It's easy to accept that Leeds' Ste Roberts, as one of the trio behind the Hypercolour and Glass Table imprints, has quite an ear for music. Alongside Alex Jones and Jamie Russell he's been responsible for curating the label's broad and revered output over the past few years while quietly developing his own music with extreme care and patience.
Having started out, as most good DJ/Producers should, as a record store 'guy' at Leeds' Tribe Records, Roberts has an uncanny ability to zero in on records that matter and it's that that perhaps marks him out as a DJ's DJ (just ask any of his colleagues and this tag becomes repetitive). Understated in his delivery, allowing records to breathe, the Yorkshireman graces the turntables at global clubbing institutions in an enviable gig-diary without unnecessary fuss or fanfare, instead relying on quality selections put together properly.
The words 'quality' and 'properly' crop up a lot in conversation with Roberts and it's easy to see why – the fact he's insistent on taking his time with his own productions until they're ready to be released speaks volumes. Even when material is ready, he declares that he's not the sort of label owner to ram his work down peoples throats which probably explains why his debut release emerged on the not-to-be-sniffed at Fear Of Flying imprint rather than his own (although there'll undoubtedly be Hypercolour output 'at some point' according to the man himself).
While cagey about his own material, he's much more animated when talking about the music of others so it's not hard to understand why he
was snapped up as the third A&R for Hypercolour, having already proven himself during a spell with the Immigrant imprint in 2008. Ask him about records and he's off listing a disparate list of names, genres and labels, some you'll have heard and some you should have heard of, and he's quickly lost in a sea of vinyl. With a new imprint, Initials, alongside Alex Jones and David Elkabas – Roberts will undoubtedly continue his obsessive A&R journey in the coming years…
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