7 Sides of Alexis Raphael [Interview & Mix] | Selector After Dark

This week’s interview & mix comes from Alexis Raphael

Introduce yourself and tell us about the part of the UK you’re from?

Hi, I’m Alexis Raphael. I grew up in Camden, North West London! Surrounded by record shops, rave culture and raves. Was a really fun place to be a teenager In the 1990s! Right in the thick of it! Wouldn’t have changed it for the world.


Tell us about some of your British DJ heroes?

Well I grew up listening to tape packs from raves like Helter Skelter, Dreamscape, The Edge etc and pirate radio stations like Kool FM (shout to Kool for still running now!) and Dream FM. So it was the DJs from these two places that first inspired me. Randall, Brockie, Hype, Slipmatt, Ratty. These were my idols growing up. Beyond that any of the greats like Sasha and Carl Cox that have managed to stand the test of time have my utmost respect. I’ve seen how hard it is to stay relevant and evolve with changing fashions and styles, so to last 30 years well… hats off! We may never win the World Cup again but we sure do lead the world on electronic music. Proud of that. 


What have you been working on recently?

I’ve gone back to buying vinyl after just being fed up with being sent so much low quality music digitally and spending so much time in front of a computer screen trying to find good bits. It’s not enjoyable. I’ve been finding such amazing music that’s original and inspiring when record shopping. I’ve been working on new music based off this new phase of record buying. I’ve also been putting together the reemergence of Creche in London, the party I started in 2010. We did the first outside at the Ministry of Sound car park on 6th May, it was a total roadblock so I’ve been planning another 2 events for the summer. Next one is 30th June – a rooftop party in Brixton! Cannot wait. It’s crazy after 5 years of being relatively quiet and doing the odd small party, there are over 1000 people are buying tickets again. We certainly are back! 


Tell us about the mix, how did you put it together, what did you want to represent?

As above it’s a mix of the great records I’ve been buying. I just wanna show that there’s more out there than what a lot of people are being exposed to in my opinion. Diversity is the spice of life and I try to show that in the mix. 


Talk us through the British music featured in this mix? Which British artists are you most excited about?

I’m literally getting a pile of records a week and trawling through them and when asked to put this mix together I had to really research which were UK etc. Lots are white labels. The Jamie xx remix is great, apparently the vinyls are going for £60 now which is mad. The opening record is the Ashley Beedle vocal mix of Unmask Me. It’s an epic – I think about 10 minutes long – piece of music… I could only stick a short bit on the mix. Absolutely amazing, love it.


What is on the cards in the immediate future?

I’m playing amnesia this summer on the terrace for the first time. Having done DC10 that will be my Ibiza tick list finished which I’m very excited about. I’m only doing a select amount of gigs because I want to play either on big stages or to crowds that are open to my mix of music. There was a point when I would go to a gig and it’s a young crowd and all they want to hear is tech house. Now that’s cool, and all power to them to enjoy that. But it’s not me. So I’m really making changes, as I said, in the music I’m playing and making but also trying to avoid gigs where I can’t push boundaries. 


Where is the best place in the world you have DJ’d and why?

There’s been amazing highlights like Brazil I always loved and places like New Zealand, and I love Kater Blau in Berlin, they’re so open to whatever you want to play (I’m back there in August), but in all honesty when I’m at my own party, Creche, and there are my friends and the crowd there, well that’s a special feeling. I feel very humbled to have been able to play anywhere outside of my bedroom. I never ever thought that would happen! It’s crazy.