This week, we were lucky enough to chat with Techno legend Phil Kieran (SoundCloud) about his upcoming tour of Australia, the music, his love of Melbourne, and some of his experiences in the industry. Over the past decade or so Phil has gained his reputation as one of the finest club DJs in the world by playing at some of the best and most well known venues around the globe. He started his career in Belfast as a much loved resident at Shine Club, later going on to release with Skint, Soma, Cocoon, Snork, and even running his own PKR imprint. Now, 15 years after his first ever release, this man continues to create, tour, and inspire.
Tom: Firstly, it’s an amazing opportunity here at Whono’s to interview you, Phil Kieran, and thanks for the chance. Let’s start from the start, how did you get into music? Where did it all come from?
Phil: I grew up going to Piano lessons from as early as I can remember, then moved onto guitar lessons then bought a drum kit and just bashed it in my parents garage. I never really thought I was going to do music full time at that age I just enjoyed it. Then at 16 I just decided its all I wanted to do.
I’ve seen that you’ve worked with some huge names in many different industries. Names like Gary Numan, David Holmes, and a personal favourite of mine; Green Velvet. Who stood out to you? How has working with them effected your music?
The Gary Numan connection only comes from me sampling his record, David Holmes is more one of my mates to be honest, we do music together the odd time but more time is spent drinking and listening to music than making it and that’s fine by me. We always have down time together, just chilling out on weekends I’m off. I’ve known Curtis (Green Velvet) for years by just bumping into him djing, he was always a fan of my records and of course I was always a huge fan of his, so it wasn’t that hard to strike up the relationship. I want to do more but he is a busy man and hard to nail down sometimes.
Australia is a place you’ve visited and toured before, is there something that attracts you to us?
Melbourne is a second home to me, apart from my own home city of Belfast I have spent by far the most time in Melbourne. I considered moving there with the family at one stage but logistically it was never going to work with being a DJ. I’m there once a year and just love my couple of weeks in Australia.
You’re performing at the iconic venue; Revolver, in Melbourne, not for just a normal set, but for six hours! How do you prepare for something like that?
Usually 5 is the long set time , think I done a little more than that, but yes 6 hours will be the longest yet. It’s my birthday weekend as well so gonna be some party vibes in the air. It will fly by as long as the drinks are flowing and I can get to the toilet in a hurry!
You’ve been in the game for over 15 years now, please tell us something about your experience around the globe. What is your favourite city or country and why?
I have to mention Buenos Aires as I just have had so many special gigs there. Huge crowds that just hang on every note or sound, it’s just so awesome! Juarez in Mexico is another one and I have to mention and Melbourne as well, just some great special moments I am so lucky to have in my life.
What was your funniest or craziest experience while touring?
A lot of them I would not wish to share on the internet. I generally find myself in some kind of trouble or messy situation, I like to live my life and not just hide in a hotel room.
For those that might be looking to travel to Belfast, where are the key spots to go out? Where are your favourites?
Shine is the big dance music event, but there is lots of smaller nights happening and some really cool guests coming over. I think there is a quite a healthy music thing going on here and its as strong as ever. It just feels very specialist and cooler I think .
What are your top 5 tracks that are working for you at the moment? Your show stoppers, your faithfuls.
Kobosil – Osmium
Tenebre – Poison the Machine
Bambounou – Each Other
Errorsmith – Jack7
Jimmy Edgar – Strike
Is there something big we can look forward to in the future? Any collaborations or shows to take note on?
I have just finished an album that will be coming out under another name and on a very, very well known dance music label, that’s all I’m saying right now.
Thanks for the opportunity again, have a great tour of Australia and enjoy yourself.
Friday 27th March – Revolver (6 hour set), Melbourne
Sunday 29th March – Geisha, Perth
Saturday 4th April – U Know, Geelong
Sunday 5th April – Sash, Sydney