Very much from the D.I.Y school of thought, Andy Doyle and Barry Donovan are the co-founders of Dublin’s Lunar Disko records. Spawned from an Italo/ Electro / Chicago night, they started the label from the ground up, and two years on, they’ve released a string of records making waves far beyond the confines of Ireland.
You’ve released records from artists from Holland, Texas, and Berlin, your next release is by Wicklow based Automatic Tasty, how important is it to you guys to support Irish music?
B: It’s definitely nice to put out an Irish artist on the label, and I think Automatic Tasty is a great first Irish release for the label. A lot of imprints aim to push artists from their own country, and we would love to put out more Irish producers but we haven’t really had the opportunity until now with the upcoming Automatic Tasty EP. Its definitely important to support Irish music, but at the end of the day we want to put out music that we think best suits Lunar Disko Records, whether that music comes from Ireland or the other side of the world.
He’s a name that won’t be known to a lot of people, can you give us a brief idea of what to expect from the new ep.
A: Unknown to us until late last year too! I think AT is a rare talent. He sent us so many quality tracks that we could have put out a couple of EPs of his stuff straight away. The 5 we picked are proper electro tracks with amazing acid bass lines and lush synths. Taking influences from Drexciya, DMX Krew, The Railway Raver, etc. and putting his own slant on it; you can really hear his own style throughout his music. We can’t wait for this to be out. There’s some really nice artwork for it too.
You’ve been running the Lunar Disko night since 2005 and the label since 2008, what was your motivation to create your own imprint?
B: Andy and myself had talked about doing a label for a while before we actually started it up. We’ve always stayed in touch with a lot of the artists we have brought to play the club and thought it would be a good idea to start releasing some of the music from these artists who have played at Lunar Disko. Sneak Thief sent us a few tracks and the first release came about from those demo tracks he sent.
You’ve released some excellent Eps, the Submersible Machines one being the standout for me. What’s your selection process when it comes to picking artists? What are you looking for?
A: We initially wanted to put out the quality music that we were hearing at our nights. So we asked a few artists we’ve had over would they like to send us some tracks. Sneak-Thief & Mr Pauli, who remixed a Sneak-Thief track for us, had both played for us a few times and Luke Eargoggle, one half of Faceless Mind had played once for us also. Everyone who is on the label so far has played for us, a part from Submersible Machines.
I don’t know what our selection process is really. When it started we asked artists that we really love and they sent us music that we thought was great. Lately, we’ve been sent a lot of stuff and we’ve asked some people too; it’s just simply down to what we like. Doesn’t matter who, what or where you are, how it’s made or if it’ll sell loads of copies. Once it’s what we like and worth pressing we’ll put it out there. We obviously can’t put out records every week / month but I think that also helps our selection in quality control.
You’ve brought over some brilliant guests in the past Alden Tyrell, Legowelt, TLR, Neville Watson among others. Is there a night that sticks out for you guys, which really fulfilled what you’re trying to do with Lunar Disko?
A: There have been so many great nights but one that sticks out for me is the 2nd Birthday with Alden Tyrell & Intergalactic Gary. It was after the early Dopplereffekt show in the Sugar Club that we were involved in. The Underground was full by 11.30. IG played amazing records all night and Tyrell’s live show was brilliant as always. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced such a good atmosphere in a club. There was an inflatable Llama being passed around at one stage!
If money were not an issue, who or what would be your dream release?
B: Eh…would be nice to put out a vinyl compilation package of all our favourite artists over the years, or have a release from myself or Andy on the label at some stage in the future.
A: I don’t really know. I could obviously say Kraftwerk or David Bowie or something but I’d just be happy if we can continue as we’ve done so far – releasing quality underground electronic music. It would be nice if we could release everything we get sent that we like but obviously the cost of pressing so many releases is just too much right now. It would also be nice to be able to put together a real nice package every time – sleeve, as well as label, art, coloured / etched vinyl, etc…
What’s planned for the future of Lunar Disko?
B: Hopefully we can keep going strong with the club and label for years to come. Plenty of exciting releases planned for the label, and few nice parties lined up for next while, starting with Alden Tyrell next month and our 4th Birthday Party in July.
Words: Paddy O’Mahoney