Happa: A Musical Mastermind.
For a DJ and producer whose music is coursing with energy and aggression, perhaps the most striking thing about Leeds-born Happa, real name Samir Alikhanizadeh, is his calm and mild-mannered nature.
Perhaps his humbleness is down to his relative wealth of experience for a man in his twenties. Much has been made of Happa’s age, ostensibly due to his sudden emergence in 2012, the year he produced his breakthrough song ‘Boss’ aged just 14. Since then, more than seven years spent developing and moulding his own characteristic style has seen Happa develop far beyond the levels of the once teenage prodigy.
Bursting onto the scene with his distinctive sound, a fusion of dark industrial techno with elements of old-school dubstep, Happa was mentored by Mary Anne Hobbs, who was one of the first to play the track ‘Boss’ on her XFM show.
Hobbs would go on to put Happa in touch with Four Tet, leading to the latter asking Happa to remix his track ‘Jupiters’, released in 2012, to which Alikhanizadeh’s impressive production brought a new throbbing, polyrhythmic feel.
Happa has been featured in Resident Advisor and FACT Magazine, as well as making his Boiler Room debut in 2014, the same year he founded his label, PT/5. His label’s first release, ‘Vent’, features a remix from techno bigwig Truss, testament to the hype that Happa’s name is able to generate.
All this gives the clear indication of a DJ on the rise, turning the heads of many in the music industry with his work remixing for and alongside Trim, Jon Hopkins and David Byrne, in addition to the iconic Four Tet.
When it comes to his pulsating DJ sets, Happa brings a clear sense of paranoia and is a DJ whose self-styled aggressive techno sound is sure to be a hit when he joins us at the intimate venue The Pickle Factory on April 25th.
By Louis Holbrook