Shoaib has had the fortune of starting a career in music from an early age as a classically trained musician playing the violin, he then went on to master the art of lead guitar in which he has toured extensively around Europe as a session guitarist with notable acts playing to thousands.
He's also done his time with sound engineering where he has worked as the monitor engineer for top.1 acts such as Egg and Nizlopi (remember the JCB song? or the Citroen advert with the cars skating on ice?).
Djing was a natural path to follow once electronic music had taken over his life with all his previous experiences in the music industry, and a path which has seen alot achieved in such a short space of time.
Shoaib Mughal AKA 'Shepz' is the head honcho of Londons elusive 'The Techno Bug' and 'Minamal' parties; as well as Sydney's newest addition 'Church of Techno' which has seen him perform alongside some of the most respected in the industry such as Fergie, Ahmet Sendil, Smash TV, Perc, Bigger Than Jesus, Timo Garcia, Oliver Dahl, Shane Watcha, Saytek and Cozzy D. He has played at pretty much every known club in London (Ministry of Sound/Pacha/Egg/The End/54/Public Life/Aquarium/etc.) and even played alongside Exit Festival in Serbia 2009.
He is also signed to the great italian 'Malatoid Records' which has seen him reach top ten minimal techno best sellers on retailers such as Beatport, Juno Records and DJdownload.com. Huge support has been given from the likes of Magda(M-nus), Francesco Farfa, Fergie (Excentric), Tim Green(Trapez), Perc (Ovum) and Burnski (Pokerflat) just to name a few.
All available for download at Beatport, DJDownload, Juno etc.
EXCLUSIVE ONE ON ONE INTERVIEW WITH SHEPZ
So how did it all begin?
It all started with my first trip to Fabric through introduction from my brother Akeel; a superclub set in the middle of London which regularly see’s cutting edge minimal techno legends smash the crap out of Saturday nights. I’d never heard minimal techno before but this just completely blew me out of the water and left me hungering for more; before I knew it I was listening to mixes after mixes more specifically from the likes of Ekkohaus etc. who used to regularly dominate the London underground scene at the time.
Naturally, I then brought my first set of decks; a shoddy pair of belt driven Numark’s of plastic construction and not much good than being able to briskly hear what a record sounds like… the only way to beat-match was to use the pitch adjust as touching the record would completely fuck everything up – but hey, it’s a start… and by the time I got onto my first pair of Technics it was a breeze in comparison!
I only switched to CD’s because I was constantly breaking my back carrying a couple of cases of vinyl around in London, the distances you have to walk are considerably more than around here…
What was the first club you ever played at?
Haha! God! I remember this clearly… a mate of mine used to co-ordinate the Saturday nights at a student nightclub in Cantebury, Kent called “The Venue”. The resident DJ pulled a sicky and they had no-one to call on for it; the guy knew I had a pair of decks so called me in on an emergency to fill in… Little did they know that I could barely beat match at the time… Hence I found myself playing in a club, to around 2000 loose students with a formerly unheard genre of Minimal Tech House. Very embarrassing looking back – but thankfully no-one noticed the shoddy mixing, and the hot uni chicks were all over me… That was good fun after…
What was your first record/cd you bought?
The Most Beautiful Girl In The World – Prince.
Again… Embarrassing, but he’s now ‘the artist formerly known as Prince’ – What’s that all about???
Out of all the music you have, which track ‘never fails?'
Ooooh this is a tricky one! It depends what sort of set I’m playing and what the crowds like… One of my favourites however if things are going on an epic scale is an old classic:
Ame – Rej
Beautifully constructed piece of music with a real modal classical influence embedded within its blood. You really can’t go wrong with this one on a closing set, after-hours anyhow.
What's your favourite track of all time?
Superstitious – Stevie Wonder
I don’t think this one needs any explanation, just pure fun!
Funniest thing that ever happened while Dj’ing?
I get to see allsorts of funny shit when I’m playing out whichever country that may be… it’s really a hard one to pick one moment of it all. Especially when you’re a regular playing the after party scene in London; East London has a habit of breeding crazies!
This one time I was playing for Redlight Afterhours in London at a club called Aquarium; it’s an awesome club, my favourite twisted after party in the world and the place has a swimming pool and Jacuzzi in it! Anyway… before I digress… it was coming up to closing time and I was at my last track… this complete fuck head decided he refused to leave the club because he was enjoying it too much – so, he proceeds to climb up some trussing up the side of the club, and stay on top near the lighting fixtures whilst several security try to bring him down and all I could hear once my last track had finished was this…
“Please don’t make me, Please! I want to stay; I love it too much, I want the Technoes!”
He was Italian, says it all… Never get in-between an Italian and Minimal Techno, because you won’t win.
Other DJs you rate?
John Digweed when I used to watch him at Fabric, he’s pulled off some of the sickest most twisted sets I’ve ever heard. I was a little disappointed when I saw him in Sydney earlier this year, I think he considerably toned down his set for Sydney – I didn’t like that at all.
So how is the party scene in your eyes at the moment?
It’s going good I think… lots of variation around; obviously there’s always scope for improvement in everything, but since I’ve been in Sydney things have been picking up and I’ve had the fortune to meet and see some great local artists here.
I’d like to see things hot up even more though and see more people getting involved with supporting the scene. We need more large scale events, multi-room with multiple headliners in every room; I’ve seen a couple of cool events though so we’re definitely on the right track!
When all the partying is over how do you like to chill out?
It’s sad… but I probably spend more time on Facebook than I really should. It’s very counter-productive watching status updates… They should re-name it StalkBook.
I’ve just started setting up a studio here now though, I plan to get back into my production and get back to releasing records; I haven’t released anything for about 2 years now… Somewhat of a dry spell!
What advice would you give to up and coming DJs?
Play any opportunity you get and even if it’s for free; when I was starting out I’d always play at peoples house parties etc. this sort of thing really helps build up a following and you’ll find it much easier to get club gigs if you have a good solid following. Unfortunately it’s just the way the industry works; a lot of promoters don’t want to take the risk from an unknown. I’m proud to say however that we regularly offer new DJ’s debut gigs at Church of Techno which is the regular Sunday day time party I organise in the Sydney CBD, as long as you can mix well and fit in with what we do!
Also – don’t hoard tracks for the sake of it, only have a collection of tunes which you absolutely love and you can’t go wrong. Get tracks that you like the sound of and try to steer away from whatever happens to be in the Beatport top 100. You don’t want to be playing the same tracks everyone else is playing… It won’t get you anywhere and ultimately, it’s cutting in front of everyone with track selection which makes you stand out.
Also – I don’t recommend a stint of horse tranquiliser prior to hitting a set in a club, it’s a recipe for disaster!
KONTRAST PRESENTS SHEPZ (Malatoid Records)
Saturday 16th October
Melt 12 Kellett St, Kings Cross, NSW, 2011
SHEPZ (Malatoid Records)
Joey Kaz ( KONTRAST DJ / Resident)
Joey Tupaea (KONTRAST DJ / Resident)
Doors open 9pm - 5am
$10 before 12 / $15 after
Drink specials between 9pm – 11pm which include $9 cocktails, $25 cocktail jugs & $6.50 tap beer.
All booking inquiries e-mail: email@example.com
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