King Unique - The Only One
King Unique make dirty house – and that’s all you need to know, if you pay attention to their bio. 3D’s Rezo talks with UK producer Matt Thomas about his new life as a solo artist.
King Unique was once upon a time a partnership of two Matthews, but the duo went their separate ways recently, with Matt Thomas continuing the KU name.
“The time we spent together was a great genesis of minds,” Thomas says. “We did a bunch of stuff that had a great run. Having guys like Pete Tong picking up everything we made was amazing. We also did heaps and heaps of remixes; we were always like the first core remixers; it was like ‘here is a few grand for a remix!’ Straight away we went from eating cheap noodles to going to Japan on tour! All these choices and decisions were thrown before us, which eventually became more constant. We became the hot new thing and I’ve carried the flag since then.”
And what of Matthew Roberts-
“Matthew just wanted to move on to other things in life; I can take my family with me when I tour so I’m lucky to have that choice,” Thomas says. “We were spending a lot of time at being DJs and everybody was delighted so when we split it became a big deal and then stopped being this big deal. He moved on to do motion graphics and he is knee deep in investing in that world right now. We agreed that it was the perfect way to do it, so he transitioned out and we played a farewell gig in Romania – a long and indulgent set of all our remixes.”
Over the years the two were never considered a huge production outfit. They were more about remixing – roughly 70 they’ve completed – including a few big ones for Underworld, and they’ve always placed an emphasis on being solid remixers; stamping their own name onto a track.
The irony of that is the anonymity Thomas experienced when trying to break into the scene initially. “I would make myself available for free to make tea and sweep floors – and that was great fun,” he muses. “Oasis was just getting big and some big names were doing some interesting things and I thought this was good. It filled me with an awareness of possibility and it made you want to appear on magazine covers – that was about the time I met Matthew – he was working on digital editing and I was the man that did the sound effects. That’s how I groomed myself and at the time it was a good fit. We had different backgrounds and we were on an opposite universe, but it really suited us.”
Thomas is just as excited about his ‘decks’n’fx’ tour as he could be, with or without his former partner-in-crime.
“I’ll be playing on this mystical new piece of gear which is made by these hippies outside New York with little rubber buttons on it. You wire it up to do anything you want basically – you can control Ableton and keyboards and whatever you fancy. It lets you grab elements of the records you’re playing and by passing it through you can grab a snare or a vocal path and map it. It’s twisted stuff and to be honest I’m exploring what it can do – so the possibility of total fuck-ups exists but the thought of that quite excites me actually…”
WHO: King Unique
WHAT: Plays Club Club at Chinese Laundry
WHEN: Saturday 28 February