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Spotlight: Eatbrain, Tales of the Undead & Interview with Jade

19. 05. 2014

One of the most anticipated releases as of late (not only in terms of neurofunk, but Drum & Bass as a whole) is finally here. Yes, we're talking about the new Various Artists LP coming out on Eatbrain, Tales Of The Undead. And it's definitely not for the faint-hearted. A week after the exclusive Beatport release it has hit the number spot in the overall electronic music chart there, leaving all them Aviciis and David Guettas behind. Bringing together big names in the game like Jade, Mindscape, Chris.Su or Maztek as well as the fresh blood like Qo, L 33 or Zombie Cats, covering the whole width of "neurofunk", this definitely is an album not to be missed. Whether you like it all "in your face" or prefer a bit more tricky and techy-orientated production, you'll find it here. In the end there's 23 names from 15 different countries involved in 18 fresh tunes that won't let you sit down once they get dropped. Apart from digital version you can get it on CD (coming soon) and also there's 3 vinyl samplers featuring Mindscape & Jade feat. Coppa - Friday the 13th b/w Zombie Cats - Grey Town, Jade - What You Are b/w Disphonia - War Bunker and Chris.Su feat. Kryptomedic - Underground Culture b/w Dabs - Sniper. As usual accompanied with a sick hand-drawn artwork. But enough of me going on about the album, let's hear it from the man himself, Jade, who's responsible for everything Eatbrain related, this album included of course!

 Tales of the Undead

Hi Gábor! First things first, let's talk about Eatbrain. When did you start to think about setting up your own label for the first time and what was your motivation to do so?

Hey! I first thought about that 4 years ago. I've released tunes on more than 15 labels in my career before that, and I felt like I could do a great job at running one myself. Boy, I had no idea! Actually doing something is entirely different from thinking you could do it. In the first year, it was all about me searching my path as a label manager, the second year I've caught on to the taste of running a label, we've got some pretty heavyweight stuff out there, EPs by Mindscape, NickBee, Telekinesis, Teddy Killerz' Violence was nominated for Best Track at the Drum & Bass Arena Awards 2013. This year our first release is number 1 on the top chart, so I think we are on the right path - there's a lot to come after the album :)

Now, a good few releases on Eatbrain later, what was the hardest thing to cope with in terms of running the label? Any funny inside moments worth sharing?

Hardest thing is that I oversee every part of the label's work, I am deeply involved not just with A&R, selecting tunes, but also with the graphic design, promotion campaigns, merchandise, podcasts, and I try to get back to every single fan personally. That last part gets harder and harder each day as the label is getting more and more spotlight, but I still try to keep it up. I care.

I could tell you many funny stories but not without hurting people, so I'm not gonna get into that.

I know you run the label practically all by yourself which is impressive as there's surely a lot of work needed to be done when you want to keep up with the competition, have you ever considered hiring anyone to do some work for you? And honestly, how often does the "okay, fuck that, I quit" line cross your mind?

Well, there are a lot of people working for Eatbrain, even though I personally oversee every part of the work. Triple Vision is responsible for the distribution, their four-man crew has a lot to do with our success. Mindscape always listens to every Eatbrain candidate tune and he has a strong word in what should or shouldn't be on the label. Sam Bloom from CA is our talented writer, Gabor Krizsanyik does an insane amount of online promotion, even my fiancée is involved - she is responsible for the merchandising department. Cygnus Music is our main promotion and mail out crew, Bladerunnaz help a lot with the local Eatbrain Nights, Gram Agency does the bookings and helps out with non-Hungarian Eatbrain Nights. László Tringli does super sick artwork inks that I color and finish up for release. There are at least 15 people involved with label-related work across the planet right now.

And no, it never even occurred to me that I should give it up. There were some fuck-ups in our history, like the third release //Jade - No Cure (Black Sun Empire Remix) b/w Jade & Matt-U - Moblaw (Fourward Remix)// accidentally coming out on Beatport 3 months ahead of schedule, but I think we've managed everything so far and the label is growing exponentially at the moment so I'm even thinking about hiring someone full-time to help out in general matters concerning the label.

