We speak with rising star producer Toronto Is Broken about his latest LP, his upcoming Viper release and fax machines.
Your first release listed on Discogs is your ‘Never Easy’ EP and you were fairly young when you made this. I believe 17, is that right?
Oh God- I totally forgot that release ever existed! It was my first ever foray into bass music, primarily dubstep, which I gave away for free via my soundcloud. I remember actually playing a few of those tracks out years ago, and they held their own on a club system which I was quite surprised about considering it was my first attempt. Unfortunately (thankfully for me), I don’t think there’s any trace of them on the internet any more apart from that listing on Discogs.
Making tunes at such a young age did you find it difficult getting the gear to produce with or did you have supportive parents who helped you out?
I’m actually using the same computer today that I used when I first started producing music about five or six years ago- it was brought with some birthday money years ago I believe and only cost me £200. It’s gone through a few blue screens since then, various bits of hardware gear have been added and removed along the way, and I use Ableton Live 7 now, as back then I used FL Studio 8. My family’s always dubious about me pursuing a career in music, and I do work full time too, but they’ve always been really happy and supportive for me whenever I have a new release out or something good happens.
Your first release on Sub Slayers is the ‘Move It’ EP, which is a great set of tunes. How did you get linked up with Jay and the Sub Slayers crew?
I created the track “Taking Over” back in October 2011, and had no idea what I was doing or what it even was. I sent it to High Rankin who’s always been a strong supporter of my stuff since more or less day one. He then forwarded it to Jay Cunning who runs Sub Slayers, as SS’s first ever release was a High Rankin single, and before I knew it I was signed and released a whole EP with them.
You have a massive release that just hit the stores with the ‘Section Nine’ LP Sampler which is 7 out of this world tunes. Are you excited for the world to be hearing this?
Well, the whole album’s been out now about three weeks or so, and it’s been going really nicely. Lots of big names have jumped on board and gave their support and kind words such as June Miller, Mind Vortex, Reso, DJ Hype, Brookes Brothers, Tantrum Desire- I could go on! It’s been unreal and I’m super thankful for everyone who’s shown their love towards the album. It was a long two and a half years spent writing the album with a lot of frustration and all-nighters, but I think it’s definitely paid off!
If the LP Sampler is 7 tunes how big is the full on LP? What is the time frame on that to release?
The album itself is 18 tracks long (15 full and 3 interludes), all gapless with reoccuring themes, as it’s basically designed to work as one 70-minute piece of music, instead of just a collection of dancefloor tracks.
Your name is pretty unique, however contrary to suggestion you’re from England. How did you come up with Toronto Is Broken?
You’d be hardly surprised to hear that this is my most asked question haha! I was having trouble to think of a name for myself when I was about 16 (Im nearly 22 now), and I knew of someone who had a music page called “Detroit Valentino”. He basically came up with that name by getting a random placename and a random word and combining them. The first thing which popped into my head was “Toronto Is Broken”, for no reason whatsoever, and it kinda stuck. It’s far too late to change it now!
What was your favorite tune to make or listen to on this new LP sampler?
I like all of the tunes on the album just as much as each other, otherwise they wouldn’t be on the record. When it comes to picking a favorite, it depends on what mood I’m in at the time, and what I want to listen to at that particular moment. About making the tracks, they were all totally different, some were writing in a day, whilst others took maybe the best part of a year. Personally, “LV-426” was probably the most enjoyable to make and came to together really easily.
We heard a little something about a new tune releasing on Viper Recordings. Is this true?
Yes it is! I achieved a small dream of mine and have a new track of mine entitled “This Way Up” forthcoming on the mighty Viper Recordings on March 15th. I’m super excited about this and can’t wait to work more with Futurebound, Tim and everyone else over at Viper in the future. Following that there’s the last single from the album, “Field Of Poppies” which is to be a released with a remix or two, and also my first ever music video which is looking amazing right now! Finally, I have a single coming up on Sub Slayers’ sister -label Sub Nation, which is my first foray into 125bpm, but it’s not house whatsoever. So lookout for “Mirrored Walls / Sorrow” in a couple of months, I’m keeping myself super busy!
We heard you had a little mishap just a few days ago. Something involving a fax machine? Are you doing alright?
Yes, a fax machine fell on my face at work the other day. Can someone please fill me in on who still uses them and why!?