When it comes to rave culture there aren’t many artists out there who are as passionate and dedicated as Enzo Siragusa. The Londoner is the mastermind behind one of the capital’s most infamous party brands, Fuse – an event which he has used to cultivate an unmistakable sound, attracting a loyal, dedicated following in the process. His roots lie in jungle and drum n bass, that pure, undiluted sound which sprung up from London’s inner city in the mid-nineties. Enzo still holds true to many of the aspects of 90’s UK rave culture that made it so special and carries them into his current output. So, whether he’s DJing, making beats in the studio, hosting another sellout Fuse event or letting loose on the dance floor, you can be sure it’s always fueled by a desire to perpetuate the culture that changed his life.
What can you tell us about your upcoming visit to NYC and Montreal?
I will be making my debut at Output and playing in the main room. I’ve wanted to play there since I saw Danny Tenaglia earlier this year. I remember looking around and saying to myself “I want to play in this room.” It was a great night.
In Montreal I will play the downstairs bar at Stereo, and I have only heard great things about this room and sound system. I cannot wait for both gigs.
In addition to your music, you also founded Fuse events and head up not one, but two record labels—how do you maintain balance?
It’s not easy, but a healthy dose of passion for what you do helps a great deal. I love what I do, and so it’s not work to me, I would happily do it 7 days a week.
Fuse is celebrating its 9th anniversary this month. Tell us about the Fuse origin story. Talk to us a little about that journey.
We had very humble beginnings.
I started running an after hour for a Saturday night party I was doing at the time. It was free entry and started at 10am. Eventually, the popularity of the Sunday swallowed up my Saturday party as everyone wanted to save themselves for Sunday morning. FUSE was born.
We started at a small club on Brick Lane called 93 Feet East for around 100 people. We played music to suit the after-party mood, so more dubby, stripped back and minimal. The party centered around its residents, most of which came from our dancefloor and started to make music for our party, and it is still evolving in this manner. We grew together, learned to make music together, and the two record labels FUSE and Infuse we’re born out of this sound. Now, we reside at Village Underground in London and had a residency at Amnesia last summer.
What would you tell yourself when you began, now, knowing what you know in the business?
I know now that whatever you do it takes time to build a career, and to have foundations and longevity in this business you have to put the work in, and put it in consistently. This is key.
I’ve always stuck to my roots and guns and done things the way I have wanted to do them. I believe that the 20 years of man hours I have put in have taught me my trade and how to be a good DJ. There are no shortcuts for that. You have to enjoy what you do from the heart, and truly live it in order to take that through. Don’t take those short cuts, if you’re passionate about what you do.
We hear you’re a notorious vinyl aficionado. How old were you the first time you bought your first vinyl?
I was 14 years old and it was a Hardcore record by Shut Up and Dance.
If you had to pick one. What’s your favorite record in your collection?
If I had to pick one right now, with my current mood, it would be 19.5 Reprisal by LTJ Bukem.
Were you always interested in music?
Yes, I was, I was always playing stuff on my Casio keyboard. We also had a piano in the house when I was growing up and I also played the trumpet. When I was 14 it progressed to DJing, and my passion for mixing records began.
What would you say is the most important lesson you’ve learned from life thus far?
To believe in yourself. You can follow your heart but you have to work extremely hard and be committed to that belief. It’s a hard path to follow, but if you really believe you can do it and match that with hard work, it’s a great path to be on.
You recently toured South America. What have the tour highlights been so far?
It was an absolutely incredible to see how far the FUSE sound has spread. Going to Cordoba and the guys there telling me that various mixes of mine were viewed as legendary mixes for DJs growing in their scene, and the FUSE label has helped shaped their sound. To find out that we have helped inspire their scene was very humbling. It really did seem that we have impacted more deeply there than anywhere else outside of London.
Tell us about your upcoming releases on Fuse.
I have a collaboration EP coming up with FUSE resident Archie Hamilton, and Subb-an, and a remix for Guti and Romanian DJ Cristi Cons.
Over 20 years deep and still as passionate, enthusiastic and obsessive as ever, Enzo Siragusa continues to inject his ideals into his output. Building a community around Fuse, while maintaining a successful solo career and producing dynamic sounds in the studio. Always smiling, he’s a man who has a created a London institution and he’ll be involved with rave culture for a long time to come…
Catch Enzo on tour:
Listen to clips of Archenzubann EP:
Check out Enzo Siragusa’s BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix: