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"Genius Recognised" Interview with Jason Midro (Hard NRG Vol.2)

Author: Will Jackson
Tuesday, September 11, 2001
Jason Midro has long searched for the recognition he feels he deserves as one of Australia's premier hard house and trance djs. Last year the mighty Ministry of Sound asked Jason to mix a collection of high-energy hard house for an Australian release called Hard NRG. This CD went on to become one of 2000's best selling dance releases. As a result of its success, Jason was asked back by the big M and has now put together, with Nik Fish, Hard NRG Vol. 2.

While the album is a collection of Jason and Nik's picks as the most popular anthems for the NRG and hard trance scenes at the moment, Jason says he also he wanted to represent a particular time and place.

"I released it as representative of the Melbourne sound," he says. "It's for all the Melbourne people who have been going out and hearing the tracks and who want them on a CD they can keep. It's also meant to let Australia and I guess the rest of the world know what's been going on in Melbourne."

Captain Kirk co-authored the first Hard NRG release, which had a more house oriented sound. With Nik Fish on board, the series has gone on a slightly different tangent, with Midro and Fish delving into a trance scenario.

"His is a bit darker and more trancey, maybe," says Jason. "Mine's a little bit more uplifting and melodic even. I like the bigger more synthy sounds. (But) his sound is still very similar to mine."

Nik Fish is a bit of a journeyman when it comes to the whole mix CD thing, and apparently has attempted explore some new ground with this release. Jason says he decided not to put any of those newer tracks in his mix, as he's trying to capture the flavour of Melbourne over past year or so. However, there was still a little conflict over who was going to get some of those particularly bangin' tracks.

"There were four or five tracks that we both wanted to put on, the main one he really wanted was Overdrive. We sort of traded off a few tracks here and there and he ended up putting a couple on a couple of newer ones and vice-versa so there really ended up being only one track that we both really wanted and he used it. Otherwise it was basically our own choice of which direction we went."

"There are always a couple (of tracks) that you try to get licenses for but you don't get. But all the tracks that are on the CD are pretty much the tracks that I wanted, definitely."

"This time I had more of a choice in the musical direction for the tracks that I wanted to get licensed. For the first ministry CD I oversaw more and only had a bit of a say. This time they were all my choice, except for one, which was a Ministry release they really wanted on the CD - which is not a track that I haven't played and don't really like. I'm very happy with the selection."

So how did Mr Midro manage to hook up with London's massive dance-corporation Ministry of Sound-
"They approached me, which was probably the greatest honour of my dj career just about, apart from being flown overseas last year to play at frantic in London at the Camden palace.

"They approached a few of the major record stores here to see what was being asked for and Kiss FM to see who was the biggest hard house dj, and my name kept popping up. And because I'd never done a CD before the dudes in the stores said that people kept on coming in asking for Midro all the time and there was nothing, (because) in my 10 or 11 year career, I've never ever been asked to do a CD compilation by anyone…

"It was ironic, but also it was so fitting in a way, because I was pretty upset because no-one had ever recognised the talent that I was and how well a CD would do if I ever did one, and no record companies would do it or approach me. And then Ministry come and do it and it's a national best seller. And it has been for 12 months, and its just shocked a lot of people. Its so rewarding, it gives me such a sense of satisfaction that finally I have got the fucking recognition and to get it from ministry, it's like