Get to Know: Bulletdodge

Scottish based record label bulletdodge is a collective movement of like-minded musicians and djs whose focus is to challenge the limits of contemporary electronic music. It focuses on delivering consistantly innovative house and techno music that pushes boundaries and charters new musical territories.

The label was founded in 2007 and is going from strength to strength, already having support from Carl Cox, Richie Hawtin, Speedy J, Slam, Danny Tennaglia, Laurent Garnier, Ben Sims, Dubfire, Josh Wink, Steve Bug, Rolando, Christian Smith, Technasia, Magda, Carlo Lio, John Digweed, Troy Pierce, Danny Howells, Luke Slater, Luke Solomun, Ryan Crosson, X-press 2, Mauro Picotto, Nic Fanciulli, Claude Von Stroke plus many more.

With Bulletdodge Records latest release 2 How Can I ft Marshall Jefferson & Robert Owens (incl. Luke Solomon Mixes) out now on Traxsource, we sat down with label head Gareth Whitehead to find out a little more about his imprint in this exclusive label feature.

Hey Gareth, thanks for taking the time out to chat with us. Tell us where you are and how you are you feeling right now?

Hi there, sorry for a second there I thought I was in a session with my therapist! ha ha. I shall with respond with caution. I am feeling very good at the moment in anticipation for the release of my debut album on Bulletdodge

For those that don’t know, you own Bulletdodge, the record label; tell us about its inception and how the label came to be…

Yeah sure, Bulletdodge has been releasing now for nearly 7 years. Prior to this I was one half of the production project and label Edit Select. I wanted however to create a platform for my own output and a have a label that released House and Techno across the spectrum so in late 2007 I set up Bulletdodge. Its inception was at the tail end of the minimal phenomon and I think that is reflected in some of our earlier releases however our main focus has always been to release deep, dark and dubby house and techno.

Obviously, the topic for today is new release – tell us in your words a little bit about the artist and the trax…

Well the new release is the second single from my forthcoming album entitled The Brood. The new single, “How Can I“was a collaboration with myself, Marshall Jefferson and Robert Owens with the intent being to create a track that paid homage to the early Chicago house sound but yet with a modern production approach. I wanted to capture that sound by working with two of the innovators of that time, legendary producer Marshall Jefferson and charismatic house vocalist Robert Owens. Without these guys I dont think the sound would have been the same.

The album will not be the usual 4/4 house and techno affair but rather a reflection on the history of these genres. I wanted to create a collaborative album that honoured the industry pioneers who not only inspired me as a producer and DJ but who have also shaped the musical direction of Bulletdodge and the industry at large. Aside from Marshall and Robert on the album Ive collaborated with originator of techno, Juan Atkins, Brooklyn innovators Lenny Dee and Frankie Bones, Darren Emerson, Carl Cox and The Detroit Grand Pubahs plus many more.

So many talented/legendary cameos on the EP including; Robert Owens, Marshall Jefferson, and a remix by Luke Solomun – how’d you get all these guys on ONE release?

Its amazing what a threatening telephone conversation can do. No one really wants a letter bomb after all now do they? The militant approach has always worked well for me!

Any interesting or funny stories in the process of making this?

This was a strict operation, like I said above, maintaining a militant approach is essential. No time for laughs! ha ha ha.

Bulletdodge is a rather interesting name in any sense, what does it mean?

To be honest it has no real meaning behind it, even though I was a sniper to trade many years ago prior to working in the music industry and dodging bullets was just a way of life. Other than that I was inspired by the Remo Williams TV show. Type Bulletdodge into Youtube and you’ll see. ha ha ha.

Apart from the obvious quality factor, what it is like running a record label? How has it changed say 5 or even 10 years ago?

Id say its pretty time consuming, if not life consuming. I wouldn’t say the last 6 years that the industry has made it more demanding for me, but certainly as we’ve grown more needs done and more attention etc leads to more work maintaining it all. Obviously the digital era has completely changed things, vinyl sales are pretty much non existent and we constantly have to be tackling and understanding new digital forms of promotion and advancements. But that keeps us on our toes which is a good thing!

What do you want to accomplish as an imprint?

World domination! ha ha. No I think just do be recognised for what we are doing. The quality of our output is very important and I don’t want to compromise that in any way. So sustaining that is imperative!

What keeps you motivated after all this time? Tell us about the highs and the lows…

I think the genuine love for the music is what certainly drives me. The industry can be quite an ugly beast at times but its the passion I guess that really keeps things going and the love for the music supersedes all that. Its easy to handle the highs, its handling the lows that really is the challenge. Nobody likes a comedown! And as for the music highs and lows………. ha ha ha.

What are some of your personal favourite cuts from label’s entire catalog and why?

Its hard for me to say what my fav is to be honest, but tracks that Id say did well and the ones I knew were strong from the offset were Silicone Soul’s remix of Soul Camp’s Walk with Me, Vince Watson’s remix of Till Kruger’s 0001A, Pig & Dan’s Eagles from Space and more recently Matthias Vogts remix of Tom Taylor and myself’s The Beginning. All these tracks depict the kind of deep or dark Bulletdodge sound that Ive always strived to release.

What’s you’re opinion on the current state of house (or techno) music?

I think its good, I think far too many people pigeon hole them self into liking one or the other. People like to belong to something I guess, but we’re not talking about human nature here. ha ha. I think if it moves you and you feel it then great. House or Techno. But yeah I definitely see House having a massive commercial resurgence at the moment.

Where does a music media store like Traxsource fit into your musical agenda?

Very high in my opinion. Its one of the few stores that I personally buy from as I feel it truly reflects the underground dance industry and doest succumb to trends. You guys have always given us a lot of support and Im very grateful for that! Traxsource is an excellent platform for new and innovative electronic music!!

What’s next for the label?

The completion of the album is paramount for me. Its nearly all mixed and will be very much at the forefront of next years schedule. We also as a label have developed our label parties at our club in Paisley, Scotland. Projecting that further is certainly paramount also. I also next year want to focus on pushing my core of up and coming artists who have really been a massive part of the labels infrastructure over the years. Have helped me running things. So look out for Sqyre, My Evil Twiin and Raymond Ward next year!!

Any final things you would like to say to your Bulletdodge fans?

Sleep well!! 8 hours is just enough!

Bulletdodge latest release “2 How Can I” out now on Traxsource.

Bulletdodge label & releases on Traxsource.