A moment with Mark Knight

The man behind it all, Toolroom Records’ founder Mark Knight has proven to be a rare breed amongst his peers, a house and techno heavyweight if you will. With a career that now spans over decades, from the progressive house days to the now ever-evolving techno scene, Mark has been at the forefront of some of the biggest underground music movements to date. He is a Grammy nominated producer, international DJ and runs one of the biggest labels on the planet, we caught up with him before his gig at the new Seminyak club Opivm to see what he might have in store and how we should prepare for this monumental gig on Jl. Dhyana Pura! Catch him Wednesday February 1 at Opivm.
Hey there Mark! How is your New Year treating you?
Pretty good so far. After a much-needed break to spend some time with my family at the end of last year, I’m straight back into the fray, wrapping up a couple of things in the studio and travelling halfway round the world to play at some great venues. I’m looking forward to what 2017 has in store.
Another busy year for Toolroom, can you give us some of the highlights of last year?
I say this every year, but just that the fact that the label is still there and thriving makes me incredibly proud. We’re fast-approaching our 15 year anniversary, which will be a great milestone to hit.
What about your personal highlights? Are they any different?
I’ve been working in the studio on a new project that’s very nearly finished. This is something that will be kept separate to Toolroom and will show a different side to my production. I had some really successful records last year, but I feel like it’s time that I did something that pushed me a little bit more. So that will hopefully see the light of day sometime this year.
You just performed at the BPM Festival in Mexico with some of Toolrooms greats, how did it go?
It was a fantastic experience, as it always is. As you say, the line-up was pretty spectacular and everyone smashed it. BPM continues to be one of the most fun festivals to play, and it’s a great way to kick off the year. [Ed. This was written a few days before the club shooting at the festival] How do you find room for producing? How many of your records started off on a plane going to another gig?
It rarely happens like that to be honest. I find that I’m much more creative and in the zone when I’m in the studio. I might have an idea for a record on a plane or when I’m travelling, but I always like to be in the studio to really get stuck into. As far as finding the time goes, it’s a constant struggle! I wish I had more time, but I have to balance my time in the studio with everything else that’s expected of me. I’ve been trying to take more of a backseat in regards to the label to give me more time elsewhere, and expect that to continue this year.
How many projects are you working on at this very moment? Where does the inspiration come from?
As I said the main one I’ve been working on I can’t really talk about yet, but suffice to say it’s something I’ve put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into. The inspiration for this particular project came from wanting to do something new, that would have its own identity, and eventually legacy. Inspiration can come from anywhere, at any time, but usually when you least expect it.
Out of all the remixes, originals and collaborations you have made in your time what is one that really stands out for you?
Nope, sorry – can’t do it! There have been so many that have been really special, for different reasons. And ultimately it doesn’t matter what my own personal favourite is, it’s about how much the music I make is enjoyed by my fans. Hopefully every record I’ve made is someone’s favourite. It’s a nice thought to have anyway!
What are some of your favorite activities away from music?
Doing anything with my family, sport, sitting on a beach: basically all the stuff I rarely get a chance to do because of my fairly relentless schedule.
You have performed in Bali quite a few times, what are your thoughts on the electronic music scene here?
It’s getting better and better, every time I play the crowd seems more knowledgeable and into the music. There’s a real local scene of DJs and music lovers, and then you get the holiday/tourist crowd who are always up for a party: it’s a very hedonistic environment. And of course it’s a paradise, which helps!
We think you are the perfect act to put the island’s new club Opivm on the international map, what can we expect on the night? Do you have any tracks in mind for the gig?
You’ll just have to come along and find out for yourself…

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