Reggie Dokes Q&A

Hello and welcome to Magazine Sixty, Reggie. Let’s start by asking about your new release (along with Gari Romalis) on Psychostasia: Feel Me Deep. Can you talk us through how you produced one of your tracks and how you achieve your signature sound?

Producing for me is mostly about feeling. If it moves me, then I feel it will move someone else, or at least someone will get it, lol. There are so many things that inspire me during the course of a day. When I am inspired, I get to work. I don’t agonize over a record for long, I am quick to finish once I have something. Mix it and move on to the next. I just think my sound comes from my experiences and growth as a spiritual being and person. I don’t strike out to be different, it is what comes out of me naturally when I create.

What provided the impetus to relaunch Psychostasia Recordings, and how did the relationship and distribution from Clone Records and Rush Hour come about?

I had just gotten to that point creatively, where I wanted to get back to my label. Serge over at Clone offered to help, and I am greatful to him and the crew. Serge and the Clone family have always been supportive of my work. I have done some great records that I am proud of at Clone, so there was a trust and understanding that I was comfortable with at Clone. Rush Hour in the Netherlands is now my new distributor now. With them, I was able to connect with them personally while at ADE, in addition, they have been supportive of my Hip Hop productions, under the alias, “Detroit Westside Kid”. Right now creatively, I am doing deep house and Hip Hop.

Your music has a playful yet intense funkiness. Who are your main influences both in terms of music and also from outside of the world of sound?

I like the way you put that, ” My music has a playful yet intense funkiness to it.” I have to use that one, lol. I would like to think some of my influences in music are: Jimmy Smith, Herbie Hancock, George Duke, Prince. Rod Temperton, Stanley Clarke. Outside the music world would have to be: Dr. Limuel C. Dokes (RIP), Dr. Frances S. Dokes ( RIP) both of whom, were my parents.

Do you feel that nostalgia helps or hinders the creation of music going forward?

Looking back helps me in moving forward in the creative process. I like listening to great musicians and bands. Look and listen to what they are using and the sounds. Now everybody wants a vintage keyboard or drum machine. Most want those cool sounds from the earlier golden years of music.

What changes for better or worse have you witnessed in music and clubs since your label originally released back in 2001?

I can only speak on music. It appears it has become more of a challenge for me to find good soulful music I like, whether it be house, techno or hip hop. It appears that hype has become the norm, and not substance. As it relates to clubs, give me a few more years. I have really just started to tour, so I really cannot give you a true assessment of the European club scene right now.

You also have releases out on Shift Imprint and We Play House Recordings which highlight the diversity of your sound. How would you describe the differences (if any) between House, Techno and other forms of electronic music?

Yes I do have releases coming on Shift Imprint, which is a fairly new label distributed by DBH music, and We Play House ( Belgium) run by my good friend Bart Van Neste aka DJ Red D. For me I just like to keep my sound diverse. On my label Psychostasia, I purposely like to put deep house and techno on the same EP. Keep em guessing, keep them wondering and make it interesting. You have to remember, that I was exposed to house music back in 83 or 84. Also, I was born and raised in Detroit. So back then, we called it progressive music. House music was very raw and soulful. Techno came later for me, but it was Detroit techno: Juan Atkins and Derrick May, much more electronic and futuristic sounding, but still had soul. Now you have all these different genres, and I get it, but at the end of the day for me, if it is good music, it is good music, lol.

And finally. What are you forthcoming plans for 2018?

My plans in 2018 are definitely to play out more as a DJ and continue to put out interesting and soulful music across all three genres: deep house, techno and hip hop.


Re.You – Without You EP – connected

The word you’re looking for here is, excellent. The words plural to describe this latest from connected are building, tension, beautiful, harmonious, and challenging. Re.You surpasses himself with Without You feeling uniquely important as a standalone piece of music that utilises the power of repetition as a force, combining voice and drums to devastating effect. Next, Too Much sees Marius Maier alongside Soheil deliver addictive, smoking, tribal infused rhythms which feel Dub-like yet powerfully pointed. Release: April 6

Ronnie Spiteri – Shakedown EP – Do Not Sleep

Ronnie Spiteri’s refreshingly brutal architectures resonate wildly across the title track so easily it almost hurts. Shakedown, hits you with a succession of powerful drums plus a heady sequence of synthesized lines, which then break down and start all over again. Simple. Anja Schneider supplies the remix which teases you via fiery Detroit intention amid melodic keys and seductive drum machines. The remaining two originals: Inside Out and the excellent Another Life both proceed to gather a furious pace of intensity and both hit the spot via heavy-duty kicks and to the point stabs, which feel particularly acute on the later. Release: March 30

