THE BIRDHOUSE 085: Lord Leopard & Weiss

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For this week's episode of THE BIRDHOUSE, I enlisted two talented Brits who have been making big moves on Dirtybird: Lord Leopard and Weiss.

You know Lord Leopard's music from last month's massive "Clash Of The Tight-Uns" EP with Eats Everything. You probably don't know much else about him... and that's the way he likes it. LL is a relative newcomer, as his first release dropped in November on Eats' Edible imprint. All we knew about him initially was that he's a "part-time surfer/bedroom producer" from Cornwall, UK; after seeing his set with Eats at our Miami B2B Throwdown, it's safe to say he's the real deal. 

The show's second guest, Weiss, is no stranger to the house music scene, with releases on Toolroom, Play It Down and Relief, among others. He made his Dirtybird debut in December on our "New Year's Special" compilation, and we're excited to drop his "Change Dat" EP on Friday.

Check out Lord Leopard and Weiss' standout guest mixes on the show, and then read their answers to the Birdhouse Questionnaire... these two are surprisingly similar!

THE REAL

How did your music career get started in earnest?

Lord Leopard: I have to say that was my dad's fault when he put me onstage to play the drums during his band's interval. I was age two. 

Weiss: It all started from the age of 13 when my brothers had a house party while I was away with my mum and dad and a pair of 1210 [turntables] were left at the house. I had a go on them and was hooked ever since. This was back in 1995, and from that day I spent every penny I had on vinyl. 

Where are you from and does it have an influence on your music?

Lord Leopard: I grew up in Cornwall in the UK, which is very beautiful but isolated, so not many clubs or gigs to go to. This can be a disadvantage, but being cut off from the rest of the world helps in someways as you're free to develop ideas in your own way. 

Weiss: I’m from Surrey, just outside London. I'm not sure it has any influence on my music but I've always been into house and most other genres. I'm very eclectic when it comes to music and in my spare time I like to listen to many different artists, anything from Paul Simon to Metallica. 

How many times did you want to quit trying to make this your career?

Lord Leopard: I've always been involved with music in some way shape or form as long as I can remember, so I've never really thought about it like that! 

Weiss: I've never wanted to quit. This is what I've always wanted to do, no matter what it took. I've been in debt many times to get where I am now but it's been worth it. It's all I've ever wanted to do and luckily I have the family/friend support. 

What was one piece of equipment that helped define your sound early on?

Lord Leopard: I'm still early on in my career! i'd say that the Moog Voyager is fast becoming my favorite bit of kit... so well built and sounds so good!

Weiss: I used the Akai S300XL sampler a lot and then when the Nord Lead 3 came along I couldn't stop using that. I also use the 1210 as an instrument and sample a lot of records turning the samples into strange sounds. 

When you were getting started, which artists did you try to emulate (both musically and careerwise)?

Lord Leopard: Mr. Oizo, Thomas Bangalter, Recloose, Aphex Twin, Moodymann. Artists who have their own sound and identities.

Weiss: I've taken a lot of influences from many of the artists I grew up with, like Funkadelic and Prince, but I do love what Switch/Solid Groove did. Also, I hope you don't find it too cliché but I love what you guys do and have done. The way you treat your artists makes you feel very welcome. [Thanks dood! – CVS]

When you have a tough week or a rough tour, how do you get yourself back on track?

Lord Leopard: I go surfing. No matter what that always seems to sort me out. 

Weiss: I like to chill for a day at least and catch up with the family. I'm a bit of a movie junkie so I like to chill with the wife and a good Chinese takeaway.

Where and when are you at your most content/happiest?

Lord Leopard: I'd say I'm really happy and content doing the following things: surfing, DJing, noodling in the studio (if it's going well).

Weiss: Definitely with my wife and kids. I have a three-year-old son who's a bit of a nutter at the moment so playing with him is amazing and he always brings a smile to my face. 

Do you have any secret hobbies or hidden talents?

Lord Leopard: When I was eight years old I played chess at the highest level for my age. I traveled all over the country playing it!

Weiss: I'm a proper geek when it comes to collecting Hot Toys from Hong Kong. I have a massive collection, from Robocop/ED-209 to the Joker from The Dark Knight. I also own an original Stormtrooper helmet from Star Wars: A New Hope. My wife and I also like to collect art. We have a few pieces from JJ Adams to Banksy in the house. 

THE REST

Favorite and least favorite colors?

Lord Leopard: Favorite is blue, least favorite [is] yellow… although I still quite like yellow.

Weiss: Favorite is blue, least favorite is beige.

Favorite and least favorite words?

Lord Leopard: Favorite is “fantastic”, least favorite is “pupil”.

Weiss: Favorite is “well good”, least favorite is the c-word.

Favorite animal?

Lord Leopard: Owls. [Not the answer I would have expected. –CVS]

Weiss: Dogs, love them.

Favorite guilty pleasure song?

Lord Leopard: Mr. Mister, “Broken Wings”. Though to be honest i don't feel guilty at all about that…

Weiss: Foreigner, “I Want To Know What Love Is.” Haha!

German or Detroit techno?

Lord Leopard: Detroit. 

Weiss: Detroit.

Festival, club or illegal warehouse?

Lord Leopard: Tough one! Illegal warehouse!

Weiss: Illegal warehouse.

Biggie or Tupac?

Lord Leopard: Biggie.  

Weiss: Biggie.

Star Wars or Star Trek?

Lord Leopard: Star Wars.

Weiss: Star Wars alllll day long!!!

Exercise or Netflix?

Lord Leopard: Exercise, then Netflix.

Weiss: Netflix.