Behind the Beat: Flux Pavilion
Banger after banger, Flux Pavilion has been unstoppable since founding Circus Records with best friend, Doctor P back in 2009. From teaching himself how to make beats to creating some of EDM’s most well-known anthems, Josh, better known as Flux, is a pioneer in the industry. Only The Beat got the chance to peek into the British Dubstep producer’s past while sitting down with him at Spring Awakening Music Festival just before his set. Wearing his favorite tie-dye pants, Flux Pavilion took his talents to the stage drawing a crowd of thousands, ready to rage.
Only The Beat: Are you stoked for your set later?
Flux Pavilion: Yeah, always excited. We’re doing an after party later at The House of Blues tonight which should be radical.
OTB: Do you prefer to play big festivals like this or more intimate shows?
FP: They are both different experiences really. I like them both equally to the point where I can’t really say. It’s a different buzz. Its like at a festival you’re more disconnected. You’re letting the music out there and it’s less about you as a person and more about the music your playing. Where as in a rave there’s something about being intimately connected with [the audience] there and you get more whipped up in the frenzy and it gets a lot more crazy.
OTB: You’ve traveled all over the globe. Where would you say is your favorite city in general?
FP: I like London. I live in London. I grew up just an hour north of London. Yeah, I just like England in general. I think there are a lot of people who hate where they grow up but I feel quite lucky with the traveling that I’ve done. I’ve realized that there is a large part of me that has connected with where I grew up. I was obviously really excited to go to all of these interesting places but there’s something about just my local corner shop, my house and my garden. I’m a lot more of like a caved creature. I like to just stay home. If someone told me I didn’t have to leave the house for two weeks that’s perfect for me. I guess I’m quite anti-social. Not anti-social in the way that I hate being social. I’m just a lot more comfortable chilling by myself. People are at different speeds and mine tends to be sitting down.
OTB: You and Doctor P are really good friends and founded Circus records together. Where did you meet and where did all of that start?
FP: I met Doctor P when I was 11. He was a few years above me in school. He used to have a massive afro and me and my friend Trolley Snatcha, his name is Zach but he’s an artist called Trolley Snatcha, we didn’t call him that back then. We used to throw stuff in his afro on the way home from school and he would always laugh about it. We weren’t friends but we became acquaintances. He really liked music and Zach and I really liked music so when we got a little bit older we started a band with him because he was the only drummer in town.
OTB: What kind of music did you play?
FP: It was mostly covers. Then I started to write music for it. We were always pretty shit.
OTB: How did you transition from that to the music you make now?
FP: When we would record our tracks, Doctor P would always record like he would know what he was doing and he would always be pissing them out with electronics. I always thought it was pretty fascinating and then we became better friends from playing in the band. I would just watch him. He started to make drum and bass so I would just sit there and watch him do that. Then I would go home, I was like 14 at the time, I would get the software and do it all myself. He pretty much taught me everything that I know. I’ve really come into my own over the past few years and gone off in my own direction. Now there is loads of stuff that I do that he doesn’t do. But for the first lump of Circus, if I didn’t know what to do in a song, he’s the guy. I’m like, “How the hell do I make the snare sound like this?” and he’s like “This is how.” I’m a real producer now.
OTB: What was that life changing moment for you when you realized that you were making it big?
FP: I guess it was quite gradual, it doesn’t really happen over night. It happened over the course of a few years. It was when Jay-Z and Kanye West used my track. What really changed for me then, they are like superstars, super professional big artists and I’m just a college kid in my dorm writing music on my computer. There’s a big disconnect there between the way I view myself and they way I view them. But then for those guys to really dig the music it kind of broke down the barriers for me and made me realize that music doesn’t have to be made in a big studio. It’s not about professionalism, that’s where the artist comes in. Music doesn’t have to come from a professional place. Anyone anywhere can do anything and it can be great in all sense of art. Then there was the thing where it’s not like I realized I was a “pro”, I realized I didn’t have to be. I could just carry on being the person that I am and people I view as professional could connect with my music because it’s real basically. So I guess I realize that it didn’t matter so much.
OTB: How does it make you feel that basically every single set now a days samples the track ‘I Can’t Stop?’
FP: It’s quite funny, it’s such an old song. People weren’t playing it for ages and then they started playing it. I think a lot of times people are really desperate to try and be the next big thing or to try and be current or to try and be what everyone is talking about right now. I think for me and for Doctor P as well, there was never really a focus. We didn’t try to be like super cool. It was just that we were trying to write some really good music. Now, if I put something out there and it’s not popular it doesn’t bother me because if its not popular now it doesn’t mean that it’s not going to be popular in ten years time. All I have to do is make sure that I think it’s good and I will always think it’s good. In that sense you’re not really trying to make something happen. You don’t get as disappointed when you put something out there and nobodies really that into it. Its like, cool, they didn’t have to be into it. As long as I’m into it then I’ve done my job, and I will continue to do my job like that basically.
OTB: Shout out a new name that you think is changing the game.
FP: I really like Herobust. His stuff is really outside of everyone’s comfort zone. I think it’s really good to go outside of your comfort zone especially for music. Me and Doctor P just put out a track called ‘Fuckers’ and it’s just weird as fuck and I think that’s the whole point of writing something. I love playing it out. It’s not really utilizing anything that anyone would call popular and I think that’s quite fun. Try and make something that people will dance to even though nobody would expect it to work and I think Herobust is kind of a similar thing. He will put some really weird things in that most would say, “That doesn’t work.” Yet, he will persevere and make it work. I think that’s what I’ve always thought was cool.
Doctor P and Flux Pavilion – Fuckers
Even though Flux Pavilion claims his pace is sitting down, he’s always had us all standing up. Even several years after he releases a track, the world can’t stop dancing to his sound.
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