Category Archives: Interviews

“I think I have finally arrived again as a producer, after my long break behind the scenes, I really have found the instruments and working methods which suit me” – Hannes Bieger

Hannes Bieger is an artist that has built a very lefty reputation of late with what appears to be an exhaustive client list that only some artists could possibly dream of. For 11 years Hannes was very much focussed in the world of mixing and mastering with his magic touch being the choice of some of the biggest names in the industry. Since 2017, Hannes has decided to step, once again, back into the limelight and start making his own music after an extended break  Hannes returned to making his own music with his debut EP on Poker Flat in 2017 inspired by the purchase of a coveted Moog modular synth in 2016, which reinvigorated his passion for production. Since his return to the forefront of electronic music his music has graced labels including Flying Circus, Poker Flat (a couple more times), Hommage Records, Aeon, and of course John Digweed’s, Bedrock Records. His output has continued to be more than consistent, maintaining the high quality throughout 2019 showcased on tracks like ‘A Million Souls’ (featuring Francesca Lombardo on vocals) bolstering Hannes’ sterling reputation. In October 2019 he was signed to Davide Squillace’s label This And That with the ‘Tharsis/Elysium’ EP. Again, demonstrating Hannes’ ability to craft emotionally-charged, club-ready electronic music with precision and panache. He is now due to release his labels LP on Christopher Coe’s and Carl Cox’s label, Awesome Soundwave.

Proof that dedication to one’s craft and an uncompromising focus on quality over quantity can provide the perfect foundation to a lifetime of success. Hannes Bieger is an artist who is reaping the rewards from a lifelong commitment to music (take note you rookies out there), sharing his gift with the world every step of the way… I caught up with Hannes shortly after he landed back in Berlin for mandatory quarantine to talk about his new album, how he is coping during this crazy time, his production techniques, and some news about some potential new projects…

When I spoke to Hannes he had just returned home and begun his time in mandatory quarantine in Berlin… “today is the first colder day in Berlin since I came back, so I didn’t get to enjoy the sun on my roof terrasse. I did a bit of a home workout, I have been answering a lot of emails, I had Spaghetti for lunch, with the Pesto I made last night, and now I’m talking to you”. Before I spoke with Hannes we had exchanged a few emails about this interview and he mentioned that he had quite a surreal trip back to Berlin from the USA. I asked Hannes to tell me more about this surreal trip… “I embarked on a US tour before all the travel restrictions and corona related measures were issued. I was supposed to play Ultra, that had been canceled already, it looked like the club shows were still on, but ultimately everything got canceled. I then went to the Bahamas for some longe planned holidays, actually my first proper holidays in almost two years, and then the US travel ban was issued, so I couldn’t even return for 14 days. By the time this period was over, all commercial flights and boats between the islands had been canceled already, and in the end, I was able to “escape” on the copilot seat of a small charter plane. I returned to Berlin with stops in Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Atlanta, and Amsterdam, dealing with cancellations, being bumped from one plane to the next, and in the end, the return trip took over four days, normally it would have been less than 24 hours… it was a surreal experience through and through. When I arrived in Miami the pool area of the hotel was still open, although it was closed the next morning. The hotel in Atlanta had 200 rooms, but only four guests. Completely empty airports, the long haul in business class with champagne and cocktails felt almost frivolous, it reminded me of this flying party in the ‘Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’, and then a very sober mood everywhere when back in Europe…”

“I was happy to get back home finally, but it also felt like I was the last techno artist still up in the air, I knew this was going to be my last flight for a very long time…”

After quite the story from Hannes I wanted to ask him about how it all began for him and what it was that got him hooked on the sounds of electronic music… “one real breakthrough moment definitely was when I listened to Portishead the first time in late 1993 or early 1994. I was playing guitar in school bands before, and it struck me like lightning. I immediately knew that I wasn’t interested in long guitar solo noodling anymore. I also liked Massive Attack, AIR, and Kruder & Dorfmeister a lot in that era, Trip-Hop was really what pushed me into making electronic music myself. Although I must add that I listened to the Beatles and Pink Floyd a lot as a kid, and much of it also qualifies as “electronic music” in certain ways, the way how they experimented with varispeed tape recorders, how they began to use the studio as an actual instrument, and of course their use of synthesizers and sound effects themselves”. Whilst speaking about his early influences I asked him who or what helped him to develop his sound over the years, as well as influence him… “the 90s with all these different styles and genres emerging every couple months or even weeks, that has been a very inspiring, eclectic period for me. Sometimes I miss this openmindedness today! As musicians, I have to mention Dave Gilmour from Pink Floyd, Adrian Utley from Portishead who taught me a lot about minimalism and also many of the musicians who played in bands and projects with me in the early years. We were companions finding our musical languages, bounced ideas, and concepts off each other, and I’m sure this has had a huge effect on me, too. Guys like Christopher Noodt, Ruben Scheffler, or Lasse Eilers, who also became full-time professionals like musicians, although in slightly different fields. I think I owe them as well.”

For those of you familiar with Hennes and his music you will have no doubt seen his incredible studio and the many beautiful machines he uses to create those all so distinctive sounds. If you have not seen his recent live set for Awesome Soundwave I would add it to your must-see live sets!!! I asked Hannes how long did it take him to build up the studio we all see today and how has it evolved over the years with the hardware/software and technology changes? “I think the oldest piece of equipment I am still keeping at the studio I bought in 1994. My Juno-60, which I bought around 1997: It wasn’t the first synth I bought, but it’s the only synth of my first setup I’m still keeping. I really started to build my studio around 2000/2001, after I had moved to Berlin. It has been a work in progress ever since. As a guitarist, I have always been an “analogue” guy, and I started to become interested in synths long before soft synths existed. The hot thing in the late 90s was “virtual analogue” hardware, I still have my Nord Lead 2… if I started from scratch today, my studio would probably look a bit different, but I bought much of my analogue stuff at a time when digital wasn’t a real alternative at all. Today this has changed for sure, and I find it wonderful that we can really choose the best of both worlds now.”

Hannes recently released ‘A Million Souls’ on Bedrock records where he worked alongside Francesco Lombardo. I asked Hannes how he came to work with Francesca and how the track came together? I had heard it had a curious history… “It was early 2019, I had just returned from a long South America tour, and I had to catch up with studio stuff and create the music I wanted to release in that year. But I didn’t have much time and everything I came up with was just decent, but no A-Side material. One Monday morning I woke up and I had the groove and the melody of ‘A Million Souls’ in my head. I sent myself an email from my bed with a couple of notes, and luckily it was precise enough to recover it later at the studio. Something like this has never happened to me before, and never after, it really was like a gift from the universe at a time when I needed it the most! I knew I wanted to have vocals on the track, and I asked Francesca to do it. I had done some mixing for her in the past years, and I love her not only as a human but also as a musician, she is so complete! DJ, live performer, instrumentalist, vocalist, lyricist, producer, she is just extremely talented, and musically we seem to be pretty much on the same page. I remember I somehow didn’t like the first idea so much that she sent me, it was just a gut instinct. But with the next thing, I knew immediately we had struck gold. It was haunting but in a great way”… and boy did they both strike gold with that track! If you haven’t heard and been living under a massive rack for the past few months, check it out below…

Whilst on the production chat and talking about vocals I asked Hannes if he found any difficulties with working on vocal-based tracks over instrumentals or dub versions… “I have written and produced a lot of vocal-based music in my career, including three full albums with different projects. I find this easy, and it’s also a great way to bounce ideas off each other, write a tune together with the vocalist. For me it is important though, that a vocal track also has a strong instrumental, I don’t just rely on the vocal to make it work. It’s like the great rock singers, who always had a very characterful lead guitarist by their side. Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, Robert Plant and Jimmy Page… This concept of vocals communicating with a strong instrumental lead always fascinated me, and in a way, all my vocal tracks are constructed in a similar fashion. When I started out with my first deep house tracks, when I finally entered the realm of straight bass drums, I struggled with the arrangements, how soon to bring the elements in, how many of them, but today I enjoy working in both ways a lot.”

