If you’ve charmed the ear of radio legend Mary Anne Hobbs, you’ve done something right.
At 15 years of age, Happa is an anomaly. The Leeds UK producer has birthed a richly industrial, head slamming sound with Pluto sized bass, easily fit for both dancefloor and autobahn–and he’s barely been through his teens.
— maryanne hobbs (@maryannehobbs) August 22, 2012
Birth name Samir Alikhanizadeh, it occurred to me after many listens of Samir’s “Jupiters” remix that Happa tracks show the influence of massive UK trailblazer (and personal favorite) Blawan. Happa knows it.
He admits the influence himself in an interview with Get Some UK that he’s inspired by industry crushers like Boddika, South London Ordnance, Paleman–a sturdy iPod to say the least.
But a seasoned blog reader sees copycat artists come and go all day. Happa has a stickier style than that. He makes you pay attention.
As ready as he is to talk about them, Happa‘s influences are subtler than a few well known names in the underground. The only reason I picked out Blawan after a dozen listens was personal taste and eight hours a day at my computer, chomping through blog rolls, emails and sound clips like they’re adding minutes to my life (rather than stealing them) and keeping a daily eye on the UK like they’re about to launch warheads.
Happa nods respectfully to his influences without snatching their style. His remixes of Four Tet’s “Jupiters” and Metrist’s “Vibe Apparatus” show a ripe instinct for deep, earthquake rhythms and spooky dancefloor adrenaline. That energy you feel when you hear the “Jupiters” remix (below) is a testament to his unique synapses. Found deep inside the artist’s mind, Happa describes a subtler influence in an interview with INHABIT:
“I find inspiration in other producers, bands, things that happen throughout the day, things I see or hear… but mainly I’d say it comes down to my mood.”
“Happa” stands for “Half a Persian prince and…” He’s yet to fill in the rest, perhaps because he hasn’t yet reached his destination. No doubt, Happa has a long discography ahead of him to find the end of that phrase.
Air bubbles find their way to the surface, canaries follow air currents to find their way out of a coalmine and true talent writhes defiantly to be brought to the public.
Hold tight the path of the “half a Persian.”