Hold Youth is a Parisian tandem consisting out of the DJs and producers Seuil and Le Loup, two vinyl purists and devoted crate diggers. Their philosophy, or rather passion, is vinyl and vinyl-only, which they aim to support trough both their sets and by running their own Hold Youth imprint. Seuil and Le Loup, close friends and both esteemed members of the underground’s elite, decided back in 2011 to start Hold Youth to share ideas and mainly as an outlet for the music they love; a sound that encompasses house, disco, techno, hip hop and everything in between. The imprint is for DJs, collectors and true music lovers, releasing giants such as Rick Wade to newcomers like S3A as well as their own material. Besides the many hours they spend in the studio, Hold Youth plays all over the globe and hold a recidency at the infamous Rex Club in Paris and they’re known to love London’s East end, holding a resident spot at Half Baked as well.
This year looks very bright as they’re about to release the imprints debut LP – a twofold called “De La Club”. MEOKO sat down to talk with them about their open minded sound and about “De La Club”.
Hi guys, ca va? Thank you for the time to have a little chat with us.
Hello, we’re good! it’s our pleasure 😉
As solo DJ’s you quite differ in style. How did you came about to start Hold Youth? Was there a specific sound you were after?
Actually we connected because we had a common taste in music, whatever it was; hip hop, soul, jazz, house or techno we wanted to share our ideas about music. Seuil was running his label Eklo, which covered a modern house sound, so with the Hold Youth label the point was to connect this modern house with the old school vibe. We cover every angle we like; sampling house, hip hop, deep, jazzy, whatever – we’ve been trying to stay true to our own style with the first 10 releases on Hold Youth.
We also release music from friends, not only here in Paris but from friends all over the world who make great music. With Hold Youth, we’d like to connect American sampling house and modern micro sampling house from Europe and bring those together.
Has anything altered in the way you play solo, after starting this collaboration?
A little bit, it allowed us to consolidate our choices and to not hesitate to play any kind of music even when we are not expected to. Our DJ sets as Hold Youth have evolved naturally, we are sharing music together and discovering more stuff on our own. We play one record each when we play as HY, it’s cool to be able to play solo as well, so that we can try out our own series of tracks.
In May you’re releasing the imprint’s debut LP “De La Club”. Why did you particularly choose this title?
Seuil thought of it actually… it’s a wink to the 90’s, in which we both grew up as teenagers. Michael Jackson & De La Soul were everywhere on the radio… The title for our LP came forth out of a joke; in the way some people have asked us “What style is it?” and in French people say, “ah, c’est de la house, de la deep, de la …” so we were like “let’s call it De La Club. It’s our view of the club as all the tracks on the LP can be played on dance floors, even while some of them are down-tempo.
“De La Club LP” features 2x 12” and is truly a devotion to the “Old School”. What is the idea behind this twofold?
The idea was to present two sides of the vibe that connects us. The first record is more old school oriented in the way we produced it and the way it sounds, showing more US influences working with a MPC and samples.
The second record is more modern; we used more modern technology in the studio, but kept still our ideas on grooves and swings. This LP is also a reflection of our DJ sets; the idea is to mix the old school and the modern house.
What’s been your day-to-day work routine like whilst working on this LP?
We worked on the album during the summer last year. Le Loup used to live on the outskirts of Paris and he likes to lie in until late 😉 Two reasons for us, to decided that he’d stay at my place, so we could work for a week, day & night, and start to build the basis of the LP. Actually we had a strong idea of what we wanted for this album, more than just making tracks and letting the inspiration come to us. It’s a tribute to our influences; we wanted to transcribe what we really liked. We made almost 7 or 8 skeletons tracks in a week to give the project a common vibe. Throughout the summer we worked on everything and added some final touches to finish the album.
Would you say each of you has a distinct role in the duo?
Neither of us has a distinct role; we try to take each decision together. Having said that we believe and trust in each other, so if one has to make something himself it’d be no problem at all!
So what’s Hold Youth’s next move after you’ve released this LP?
We’re going to play some shows in a tour ahead of the LP, DJing together as HY. We ‘re already thinking about a 2nd LP, much more different with hip hop instrumentals and slow motion stuff, but right now we organizing the studio and getting the new equipment to work on a Hold Youth live set.
This summer Weather Festival is awaiting you in Paris on the 7th of June. You are playing on the ‘Summer Stage’, which features both Moodymann and Zip. I’ve understood they both really inspired you to start the label and with the LP? How is to play alongside them during the festival?
Moodymann & Zip are both one of our main inspirations! Basically they perfectly represent what we like in this music…like we said earlier; the line between the modern European house and the US House, they both represent this connection.
Of course we are really excited and proud to share the decks with them at Weather Festival, as well as other great guys like S3A (one of our main artists on the label). Weather Festival is very special to us because it’s happening in our city; it’s a really nice achievement! Thanks to the Concrete team who made this possible…it’s going to be huge!
In fact Londoners can also catch us alongside Moodymann even sooner at Another Party on Friday the 11th of April at Oval Space, alongside Shonky, one of our good mates. Should be a big one, really looking forwarding to that 😉
You both hold different residencies. One is at the Rex Club in Paris. We’ve been told you’ve invited some interesting guests to play alongside you. What can we expect for this year?
You can expect even more!
Sure we have our Hold Youth residency @ Rex Club, the last edition was in February with Binh & Nicolas Lutz, and the next one is on the 24th of April. We will bring S3A and our friend Lazare Hoche, a 100 % French party 😉 In August we will invite our friend Raresh, so that should give you a good taster of the kind of things you can expect with us at Rex Club Paris.
Listen to Hold Youth on our 130th MEOKO podcast HERE
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