Hannes recently released a track with Ursula Rucker on vocals on Chris Coe’s and Carl Cox’s label, Awesome Soundwave. I asked him about how the track with Ursula came about and what his thoughts were on the outcome… “I was in love with what Ursula did since I listened to her for the first time in 1998! This was “Loveless” by 4hero, I was in awe! I always dreamt of doing a collaboration, and I knew that I wanted to have one vocal piece on the album, and I wanted to have spoken words. There is one person in the world I would reach out for this, and I am incredibly happy she said yes! I made the instrumental in spring 2019, and Ursula added the vocals later on in the summer. I have always been very fond of her lyrics, her poetry, and I gave her free reign to do whatever she wanted to do. Last year we’ve been dealing on a global scale with the prospects of climate change and authoritarianism, and I understood her words mainly in that context. Who knew how a “Poem for the Planet” would sound in April 2020, shortly after the corona pandemic really became a pandemic”. The release was almost the perfect release and title for the time and very bizarre space we are all experiencing right now. Check out the delightful vocals by Ursula below…

Hannes touched upon his new album a few moments ago so I asked him to tell us a little more about it and what we can expect in terms of the tracks (you can check out ‘Pluton’ from the album at the top of this interview, as well as his track with Ursula Rucker above)… “when I was invited to do a release with Awesome Soundwave, they were asking for an album, and for long tracks, well, that’s what they got! At first, I was reluctant because that task seemed daunting, but when I started to work on it the music really began to flow, also because I ended up feeling liberated by the concept, doing something outside the boundaries of a 7-minute prime time banger. The album has six tracks, but over an hour of music, and next to four “club” tracks there are two shorter pieces, one of which has a broken beat, and the other one is entirely ambient. It’s very analogue, organic, modular synth-driven, with long, almost unedited live recordings, a bit like a modular synth jazz band jamming together. In that sense, it’s musically different from what I have released so far, but I strongly believe that an album has to be some sort of challenge, is a chance for an artist to modify and challenge their recent musical concepts. The “club” tracks all can be played by a DJ, but I think they are for special moments.”

“I always envisioned the [album] title track, ‘Pele’, to be played on a beach at sunrise, with the long 2-minute breakdown really carrying the people away. The album is also a great companion for a long night drive.”

Whilst chatting about the album I asked Hannes if he found any tracks tricky to complete? We all know that feeling of writer’s block!!! Hannes answered… “not really! The whole album was created over only a couple of weeks. I think I have finally arrived again as a producer, after my long break behind the scenes, I really have found the instruments and working methods which suit me. Working so fast, and always with the big picture, the whole piece in mind, when starting to work on a new track, gave me great results, and the results gave me great confidence. The album is intentionally still a bit raw in many places, but I think this adds only to the momentum and the emotional impact. I am now enjoying to again to work on more condensed, focused EP tracks again, but I think the album is an interesting journey, and it kind of stands for itself.”

As a producer and engineer, Hannes must hear many bad habits that creep into an artist’s productions. I asked Hannes what some of his big NO NOs are when producing and mastering a track… “I think there are two main culprits. Working with a substandard monitoring system would be the first one. Of course, not everyone can work out of a perfect studio (what would that look like anyway?). What I heard a lot is that people say they only need small speakers for producing because someone else is going to mix and master the record anyway. But how can you write and arrange club music when you can’t even hear the bass drum fundamental on your speakers? The other thing is putting too many processors on your master channel while producing and mixing. This way you’re not really able to tell what you’re doing, and when you take your master effects off before having it mixed/mastered externally, the whole sound picture falls apart. You haven’t heard your mix all the time, just the effect of your master chain. I don’t see any reason why one should have a multiband compressor on the master while arranging or mixing. It’s just a band-aid, imposing its own side effects, and it prevents you from hearing and tackling the issues at the source.”

We are all living in very bizarre times at present with the COVID-19 outbreak. I asked Hannes what some of his biggest challenges have been over the past weeks whilst the world is in the grips of this pandemic… “well, the first challenge was to get back home… now I have to deal with the mental challenge of being in mandatory quarantine at home. In Germany, we don’t have a full lockdown, but I have to stay at home for 14 days after my travels, can’t even take a walk or do my groceries right now. Of course, like anyone in this industry, I have to rearrange my whole professional life, and I am only beginning to grasp the consequences. Right now I don’t expect much if any, club and festival activity to happen until spring 2021, and I have no idea yet what exactly that will mean for all of us. I will also have to move my studio and build a new workspace, this year which would be very challenging even under normal circumstances. Right now it seems daunting indeed, but I am also looking forward, as this will be my workplace for the next decade and I’m excited to make it a great space! I think Germany and especially the city of Berlin have reacted fairly well to the outbreak though. In contrast to the financial crisis of 2008, where only the largest banks received a bailout, Berlin, as a first step, has taken good care also of independent, self-employed artists and businesses like me. This can’t be the final word if the situation really carries on into the next year, but we are much better off than people in other places, who are under full lockdown, in states with fragile health care systems, and no compensation at all. I am worried, but I am also thankful for that, and I can’t even imagine the consequences of this pandemic hitting poorer parts of the world…”

A lot of people across all industries are being hit hard by the lockdown procedures especially those in events and hospitality. I asked Hannes how this is affecting him mentally, and asked how his family are keeping… “I try and do one step at a time right now, but there are ups and downs. Frankly speaking, I have been through some fairly hard times in my life, and there are days now where I am full of energy, and in a “this will not be the thing that finally brings me down” type of mood. And then there are other days where I feel the insecurity and the pressure a lot more, and it hits home in a different way when you can’t even go out and take a walk around the block, or go to the studio and actually create something. One thing that doesn’t worry anymore, though, is that I believe I have had Covid-19 already. And if that proves true when antibody tests are available, there is one thing less to keep me up at night. Luckily I experienced fairly mild symptoms, but it was a scary thing regardless”. During times like this it can be easy to focus on the negatives but I do genuinely believe that many positives will come out of this for the dance music industry and society as a whole. I asked Hannes to chat about some of the positives he feels might surface through this situation…

“It is my sincere hope that our industry, which can be extremely competitive at times, pulls together more, with the notion prevailing that we’re ultimately all in the same boat.”

Hannes continued… “I started my ‘Hannes’s Homework’ series on my socials while I was in the Bahamas, as a way to try and support producers stuck at home with some insights and inspirations for their work, and the response has been overwhelmingly great so far. We mustn’t forget that we can’t just withdraw from the overall bank account of our global scene, we also have to pay something back into it. I tried to work and live by this standard long before corona, for example by way of doing masterclasses as a regular part of my touring schedule, but I believe this becomes even more important now. On a personal level, I am an avid chef and I love cooking, and now I have to do this everyday, which saves money and is fun and very rewarding anyway. This was one of the things I really missed in my very busy pre-corona daily routines, I used to have much more time for this, and now I have it again. I also started to do my home workout again, another thing that always fell off the radar because I didn’t pause and take time for this until just recently.”

Conscious of waffling on about COVID-19 too much, and I am sure you are all sick of it on the news, like many of us, I asked Hannes what is he most looking forward to when this whole damn awful mess is over with (whenever that might be)? “Again, it’s a step by step thing. Right now I can’t wait to be able to take a long walk outside again. Something so simple will be such a fantastic, liberating experience… The first time dining out at some point, reuniting with my favourite restaurants and their staff will be wonderful, listening to music on a big sound system, even stepping inside the next aeroplane, and my first show finally, after we’re all done with this – I think that will be a fantastic experience, and imagining that situation also gives me the strength to carry on!”

With more time than ever for producers to sit and write music, I asked Hannes what he has in the pipeline (besides the new album of course)… “I’ve been very busy last year, so after releasing my album there will be another EP on Bedrock, and then I have three more EPs practically finished and ready to go. There will be another fantastic collab I did with Francesca Lombardo, and this is only the music that is already finished as we speak. Who knows what I will come up within the weeks and months ahead? But I believe it’s already time to work on the next album, and I already know my collab partner for that project. Maybe, unfortunately, it’s not a great time to dance to music, but it’s a great time to make and to listen to music for sure”. Well, you heard it here first folks, new album in the pipeline… I reckon Hannes could have this released by the end of the year if you look at his output of late… no pressure Hannes!

