PROFILE: MOTEK LONDON | Skip to main content



The promoters bringing funk to the UK club scene

Despite struggling to gain a meaningful foothold in an over-saturated clubbing circuit during its first 12 months, Motek is making moves to become one of the capital's leading forces.

“London is a difficult place to get yourself noticed, there's just way too much competition for its own good,” Matt Hardinge, Motek resident and promoter, tells DJ Mag. “Parties are spread thin because there's so much going on, on any given night. It's taken us a while to break through and find our niche, so to speak, but we're now in a really great position. I know it's really clichéd to say it's like a family, but it really does feel like that.”

Starting life in early 2011 after he and Ben Coda sat down one morning after the night before to discuss how to bring something much-needed but missing to London nightlife, Motek has had innings at C.A.M.P, Russian Bar, Hoxton Basement and Dalston Roof Park, as well as regular parties at Cafe 1001.

Opting for the more leftfield names of the deep house and techno stock than its local peers — those spotted less often in the capital — Spektre, Mark Henning, Ahmet Sisman, Mario & Vidis, Max Cooper and Slam have played during its lifetime, with Toronto's My Favorite Robot taking over Hoxton Basement, with support from Silky, last month.

“The last one was really amazing and probably one of our best parties yet,” Matt reflects. “The music flowed really well throughout the night and My Favorite Robot played the best set at Motek to date.”

Alongside plans to continue regular parties at Cafe 1001 and intentions to go abroad to throw parties and help programme festivals in 2013, Matt and Ben are looking to maintain the New York ties acquired by Matt's time as a resident there a few years' back. Especially in light of the success of the first party in the Big Apple — part of a mini-tour which visited Florida and Montreal. So how do parties in NY compare to those in London?

“The marketplace is completely different in the two cities,” Matt points out. “London seems to be over-saturated with underground house and techno, which makes it really difficult to stand out. In NYC, anything that isn't 'EDM' is in short supply, but the people running the more underground parties there are doing a great job. NYC is a little behind musically, but the atmosphere there is always good because the underground crowd, although small, is dedicated.”

For Matt, Ben and the rest of the crew, conjuring a vibe in a unique, intimate setting is at the core of the agenda. But that's not to say Motek is keeping a low profile. With much awaiting on the horizon, expect to see a whole lot more from these guys in the coming year...