Hollick and Gabriel Szatan, the duo behind party-come label No Bad Days give an exclusive interview.
No Bad Days have put together a scorching lineup for Saturday November 24th consisting of Project Pablo, Suzanne Kraft b2b D.K., Violet, Hollick and Gabriel Szatan. Its set to be a banger for house aficionados. Ahead of the party Hollick and Gabriel Szatan have been kind enough to give an interview for your reading pleasure.
No Bad Days has a very specific sound and visual aesthetic. Can you tell us about your inspiration behind both of these?
It all stems from a sense of playfulness and colour. If the music has a sense of euphoria and or takes you to a simpler and more carefree time, chances are it fits the No Bad Days mantra.
Yorkshire Tom designed the logo, aka ‘the face’. Tom says ‘the face’ was influenced by how his Grandad taught him to draw when he was a kid: breaking everything down to squares and circles. We’ve also had some of our favourite illustrators and designers work with us on posters and the like. Virtual high-fives directed to Jiro Bevis, Turbo Island and Scottish Tom aka Coolant Bowser.
Your catalogue is quite diverse with music from across the globe. Can you tell us about your approach to A&R?
We try to speak about two or three times a week, usually following the pattern of Jake sending music to Gabe with a message of “one to consider here” or “…ooh, tasty”, then Gabe says he’ll get round to it soon. Somehow this procrastination doesn’t result in a total dead end. Result!
Even though many arms extend from No Bad Days Inc., we stay quite close to an inverted mantra of ‘personal, never business’. Anyone who is kind enough to let us guide their music out tends to be a warm and easygoing soul anyway, but we like to make sure just in case. We want to balance keeping it close-knit while also having an internationalist approach.
The fact we both lead other lives in music greases the A&R wheels, to an extent. Contacts made 2 or 3 years ago for a written piece or a club booking, or even something as simple as reaching out over email when gripping a release on Bandcamp, can pay dividends down the line. You stay in touch with them, shoot the shit informally now and then, and then maybe they wind up as a releasee, a guest on the radio, or a DJ for the London parties.
Whether that person is from as far as Bandung or as close as Lisbon, it’s immaterial to us. Like they say – your vibe attracts your tribe.
Unknown Mobile – Deam State
The No Bad Days edits series is really cool. Was this something you always envisioned for the label?
Not at all actually! It happened quite organically as we were being sent some seriously dope edits from pals, who were coming at these reversions from interesting places; Windham Hill rarities, not just yer usual Afro-disco hits. That caught our ear, but we kept having to pass them on. Then, one day, the lightning bulb appeared overhead and No Bad Edits was born!
You also host a show on Balamii how does this fit in with No Bad Days’ other activities?
Jake likes to go swimming twice a week, Tom does Kung-Fu on a Wednesday and Gabriel… Gabriel likes to run for the bus from time to time.
No Bad Days with Hollick – Balamii October 2018
What have been some of the highlights of 2018 for No Bad Days?
Reframing the label as something broader than just an outlet for the occasional 12″. A year feels like a decade in the internet age (everything happens so much), so the fact that since January we’ve broken in the Tapes and Edits sister labels, issued and re-issued fairly popular merch, gigged here and there, and of course put on a series of nights at OUR FAVOURITE VENUE IN THE WORLD says quite a lot. It’s been a fruitful and fruity transition.
We also had a super fun ‘business excursion’ in Croatia for Dekmantel Selectors – it’s rare to get more than a half-day at a time in together, so a full week of ambling about, admiring acts and scoffing affogato, was a blessing.
Donald Dust – Dazzle Ship
Can you tell us about what’s in store for No Bad Days in 2019?
We’ve got a super sexy sci-fi tape on the way from your local cyberpunk Donald Dust. A long-gestating Floaty Yet Punchy Vol.1 compilation is taking shape nicely. More goofy t-shirts with slogans that are definitely necessary, and almost certainly one or two more musical gatherings at – can you hear us down the hall in the booking office? – OUR FAVOURITE VENUE IN THE WORLD!!
No Bad Days takes place on Saturday 24 November. Tickets are available here.