Reputation is a wonderful thing. It's certainly something Liverpool DJ/Producer Yousef has come accustomed too, carving his own legacy across the global electronica circuit for close on a decade. Yousef was first bitten by the acid house bug at the legendary rave metropolis "Shelly's" in 1991 and since then has grabbed the global industry by the scruff of the neck, forcing his way in through sheer talent and determination. Residencies at Ministry of Sound, Renaissance and most notably Cream, cemented the scouse empire with a love of house at a point where trance began to rule clubland. Yousef then went on to conquer the rest of the UK taking his infallible understanding of house to Basics, Pressure, Shindig and every other top UK club. The rest of the world followed with Yousef skipping across continents with the same glee as the snapping beats in the music he played. Booked in the world's best clubs on a regular basis, Yousef quickly became synonymous as one of dance music's global figures, a position he still holds to great acclaim.
It is clear that Yousef loves to travel (lucky then with the amount he does) "I love seeing the world and its dancefloors", Yousef adds. "I love going to Montreal, it's multicultural and multi-sexual and musically broad. My favourite places include New York, LA, South America and Brazil; it's so good down there - Rio, Sao Polo, Porto Alegre, amazing, high energy parties. In Argentina - The Mau Club so underground and intense. And then there's Asia, Japan, just a wonderful country where the vibes never fails to amaze me, Sydney, Melbourne, all over Europe, I could go on!"
Relentlessly playing worldwide has given Yousef a mature & broad musical taste, twisting electronica with house, vocals with techno. Yousef stays current without jumping on bandwagons, his finger on the pulse without wavering to trends. This keen ear for what works on the dancefloor also translates in the studio. Yousef has remixed for many world-class DJ's including Fatboy Slim which have been released on a slew of rave emporiums like Skint, Slip N Slide, Junior boys own, CR2, Sony and Peppermint Jam, Underwater and Denmark's Okyo. Carl Cox V's Yousef "I want you" on CR2 hit the number one spot in March for 3 weeks in the hype chart and went on to crack the national top 20 indie chart.
Taking a step back from his wild days ("I'm more interested in running than raving") has meant Yousef's studio time has been even more productive. Working on Carl Cox's monster ‘I want you' resulted in a massive remake, (signed to cr2) and the current self-penned and sung ‘My Own Best Myself', a track complete with a furious techno edit that became Carl Cox's secret weapon. "The priority for me is to continue making hot records", Yousef nods. "People who play what I'm into are Nic Fanciulli, Steve Lawler, Laurent Garnier, Paul Woolford and Deep Dish, people who have also heavily supported my own music".
There's a forthcoming barrage of re-edits as well, masterful takes on the likes of Felix da Housecat, Justice, Mr Oizo and Jence which have cheekily reappraised classic moments in dance music's archaic history. Knee deep into the twenty first century and Yousef is still cutting edge, benchmarked brilliantly by his latest mix for Underwater. Mixed LIVE and spread across two discs, it showcases the deftness of his new mature sound, garnering significant praise from the media and the coveted ‘album of the issue' accolade and a five star rating from DJMag; a compilation that acts not only as a snapshot of a now but also a timeless statement of dance music in its most visceral glory. It's in good company, joining a series that began with a classic Mixmag covermount in 2001 and has since racked up critically lauded offerings on Renaissance, DMC, Cream, UCMG and a mix for some night called Circus.
Ah, how can we forget Circus; Yousef's infamous Liverpool party? "The line-ups are ridiculous!" he laughs. He's not kidding, a feverish acid-house party, Circus has just turned five after a cataclysmic birthday at Nation. "The party was a roaring success; we managed to get together a line-up that reflected everything that we have stood for in the past and the present, as well as taking a glance at our future". This wasn't misplaced. Circus recent 5th birthday caused pandemonium rarely seen in Liverpool, the venues full of 3000 incessantly hedonistic ravers with another 1200 turned away... Something of a labour of love, Yousef has managed to balance that fine act of putting on fresh talent and combining them with world beaters, His monthly continues to its 6th birthday now, and beyond. Now Considered one of if not the Leader in the Uk clectronic music club scene
Following the success of the Circus events and driven by unquenchable studio thirst Yousef launched Circus Recordings. The first release in May is a two track EP from the man himself - ‘Letter to No One' and ‘Purple Rage' and has gained unprecedented support from the likes of Carl Cox, Steve Lawler, Paul Woolford and Nic Fanciulli. The 2nd release June also by Yousef, ‘Equilibrium' and ‘Wig' and is already getting a lot of support from James Zabiela, Paul Van Dyk and Dave Seaman. Two perfect and very positive introductions to the one of dance music's exciting new labels!
‘Antelope/Poison Dwarf' Yousef teams up with DJ and producer du jour Juan Kidd for Azuli, and with forthcoming tracks on Toolroom and CR2 it seems like a likely partnership!
So what does lie ahead for Yousef..? The dj touring continues, Yousef's signature sound - all the best forms of house, techno and electronica, his innate understanding of soundtracking continues to devastate dance floors worldwide.