It’s impossible to forget Patrick Topping’s dominance over the tech-house landscape of Ibiza this past summer. The rising star gained notice at the onset of 2014 with a pair of top-notch floorfillers—“Get Beasty” and “Look Around”—on Jamie Jones and Lee Foss’ Hot Creations imprint. But it was “Forget” that slung the U.K.-based DJ/producer hurtling toward the club stratosphere.
Merging tribal influences and an undeniable 4/4 beat with entrancing chime strikes and Lolita-inspired vocals, Topping’s megahit packed out the dancefloors of Ibiza’s clubs for months on end. The track’s near ubiquity was heralded by both partiers and critics, going on to be named one of the Top 10 Shazamed songs of the island and earning Topping the Best Newcomer and Track of the Season wins at Ibiza’s DJ Awards.
As 2015 begins, Topping looks for more, as he’s booked for a slew of major international club gigs, plus some of the world’s more heralded festivals like U.K.’s Outbreak, Detroit’s Movement and Croatia’s Hideout. DJ Times connected with the Topping to chat about having the biggest track in Ibiza this summer, finding time to produce amongst a packed tour itinerary, and collaborating with the legendary Green Velvet.
DJ Times: You had a massive season out in Ibiza this past year. How was that experience for you?
Patrick Topping: I spent more time in Ibiza last summer than I have any other season, and it was easily my best summer over there yet. I played at DC10 four times for [Jamie Jones’] Paradise, and each time was amazing. It’s my favorite place to play by far! The crowd is so good; the reactions to tracks are crazy. Paradise was really strong this summer, too. They actually had to open an extra room most weeks to accommodate with the buzz around the night and extra numbers through the door. I also played at Sankeys for Viva Warriors opening, which was also wicked.
DJ Times: “Voicemail,” your collaboration with Green Velvet, is a recent hit. How did you two come to create it?
Topping: I actually booked him for new club night in Newcastle, England, in 2013. That was just around the time my first EP ["Any Amounts” on Hot Creations] was coming out. That was when we first met. Obviously, he is huge hero of mine and to book him to my home city was such an honor—but to now have track with him is such a buzz! We hadn’t spoken again until we met at DC10 this August. I knew he had been playing my tracks for a while, so I was really excited to see him again. So that night we spoke for a while and that’s when the idea for collaboration came about. After that, it just happened very quickly. We made the track remotely, sending each other parts in about three days or something.
DJ Times: Sounds pretty unexpected.
Topping: I was actually about to leave my house for a tour for nearly four weeks, so we wanted to get it done before then. So he actually stayed up all night in studio working it to make sure it was done in time. We were both on Skype listening to it and talking and tweaking it. It went No. 1 on Beatport’s Tech House chart, too, so we are over the moon about the reception it’s gotten.
DJ Times: “Forget” was a huge smash during the Ibiza season. Did you expect that level of success when creating it?
Topping: I don’t think anyone involved expected that; I didn’t, for sure. Jamie Jones said when I sent it to him that it was my best yet, but I don’t even think he expected it to win “Track of the Season” [f[from Ibiza’s DJ Awards]I met up with Lee Foss in the U.S. the other month and he said he knew it was going to be that big, though.
DJ Times: What sort of production setup are you using currently?
Topping: Only hardware is an iMac and KRK Rokit 5 monitor speakers. Also, I test the sound on my Sennheiser HD 25-1 headphones to double check that the sound is correct. I also like to test it on my car’s speakers. They aren’t the best, but I think it’s good to try it get it sounding right on all systems if possible.
DJ Times: What about software?
Topping: Software-wise, I use Apple Logic Pro as my DAW and an array of plug-ins, as I don’t use any outbound synths or effects units.
DJ Times: You have such a packed tour schedule. How do you find time to make music?
Topping: Well, I don’t spend anywhere near the same amount of time working on music as I did before, but I’m still managing to squeeze in just enough. The winter isn’t quite as full-on as the summer. I’m still touring heavily, but I’m hoping to get back into the studio a lot more in the coming months.