Unforgettable: Patrick Topping on Ibiza Success, Green Velvet Collab, & More
It’s impossible to forget Patrick Toppping’s dominance over the tech house landscape of Ibiza this past summer. The rising star was well on his way to making a name for himself 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 UK-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 this year’s DJ Awards.
DJ Times connected with the Topping to chat about having the biggest track in Ibiza this summer, finding time to produce amongst a packed a tour itinerary, and collaborating with Green Velvet.
DJ Times: You had a massive season out in Ibiza this season. How was the experience and how were the crowds?
Patrick Topping: I spent more time in Ibiza this 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: Your new collaboration with Green Velvet “Voicemail” just came out. How did you two meet and come to create it?
Topping: I actually booked him for new club night in Newcastle, England 18 months ago. That was just around the time my first EP 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 till 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 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 just went No. 1 on Beatport’s Tech House chart too, so we are over the moon about the reception it’s getting.
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 him it that it was my best yet, but I don’t even think he expected it to win Track of the Season! I met up with Lee Foss in the US 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 KRV Rokit 5 monitor speakers. Also, I test the sound on my Sennheiser HC25 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 Logic as my DAW and an array of plugins, as I don’t use any outbound synths or effects units.
DJ Times: You have an absolutely packed tour schedule. How do you find time to work on producing amongst all of it?
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.
DJ Times: What tracks and/or artists have been mainstays in your DJ sets as of late?
Topping: wAFF has an EP about to drop on Cocoon and both tracks I’ve been playing all summer—actually, all year—since I got them.
DJ Times: What other projects are you working on and what can fans expect in the coming months?
Topping: I’m coming back over to the states a few times, on Thanksgiving Eve at Verboten in New York with Green Velvet, then back over for a tour the start of December, hitting Miami and San Diego, hopefully a few others. Release wise I’ve got a remix about to drop on Matthias Tanzmann’s Moon Harbour and also a new EP for Hot Creations in the pipeline.