Dan Shake on the Introspective Sound of his ‘Verde’ EP

We catch up with the infectious UK artist Dan Shake to learn more about the feelings of escapism that went into his new EP on Shake Records.

5 min
Dan Shake photo 1536x715
Apr 13, 2023
·
By
Cameron Holbrook

With a steady and organic rise to dance floor stardom in his home of England and abroad, DJ/producer and label head Dan Shake has come a long way since the release of his debut two-tracker 3AM Jazz Club — championed by none other than the consummate Moodymann and released via his Mahogani Music imprint.

That was back in 2014, and his big break, but since then, Dan has proven to us time and time again that his win with the not easily impressed Detroit legend was no fluke. Dan’s robust understanding of bodacious rhythms and impactful grooves — paired with his trained ear for exceptional dance floor bombs and compelling stage presence — make him a fan favorite across the underground spectrum.

His production chops shine bright on labels like Black Acre Records, Silver Bear Recordings, Ed Banger, Toy Tonics, and his own Shake Records imprint, which hosts most of his original productions.

The prolific act’s most recent EP, a four-tracker titled Verde, sees the artist stepping back from the driving, club-focused weapons to embrace his much-deserved sonic freedom, inspired by the escapism and greenery of his country retreat in Devon, UK.

We quickly caught up with Dan Shake to learn more about some of the sonic psyche behind his new EP and what festivals he’s most looking forward to this Summer.

Dan Shake’s new Verde EP is out now via Shake Records. Buy it on Beatport.

Dan Shake Beatport 1746x2048

Hey Dan! Thanks for joining us, how is 2023 treating you this far?

It’s great. I’m currently writing these answers sitting up a mountain with a Corona! Worse places to be.

It wasn’t all that long ago that you relocated from London to the rural hills of Devon. What prompted the move, and how have you adjusted to the pace of life out there?

Lockdown, I wanted a little break from London, so we headed to Devon temporarily, which ended up being permanent. I absolutely love it there. It’s the opposite of a club in every way, which is a lovely balance when touring.

How has this escapism played into the formation of your new four-track EP, Verde? What does the color green signify in relation to this release?

Huge impact. I made all the tracks when I first moved there. Beginning of Spring, everything was green.

You are using your own vocal samples on this new EP for the first time on the record’s burning closing track, “Locked.” Tell us a bit more about that.

Pre-lockdown, I felt quite a bit of pressure to make music that would pop in the club. However, lockdown completely reset my mindset, and I found myself making music for the love it again and experimenting more than I usually do. Using my vocals was an outcome of that.

Last year, you made your Essential Mix debut, graced the cover of Mixmag, and treated us to some wicked Myd remixes on Ed Banger. All massive accomplishments! Are there any additional benchmarks you are hoping to hit in 2023?

Thank you! There are always goals, and I’m always looking for the next exciting project to work on! Keep ya eyes peeled!

You have a boatload of festival dates scheduled throughout the Spring and Summer. Having previously worked for both Dimensions and Outlook, what festival(s) do you think are shaping up to be the best of the season?

Ooh, hard question! Aside from Glastonbury (obviously), and I’m really looking forward to CORE Festival in Brussels, Junction 2 in London, Mongros in Spain… so many others, it’s really impossible to answer.

In addition to your upcoming rework of Cody Currie’s “Cash” on Toy Tonics, are there any other records we have to look forward to following the release of Verde?

🤫👀

Cameron Holbrook is Beatportal’s North American Editor. Find him on Twitter and Instagram.

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