La Mano

La Mano – Interview

La Mano

La Mano

Fabricca’ marks La Mano’s return to his Sound Du Jour label, following his 2021 ‘Tarvisio’ EP, which launched the label, and a remix for MAN 2.0’s ‘Synapse’ on the imprint shortly after. Since then, he has gone on to release on Mélopée and Tusk Wax, as well as a remix for Man Power on Me Me Me alongside work on releases with the likes of Andy Ash, Marcus Christiansen and Demetae via Sound Du Jour.

La Mano - Interview

Hi La Mano, thanks for taking the time to chat with us today! How are you doing

I’m great, thanks for having me.

Tell us about your journey to where you are now – how you got into dance music, where and when?

I was too young to attend, but in the early 90’s, I’d seen videos of the Fantazia events at Castle Donnington and other places, and the music I heard was just like nothing else; this new sound of electronic music just fascinated me. I was also really interested in turntablism and had loads of videos of the DMC championships. Luckily for me, my grandparents had always run pubs and nightclubs, so I slowly started being handed bits of equipment that were no longer being used and learning how things worked. We had a great little record shop in Preston, Action Records, which was actually split into two parts, with the smaller shop dedicated to dance music; I spent most of my Saturdays in there.

La Mano is an alias you’ve used for some time, with several releases on labels such as Mélopée and Tusk Wax. What was the inspiration behind the alias?

For a good few years, we used to have an annual boat party in Amsterdam on Queen’s Day, which then became Kings Day. It was a lot of fun, and things used to get a bit out of hand, including a fire alarm being set off in a hotel over there. Nobody owned up to it, but somebody blamed it on me; I said I didn’t do it; it was my hand; from then on, anything that went wrong was blamed on “the hand”. I’m of Italian heritage, and La Mano is the hand translated into Italian, so I thought, why not use that when thinking about an alias to release under?

You’re the label boss of Sound Du Jour. How did the idea or desire to start the imprint come about?

Although quite daunting initially, it was something that came about quite quickly with a lot of help and advice from friends in the industry. Sending out demos and having people A&R something that you were already happy with can be frustrating for an artist, and the process of finding somewhere to release your music is lengthy; this is a large part of releasing music as an artist. I just felt that having my own home for my music and that of friends or artists I admired would make life easier; it’s also much more fun working with people you know who will give you honest feedback.

What are you most proud of and excited about from the label?

I wasn’t sure how things would work out when I started the label, and although it’s still in its infancy, I think hearing Paul Woolford close his show on Radio 1 with the Vyvyan remix of MAN2.0 – Monsters when standing in for Pete Tong a couple of years ago really validated everything for me. It’s such a competitive industry, there’s so many labels, there’s so much music, when you start to hear people play something from the label on merit it makes it all worthwhile. I’m also super excited about our next release which is due out in September, it’s a slight move away from the electro sound we champion, it’s a vocal track and has killer remixes from PBR Streetgang and Magari, it’s also the first time we’ll be releasing on vinyl, we are pressing 400 copies, the artwork is amazing.

Your EP ‘Fabbrica’ is the latest EP to come out on the imprint. What can you tell us about it?

It’s an emotive three-tracker that crosses over from electro to melodic. I really enjoyed making this EP and decided to release the three tracks as originals without remixes this time. It’s had some great support, and I’m really pleased with it.

What equipment did you use when making this EP?

I’ve got a great little studio space in my cellar at home where I have an array of outboard gear; I use Ableton as my DAW, and although I use some VSTs (Arturia’s V collection is a favourite), my go to pieces of hardware that I use extensively on the track here are my Moog Subsequent 37 and My Prophet Rev 2. Drums come from my Roland TR8s; I use the Soundtoys suite for effects and a lot of UAD plugins when mixing. Mastering is a dark art, so I always send my music out for that final stage.

Outside of electronic music, what do you enjoy in your spare time?

My family business is hospitality, along with my parents and three younger brothers we run a chain of Italian restaurants so I tend to do a lot of eating and drinking followed by a little bit of running to try and offset it.

Any final words for our readers?

Thanks to anyone who’s bought, played, or listened to any of my music or that of the label! And if anyone has any demos that they feel may be a fit for us, fire them over

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