On that note I would like to thank Hannes for a truly inspiring chat. I would like to wish him safe and well during this time, and know all the Decoded Mag family would also like to thank him and wish him well. Here’s to summer 2021!

You can pre-order Hannes Bieger’s new album on Awesome Soundwave here.

The post “I think I have finally arrived again as a producer, after my long break behind the scenes, I really have found the instruments and working methods which suit me” – Hannes Bieger appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

Trond Gjellum Brings Prog To Electronica

Electrond, photo by Trond Gjellum. Used with permission Trond Gjellum is a Norwegian multi-instrumentalist best known for his work as the leader and drummer for Panzerpappa, an instrumental progressive rock band, and Suburban Savages, which is more song-based. He's worked on a number of other projects, including The Samuel Jackson Five, and +Ingelrii+. Earlier this... Read More »

The post Trond Gjellum Brings Prog To Electronica appeared first on Positive Feedback.

Original Resource is Positive Feedback

Funk D’Void is Still Alive: “Asking for anything else is just greedy!”

During a jaw-dropping 30 plus years behind the decks and in the studio, Funk D’Void’s musical career has taken him all over the world. His tracks, like the infamous and much loved techno stomper Diabla, and remixes for New Order, Underworld or Laurent Garnier’s Man with the Red Face among many, many others, have gained him both respect and notoriety in the music industry.

He has had his fair share of everything a DJ career in the limelight entails, including the highs and the lows, such as the shenanigans a few years ago surrounding his T-shirt company in the USA, which saw the dance music veteran test his character and fan base. Now Funk D’Void, known to most in the industry as Lars (Lars Sandberg), sets the record straight on that string of absurd events and chats to Decoded Magazine’s Mark J about how it has helped him adapt to and deal with modern challenges faced by musicians in the public eye in an era of always on, instantly communicated false news and distorted narratives.

Lars doesn’t dwell on it though. He also discusses his new studio set-up, future projects and the initiatives he supports, especially his community work here in Barcelona through the city’s chapter of the Guardian Angels campaigning against street crime and for more community outreach. But before that, a little background is required, and whilst Lars has resided in Barcelona for nearly half of his life, the journey began back in his native Scotland.

In the 80s, Glasgow’s Indie-Pop music pioneers were absolutely bursting out of the city’s vibrant scene and quickly became stars. In fact, it is well documented that London-based A&Rs crossed the border quite regularly and signed anyone they could. Bands such as Hue & Cry, Simple Minds and The Jesus & Mary Chain among countless others made it big on the national and international scene during this period. Glasgow was quite the centre of the music world at this time. Then came the 90s and the dance music underground. Stories of Glasgow’s night manoeuvres throughout the 90s were peppered throughout popular culture magazines like DJ Mag or Mixmag and the city was banging well before London started to bounce to the beat. Lars started DJ-ing when he was 15 in Glasgow’s clubs, cutting his teeth on the alternative music, laying down the very best in early Chicago House and Techno with other alternative and new wave sounds.

Music was always in the home. His mother was a well-loved pianist and clearly some of that talent rubbed off on the teen. But it wasn’t all about the DJ-ing. There was other work to be done to help him earn his keep.

“I used to deliver frozen chicken to Chinese restaurants and sell advertising space over the phone,” Lars recollects. “My real name was too weird to close deals with clients so I had to change my name to Simon Walsh. I was so shit at it though! I remember actually pitching to a company boss with the same name and even then I couldn’t convince him to buy.”

“My big break at 16 years old was getting a gig and the chance to play in a nightclub with Keith from Desert Storm (Keith Robinson, dec 2016). His way of lifting people up stays with me to this day,” he added.

Inspired through that, some classical music nurturing and applying his talents to the newer and emerging sounds in his early sets, Lars soon began to craft some fine sounding house and techno fire of his own. Ever since then, he has spun at the world’s hottest clubs and events, clocking up a highly impressive number of DJ sets and live gigs under his Funk D’Void moniker or as Francois Dubois (yep that was him too!) Today though, it appears Lars is at a mental and cultural crossroads about the electronic scene, and for good reasons too.

“I’ve no idea about the scene right now as I’m a bit of a hermit nowadays and don’t pay attention to it,” he confirmed.

Maybe most readers remember Funk D’Void’s Balance Series Mix Session, sealing him a place at the top table of DJ-dom. For others though, he will surely be remembered from Glasgow’s nightlife circuit. Back then, his music was eagerly signed by the city’s now legendary Soma Quality Music label – a pioneering label family that included founders Slam, Silcone Soul, H-Foundation and Daft Punk.

So, after numerous successful releases and remixes, along with notching up tonnes of worldwide gigs, why on earth would he want to leave all of that and move to somewhere like Barcelona?

“I fell in love with the city when my feet hit the tarmac,” Lars recalled. “I’ve spent nearly half of my life here and haven’t regretted a minute of it. I loved Glasgow during my childhood and the hedonistic 90s but the move in ‘98 just felt like a natural progression of where I needed to be. There have been lots of ups and downs, but it has been the most enjoyable backdrop to my adult life.”

“For most of the 2000s, I was a resident DJ at Razzmatazz Barcelona. Then at Moog for the last part of the decade… and now I’m in the best spot in town – La Macarena. The management there are like family to me now and have shown me so much support over the years,” he added.

Citizens on Patrol

Being a long term Barcelona resident, Lars is constantly moved by both positive and negative changes to his city. So much in fact, that Lars, for a number of years, has been campaigning against the rise of street violence against residents and tourists here. Now, he and fellow campaigners from Barcelona’s recently formed chapter of the Guardian Angels (originally formed in New York during the 80s), have all stepped up to actively patrol problem areas in neighbourhoods and on the city’s metro system, where pick-pocketing and petty violence is rife. In fact, I often see him when I’m nipping about the city on business.

“We walk around town helping people out. Tourists, the homeless, the elderly… anyone who needs a hand. I feel more like a giant Boy Scout at times, but it’s a natural fit for me. I’ve always admired the Guardian Angels my whole life but I never thought I’d end up as one in Barcelona, and it got me in shape too. If anyone in Barcelona feels like helping out as an angel too, drop us a line!” he said.

For anyone who knows about this organisation, it’s more than simply patrolling hotspots. The Guardian Angels are also very well know for their community outreach and events to support those affected individuals and the organisation’s aims.

Ripping the T-shirt off his back

As some of you maybe aware, Lars had an online T-shirt store based in the USA… in fact one of his best sellers was a shirt bearing the words ‘Fuck Berlin, Barcelona has a beach! It looks like the city got some kind of revenge in the end though. To put the record straight, Lars didn’t say anything offensive or support anything like what has been claimed in certain dance music media and their related social networks at the time. The T-shirt company (now rebranded “Punk The Void”) also produced and sold merchandise for other organizations and artists – like Amazon does.

Unfortunately, some items from the online product range – a mug and t-shirt – drew attention due to featuring logos belonging to Scottish Canadian conservative (and founder of VICE) Gavin McInnes and his online show. Then one thing led to another before Lars could explain himself (he wasn’t hiding either) or take the offending items offline. It was all over for him in social-media sphere, starting with a gig cancellation in Berlin, and snowballed from there.

“I genuinely thought he was a comedian, not the Alt-Right maniac the media was portraying him as…but I cut ties and distanced myself when his organisation started going to political rallies – not cool”

Is he a bit guilty of not realizing how such a connection might look to his fans? Possibly. Was he openly promoting unsavoury ideals himself? Nope. Not at all. Yet, are our own ethics, totally pure and unblemished that they, shouldn’t we be asking ourselves the same question? The age of consumerism says maybe not actually, judging by all the shit we have accumulated over the years, most of it produced for pennies per piece in far away territories. Reading this article on an iPhone counts. What about Amazon and its practices? Does it stop us from using their devices or services?

