Hailing from Manchester (UK), producer and DJ Hypho is representing all shades of UK bass music with experimental beats ranging from 100-140 bpm. Hypho is signed to deep, dark and dangerous, encrypted audio, time is now and swamp81. He also founded manuka, a label that is showcasing new talent across the UK and USA.

The Interview
By Calvin Cyrus

The Manuka is a tree from a very specific region of New Zealand and bits of Australia that’s nectar produces the Manuka honey. Why did you choose this as the name of your record label?
For my end of year project at university, I was asked to start a record label. This name always stuck out to me as I was a big advocate for Manuka honey in my tea every morning. I always liked the name and how it rolled off the tongue. You can never go wrong with a bit of honey, right?

What’s on the pipeline for Manuka this year? Any big plans?
We have a lot of plans for Manuka this year. We just got a really dope team together to help run things. Felixculpah and Savant have joined the label, and Felix has really helped us step up our game in terms of organisation. We have a lot of releases in the pipeline. We are working really close with the cut house to bring some one-off vinyl releases. We also started a mix series titled ‘MNK Cast’ which we ask artists to showcase their sounds. The digital series will be running, as usual, and we have some very exciting artists coming this year.

If someone wanted to start their own record label, what advice would you give to them?
Teamwork makes the dreamwork.

Your name in the scene has grown substantially since we first met. What are a couple of songs that helped you become HYPHO?
The whole idea of Hypho at the beginning was to create tracks in the realm of Swamp81, so my biggest influences were the likes of Lamont, Boddika, Chunky and Loefah. I’ve always had a soft spot for techno. The sound they brought through, in my eyes, was a very distinct collaboration between techno and dubstep. Hence why I do both in my productions.

Your iconic vest has been animated with you on logos. Can we expect any additional content with the visual character?
Funny you ask. I’ve been thinking of ways to incorporate my little character into my brand a little more. There’s definitely some things coming with that.
My latest EP on DDD titled ‘Dingle Bat’ has the character on the front holding the vinyl release. It’s a bit like inception, go check it out.

It’s great to see you touring the US, but I know the journey to get back over here has been tough. Tell us about that visa experience and what it means to have one.
The visa situation was a long winded one, from back logs to covid, the whole system was a very long process. I kinda used my waiting time as a chance to create music and plans for the future. Without being able to do that, I probably would have went insane. All in all, the process probably took 9 months, which is very nerve-racking. For anyone planning on getting a visa, I recommend you have the patience of a god.

Now that you’re back stateside, what’s been your favorite city so far? Any destinations that are on your bucketlist?
There was a renegade show in New York, Brooklyn. Has to be the best underground show I’ve ever played! Big love to the SmackNYC crew for bringing me down! Was absolutely mental settings with myself, Wraz and Rafeeki! Never played a show like it.

Life on the road is fun, but sometimes it’s hard to balance the excitement of travel and remembering to continue to work and stay active. How do you handle that?
I’m in the middle of getting a MacBook for working on the road. I’ve purchased a GoPro11 and I’ve been gaining as much content as possible! It’s always nice to pay videographers for footage from shows, too. Really helps set the tone for your online presence.

You’ve done some work with Pav4n of Foreign Beggars. Those songs seem to be doing really well. How did those collabs come to be?
I hit up Pavan on messenger one day, just letting him know I loved his craft and said I have a few tracks for him! We have done the ‘relentless’ track which was a collaboration from PAV4N, myself, Strategy and Ternion Sound. Also the single I released on Manuka titled ‘Shades Of Amaranth’ which is the title of my USA tour. Really proud of how they turned out to be honest! Very pleased to be working with him.

I‘ve recently seen that you were working with mythm? What’s that one about and what’s your favorite tune from it?
Myself and Mythm worked together a lot during lockdown, he’s a very nice guy. we have a lot in common when it comes to music and the direction we want to go. We created a good 9/10 tracks and decided to evenly spread them across a few releases. One of them just came out on a sister label of Duploc called ‘BLXCK TXPES’ which I’m buzzing about! My favourite track on there has to be the title track ‘Questions’.

You were at Outlook UK this year and it was a great time. Tell us how you prepared for your set knowing that the festival itself represented sound system culture.
Outlook is the Mecca of dubstep, you can’t deny it. Such a fun festival full of the whole scene. It’s pretty much like a family get together! Had a lot of fun working close with Deep, Dark & Dangerous on the main stage and the boat parties.

What’s next for you? New releases? Exclusive mixes? World domination?
I’ve released four releases this year already and it’s only February. Looks like I’m not going to slow down either! I’ve had my Dingle Bat EP (DDD), Terps VIP on Darkzy’s Grottingham Label, Take it or leave it Ft Abstrakt Sonance and Rakjay and then myself and Mythm have the ‘Questions’ EP forthcoming the 27th of February. I have a few mixes out this year for sure. Check out the ones I’ve done so far.

Anyone you wanna shout out?
Big shout to my mum and dad, without your guys’ love and letting me do what I set my eyes on all these years, I wouldn’t be here today.

Follow Hypho online