Still, as you've said, you've been going from strength to strength last year releasing a bunch of highly acclaimed EPs and tunes which got worldwide exposure, at least when we talk about the drum & bass community. So after some singles and EPs here you are, ready to unleash the first VA album on Eatbrain, Tales of the Undead. How long have you've been working on making this happen?

This album was planned about a year ago, I can safely say this is the project I've worked on the most since I've started my music career and that includes my own artist album. Managing a release of this scale is much more complicated than I've have ever thought, but totally worth the effort. The intention was (and still is) constant, to put quality music out there, to help the growth of the neurofunk movement. And I think we've managed to do that, the release is currently the number one electronic music release on Beatport, among all genres. 

Did you have a clear idea (concept) of how should the outcome sound like and/or a list of artist you wanted to include? Or was it a gradual process of snapping up tunes you liked and adapting the overall shape of the compilation on the go?

You can't imagine a 18-tune album and have it done exactly the way you had it in mind :) It is definitely a process, and in this case it took a whole year. The diversity on this album is unique on every level, in terms of the artists, style, mood. On this album we have well-known stars of the scene alongside total newcomers, all together coming from 15 different countries. There are futuristic crazy neuro tunes (Hyper Reality, Atlas) and old school rollers (Arboria), aggressive stompers like Killcode & Watch My World Burn next to the deep minimal vibes of Future Lights...and 2N's tune is almost jump-up :)  The only thing connecting these 23 artists throughout the unique diversity of the album is top quality. 

So in the end there's 18 tunes and 23 names involved, that's pretty huge for the first album on the label! Care to share your personal favourite? And the obvious question is what's gonna happen with Eatbrain now? Are you planning on signing any artists exclusively to the label and/or releasing their own albums in the foreseeable future?

It's a trick question! I'm not going to name just ONE tune from the compilation as the best :)

As for the future plans, EATBRAIN010 is going to be Zombie Cats and Mefjus with an EP, vinyl test presses are already here. After that EATBRAIN011 is going to be Kung with Aeph. That is what's scheduled for now but we have Qo, Disphonia, L 33, Dabs, State Of Mind, Maztek, Akov, Hypoxia, Concept Vision and more working on EPs. I am really excited to see how those are going to work out.

Having experienced one by myself (cheers for that!) I think it's safe to say Eatbrain nights in Budapest are pretty huge as well, do you plan on taking them on tour somewhere else in Europe or even overseas?

You've earned that DJ spot and I'm happy you liked it :)

We've already had an Eatbrain Night in Greece and Switzerland. And we are working on more. Gram Agency is in the middle of talks for several Nights in Europe so far, but I could imagine an Eatbrain US tour soon.

And how does the future look for Jade? You've been a bit quiet the last year, now you're coming out with some fresh tunes on Tales of the Undead, true, but are there any singles in the pipeline? Or even an album, hm?

Yes, those tunes on the album were much needed, it wasn't just the label that needed attention, my personal life was responsible for the lack of output. I was without a studio for over half a year and building the new one was quite the effort. And learning in the new one took long as well. Anyway, I have several tunes coming up now, only with State Of Mind I've done 3 collabs recently, also I'll finish a tune with Prolix soon and I'll have an EP on Blackout soon as well.

One last question before the end, who do you think we should look out for this year on the drum & bass scene? Do you want to add anything, any shouts?

L 33, that kid is immensely talented. Qo, I have big faith in the guy, I will even have a collab with him for his EP which is almost done. Zombie Cats on Eatbrain will have a big impact soon I think. Concept Vision is going to be big soon, too. Signs from France have some mindblowing stuff coming up. A-Cray really surprised me recently, he has some wicked skills.

I could go on for a while, these are great times for Drum & Bass and especially neurofunk, so many young and talented producers... A few years ago all those kids would have been sucked up by dubstep, now they favor neuro. I'm happy.

Shouts to Rido, Brooklyn, Morebeat, No Money, Philip TBC, Qo, Kryštof @ LIR and Jan Karola!


BUY VINYL - bit.ly/EATBRAINLP001-1 & bit.ly/EATBRAINLP001-2 & bit.ly/EATBRAINLP001-3

RELEASE DATE: 12.5.2014

LABELS: Eatbrain




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