“In hindsight, I realised it was silly to get involved with them. I made a misjudgment with that T-shirt episode, but it was a way more divisive time back then, what with that big election result, and being apolitical, I was hung out to dry and sentenced to death by Internet Outrage Cannons,” he stated.

Ricky Gervais delivered the kind of message that Lars truly believes in at his performance as an announcer at the Golden Globes Awards.

“I loved what Gervais said at that awards ceremony and it was delivered compassionately. The mainstream media backlash against his words is actually an excellent gauge of how wrong much of their narratives really are. Combined with social media, they seem to be trying to push peoples’ sensitivity levels to new highs, or better, new depths of despair” he said.

“I mean everyone has banter and gets along in football right? I have mates who are Rangers fans, and we take the piss out of each other, so why not with politics or anything else? Maybe it’s just a Scottish thing. Anyway now I shy away from any such conversations because I’m sick of everyone being outraged and losing it over the latest click bait news headline only to forget about it later.” Lars added.

“But what can I do? I’m just treading water and quite fearful of posting anything funny or quirky, anything that is considered too controversial because you know that there will be an imminent backlash of pent-up arrogance, usually because regular social media consumers take in too much targeted trash online.”

“Social Media is a mess and people need to get a grip and open up to different methods of communicating and stop with the stereotyping or getting their info from click bait. Twitter is a vile fucking cesspit of intolerance and shaming and believe me I’m very careful every time I use it now,” he added.

The wrong meme could have your head on a spike at the city gates. The Peace, Love, Unity and Respect crews from back in the day are a far cry from the toxic tribalism we sometimes see in the scene these days. It’s a wee bit of “Old Man Yells at Cloud” but you know what I mean,” he said.

Fixed by Funk, a personal touch for up n’ coming producers

Lars’ new business venture is a far more low-key, no pun intended, but extremely potent for producers looking to sign their first offerings. You can present your new project and get some pure one-to-one counsel with one of the music industry’s production titans.

“Have you noticed the feedback you get now on promos and new music reviews?” asked Lars. It’s quite meaningless… will try, downloaded by whoever, etc! It’s all feedback for the marketing game and I have a few years’ experience with the system. Sometimes though, talented new producers need solid feedback in terms of their production methods because they don’t get that today as label management expertise is pretty much non-existent,” Lars iterated.

“I’m there to tell you where I think you’re going wrong in your approach to your productions, and how to better it. It’s an intricate process when I break down the idea presented and help the artist find their next steps to bettering their sound. I tell you the truth, which seems to be a valuable currency in this world right now,” he added.

“We need some new heroes, maybe this state of emergency over the Covid-19 virus outbreak will help us find one,” Lars declared.

“I recently upgraded my studio worktools and have fallen in love with making music again (hence me writing new tracks right now). I have lots to learn as I have had to catch up from 2006 – when I last bought a studio computer – so it’s little wonder all my productions up until now have sounded retro! I saw recently Behringer is about to release a free DAW complete with plugins so that will be interesting to see how that develops,” said Lars.

The music is the next phase in his journey and fans will be happy to hear that he has produced some new material under his old Francois Dubois alias, firstly with a forthcoming remix for Tony Lionni. He happily reports that new work has been completed, already snapped up, signed and ready to go soon.

On the radar

“Diary-wise though, with the Covid-19 virus currently gripping the world, all gigs are on a hiatus – which I’m fully supporting,” he commented. “We have to take every precautionary measure to slow down the infection rate to give the health services time to prepare for sick patients and virus labs around the world come up a vaccine.”

“Be prepared though – this is the biggest global event of lifetime. We’re all in for some tough times ahead. I’m asthmatic so I realise what may lie ahead if I contract it. Fingers crossed myself or any of you lot doesn’t. I really mean that. It’s a killer!”

There it is. So when you are at home under self- or enforced isolation, think of him, because while Lars will always be a music guy in the studio, he is also the guy patrolling Barcelona’s streets and metro system (maybe not right now though due to Barcelona’s lockdown) looking to help the vulnerable and the needy. Or anyone really.

The post Funk D’Void is Still Alive: “Asking for anything else is just greedy!” appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

WATCH: An extended interview with the legendary Andrew Weatherall

In February 2020, the music world lost one of its true innovators, Andrew Weatherall.

Weatherall made his first and only appearance at the Sydney Opera House in December 2017 with an unforgettable five-hour Studio party, taking the audience on an eclectic journey through the history of electronic music and beyond. In this newly released, uncut version of his interview with Ben Marshall, Sydney Opera House’s Head of Contemporary Music, Weatherall is in full raconteur mode, talking about the ritual of clubbing, the joy of music discovery and the importance of dressing for the occasion.

Andrew Weatherall’s importance as an artist extends far beyond his well-documented production for others and his own seismic work. As this interview demonstrates, he was also an incredibly articulate man who had done the hard thinking to come up with a rigorous and coherent philosophy on art, craft and following your own truly creative path. In this extended interview cut from Weatherall’s 2017 Sydney Opera House performance, he covered an amazingly erudite amount of ground and proved yet again why he remains an inspirational example of an artist profoundly true to his own singular voice.

The post WATCH: An extended interview with the legendary Andrew Weatherall appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

“I don’t want to release too many EPs and on too many different labels. I’m focusing only on Lost Miracle and All Day I Dream for now. I want to keep this tight and family like” – Sebastien Leger

Sébastien Léger is an artist that continues to make his mark on the global dance community after over 20 years with his distinctive thought-provoking sounds and moving DJ sets. With his emphasis on hands-on, innovative modular production, his beautifully crafted productions have enabled him to make some of the most standout records on labels including Lost & Found, and All Day I Dream. Sébastien launched his own label, Lost Miracle back in 2019 and he is set to release the fourth release on the label, ‘Where The Heart Is’ by Shai T. During this crazy time I grabbed a little time with Sébastien to talk about his sound, unique production methods, and his Lost Miracle label.

When I spoke with Sébastien he was answering a few emails and feeding his dogs… for those of you out there that follow Sébastien you will know his a big dog lover. I asked Sébastien what was it that got him hooked on electronic music? “It was dance music with hits like Lil Louis ‘FrenchKiss’, Technotronic ‘Pump Up The Jam’ or Black Box, ‘Ride on time’. I was probably 9 or 10 years old watching those tunes at the top 50 from France on TV”. Certainly, some tracks I am sure a fair few of us can relate to and tracks many of us still love to this day!

Over the years the sound of Sébastien Leger has evolved into what is now a very distinct sound, and may I say, a sound he has become very at ease with. I asked Sébastien what some of the biggest influences have been in the development of his sound over the years… “My own mistakes over the years have been my biggest influence. This might be a strange answer, but I’ve learned a lot from myself, and I especially learned that being influenced too much won’t take you anywhere but just being a follower. I do not listen to music at all on a daily basis. Except for the tracks that I dig online to play them out as a DJ. I’m just obsessed with good grooves and melodies, I’m a disco, funk and in general black music fan. I need soul in what I do, hear and play”.

“I want to be ahead of my own game, being creative and not following a specific trend.”

For those of you who follow Sébastien Leger, you will be aware of his sublime looking and sounding modular setup he uses to produce his music (as well as new live jam sessions he is running over Facebook). I asked Sébastien how long it took him to get the setup he uses today? “The set up I have right now is a collection of modules that took me (only) 4 years to get. It got out of control, and very happy that it did as it simply helped me to create better and unlock my creativity where it was a bit stuck a few years ago. It has been a game-changer for me”. I went on to ask Sébastien if it was his goal to move to a modular setup and Sébastien answered, “it wasn’t planned at all. I knew nothing about modular synthesisers 5 years ago. I had a strong knowledge with “normal” synths in general, and I knew my basics subtractive synthesis at that time, enough to make good sounds from scratch. I just got into it a bit randomly with Instagram, having my timeline feed with lots of very attractive system and sounds, I got really curious and started with a very small system, which got out of hand very quickly”.

