Brighton Mixtapes: Magnus Asberg - A Brighton Underground Legend
Since the success of our beloved Berlin Mixtapes Series, which has featured awesome guests so far, we felt there was a real gap in terms of showcasing the amazing talent within our own home city right here in Brighton. We have a wide spectrum of artists that span across many genres therefore we decided we would create the 'Brighton Mixtapes' Series, so that we can not only showcase established artists but also feature up and coming musicians that would like a platform to be heard.
Equally, whilst our focus at Berlin has always been somewhere between Deep House and Techno we can now open up and extend a wider reach into other genres that Brighton has to offer. Also each artist will be subject to a series of one answer quick-fire questions to accompany each guest mix to give readers a quirky insight into the artists' likes and dislikes.
Next up we have a Brighton Underground legend Magnus Asberg. After earlier years playing Hip Hop, Electro, Italo Disco, Pop & Rock. Magnus first caught the fever for House music in 1985. Since then he’s honed his craft amongst the best there is, pushing the sound everywhere and anywhere he’s been. Unsurprisingly, a DJ career that has lasted more than 30 years has seen Magnus play at hundreds of clubs and parties all across Europe. From world renowned super-clubs like Fabric through mountain-side bars, to hard-to-find warehouses in a city near you, this man has done ‘em all.
Hi Magnus, how are you and what have you been up to this week?
Hey Markus, yes this week I have been mostly snowboarding and sorting out bits for my new vinyl label Romana Records. I also managed to sort out a few gigs in France, USA, Sweden & the UK.
You have been in Brighton a long time now, what made you come to Brightonia and what made you stay?
Yes, I've been in Brighton for a long time now and I came here for the first time when I was about 10ish. Soon after that I started going record shopping here & in London with family friends, who lived just outside of Brighton. We used to come over on family trips from Sweden and I used to spend most of my time in record shops like Jelly Jam (after that became Ugly), Inner Rhythm & Urban, here in Brighton. In London I used to go to Groove Records, Black Market & Zoom Records, then Eukatech, Tag & Swag Records became my favourites.
How long have you been producing and Djing?
I have been DJing since I was about 10, so literally when I started buying vinyl. I started doing mix tapes for the street hockey tournaments before I got my first set of 1200s when I was about 12-13. I then started DJing at the school discos & then opened up my own night club in a small town outside of Gothenburg when I was 17, playing all sorts of early Electro, Hip Hop, Italo Disco & Pop.
I used to be well into my Hip Hop and entered the DMC Championships in 87-88. I got into House music in the mid 80’s hearing a B-side on a Dr Dre 12". I guess House music comes from a lot of different styles of music & I was totally hooked straight away. In terms of producing, I've been doing that for 17 years now with my first release out on DIY Disc as C-Soul. This was my first production name, as it was a few of us back then contributing to the music i.e. singers, keyboard players & drummers. I didn’t want to use my real name and also it wasn't so important to big yourself up so much back then (no social media).
I have now been producing under my own name for 5 years or so with releases out on my own label On The House Records & Romana Records. Releases on other labels include Plastic City with Robert Owens, Quanticman, Evasive, Ornate Music, Myna Music, Manuscript Records, Viva Recordings, Bounce House, Rogue Decibels, Danzon Records, Betrieb Records, Green Gorilla Lounge, Zooted & Booted, Bogota, Future is Now, Oh So Coy Recordings, Underground Lovers Records, People That Make The Music, Scallywag Music, Born Fourth, Kakkoii Records, just to name a few!
I also appeared on compilations like Fabric, Voltaire Music, Re:Intergrated Music Re:vibe, Plastic City, Household Digital, Nightshift Records, Body Music.
Up coming releases will be on Repeat After Me, Oh So Coy Recordings, Deep Experince, Quanticman, Viva Recordings, Underground Lovers Records, Doin Worx, Right Nut, Romana, On The House, Platform 7even & Future is Now Records.
I remember you telling me once about the wild pop up parties you used to do around Sussex. Tell us more.
