Heeeey Patrik, I hear you had a strike of bad luck just before recording the podcast and your laptop was stolen, so sorry to hear about that and so glad you still managed to catch up and get an amazing mix in. How on earth did you manage? Do you have backups? Or did you use vinyl to make the mix?
Hey! Actually slight misunderstanding there, I wasn’t quite that unlucky, I just had a bag stolen with chargers and cables, laptop was happy and intact over at the studio so making the mix was no problem haha. As for how the mix was done I’ve recorded some new and old vinyl on to the computer and put it all together with additional newer files.
Your mix sounds very fresh and unbiassed, and actually starts with a very deep tracks only to take off… can you talk a little bit about your mix? Where did you make it, and what was your primary intention when you were tying it together?
I made it in our new studio and just spent a day finding some music from all kinds of various styles of dance music that I’m into, some off the techno tracks have been very inspirational to me when I was a bit younger. Basically I just wanted it to be quite diverse here, though in a club setting it makes more sense to carry on longer with a similar sound.
What is important for you when you pick your records, what is a reason why a track for you stands out?
I don’t know exactly but I guess you get more picky the older you get? As your preference, at least in one partcular genre, gets narrowed down and more specific. Having said that though I think in general when it comes to music, with time also comes a broader acceptance of different styles. Generally I look for something that sounds a little different, ballsy use of percussion and making melodies out of tonal changes rather than notes.
Which tracks are on the mix?
I can’t give a full track list but there is some music from Juan Atkins, Rob Hood, Biosphere, Claude Young, but also new tracks by Usio, Basic Soul Unit, and Fonos, to name some!
Agaric MEOKO Mix
You are a very special DJ and producer, as you already live your second career in electronic music. As Patrik Skoog you were part of the last great wave of Sweden techno producers, as Agaric you are one of those interesting flavors that have kept the techno house scene afloat. How did you make this clever move?
I hardly think of it as a clever move, but more like a needed change from a scene that I didn’t really agree with anymore. A name change felt like the right thing at the time since with the start of a new label in “we are” for me, I also changed to a new sound completely. Now I don’t worry so much about it anymore, and plan to release lots of techno as Agaric as well haha.
Was it easy to reinvent yourself? \
I really did not think much of it or had a meeting with a publicist, it just happened naturally over years. Your musical preference change all the time I would say, as well as your body, and personality to some extent.
Did you ever feel like your Patrik Skoog identity will be able to come back through?
Definitely, I have not done anything for a long good while now, and i would love to make an album sometime, not under any alias or project name. I will be sure to do that some time
What, if there is any, consciously, are the differences, musically? I would love to hear how you describe this metamorphosis in your own words.
Well, at this point right now, for example, the music I’m currently producing in the studio is probably way past the style of my previous released record, and not belonging in any tech house genre placement. So in general, all it takes is a bit of break from working on music, taking some time to focus on touring, and then people feel that you come back with a “new style”. Right or not, I feel that it would be too boring to release several records in the same vein though, and this has definitely been the case for me when I was younger. I prefer to work on a project a bit longer, and make it just as you pictured it in your minds eye, or ears that is! I know you wanted a description as to what the differences in sound actually are, and all I can say it that I am a fan of a heavier sound now than I was 2 years ago, which was the time of producing my album for Ovum. Although regardless of what style, I think over the past 15 years people always said that drums seem to be the focus of all the songs I make. I would have to agree!
What is it that you think music needs to capture your attention, and the attention of your audience?
It’s so subjective isn’t it but I think it just needs some balls if you pardon my language. I think alot of music now especially in the dance music scene sounds a little too well placed and neat. I hate it when people complain of other music in interviews and in person and I’ll try to be diplomatic and just say that it’s important, to go a bit crazy and let go of the conventional rules of music making, when it comes to techno. Let it chock the dancer a bit, after all – all that makes a track on the dance floor leave an impression, is that one thing that is a bit surprising and exciting, which is to say, that it doesn’t sound like the 15 tracks that were played before it. If I’m good at this, is another question – but I try to keep that in the back on my head at least, when chosing music to play, and making a production. Some times you fail, some times you nail it.
How is living in Berlin for you right now? Last time we talked, we marveled about this glorious city….
Haha yes I definitely love this city, and you tend to find new things, as in any city, over time that you like about it. I don’t really go to clubs that much because I have been so busy this year with other things in my life, and that has left me with alot of space in my head to figure certain things out, and enjoy Berlin as the relaxed joyful haven in central europe that it is.
How is the situation with We.Are, your label stroke event row?
It’s great, just revamped the distribution and released a record by VID from Romania along with Andrew Grant, and the next record from LIMO will be out in early December. Label party in late December in Berlin!
What is the philosophy of this amazing label?
Thank you! The philosophy is to find good music to release techno and house from people in my surrounding that I like, so I guess the sound changes with my personal musical preference over the years. That sounded a bit narcissistic I just realized. Oh well. The format is usually 10 inch vinyl and on occasion I put out four track 12 inches as well, but never full length albums or mixes.
Who is currently on it, and partaking in your label parties?
There have been a big list of involved artists although the ones I currently work with include Fonos, Ed Davenport, Walker Barnard, VID aka Egal 3, Andrew Grant, Raudive, and Limo.
It’s getting harder and harder to manage a vinyl based label, no? Will you continue anyhow?
I will continue anyhow, on occasion records do sell quite well but yes you are right; it is getting rediculously difficult to keep a label afloat these days. Although the few people that keep buying records, actually seem to be growing in numbers lately. Even if there is a huge difference still to a few years ago. Perhaps the joy of performing dj sets with laptops on stage was indeed a fad. I think both ways will continue to stay, and merge together in the future.