There is no doubt Sébastien’s sound has evolved over the years so I asked him how his studio has evolved… “I started 100% hardware, there was NO computer in my studio still 2007 which means every single track I have released from 98 till 2007 has been made only with hardware, drum machines, external FX, analog, and digital mixers and synth. Then Ableton came into my life out of nowhere, which was a game-changer for me and totally opened a huge world of new possibilities and especially the total recall, which wasn’t possible with only hardware studio. But I kept my synths and combined them with Ableton, I simply couldn’t go to all in the box, I’d still need a real instrument to interact with. Now it’s a healthy mixture of hardware (synths and modular) combined Ableton for the mixing/ sequencing part, using very few plugins, 95% are Ableton’s stock plugins”

Moving onto Sébastien’s productions, he recently released his ‘Secrets’ EP n Lee Burridge’s All Day I Dream and what a truly stunning release it is. I asked Sébastien to talk through the release, the thought process behind the EP, and his thoughts on how it has been received by the electronic music fraternity… “There are 3 tracks on the EP, the main one called ‘Ashes in the wind’ is born by a jam I recorded my modular system a year ago, without any drums, just the main bass/lead you can hear during the whole track. I recorded maybe 10/15 minutes of it, with manual filter, chord changes etc… then once I got enough material, Started to cut and edit the parts I wanted, built a beat, extra synth around, and that’s it! My way of making music is fast, simple. I don’t like to spend more than 2 days on a track. If you spend more than that, it’s just not a good track, you lose the feel, the spontaneity. The second track called ‘Menabelle’ has been created right after my hit track ‘Lanarka’ it got the same techniques that I used (discovered by mistake). This is typically the type of track that I born completely by accident, which is in my opinion, the best way to make music. The last tune, ‘Secret’ is actually the oldest of all, maybe 2 years old now for me, but it’s one of that track that you like so much, but never really have the chance to release it, because it is not the most obvious one, but is very special to me. A 50/50 mixture of analog synth and Ableton”.

I asked Sébastien, what can we expect from him over the coming months and his response will certainly get fans of his music rather excited, I know I was…”Something very new for me, I opened myself a bit more and started to collab’ with producers friends that I highly respect and like their music. You can expect some stuff made with Tim Green, and once again with Roy Rosenfeld. But that will be in a couple of months”.

Sébastien’s Lost Miracle label is currently on release number three (soon to be four) which was a superb release by Khen. Sébastien is clearly a big supporter of Khen’s work so I asked Sébastien what was about the music he liked and why does his sound fit Sébastien’s label so well… “Khen, Roy (Rosenfeld), Eli Nissan, they are all from Tel Aviv and all friends with each other. There is a very specific type of sound coming out from there, but what stands out the most for me is that they keep this very melodic sound but with a very good groove, it stays quite funky. It’s not something only pure progressive, a type of sound which I’m not very familiar with, as it is not my background at all. If it’s too much cold electronic, I just disconnect immediately”.

Whilst discussing Sébastien’s label I asked what he looks for in new artists? What would grab his attention? “I need to be surprised. I received a lot of demos in the past few months, and they were either completely off-topic or forced. For example, I receive a lot of tracks with a strong “Arabic” vibe in it. Just because I like and play some of it, doesn’t mean Lost Miracle is a label looking for this genre only. I want to hear something that stands out, but the sound design, the groove, the melody, the overall vibe”.

“I like my stuff being either groovy or melodic or both. So any cold straight aggressive music will go to trash immediately. Being original is key.”

I asked Sébastien, what was the main reason he wanted to start his Lost Miracle label? I have had labels in the past but this was the time for me to start a new adventure, as I am more mature in my taste, sound and vision. I don’t want to release too many EPs and on too many different labels. I’m focussing only on Lost Miracle and All Day I Dream for now. I want to keep this tight and family like. I just wanted to be free to release different things that I wouldn’t be able to release somewhere else too”.

For those of you that follow Sébastien on Twitter, you will know he is a man that likes to air his opinions and I must admit, I find it quite refreshing in this “we are offended by everything” world we live in at present. I asked Sébastien if you could change one thing in the scene right now what would it be, what drives him crazy? “I would change everything. But it’s not possible, you have to deal with all the fakes. Fake smiles, fake friends, fake followers, fake DJ’s, fake producers, the list is long. Is telling the truth online a good thing? I guess it’s tricky but sometimes it is necessary to say the things how they are, instead of ignoring it. I could, but I can’t. What drives me crazy? How fake this industry is. Fakers and liars everywhere”. Certainly, an opinion I (and many others) would not disagree with in any means!

Whilst on the subject of honest opinions, Sébastien recently made a comment about the overkill genre of “melodic techno”. I asked Sébastien about his comment, and what it is that he finds so soulless? “It’s soulless because it’s just a bunch of producers who copied someone who copied another one that actually created something at first. Hey, some people do like it banging for the sake of banging, they don’t care much as long as it works. I see so many DJs who, last year played what was trendy, now playing this “melodic techno” because it’s what’s popular, and will play what’s trendy next year too when they are bored of it. Which might happen soon. As it’s a constant circle. I’m just not feeling the techno/melodic techno movement these days, back in the days, it might have been banging, but there was plenty of groove and soul in it. Now it’s just music made by white people for white people. There is no what so ever vibe in there, just take some drug and there you go (btw, I do not take any drugs, near did and I don’t drink either)

“(melodic techno) music is just cold plastic sounding techno with very poor musicality in it.”

Before I left Sébastien to enjoy his day I had to ask if we can expect to see any live sets once we can all get back on with our lives and all he would give me is, “yes, and I will keep it secret for now”, which does sound promising so roll on late 2020 or 2021 maybe!

I would like to thank Sébastien for a great chat and providing some superb answers to my questions. Everyone at Decoded wishes you safe and well during this very bizarre time and all the best for 2020 and the future.

Press shots by Tom Hooliganov

The post “I don’t want to release too many EPs and on too many different labels. I’m focusing only on Lost Miracle and All Day I Dream for now. I want to keep this tight and family like” – Sebastien Leger appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

Hybrid Minds discuss all things Drum & Bass whilst in lockdown

Over the past few years, British Drum & Bass producers Hybrid Minds have broken out as one of the most significant acts within the scene. Defining a new era of liquid Drum & Bass, they flow between beautiful vocal melodies and the more high energy productions, creating the innovative and unique sound they’ve become known for. Hybrid Minds is made up of longtime friends Josh White and Matt Lowe. The pair work on every aspect together from studios at opposite ends of the country, taking in both their influences from all ends of the musical spectrum to create smooth sounding, yet addictively danceable drum & bass music.

I caught up with Josh from Hybrid Minds to talk about all things Drum & Bass and when we spoke he was spending some time in the studio like many producers at present whilst in this crazy surreal time… “With everything that is going on at the moment, the plus side is that we have found ourselves will plenty of studio time which is turning out to be pretty productive”. This, of course, will hopefully mean lots of new music from the guys over the coming weeks whilst we are all in lockdown and with plenty of time to listen to new music.

I went on to ask Josh about the label Hybrid Music, and why the guys decided to start their own label, and what some of their biggest lessons learned were over the years… “We just decided that the time was right. We had all the contacts needed to run one and just went for it. It has been one of the best decisions we have made. I always did our own artwork and arranged the bulk of our own promo there was no need to be on a label. Being good friends with our label manager Gareth, who runs a business helping record labels was great. We have the contacts for pressing vinyl etc sat there waiting for us to do it. Labels in Drum and Bass are brilliant to help get artists off the ground and in the clubs, but once you have a strong enough following and the right contacts it just makes sense to self-release. You can pick your own release dates and just use friends in the industry to help you A&R your own music. It’s quite easy if you are lucky enough to have that kind of contacts. It is a fair bit of work but having the right people around you helps take the load off”.

