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Rowland The Bastard

Exeter, United Kingdom

House, Techno

Drumasheenz, Raw, Stay Up Forever
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Rowland the Bastard (whose name comes from his straight-to-the-jugular style of mixing, and not his attitude !) started djing back in 1993. He could be found taking control of the dance floor at many free parties in the south west of England, hosted by crews such as Lazy House, One Family and the infamous Sign On Crew.

All this led Rowland to start his own club night/party, called Fun Factory. Out of these nights emerged a fuck-off sound system, co-run by the legendary Pigfarmer and Rowland himself.

Together they were renowned for putting there 30k sound assault in any field, beach or squat, at anytime, anywhere.

After a three-year affair, the Fun Factory disbanded. Pigfarmer and Rowland joined forces with Bristol- based party crew Sunnyside, and went on to organize some of the best parties Bristol had ever seen, attracting as many as 5000 party-people a night, during their two month reign over the cities’ industrial estates.

Working with Sunnyside introduced Rowland to London based crews UN Sound and the Big Sexy Festy organization. Back in 1997 he could be seen and heard playing at many underground party venues, including Parkway Cinema, North London Uni, The Rocket and Hackney Marshes.

Around the same time Rowland started working for Plymouth- based record shop/ record label Urban Collective, in their Exeter branch. A chance meeting with hip-hop fanatic Simon Franklin encouraged Rowland to establish his own label, Bionic Orange. The first release was a double A side which featured Rowland with “Your Mother Wouldn’t Like It”(Bio-001) and saw Simon responsible for the AA track …. Bionic Orange was born !.

The distinctive sound of “Your Mother Wouldn’t Like It” impressed Urban Collective’s label boss (and large fromage), Pete Miller, and Rowland was asked to remix Emissary’s “Perfect World” along with Dave Valentine. The “Perfect World” remix, along with Chris Liberator’s remix of “Your Mother Wouldn’t Like It”(Bio-002), and Rowland’s second onslaught “The Spinebender”(Bio-003), went on to be showcased on Graham Gold’s CD “Full Of Beans”, which was voted Album Of The Week in HMV record stores nationwide.

Rowland started a residency for Urban Collective at Dreamscape, where he caused total mayhem in the house room on New Years Eve, whilst playing a mix of Acid with a dash of Hard House, and just a hint of Techno. The Techno Terrorist was about to be born ….

By this time, Rowland was losing interest in Hard House and was getting strongly into a new sound : ACID TECHNO.

Still resident in Devon at this point, he was making frequent jaunts to London to meet up with Smitten’s head honcho Steve Smitten. While supping a few cold ones, Steve put the offer to Rowland to remix Geezer’s “Prozac”(Smtr-002) engineered by the man himself, Guy Mc affer.

The pair forged a strong friendship.

In early 1998 Rowland decided that it was high time to spread his wings and move to London. During his early days here, he focused mainly on running his now renowned underground label Bionic Orange, and working and producing in Geezer studios on new projects, including the “Intent To Supply e.p.” (Bio-004) This particular release ( a four-tracker, two written in geezer studios and two written in Rowland’s own “Bio Lab” studio in Devon) gave Rowland much global acclaim.

Geezer and Rowland decided it was time to join forces, and due to there extreme smoking habits in the studio, Tarball&Lungbutter were conceived, and the awesome release,”Sonic Eruptor”(Bio-005 (now licensed to Stay Up Forever)) became celebrated by the likes of Chris Liberator and D.a.v.e. The Drummer.

Tarball&Lungbutter were rapidly becoming household names in the Acid Techno scene.

The success of Sonic Eruptor led to Mark Harrington of Kinetec Records contacting Rowland and arranging to buy tunes direct, the Kinetec crew sold over one hundred copies of Bio-005 in their shop alone.

Through another chance meeting with John Gallop (Syceda Rhythm), (whilst being on a reconnaissance mission in San Francisco), Rowland embarked on his first solo U S tour during October/November 1998. This five week adventure kicked off raves in cities such as Chicago, Kansas, Milwaukee, Cleveland and Pittsburgh, not to mention the mid-week clubs and several radio shows.

During the latter part of 1998, after weeks of discussion about the lack of distribution for Techno/ Acid Techno, Rowland and Mark Kinetec decided that it was time for action, so they joined forces and started Infectious Distribution. This alliance also gave way to some new labels that Rowland was responsible for in the areas of both management and A&R

These labels being,- Infected, Antidote, Cut’n Dry, D, Chunk, Twitch, Strata, not to forget another label that Rowland started with Biff from Future Under Ground Nation (F.U.N.) : F.u.2.

By popular demand, Rowland embarked on his second solo U S and Canadian Tour, on New Years Eve 1999. This excursion lasted six weeks, and killer-sets were spun in cities as far afield as Cleveland, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Toronto, San Francisco, Kitchener, Niagara, Chicago and Kansas. Promoters for these events included Happy Head, House Of Styles, Drop Bass Network, Harmony, Syceda Rhythm and many more. With a total of 22 gigs, as well as five radio shows and a TV appearance on the famed Electric Circus (Toronto) which including satellite broadcasts from the top of Canada to Mexico, this tour was a huge success.

Rowland is now flying frequently back and fourth from Europe, United States and Canada, playing a blend of sounds, ranging from deep dark Techno to full blown banging Acid Techno, and that’s not to mention his UK appointments

So you would think Rowland has his work cut out for him, with all this globe-trotting and running not only a successful distribution company, five record labels, and producing tracks for all of these, as well as other labels such as Smitten, Stay Up Forever, Abstraction, Paradigm Shift, but he is still always keen to take on new challenges …..