Yes the parties used to be crazy back then and we used to set up big sound systems on the beach, on the downs and every warehouse you could possible break into! I used to play with Baby Boom Sound System, Bob Church of Sub Genius & Slack Parties and soon become part of Positive Sound System, which became my spiritual home. I used to live in France/Chamonix and organised parties in the mountains, so I sort of had the know as to how tricky sound system set ups can be. Therefore setting up in the pitch black on the beach or in a warehouse with the police standing behind you or just around the corner was just part of every weekend...
Where was your first gig in Brighton?
My first gigs in Brighton were for the Bob Parties & King Tafari Reggae & Dub Sound System that used to do warehouse parties in town. I used to play House and they loved it so much they would get me on straight away when I turned up with records I'd bought that day. My first gig in a club was at the Shark Bar on the seafront for the Enlightenment parties and soon after that I started playing at the Escape, The Event (now Prizm), the Old Concorde by the pier, Beachcomber that became the Honey Club (now Shooshh) and of course The Zap (now The Arch) but I was more focussed on the free party scene really.
You have played at some impressive venues and parties around the world. Which places have been the most fun over the years?
Yes, I've played at some amazing clubs & parties including Fabric, The Mass, Turnmills, The Cross, The End, Megatropolis Warehouse with Drum Club (Charlie Hall), Heaven, Soundshaft, The Drome, 333 club, The Key, The Scala, Board X Battersea, Urban Games on Clapham Common, The Bomb Nottingham, Comics Club Bulgaria, Mokka Switzerland & all the first raves in France were a very special time. I also used to be involved in the Notting Hill Carnival too, where we hosted a float with Positive Sound System. In addition, WMC was always fun as we used to do the closing party there for a few years with Justin from Music for Freaks/Classic & Digs DIY plus the Omni AM party in New York was always a belter. Furthermore, the Berns night club in Stockholm was always good and I was well-in with a known motorbike club in Gothenburg that the police would never touch. Finally, of course all the beach parties in Brighton were always very special too.
You do a lot of parties in the French Alps. What do these parties involve and how often do you do them?
Yes I have been doing parties in the mountains all around Europe, which are more day time events such as the UK snowboard championships. I have been doing that for 10+ years but I think the only reason they always get me back was because I was the only one that knew how to get a sound system up on the slopes! I'm pretty sure they didn’t want Underground deep tech all day. Lol!
Equally, you travel a lot between here and your native Sweden putting on various parties - How is the Swedish Underground scene right now and are there any places or events our readers should check out?
Yes, I have been DJing in Sweden a bit more lately, hooking up with a sound system called Locus Sound System in Gothenburg who put on some amazing parties & festivals. They play super good music and the scene is excellent over there too.
You also run your own label 'On The House' - Tell us more.
Yes, I run two labels, On The House Records, which is also a party which I organise all around the world and I just started a vinyl only label called Romana Records. The first release 001 got a remix by Silverlining and EP 002 got a remix by Dudley Strangeway from Leftback Records.
The Brighton Music Conference returns for another year in April, this time shifting its activities from the Dome to the i360, which will be incredible - What's been your involvement with the BMC over the years and how to you feel it's progressing?
BMC is always a good few days of partying and networking. I have been doing the closing party with Wiggle every year since the start. My plan for BMC is a bit more of the same this year but we're looking to go bigger by getting the gang together again, as it's Wiggle’s 25th birthday party this year. Therefore it makes sense we should do a special one. This year we'll be hosting it at Hideout on Friday the 26th of April with a monster line up with friends from all around the world.
Where's your favourite place to just to kick back and chill in Brighton?
My favourite place to kick back is my studio or at Club Magnus after hours (Magnus' own afterparty, which has become a bit of an institution).
And equally, where's your favourite place to let loose?
I like the Green Door Store for the Berlin-Brighton parties of course and I also like what Alter Hour are doing.
Which other DJs or producers are you liking right now?
There are so many good producers out there now, it’s impossible to have a favourite. Currently I like Dudley Strangeway, Silverlining, Arapu, Ted Amber, Mateljan Mariano and Baby Ford.
Back in 2016 you compiled Berlin Mixtape Episode 005 for us. This time around you have compiled our latest Brighton Mixtapes Series Episode 003 - Tell us more about your mix.
My mix is all of my own productions. I have never done one like this before, so it’s a bit special in that way but also a good way to showcase my music. It’s old stuff combined with up and coming releases, all mixed together for your pleasure.