I was intrigued by what first got Josh hooked on electronic music and in particular Drum & Bass… “I have always been a fan of drum breaks. I was into a lot of boom bap hip hop and people like DJ Shadow. I just love that whole kick, snare relationship so when I first heard Drum & Bass as a teenager it grabbed me. Then I got more and more into it as I discovered new artists and tracks. Along with getting into drum and bass, I was listening to people like Aphex Twin, UNKLE, The Chemical Brothers and the album Kid A by Radiohead. I love music that has a lot of atmosphere and feeling to it, so I have always been grabbed by acts that achieve that”.

“I just love that whole kick, snare relationship so when I first heard drum & bass as a teenager it grabbed me.”

The Drum & Bass scene has seen many changes over the years and I feel is producing some of the best underground music around at present. I asked Josh about his thoughts on how the Drum & Bass scene has evolved over the years… “I think every style of music evolves with technology and the times. Everything is very well produced now, you have to be constantly studying and trying to make sure your songs match other producer’s music sonically. It’s tough! There is no doubt that drum and bass is a hard genre to make in regard to its technicality”. I went on to ask Josh who some of his favourite producers are at present… “Matt and I have been shouting about Monrroe a lot recently. He is consistently releasing brilliant music that is right up our street. Then we also love Fred V, LSB, Technimatic, Alix Perez, Bou, Camo & Krooked, Kanine, Dawn Wall, Artificial Intelligence, The Sauce, Ekko and Sidetrack and pretty much everyone else releasing music at the moment. There is such an amazing stack of Drum & Bass coming out almost weekly, it’s pretty mental. Pendulum are coming back with new music as well which we are pretty excited about”. I feel that very news may excite a lot of people! Good time ahead!

Getting on to some studio chat I asked Josh if he and Matt have specific roles when laying down a new track of remix… “We both give it all a go really but definitely have our strong points. Matt has been smashing the bass grooves at the moment. We tend to just do whatever we feel like doing that day whilst also trying to be a bit smart about it. We want to make sure we have tracks that are almost ready to play and release amongst starting new ideas and being creative. The main trick is just having fresh ears on stuff at all times. We can send clips to each other and get instant feedback all day as we pretty much do the same hours in the studio. We are really trying to step our ability up at the moment as well and try and get some different vibes down as well so trying to do a lot of learning amongst the creating”. Whilst on the studio chat I was keen to know some of their go-to kit in the studio… “We use the Valhalla Reverbs and FabFilter stuff a lot. I’m also borrowing my friends Moog Sub Phatty at the moment and loving that”.

“We want to make sure we have tracks that are almost ready to play and release amongst starting new ideas and being creative. The main trick is just having fresh ears on stuff at all times.”

Moving onto gigs the guys were set to play Annie Mac’s Lost & Found Festival in May but it has been put back to September due to the COVID-19 outbreak. I asked Josh if he is looking forward to getting over to Malta should we ever get back to a state of normality this year… “I have never been to Malta and heard it is amazing so I can’t wait for it. We will be bringing some sunshine vibes for sure”.

Moving away from gig chat, as let’s face it, there is not really much to talk about at present I ask Josh his thoughts on social media platforms these days considering it has become an essential part of a DJs life now… “They are both amazing and horrible. I think it is an essential tool for any artist now. Having these platforms are just the best way to reach any following. But at the same time, they are time-consuming and dissolve your brain”. Something I am sure many of us agree on especially at present with the sheer amount of time we are spending staring into that rectangular screen whilst on lockdown! Whilst on the topic of social media, I asked Josh if he believes an artist’s social media, and likes in particular, can sometimes outweigh a DJ’s ability behind the decks… “I hope not. Any good promoter will know to look past that stuff. You might get one gig with impressive stats but unless the people at the event have fun then you won’t be playing for that promoter again”.

Finally, before leaving Josh to enjoy his day of studio time I asked what he likes to get up to when he has some time to himself… “I am a massive snowboard addict so I try to do that as much as possible. It is the best thing I have ever done to take my mind off things and be active.”

I would like to thank Josh for his time and wish both him and Matt a great 2020 when things all get back to normal. I hope you enjoyed the interview and the exclusive mix the guys put together for Decoded Magazine.

01. LSB & DRS – Frozen
02. Monty & Visages – Limbo ft Benabu
03. Elan & Djah – Replay
04. Hybrid Minds – Listen ft. Tiffani Juno
05. MustMake – Common Interests
06. Hybrid Minds – Paint By Numbers ft. Charlotte Haining
07. Grafix – Rain Fall Down
08. Tokyo Prose – Trick Of The Light
09. Hybrid Minds & Fred V – Drowning In You
10. Marcus Intalex – Celestial Navigation ft. S.P.Y
11. Hybrid Minds – Higher Love ft. Charlotte Haining
12. Mohican Sun – Fixation
13. Alix Perez – Numbers ft. Benabu
14. Edlan & Monrroe – Used To Be
15. Hybrid Minds – Pretend ft. Rocky Nti
16. BCee & Blu Mar Ten – Grow ft. Charlotte Haining
17. Dexcell – Landscape
18. Friction & JP Cooper – Dancing (Dawn Wall Remix)
19. Tom Walker – You & I (Hybrid Minds Remix)
20. Spectrasoul – Say What ft. Madi Lane
21. Dawn Wall – Take Control
22. Monrroe – Never Too Old ft. Emily Makis
23. Grafix – Radiance
24. Hybrid Minds – Kismet ft. Riya
25. Anile – No Code
26. Hybrid Minds – Solitude
27. Macca & Loz Contreras – Ghosts
28. Hybrid Minds – Supernova ft. Catching Cairo
29. Kanine – Depth
30 Artificial Intelligence – Degrees of Separation
31. Tokyo Prose – ???
32. Hybrid Minds – Wasted
33. Calibre – Bogeyman Bullshit
34. Alix Perez – Melanie
35. Hybrid Minds – Phoenix ft. Alexa Harley
36. Particle – Code 3 VIP
37. Dawn Wall – I Should Have Been There
38. Fred V & Grafix – Clouds Cross Skies

Press images by Chelone Wolf.

The post Hybrid Minds discuss all things Drum & Bass whilst in lockdown appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

“The 303 has become the electric guitar of electronic dance music” – Honeysmack

Some of you may be familiar with the sounds of Honeysmack and some of you may not. For those of you that are not so familiar with the sounds of Honeysmack, you are about to start hearing that name a lot more across Europe and in the US I can guarantee. Honeysmack is an Australian electronic dance music producer and live artist who has been at the forefront of the Australian acid house and techno scene since the 1990s. He has worked with notable labels including Sony, Shock Records, and Kickin Records under a wide range of aliases. Using vintage hardware and a renegade’s approach, he brings real dynamism to his live shows and studio sounds and remains a pioneering force. With his new album just released on Awesome Soundwave, we caught up with Honeysmack to chat about his time in the scene and his incredible new album which is actually his fourth studio album…

I began by asking David what it was that first got him hooked on electronic music…  “The fascination of hearing something new and not understanding how or where it came from. When I was growing up in the late 1970s and 1980s, I was lucky enough to be exposed to lots of Synth Pop and early Electro, which was early Hip Hop. The sounds and rhythms I was hearing were truly out of this world and offered an authentic alternative to the same old copied insipid rock/pop of the time”.

The sounds of that David produces are very much that beautifully distinct sound of Acid House and Techno. I asked David. what is that draws him to the sounds of the 303 over anything else? “There’s an immediacy about its sound and how it can play dual roles. It can be a lead sound and/or happily being a bass line, as intended by the manufacturer, Roland. The 303 has become the electric guitar of electronic dance music. The 303 and all its limitations were the gateways for me as a music maker. I remember back in the 1990s, a number of electronic dance music snobs would often dismiss the 303 sound as they felt it had been overused.. well here we are in 2020 and producers across all genres continue to include the 303. Music gear manufacturers continue to develop clones of the 303, its sound has been emulated more times than I’ve had cooked meals. For me it’s a little bit of an obsession, I own about 15x 303s (original and clones, hardware only). Even my son was born at 3:03pm”.

