Australian DJ, producer and Superconscious Records co-founder Fantastic Man joins us for the 67th edition of the Phonica Mix Series.
Australian DJ, producer and label co-founder Fantastic Man first came to our attention more than a decade ago with a steady set of EPs and remixes on labels like Tsuba, Freerange and Fina, produced under his birth name Mic Newman. In 2011, Mic’s Fantastic Man alias was born and his distinct brand of trippy and trance-inducing house music has since been picked up by such labels as Love On The Rocks, Kitjen, Let’s Play House and Fine Choice to name but three, as well as his own label Superconscious which he co-runs with fellow Aussie talent Francis Inferno Orchestra.
As longtime fans of Mic and the Superconscious label, we reached out to see if he would be interested in contributing towards our Mix Series. The recording Mic sent over is an incredible one hour and six-minute-long, psychedelic trip through the many shades of house and techno. Be sure to check it out below, along with Mic’s interview.
Check out the previous mixes in the series here:
Hey Mic, thanks for joining us! First up, can you please shed a little light on the mix? Were there any particular themes or influences behind it?
I had a lot of fun doing this mix. It’s more banging than usual; I have a tendency when doing mixes to go for the introspective rabbit-hole, which is what I love for a home listening situation. But I thought it was overdue that I give a snapshot of what I’m actually playing most of the time in da clubz.
Are any of the records in this mix recent discoveries? If so, where did you stumble across them and what drew you to them?
Some yes and some no, I’m currently spending a couple of months away from home in Europe and took the time to digitize and catalogue the stuff that was circulating in my sets as well as amass a load of new stuff before I left. And I wish I was as organized as that just sounded because what I was actually left with in the end was minestrone of record-rips and digital downloads across various folders and throughout my iTunes, making it hard to remember what was what and where it all came from!
Could you tell us a little bit about your background, perhaps where you grew up and what first got you interested in electronic music?
I can give you the short story; I grew up in Melbourne, listening to hip-hop and grunge music – mainly Nirvana – as a teen in the late 90s, not bad right? So it wasn’t until I graduated from puberty and started going to clubs that my taste in music REALLY went downhill. I started playing early 2000s afro-Latin funky house in commercial clubs around Melbourne at age of 19. It didn’t last long either, as I was a terrible promoter-DJ, which was required at that age in Melbourne at the time. So I eventually began to make my own music, which I obviously really enjoyed and so with a lot of twists and turns along the way, slowly but surely the situation improved somewhat. I guess you could say it’s been a long road. But hey, life’s a journey, am I wrong?
Australia’s dance music scene has gone from strength to strength over the last few years. Are there any exciting new Aussie producers coming through the ranks that you feel we ought to keep an eye on at the moment?
I reckon the ones I’m thinking of might be fairly well known by now, and it’s also hard to keep up with the sheer amount these days. The last time I was there I came across a duo called Hybrid Man that is super worth checking out.
What are your favourite record labels out there at the moment?
I’ll go with current active ones; I like what NAFF are doing, from Montreal,
Kalahari Oyster Kult, from Melbourne 😉 and I always find the Whities releases interesting for a more modern take, especially the artwork.
What can we expect from Superconscious in 2020?
Hopefully, a bunch of great records released sporadically and with very little to no notice in advance.
What’s your preferred method for finding new music – do you still enjoy digging around in dusty crates or are you more of an order online kind of guy?
I think it’s hard to not be both nowadays. I love digging, but ironically find it most fruitful online via Discogs. In the digital domain, Bandcamp is my numero uno.