cone magazine

Interview: Alan Fitzpatrick

Alan Fitzpatrick interview, Fabriclive 87, Drumcode, techno on Cone Magazine

In a relatively short window of time, techno producer Alan Fitzpatrick has stormed onto the scene.

Alan Fitzpatrick has been steadily gaining recognition for his talent and dedication since he burst onto the scene back in 2008. And with a remarkably high turnover of quality music – his discography consists largely of dance floor thumpers released on Adam Beyer’s Drumcode label.

Recent years have been good to the Southampton producer; who in 2015 dropped an impressive number of EPs – including the banging ‘U said U’ which was premiered by Mixmag – while playing in some of the most iconic venues worldwide. 2016 has so far proved just as fruitful; the legendary Fabric recently called Alan up for the hugely coveted charge of producing a Fabric 87 mix, which dropped on April 15th to huge critical praise. Alan has since been touring to promote it.


“My inspiration comes from being out on the dance floor or in the dark corner of a club lost in the moment of the music”


Despite the darkness tones that are present in a lot of Fitzpatrick’s production, his sound is undeniably geared towards the big room. This love of having a good time is evident in Fitzpatrick’s personal persona and is one of the reasons his fans hold him in such high regard.


“I think I have been good for Drumcode just like they have been good for me”.


Walking a path carved out by old-school heavy weights like Carl Cox, Fitzpatrick’s prominence on the scene is symbolic of the resurgence of huge, banging, Ibiza-style techno. He does this sound extremely well and gives ravers exactly what they want to hear. He often mentions his understanding of the importance of marketing in the electronic music industry and how it’s helped his personal career, and it is clear that Fitzpatrick is not only a gifted musician, but is also a competent and realistic guy. This down-to-earth attitude has culminated in huge respect, and bought him to a position where he is in constant demand to play gigs not only in England, but worldwide.  

I recently caught up with Alan ahead of his show at Motion nightclub, Bristol this bank holiday weekend (1st May), to discuss his musical beginnings, personal achievements and his relationship with the Drumcode label…..


“It definitely means a great deal to be a Drumcode artist. They have become a huge brand”.


Sapphire: Hi Alan, thanks for taking the time to talk to Cone. Firstly, I’d like to congratulate you on the success of your recent Fabric 87 mix. What did it mean to you to be called up for the Fabric mix, and was there anything in particular you wanted to achieve with it? Did you approach the mix differently to how you would a live set?

Alan: As someone who used to go to Fabric as a punter, it means a huge amount to be asked to compile one of their mixes. As well as attending the club regularly I did collect their CDs for a while, so the club has been a big part of my musical make-up. As such I wanted the mix to sound timeless and be something people would come back to over and over. I worked hard to find exclusive tracks or music that wouldn’t have been released by the time the CD was released. This was the biggest difference to how I usually approach a DJ mix. I had to think a bit deeper and harder about the selection, not just play the biggest or my favourite tracks of the moment. 

Sapphire: I know you’re from Southampton, a place that doesn’t have the huge, thriving music scene of London or Manchester, but does have a strong connection to house music – something which has certainly intensified over recent years with the success of clubs like ‘Junk’. How did living in Southampton affect your initial involvement with DJing and producing.

Alan: Southampton has always punched above its weight really as far as attracting major touring bands or DJs, mainly because there are so many students in the city. This meant that there was and still is plenty of chance to go out and experience live music, but for me it was the people I grew up with that influenced me the most. I’d swap mix tapes, go clubbing or record shopping at the weekend or we’d spend hours messing around having a mix in our bedrooms, and later on I started writing music with my friends. Some of these guys have also gone on to have careers in music too so I guess I just happened to have a particularly passionate and talented group of friends. 

Sapphire: You’re a huge part of Adam Beyer’s label Drumcode, and have been releasing with them since 2009. Can you tell us a bit about how you became involved with them initially and what your journey with Drumcode has meant for your career?

Alan Fitzpatrick interview, Fabriclive 87, Drumcode, techno on Cone Magazine

Alan: I’d always been a fan of the label but my break came from Adam playing a remix I’d made of a Fergie track. He got in touch to ask me if I had any other music he could have, and things progressed from there. I really don’t mean this is a big-headed kind of way, but I think I have been good for Drumcode just like they have been good for me. At the time I got signed the label started to work in a more strategic way, developing artists and trying to grow the brand; doing Drumcode events and tours. I’ve been very loyal to the label over the years by pretty much only releasing with them and they have been very good to me by opening some doors and giving me the chance to play on bigger gigs all over the world. Right now it definitely means a great deal to be a Drumcode artist. They have become a huge brand.

Sapphire: You’ve got a string of overseas shows lined up as part of the Fabric 87 Tour, and you’ve been touring consistently both in Europe and further afield over past years, playing in some of the world’s most iconic venues. European clubs in particular have long pushed Techno as a genre in a way many UK clubs are only now starting to catch up to. It’d be interesting to know if your experience playing to a European crowd, for example in Sweden, the home of Drumcode, is different to playing at home?

Alan: It’s a cliché but there really is no place like home and for me. Playing in UK is really special because it is where I am from and so I share a musical heritage with most of the people who are at the party. I tend to play a style of techno that is certainly influenced by the rave era and I’m also not afraid to drop the odd classic from the 90’s or 00’s. When I play in Europe or USA you just can’t do this all the time because they don’t share the same musical history. For example, I recently closed Chapter XII festival in Birmingham with Bizarre Inc ‘Playing With Knives’ which was released in 1991 and was a huge hit in UK. A proper rave classic. It was even on Top Of Pops! If I did that in Dallas or Dortmund or Dubai then everyone would probably just be super confused and be wondering what the hell was going on!

Sapphire: Throughout your career you’ve tackled a variety of different styles of Techno, from the heavily industrial influenced to the more arty and emotive sounds. Most of your creations seem to have darkness in them, but are still undeniably dance floor thumpers; is it this style which comes most naturally to you when you play with the tempo?

Alan: I’m a raver at heart. My inspiration comes from being out on the dance floor or in the dark corner of a club lost in the moment of the music, so it’s naturally the more emotive stuff that sticks with me the most, whether that be darker sounds or big sounding bangers. I guess when I write music it’s these moments that come out in the music, regardless of the tempo or style. 

Sapphire: Finally, can I ask which of your tracks you’re most proud of, and why?

 Alan: This is a difficult question to answer, but if you are going to put me on the spot I would say it would be the remix I did of Trus’me ‘I Want You’. That has certainly been the one track which has made the biggest difference for my career. It went on to be a hit right across the underground scene with house and techno DJs of all types playing it, and opened some doors for me. For example, I got the chance to remix Rosin Murphy as a direct result of that remix. She messaged me on Twitter to say how much she liked it then a few months later I got a message saying that she wanted me to remix her track ‘Exploitation’ from her new album.

You can catch Alan Fitzpatrick tonight (Friday 29th April) at Arch 9 in Sheffield. He is also playing alongside a cracking line-up at Motion in Bristol this bank holiday weekend (1st May) followed by a string of international shows as part of the Fabric 87 tour.

Photography by Jimmy Mould


Features are free for all CONE Mag subscribers.
Sign up below