“The 303 has become the electric guitar of electronic dance music”

I asked David to talk through some of his biggest influences over the years… “This is always a long list, and feel influenced and stimulated by art every day. I like people who can challenge our way of thinking, regardless of what they do. Malcolm McLaren, Vivienne Westwood, Alan Moore, Frank Miller, Dario Argento, John Carpenter, Marcel Duchamp, Andy Warhol, Don Buchla, Tadao Kikumoto, Henry Rollins, Dieter Doepfer, Jeff Mills, Hank Shocklee, James Brown, Conny Plank, Patricia Apollonia Kotero, Morton Subotnick, Pauline Oliveros, Derek Bailey, Brian Eno, Pointer Sisters”.

Moving onto David’s music and his new album I asked how the album was constructed and some of the techniques used… “I compose through an improvised performance approach with my “studio instrument”. I don’t use a computer to compose or arrange, they are all performances that capture a particular time. I took a bunch of gear to El Rancho Studio and over 2 days we recorded myself jamming with my gear. After the recording session, we extracted the best bits as complete sections to form tracks for the album. I work exclusively with hardware, each drum machine, synth, mixer, effect and interfaces all part of my studio is my “instrument”. Therefore, I surround myself with lots of gear in order to provide lots of options I can access whilst I perform. My tracks emerge through the performance, and because I don’t recall or save anything, I’m always constructing a new (studio) instrument informing a new performance with new outcomes for each permutation”. If you watch the exclusive video on our Facebook page you can catch David talking in more detail about his studio techniques and setup.

Leading on from David’s production techniques I asked if he has a particular workflow when he is jamming or creating new music… “It begins with the different pairing of machines to see what will come through different hardware interactions. Occasionally, I will very broadly think, “ok today I’m going to go in a dub direction”, but the complete opposite will eventuate. Ultimately I just jam things out and record long performance takes. Whilst I’ve been doing this for 25+ years, I don’t always know where best bits are until I’ve listened back to the recorded performance. Everything is fully improvised and I don’t save or recall anything. The only proviso is that some vintage synths or drum machines have limitation and require some programming of patterns, but the patterns are fluid and I don’t predetermine how I will make use of each pattern, rather they are just another small component that will be contextualised during a performance”. All this chat of hardware, I had to ask what his goto gear was (whilst kind of knowing the answer… David answered, “TB-303, TB-303 and TB-303, hmm my TR-909 and modular synth rack”. I then went on to ask what his first piece of hardware was… “I can’t remember exactly, it was either my Roland SH-101 or Casio CZ-1000 and yes I still have them”.

If you have every caught David playing live (or caught snippets on social media) you will know his live setup is pretty impressive. It is like a hardware obsessive’s dream. I asked David to talk through his live setup… “My live set-up is simply a smaller version of my larger studio. At the centre of it is the TB-303 and TR-909 through to all the iconic Roland x0x boxes, 101, 202, 606, 707, 808 etc, that I acquired a very long time ago. This is how I started making Acid Techno in the early 1990s and this is how I continue to make — it is the sound of electricity! Today the studio has evolved with a number of Elektron boxes and my insatiable appetite for modular synthesis. The Octatrack is a great live performance tool that can glue the past and present. The constant flux of gear and modules allows for a greater variety for each performance further making each performance different from the previous. The interchangeable nature of the gear and how I perform is further enhanced by predominately not saving or recalling patches or sounds, this also helps every performance is unique”.

Chris Coe and Carl Cox are huge supporters of David’s work. I asked David to talk about how the latest release came about and how he first met Chris and Carl… “I was contacted by Chris Coe when the label was being formed. Chris has been a close friend of mine for well over 25 years. He said the label was focused on live artists and was told I’d be a natural fit, so yes was only too happy to oblige! Given the nature of how I compose through an improvised performance approach, I sent Awesome Soundwave some long studio jams as examples of what I was doing at the time. Chris was into it and wanted me to record at Carl’s studio. Chris suggested I come to the studio and jam out some new stuff exclusive for Awesome Soundwave. So that’s what we did – after the recording session, we extracted the best bits as complete sections to form tracks for the album. Carl Cox heard the results, loved it and said the work was an important release for the label”.

Moving back to the Honeysmack album, I asked David if there were any tracks he found particularly difficult to construct… “The biggest challenge was that I don’t use a computer or DAW to compose or arrange tracks, with no prior construction of tracks, sounds or loops in software. Everything is a focused improvised jam with hardware. It either works at that moment or it doesn’t. I don’t spend hours preparing or crafting sounds, sequences, samples or phrases, it’s a jam that develops very quickly or I move on. First comes the performance and then I extract a track from the recording, not the other way around – if that makes sense”. David continued… “There can be days where I’m jamming boxes and modules and I don’t feel it works, so I was a little worried, what if I get to El Rancho and performance doesn’t work. The way we overcame this was by designing a recording session with plenty of redundancies. We plugged in enough gear to provide a plethora of options, somewhat overcompensating. For example, we had a real TR-909 along with 2 other clones (TR-8 and TR-09) all running in sync – overkill, yeah maybe. After setting up all the gear we simply hit record and I went to work, and we captured 2 days of my performance. During the recording Chris Coe (who engineered the live recording) and my co-producer, Carl Anderson (who would later mix the album) were in the studio and they provided real-time feedback as to what was working whilst I was performing. They would shout out stuff like, “yes, stay on that groove” or “keeping going with that beat/sequence”. Whilst this might be annoying to some, they can pick up of stuff that I might miss. The important part was to lift key sections of the recorded performance without doing too much editing in post. I worked closely with Carl Anderson (two4k) who mixed the album and together we kept the tracks reverent to the performance captured”. A massively different way to record an album than many would be used to but what an exciting process.

“I don’t spend hours preparing or crafting sounds, sequences, samples or phrases, it’s a jam that develops very quickly or I move on.”

I went on to ask a very tricky question for all artists, what is David’s favourite track from the album? If I had to choose (now picture me blushing like a little girl) it would be ‘MERK.’ This to me feels like it is Post Acid and the moment I extended upon the genre of Acid.

David has been involved in the scene now for some time and, no doubt has seen some massive changes over the years. I asked David what he feels have been some of the biggest and most positive changes… “I was never really part of the scene and always existed on the peripheries. I felt removed from the scene for a number of reasons, politically, culturally etc. It is only by virtue, as what I do as a live electronic dance music artist that places me in the “scene”. The popularity of electronic dance music and how it has weaved throughout popular culture is a huge positive evolution. Although the biggest positive aspect is the increased amount of new music from new artists, let’s hear more of it”. I went on to ask David what some of the biggest negatives are for him a present in the electronic music scene… “Scenes can be as full of dickheads – past, present and future. Maybe these days there’s more dickheads considering the immense popularity of electronic dance music. If anything, the homogenisation of the culture has made it rather predictable and boring in many aspects and places. As a non-practising nihilist, I’m simply not interested in changing anything, we’re all a bunch of random events and I’m content in observing, it makes things interesting”.

If we do actually have a UK festival season this year in the wake of the Corona Virus I asked David if we can expect to see him over the UK anytime soon and he responded with a very simple response… “We’re working on it and hope to be there soon”, and I hope this is the case. Whilst on the topic of the UK scene I asked David if he thinks the UK and Australian scenes are massively different and if so what in particular makes them so different? “Good question, whilst not a comparison, Australia does have a thriving live music circuit, from large festivals down to small venue gigs. It seems Australia and particularly Melbourne has many opportunities for young artists to perform. The UK might have this, but Melbourne blooms with events small (and large) in pockets all over the city. Practically every week there is a show that has something interesting to offer”.

I asked David if there was anything else he would like to add before I left him to his day and he just added, “remember, whatever the question may be, the answer is always 303”. I certainly would not disagree! I would like to thank David for his time and superb answers he provided to my questions.