What else can we expect from you soon? What's next on the horizon for DJ gigs & productions? Where can people see you next?
I have got so much stuff going on this year, I have no idea where to start???
Exciting stuff! It's been an absolute pleasure as always talking with you Magnus. Next up here's the Quickfire Round:
Genre: Deep Underground Techy Stuff
Favourite Colour: Red
Where in Brighton are you: In Hove at Club Magnus most of the time...
What do you put on your chips? Cheese
Apple or Android: Apple
Pioneer or Denon: Pioneer all the way - Never heard of Denon? Lol
Ableton or Logic: Ableton but I do use Logic too
Can you juggle: No
Weirdest/Coolest Item of clothing: All my old skate Tees or my T-shirt from when I entered the DMC mixing championships 87-88
First record ever bought: Got some from my Dad, he is a Jazz musician. His friends used to play at Al Capone’s parties way back in the day. First bought? Probably some nice Swedish pop band or Kiss or something.
Favourite place to hang out in Brighton: Behind the curtain at the Green Door Store at a Berlin night
Favourite Pub: Don’t really do pubs. I like Pelirocco for a drink
Favourite place to eat: Eat? Don’t have time for that.
Best club: Depends on the music. Crap venue with killer music will do me fine
Who does the best roast: Pelirocco
Coffee or Tea: Tea please. Beer would be better
Have you swam in the sea: Of course. I swim a lot in the sea, I’m only 5 seconds from the beach
Brexit or EU: EU
Favourite Footy Team: Got so many, where to start? Öis from Gothenburg, Arsenal (used to hang out a bit with Anders Limpar), Southampton, the Albion
Favourite Track right now: Silverlining Remix on Romana Records 001
View on Seagulls: Love them
View on Oysters: My friend Joe Volpeliere has got me right in to them
Favourite word: Äna - Swedish fill-in word
3 words to describe your mix: Some Housey stuff
To find out more and listen to Magnus' music catch him on these socials and stores:
1. Magnus Asberg- I Feel So Real - Rogue Decibels 010 2. Lee Gardner - Lurge Em In (Magnus Asberg Remix) Scallywag Music 006 3. Magnus Asberg - All Night Love - Born Fourth 004 4. Magnus Asberg - Hey Baby (Dudley Strangeway Remix) - Deep Xperience(forthcoming) 5. Magnus Asberg - Liz’s Birthday - Future Is Now Records 6. Magnus Asberg - I Wanna Funk - Betrieb Records 7. Magnus Asberg - If You Love Me - Betrieb Records 8. Magnus Asberg - Rely On Me - Repeat After Me Recordings (Out Soon) 9. ZaVen - Fantazy (Magnus Asberg Remix) - Unsigned 10. Magnus Asberg - Together - Unsigned 11. Magnus Asberg - Porta Rain - Romana Records 002 - Vinyl Only 12. Magnus Asberg - Life - Romana Records 001 - Vinyl Only 13. Magnus Asberg - Brother & Sister - On The House Records 005 14. Magnus Asberg - In Our Village - Future Is Now Recordings 15. Magnus Asberg - Revolution - Viva Recordings (Out Soon) 16.Magnus Asberg/C-Soul - I Want Your Love - On the House Records 17. Magnus Asberg - Feel It - On The House Records 18. Magnus Asberg - Awaked Future (Schmoov! Remix) - Bogota Records 19. Magnus Asberg - Knee Deep - Bogota Recordings 20. Magnus Asberg - Love Like This - Bogota Records 22. Magnus Asberg - Moonlight House - Bounce House Recordings 23. Magnus Asberg - Substance - Quanticman 24. Magnus Asberg - OMG - Doin’ Work Records (Out Soon) 25. Magnus Asberg - She Is Beaker - Quanticman Records 26. Magnus Asberg/Stephen P Walker Presents Toka - Project & C-Soul - Make Me Crazy - Myna Music 27. Farfan - Whisher (Magnus Asberg Remix) - Underground Lovers Records 28. Magnus Asberg - Remember Love - Danzon Records 29. Magnus Asberg/C-Soul - Angels - Viva Recordings 30. Magnus Asberg - In The Heat Of The Night - Viva Recordings (Out Soon)