Jay Tripwire & Modern Ancient – Heart432 – Superfreq

Superfreq reassert their importance (again) with this super-hot new production care off Jay Tripwire & Modern Ancient. The original version tugs at the heartstrings as the breathy rush of synths and voice-like impressions are cast together over probing drums and repeating tones, cumulating in a classically tuned arrangement that doesn’t waste a moment. A further three alternative interpretations prove to be equally alluring. The Spiritual Heartbreak Mix alters the emphasis on the drums, leaving both the Meditation and Spirit Tool versions break it all down to reveal the essential elements. The former letting the ambient pulse of the keys expand, the later sees the rugged sequences given free rein to soar against a background of live recordings. The excellent Dance Spirit are on hand to deliver a powerful remix which then accentuates atmospheric notes finely tuned into the stereo of possibilities. Release: March 30 Pre-order

Spatial Awareness – From Hell It Came – Interzone Music Club

I wanted to say that this record is in ways as explosive as Phuture’s Acid Tracks. Bold I know but maybe that’s just how this sounds to me thirty plus years later. I guess with concentrating so much on nostalgia these days perhaps clouded judgements can overlook what’s happening excitedly in 2018. However, this energy propelled production sounds just as hot-wired into the mainframe of history as the aforementioned felt futuristic back then. Its temptingly sleazy array of fast and loose synthesisers drive the Acid fuelled basslines into frenzy, while the beats feel pure and simple. The remix comes from label cohort Pete Dorling who injects a hurried melody into the arrangement, compounded with alternative drum brakes plus plenty of sass. Interzone Music Club’s co-founder and artist in question, Spatial Awareness then delivers another development of the theme on their complimenting Alt Version. Essential House Music. Release: April 13

Jimpster – Burning Up – Freerange Recordings

Lots of words gather to fire-up the imagination to describe Jimpster’s gritty, unrelenting yet exhilarating reworking of Techno, Disco and House all in one go. Sounding like the future has just erupted in a series of awkward stabs that twist and turn any safe notions of what music should safely sound like is no easy feat. But here we go. Burning Up, succeeds in doing so touching tougher sensibilities one minute, then infusing you with harmonic resonance the next. The intriguingly titled, Becoming Cyclonic follows with what can de safely described as a playful nod to Jazz-Funk as drum machines accompanied by ever expanding fretless basslines tune in perfectly to the here and now. Release: March 9 Pre-order:

Jared Wilson – I Love Acid 17

Already sold out of its 303 vinyl pressing these three tastefully tempered tracks from Jared Wilson each strike echoes from the past, while so obviously resounding with the present. Noctilucent, opens in a blaze of analogue repetition that immediately knocks you off balance as furious sequences fill the spaces between the classic drum machines in serious fashion. Next, the more probing rhythms of the excellent Deepen The Mystery initially feel more thoughtful, albeit hitting you at a fast-paced reoccurrence, then proceed to pulverize any remaining subtleties. Which leaves the warmer atmosphere’s of Fort Street To Mars to conclude another fine release of sound from this sought after label.

Sherø – I Came To Jack (Remixed) – Black Vinyl Records

If you like basslines. And let’s face it who doesn’t. Then the one delivered on Spence-Chicago’s dangerously hot remix of I Came To Jack is to be savoured. It’s a cross between infectious Acid and the inappropriately Heavy-Duty cumulating in an excellent remix that stretches out the safety valves of funk to extremity. Big, brash, loud and full of attitude this packs more sonic punch than most with its fusion of stabbing keys and dangerously, tempting percussion. Next is Project 268 who ease down the intensity to reveal deeper shades provoked by cool bass and stereo resonating vocal treatments. Release: March 13 promo:

Justin Harris & blondewearingblack – Remember EP – MFF (Music For Freaks)

Music has that innate ability to transport you somewhere else. In one place and time that’s back to the 1990’s at some random point in the evening with music just like this pounding away. Perhaps it is the fact that Remember is musical, featuring an actual song that provokes that sense of past times. Maybe it’s just that it is a good record. Either way the playful bass and punchy drums do all the work as brilliant, occasional keys add that extra something on the original version. The remix comes from Javi Bora & IAAM who add a more brutal kick to their arrangement, while the essence remains intact care of the vocals touches providing a more open Dub feel. Eggshells In The Ghetto, then simmers with Acid tension as the vocal once again adds spice to the sequence amid fiery snares and deep intention. Fine times. Release: March 23

Genetic Funk – You Need Me – Grounded Records

Si Firmin aka Genetic Funk delivers this sweet counterbalance of melancholy which cries out for late nights and crazy atmospheres. Somehow I suspect this will be revisited across summertime but before then this tastefully crafted production combines heartfelt vocals together with Jazzy intent, cooking soul alongside life-affirming ingredients over a timeless feel for events. A great record which played at just the right moment is sure to cause waves, in either of its three incarnations. Release: March 9