Honeysmack’s ‘Post Acid’ LP is out now on Awesome Soundwave. You can purchase the album here

The post “The 303 has become the electric guitar of electronic dance music” – Honeysmack appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

Lee Burridge and Lost Desert discuss their latest EP and all things All Day I Dream

It is not very often you get the chance to speak with Lee Burridge but when you do get the chance there is usually only one answer… also being a huge fan of All Day I Dream made it even easier. Then I get the news that Lee would like to include Patrick Bruyndonx, who is better known as Lost Desert to many of you out there, so it was really the perfect opportunity. For those of you who have witnessed any of Lee Burridge’s recent sets would no doubt have heard him playing many of his collaborations with Lost Desert along with many other of the deep melodic sounds of the All Day I Dream and TRYBESof stables. For those of you familiar with All Day I Dream will know it is far more than just a label or a series of events, it is more like a musical movement or family. It has developed quite the following over the years…

When we spoke Lee and Patrick had just finished their upcoming release on TrybesOf, ‘Moogami’ and Lee was making plans for this year’s All Day I Dream summer parties which are looking very impressive as you may have already noticed. Since the guys first started working together they have developed a very formidable pairing in the studio. I asked the pair how it all began and Lee answered… “It depends on who you ask. If you ask us then it all began in the wilderness. Trekking through uncharted deserts and randomly bumping into each other when Patrick was making field recordings of exotic animals and the wind blowing through salt pilar canyons. Then we got bored and wanted a cup of tea so went to Belgium and decided to make some music while drinking it”. Patrick added… “We met in a disco in Belgium, hung out after that at my house and then working on the first demos together which were ‘Stand Up Right’ and ‘No Wicked For The Rest’. This was the beginning of 2015”.

Moving onto today and the guys latest release, the ‘Moogami’ EP, I asked the pair how the EP was put together, as Lee is often travelling all over the globe… Lee answered, “As I’ve said many times. Patrick is a pure producer and I am the passenger in the car. His generosity with ideas and skills fully supports my lack of experience. We do vibe well with each other though. Patrick creates an enormous amount of work in progress tracks and a lot of the time we don’t just have to start with a kick drum and a clap. It’s more time-efficient. If I’m away we send ideas back and forth. The new EP came from a new piece of kit in the studio. The Moog One. A beast! Now you know where the EP title came from. The Moog is a black hole that sucks you in and when you come out the other side three days went by. Patrick then added… Moogami’ is the first track we made with Lee’s Moog One. These days the internet is our friend, so even if Lee is away, he can be next to me when he is overseas. Obviously, like last week, it’s even better when Lee comes to the studio for a week together”. Whilst on the studio chat I asked the guys about their favourite studio gear which Patrick was very keen to answer…  “Its practically always a combo between analogue outboard gear (Moogs – Nordlead – SSL Summing) and inbox (Spectrasonics – Uad – Fabfilter – Native instruments)”.

For those of you who follow the guys and All Day I Dream you will no doubt have been a fan of the LP they worked on together back in the summer of 2019 titled, ‘Melt’. I asked the guys how long it took to collate the album and how it actually happened… Lee answered… “I’d say it took all my life. Haha! It was inspired by certain moments or times in both our lives. It’s an album dedicated to Summertime’s gone by and childhood moments at the carnival. It’s intended to mark a moment in our lives and we hope some of the tracks might mark moments in others lives too”. Patrick added… “I always wanted to do an album on All Day I Dream in order to tell a full story, it took us 3 plus years to write, produce, mix, test and master”. I think we can all agree it was 3 plus years well spent!!!

Lee recently played an incredible event for Cercle at Omnia in Bali. If you missed it, check it out below. I asked Lee how the whole event was? I had heard Double Touch played a great warmup set? “Thank you for your kind words. I was honoured to be a part of Cercle. They’re doing something really amazing. The live editing and locations they chose are top-notch. I was actually really sorry they only streamed my part of the day as both Double Touch and Zone + played amazing sets as well”.

Whilst on the gig chat I asked Lee about his recent set at Fabric as I had also heard from good sources it was a very special event…

“Fabric for me is always special. I spent so many amazing nights in that space as many people did and it’s such an important venue for musically pushing boundaries that getting to go play there can only ever be special. The crowd and vibe were amazing and, as with our shows, there’s a wonderful balance of people”. – Lee Burridge

Lee and Patrick are both very busy men so I was keen to know how they find the balance in regards to gigs, producing music, travel, and family… Lee answered… “I personally feel it’s about understanding one’s limits and then figuring out your time planning. It’s hard as we always book most shows months ahead of them happening so It’s about trying to remain aware of everything else you need to apply time to in your life and making a plan for that too”. Patrick quickly added… “I don’t sleep until it is finished”. Something I am sure many of us can relate to!

Moving onto a slightly more political topic, in a music sense anyway, I asked the guys what have been some of the biggest positive changes in the industry over the years since the early days. Also what have been some of the biggest negatives… Lee answered… “Technology coming down in price and allowing anyone to make music is definitely exciting, as in the past you had to invest so much money into the tech. However, this same thing has flooded the market with below-average music that makes it hard to find the good stuff or even allow those making it to get the attention they deserve”. Patrick then went on to add… “the only advantage that comes to mind is that I don’t have to travel with vinyl, Haha! The book of a trillion faces is not my favourite thing to do, however, it’s a part of the deal these days, I think the industry let itself down by allowing the endless illegal copying and shameless sampling”. I can certainly relate to the joys of not carrying vinyl! Something that is not missed and I sure many DJs backs would agree!!!

All Day I Dream is more than just a label or an event, it has grown into more of a movement of likeminded people. It has an almost cult-like following and I do not mean that in any negative way. I asked Lee his thoughts on how All Day I Dream has evolved over the years… “It totally is. In 2009 when I had the idea I always wanted ADID to inspire artists and promoters to support this sound as well as build a community around it who might just become friends along the way. I’ve not really spoken too much about the impact the idea had on the wider industry at the time but a lot of what came after borrowed heavily on the ADID aesthetic and sound. The party and then label’s success also created an acceptance on a much broader scale to allow artists to explore their more emotive side.”

“It was always my intention to attempt to bring wider appeal to this music as well as go back to artists playing in a way that told a story rather than just relying on the relentless energy of drums to drive the party.” – Lee Burridge

Before I left the guys to crack on with their busy lives I aked them about future gigs and if we can maybe expect some Lee Burridge and Lost Desert back to back sets over the summer… Lee went on the answer… “That’s definitely happening this Summer if I get my way. Not so sure about the live set though as I don’t think we use a triangle in our tracks and that’s the only instrument I’m truly a master of haha!  One event to definitely try to come along to is Bloemendaal in Holland. It’s an amazing location that’s perfect for ADID and myself and LD.  It’s at the beach and draws not only dutch fans but a lot of our European friends from different countries. It’s a brilliant day out.” Fan of AllDay I Dream, there you go, get it booked!!! Patrick added… “Somewhere soon hopefully. Playing back to back is really fun and we are considering the idea of an orchestrated version of Melt. Don’t get too excited as it’s only on paper right now and will take an enormous amount of work to make it happen”. Well there you go folks, you heard it here first!!! Time to start getting a little excited!

I would like to thank Lee and Patrick for sparing some time to chat with Decoded Magazine. We really do appreciate it, and we hope you enjoyed reading the interview as much as we did speaking to them both.

Check out the list of All Day I Dream events here and get those tickets booked!

The post Lee Burridge and Lost Desert discuss their latest EP and all things All Day I Dream appeared first on Decoded Magazine.

Original Resource is Decoded Magazine

Gaute Storsve: Blending Cuban, Nordic Jazz, and Prog

Gaute Storsve, photo by Dag Thrane, used with permission. Gaute Storsve is a Norwegian guitarist, composer, band leader and educator who has recorded with his own jazz trio, contributed to many diverse and eclectic projects, and frequently collaborated with Ketil Vestrum Einarsen, including a new project, +Ingelrii+, and the 2nd Weserbergland album, due out in... Read More »

The post Gaute Storsve: Blending Cuban, Nordic Jazz, and Prog appeared first on Positive Feedback.

Original Resource is Positive Feedback