The NYC duo throw down some groovy melodic house for this week's RA podcast.
Olivier Spencer and Eric Duncan are two guys with some serious disco credentials. As part of the Rub N Tug duo with Thomas Bullock, Duncan has been at the forefront of the current disco revival ever since their rowdy looped up version of Chicago Transit Authority's "I'm a Man" appeared on Rong Music, with remixes of Out Hud, LCD Soundsystem, Sly Mongoose and Roxy Music becoming dance floor staples in sets of more discerning disco and house DJs. Both Spencer and Duncan are part of edit supergroup How & Why alongside Rong co-founder Jason Drummond (AKA DJ Spun), and as one part of House Of House, Liv is responsible for the end of the night disco-house bomb "Rushing To Paradise."
As Still Going, it's been a long two years since the duo kicked off their production project with the memorably anthemic piano-house grooves of "Still Going Theme," but they've finally managed to follow it up. "Spaghetti Circus," which opens their RA podcast, is a totally different beast, with the outlandishly rousing voice of comedian/musician Reggie Watts riding atop the track's duelling guitars and galloping beat. London residents digging their RA podcast will be no doubt glad to know that the pair will be making their UK debut for Warm at Plastic People this Friday. We spoke to Liv and Eric about the mix, house music in New York and the "difficult second single."
"Still Going Theme" was a massive anthem. Did you feel much pressure when producing the follow up?
Not really. We actually started this record right after we wrapped on "Still Going Theme." Then got caught up on remixes and our respective Rub n Tug and House Of House productions. The players who contributed to the record were all tracked in LA and NYC over the course of the following months. We recorded Reggie (Watts) late this Spring. Took us a bit more time than expected to turn this one out, but we're quite happy with the outcome.
Where and how was the mix recorded?
We recorded it at Liv's studio in Brooklyn. A mix of 12-inches and CDs recorded through Ableton Live - quick and easy. It's a pretty good glimpse of what we play out. Also figured this mix had to cater to both the cubicle crowd and permanent vacationers ;-)
What are each of your production roles in the studio?
It's a collaborative effort.
Eric: Producer, arranger, programming, lyrics on "Untitled Love". Oh... and "beer getter" too.
Liv: Producer, recording and mix engineer, guitar, keys and programming.
Liv, your original productions tend to be collaborations. Is there any particular reason why this is the case, or do you just prefer to produce with other people?
I do see music as essentially collaborative. Technology has made it much easier to write, record, and mix by oneself. But what's the fun in that? Original productions aside, I find myself taking on more solo remixes lately.
Eric, are there any plans for original Rub N Tug material in the near future?
A Rub N Tug album was recorded in Brooklyn in September of 2008. We're still in the process of editing and adding final touches. Coming soon!
Liv, your Discogs entry says that you’re also a composer and sound designer. What projects have you been doing this sort of work on?
Mainly TV and advertising to date. With some sound art and the odd short film thrown in for good measure. These projects run through my Amalgamated Superstar outfit.
When you ask people about New York house music, clubs like the Shelter and Sound Factory tend to spring to mind. Do you think the city is turning a corner into a new era of house?
Hard to say... House music's always had a strong footing in this city but people tend to wax nostalgic about this kinda stuff. Arguably, there are fewer iconic house clubs here at the moment, but great parties do go off regularly. The same can be said for producers and DJs. The old school heads are still very much in the game, and a new generation's coming up fast behind them. So can't really say there's been resurgence per se. House never left us in the first place.
What are you up to next?
We're currently recording a follow up single and spending some time on the road DJing.
Still Going - Spaghetti Circus - DFA Records
Dr Dunks - Keep It Cheap
Cobblestone Jazz - Traffic Jam - Wagon Repair
Gui Boratto - No Turning Back (The Mole's MMD MIx) - Kompakt
Ben Klock - OK (Kenny Larkin Mix) - Ostgut Ton
6th Borough Project - Just a Memory - Instruments Of Rapture
Tee Alford - Ready To...? - Area Code
Amplified Orchestra - Moon Voyage - Amplified
Canyons - Fire Eyes - DFA Records
Junkie XL - Cosmic Rave - Cosmic Rave
Social Disco Club - I'm Good For You
Junkie XL - Dream On - Cosmic Rave