Swapping up international cultures, the Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Project landed in London on Saturday night, Jamaican stylee, headlined by Basement Jaxx, Pro Green and Miss Dynamite. Boom.
Uniting millions of hardcore party people from over fifty countries, this unique project has one objective: to get people moving and having fun, regardless of what side of the Atlantic they live on. Whilst Madonna warmed up crowds over in America, the totally tropical ‘Jolly Boys’ got the guests over at Alexandra Palace in London, winding and grinding. Packing out the venue with over 3000 rowdy and up for it attendees, the main room’s Kingston style street party played host to Radio 1’s Rob da Bank with DJ Shepdog, MC Chunky and Toddla T, whilst the vibrant reggae collective Reggae Roast, Wall of Sound presented Good Vibrations and the Soul Jazz Sound System played the latest ska, reggae, ragga and dance sounds in the second room, The Sombrero Club.
i-D online went backstage at the all-action event to rub shoulders with the cast of Towie and Made in Chealsea and then high-fived Basement Jaxx on their epic, Caribbean-themed mix that took us all by storm. Simon and Felix brought us up to speed with all their latest news and views.
How did you first get involved with the project?
F: We were asked if we’d like to do it.
S: And we said yes.
What have you been working on independently recently?
S: Well, we did the soundtrack to Attack the Block and just finished an American film called The Hooping Line, a documentary about people who lost their way a bit and found salvation and healing through hoola-hooping.
F: It’s quite left-field, a big movement in the United States at the moment, which is a bizarre thing.
Do you have plans to release a new album?
S: Yes that’s the next thing, these things have got in the way, they’re little tangents. Now we’ve got some seeds that need watering and fertilising and love and attention.
F: We were just in Japan last week, we DJ’d there in Tokyo and Osaka.
Where are you guys based now?
S: Where we’ve been for a long time, Brixton.
F: Yeah, but we’ve got a new studio in Kings Cross which we’re moving to in a couple of months so that’s going to be a change, a new chapter. Our lives have become a lot more international, not that we planned it like that, but that’s just the nature of what we do.
When can we next expect to hear another single from you guys?
F: A single I reckon March, April? Yeah we’ve got to do it, time goes too quick!
What’s it going to sound like?
S: Well we’ve been DJ-ing a lot, not a lot by normal DJ standards probably, but regularly so we’re a bit more back into club mode and within that it should be universal and worldly.
What have you been playing while you DJ?
F: One thing that goes down well is a brass version of Bohemian Rhapsody!
Text: Milly McMahon