hospital website.
Hospitality returns to London’s O2 in February before they continue to dominate the dance across the UK, North America and New Zealand deep into 2015. Find out if Hospitality is coming to a place near you soon.
This year sees releases on Hospital and sister-label Med School looking and sounding as excellent as ever. This latest album is a stellar reminder that the label is continuing to move forward under Tony Colman’s innovative directions and a reminder for us, to trust them. They are doctors after all.
In light of the new release we decided to catch up with one of the fathers of drum and bass and head of the NHS, London Elekricity. Tony took time away from his grapefruit to give us some insight into the new album, going on tour and more…
Easy Tony, Long time no speak! What have you just been up to?
I was just peeling a grapefruit actually. (Favourite studio snack)
The mammoth Hospitality 2015 dropped on Monday, what a selection! It’s been two years in the making, why have we waited so long!?
We had to take a break to celebrate being 18, hence no Hospitality album last year – we did We Are 18 instead.
What was the thought behind releasing 60 tracks and two full CD length mixes on the album?
Probably sheer insanity. The original idea, and the final product, are truly amazing imo. That said, the mental scars it’s left on the Hospital staff making it happen will take a long time to heal!
It most definitely paid off! Would you say the sound on the new album has evolved since the last release in 2013 and how has the series developed over the last 5 compilations?
Hopefully the new album reflects the general movement away from generic EDM influenced D&B – there is a massive new wave of liquid producers coming through, as well as fascinating twists on Neuro and minimal. D&B is in a great place, and it’s never been more diverse.
Any personal favourites off the album?
The Fred Robinson remix of Fred V & Grafix’ Major Happy is as fine an example as you’ll ever find of the art of remixing.
Your only feature on Hospitality 2015 is Vapour Trail with LSB on the remix; it’s a wonderful track – is there anything from you cooking in the studio that we can look forward to this year?
I have about 25 tunes I’m building at the moment, and that will grow. I am, as usual, being stupidly ambitious. I decided I had to play to my strengths, which means each track is based around a unique chord sequence. I doubt the album will come out this year, we have many other artists’ albums scheduled so I think Spring 2016 will be the release date. That may seem a long way off, but it gives me time to make some ridiculously indulgent videos for each track as well.
Well we’ll certainly look forward to it…and the indulgent videos. Back to music – what would you say the state of D&B is in in 2015?
It’s stateless. no boundaries. It’s amazing really. Track listing Hospitality 2015 was one of the toughest jobs we’ve ever had, there was so much gold to choose from.
Can you give any production tips for any young beat makers out there?
Yeah – don’t follow YouTube tutorials, because everyone else is and you’ll sound like them. Be unlike anyone else, and make your tunes in a different way from anyone else.
Great advice. Nu:Tone takes responsibility of mixing the album over two CDs. Why was he the best man for the job, did he had have too much spare time after his album and what is his role at Hospital records at the moment?
Haha no – Dan Nu:tone is now an official recruit to the A&R team at Hospital; as our roster has expanded, we knew we needed more intensive A&R. Hospital has been built on a solid A&R policy – and we needed more hands on deck. Nu:tone is the perfect man for the job – he has run labels, he has nurtured his brothers’ music and he is a producer’s producer – universally respected. He gamely volunteered to the mixes. Not sure he quite bargained for the workload though! He smashed it though.
No doubt it’ll prove it’s worth! Congrats again on ‘best club night’ at the D&BA awards 2014 for the fourth consecutive year! So we thought; what new award do you think we should introduce this year?
Best DnB remix of a non DnB tune
We’ll bare those in mind… Hospital is nearing its 19th birthday. After all that time, what would you say is your favourite part of running a label?
That moment when one of your artists turns in an absolute smasher. Also, signing someone totally unknown and helping them to become massive. That’s makes us damn proud!
Any plans towards the big 20th party already?
20 is nothing. 21 is something!
You’ve got a huge night on Feb 6th at Building Six, I’ve got my ticket! How does it feel returning to the O2 for such a big night?
Great. That venue, from it’s incarnation as Matter to Building 6, has been one of the very best clubs in the world.
Room two is looking especially tasty!
Yeah – I’ll be sprinting between both rooms to try and see everyone I want to see!
Haha me too. That gig kicks off a national and international tour for the Hospital staff – what are your favourite and least favourite things about touring?
Favourite – meeting D&B heads around the world who all understand the language of jungle, eating local food, and playing to great crowds who, although thousands of miles away, know and understand what it is that I do.
Least favourite – only seeing the inside of planes, cars and hotels 99% of the time.
What’s your favourite track to play out right now?
A remix of my track All Hell is Breaking Loose by The Gentleman’s Dub Club – currently not scheduled for release, but it’s a killer!
Trickier question – favourite of all time?
You know that’s impossible to say don’t you? Ok I’ll say 2nd Sun by Calibre.
With the release and a string of shows lined up it looks like Hospital are still as strong as ever, can you imagine the next 20 years being as successful as the first?
Success is down to chaos theory. All we can do is keep turning up, learn new tricks and work damn hard. Let’s look back in 20 years time shall we?
It’s worked for you this far! Any final words?
Thanks to the worldwide D&B community for making our industry such a great place to live in. Without your support there would be no D&B.
Hospitality 2015 is out now via their website – get it here