Eats Everything, Andres Campo and their quest to keep the world supplied with "funky, groovy techno"
Our label of the month for December, EI8HT Records, is a truly international concern, based jointly in founders Eats Everything (Dan Pearce) and Andres Campo's respective home cities of Bristol and Barcelona.
EI8HT emerged blinking into the daylight back in May 2019, and over the course of the intervening 19 months have so far put out 12 techno and tech-house EPs from the likes of Truncate, Black Girl White Girl and Drumcomplex. They've also hosted nights at such high-profile niteries as fabric and Watergate, as well as hosting their own stage at elrow Amsterdam. Most recently, they topped the Beatport techno charts with Dan's first release on the label, the eight-track 8 Cubed EP.
And getting your first No 1 is a big day in any record label's life! So that seemed as good a reason as any to reach out to Andres and Dan and find out more…
Andres is from Spain and Dan's from Bristol, so how did the two of you first meet… and how long had you known each other when you decided to set up a label together?
Andres: “The first time we played together was a B2B set in Barcelona. We'd actually never played together before, but we had chatted and of course met at many venues. Dan’s flight was delayed, so he got to the club only five minutes before we opened and we didn't have any time to talk. We just looked at each other and said, “Let’s do this, and have fun!”. The result was superb, more than each of us expected, I think. After that show we stayed in touch regularly.”
When was the label set up, and why?
Andres: “It was just a coincidence, really. We started to play together more often, and we also have a good relationship outside of music. When we got talking, we realised that we had the same taste in music and both of us wanted to start a new label. From that point we decided to do it together and to create a label that releases the sound that we always look for in our sets.”
Dan: “Myself and Andres have a lot in common, and it was our love of not taking life too seriously is what brought us together really. After we spend more time getting to know each other, it soon became clear we wanted to do something, and a label seemed like a sensible idea.”
Describe the label's music policy:
A: “It's techno, yes, but to have a groove was essential for us both. It needs that funky element to make your body want to move. That's our goal: funky, groovy techno. We don't care about big names, our intention is to release good music, no matter who is behind it.”
D: “Yes, as Andres says – it’s all about the groove!”
How many people are employed by/involved in running the label?
D: “We have a nice solid team made up of beautiful people. Nick is our A&R, Emma is our PR and Adam is our label promo manager. David's our content manager and then we also have both our artist management teams. So in total we have about eight people behind the brand – we love you all!”
The label's called EI8HT and your last release was an eight-track EP called 8 Cubed. Does the number eight have any particular significance for you, or is it just a branding thing?
D: “We both brainstormed on names for the label, as I already had Edible and wanted it to be something that sounds like EAT. I came out with EI8HT and Andres liked it too. He loved the number in the name and cleverly designed the logo as two circles: each represents one of us finding a common place where our tastes and objectives about music fall into place.”
Personal highlights so far?
A: “Dan’s most recent EP reached the No.1 spot in Raw Techno on Beatport, which was amazing. We've also had some amazing label parties at fabric in London, Watergate in Berlin and in our own tent at the elrow Amsterdam festival.”
D: “For me, being able to put out eight tracks in one release on the label and them all to reach the higher echelons of the charts has been amazing. We’ve had a lot of fun with this label, and long may it continue!”
“You should choose a business partner more carefully that you pick your husband or wife”. Discuss.
A: “This was easy for me, as Dan is sexier than my girlfriend! Ha ha ha.”
D: "Yeah, we were kind of thrust into it, but as soon as we started playing, we realised that it was like having four arms. We do the same things when we DJ, so it was an easy and fun thing to do. And Andres is a very generous lover!”
The 8 Cubed EP is Dan's first release on the label and Andres has only done one – are you deliberately NOT making the label a vehicle for your own tracks?
A: “No, not at all! It's a great platform to have available for our own productions, and when we have music we feel works for it, then we will release it on EI8HT. But we are really into a lot of other people’s music too, and we get so many amazing demos, we want to showcase exciting young producers alongside ourselves to keep the flow. Of course, now Dan has just released his big eight-tracker it's my turn! But there is space for everyone in our house.”
D: “We will both definitely release more on the label, but essentially, it's a label to be able to showcase ALL the music that we are really into, not just our own.”
Dan, I gather you recently became a Dad… congratulations! How's juggling a business and a baby during a pandemic been working out for you?
D: “It’s actually been really easy! I already have one son, so having the second is always much easier. Being home instead of on the road has made this one different, but in a good way – it's enabled me to have so much valuable time with my family and also share the responsibilities.”
And how has the coronavirus pandemic affected the label's business generally? Obviously you can't put on events or get out to DJ, but does everything else carry on as normal or have you had to make adjustments?
A: “At the start of the whole situation, when we first realised this was going to be serious, we discussed what we should do. We talked with our upcoming artists and explained to them that sales were not likely to be good during the pandemic, but we wanted to continue releasing music – we just had to make sure everyone knew and understood the situation first.
“So we kept the releases flowing and we did six in total during the pandemic. So yes, it’s been weird, sales are down… but also we feel people need new music to get them through this hard time, so we didn't want to stop.”
D: “Yeah, we've actually been thriving through lockdown when it comes to releases and music we are putting out! Thankfully that's something that Covid can’t affect and we can continue to get some quality releases to help everyone through this time. There’s a lot more to come, and we are getting stronger as a label for sure.”
Yes, the label's still very young – what are your long-term goals for it?
A: “Conquer the world, play music loud and have fun during the process.”
D: “I couldn't have put it better myself!”
Finally, what else is coming up that iDJ readers need to know about?
D: “We have some really nice releases coming up. But I just released my biggest EP to date, so we decided to start the releases again in 2021. The next will be from Dave Sinner, it's a proper techno-focused release with Dave’s trademark sound. From there onwards, we have a lot more announcements… but I can’t tell you yet, so keep your eyes and ears peeled!"
Words: Russell Deeks
Eats Everything's 8 Cubed EP is out now