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Interviews Archives — Page 3 of 44 — MEOKO

The underground producer that loves to go deep – Guti

By Festival, Hot Off The Press, Interviews

Argentinian producer Guti is one of the most exciting and evolving artists electronic music has to offer. Best known for his groove-loaded take on house and techno that comes to life in his dynamic live set, Guti’s musical roots go deep. After years spent touring in Argentina with a well known rock band, Jovenes Pordioseros, Guti found himself drawn to the dancefloor. Whilst living in Germany, Guti made the acquaintance of Loco Dice and released his debut album Patio De Juegos on Desolat in 2011.

 guti press pic

In the years since, Guti has ascended on an exponential trajectory as an in demand artist with a unique sound. Now, Guti is making a return to his South American roots with his latest album, The Year of the Conga, released on the 29thof March on the Martinez The Martinez Brothers’ Cuttin’ Headz imprint.  The album is testament to Guti’s veteran status, showcasing his breadth of influences across 14 tracks, each rich with South American rhythm and percussive flair. Right in time for summer, Guti is currently touring his album globally. Amidst his packed schedule, Guti found time to chat with us at MEOKO. Read his interview below.

Hey Guti! Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us at MEOKO, it’s a pleasure to have you!

Let’s start with you’re forthcoming album ‘ Year of the Conga’ on Cuttin Headz. Could you tell us a little about the inspiration behind the album?

 The inspiration of the album is coming back to the dance floor. Is our rhythm. The Latino in me. It’s all the music I grew up listening to transformed in this electronic artist of a thousand battles that I am today. It’s something we always speak about with the Martinez Brothers and it is what we are. Our essence.

year of th econgo guti

Listening to the album, it exudes that kind of well-considered sense of ‘sureness’ that only comes from an artist who has truly come into their own. Did it take you long to find your own identity as an artist?

 Thing is I am many artists in one! I am the jazz musician. The underground producer that loves to go deep! I always wanna experiment but I am also the house guy that plays Latin rhythms and enjoys dancing and to make other people dance. I think I finally got in tune with all my sides and I can express myself.

 How would you describe the evolution of your sound over time?

 When I changed scene after all my years with rock bands I was thrilled with making people dance. Was addictive. Then I have some years experimenting. Now I’m back on the dance floor. Synthesizing everything. More direct. The message is more direct.

 What is inspiring you at the moment?

All my inspiration comes from three parts. My life. My love. My issues. I am floating in an endless self discovery trip. And every music I do taps into that.

Aside from working in the studio, you’ve got a pretty packed touring schedule. How do you find balance?

 Well I am pretty unbalanced! Been touring for 20 years! I do my best. Culture and sports. Hang out with my girl and my friends as much as I can. Go to museums. Different socio cultural activities that take me a bit out of my touring that makes me feel I have almost a normal life.

Having played across the globe, are there any particular scenes that attract you most?  

I love to play in South America. I love Latin people and I love Asia. I’m doing this interview from Malaysia! In the end every scene has more in common than what you would think!

 Looking ahead, you’re already set for a pretty stellar summer, with Off Week and Awakenings already announced and more to be confirmed. What’s your favourite part about playing big festivals?

Now I am on a mission. That is to present the album to as many people I can. That’s why I am on this world tour and I’ll pretty much do the whole world in the next couple of months. From Australia, to India, to Latin America, to Europe to the states and back. It’s a challenge to play the album in small clubs and big festivals. And I love it!

Coming from an incredibly diverse musical background, we have to ask, what do you listen to when you’re at home?

 I listen to jazz and salsa. I have an obsession with Oscar Peterson and Hector Lavoe.

guti piano

Wrapping things up, what does the future hold for you?

Life goes on. And I am already writing the next album. It’s from our band with Francesco Tristano “Another Paa,dise” and we are also launching a label together and preparing a big live show. We already played Mutek last year and it’s a project that really got me excited.

Interview with Guti by Lily Dalton 

Guti’s new album ‘THE YEAR OF THE CONGA!’  is now available at Beatport, Juno, deejay.de, itunes store and boomcat. – CLICK to buy 

Melodie Interview & Mix “Music I Feel Strongly About”

By Hot Off The Press, Interview & Exclusive Mix, Interviews, MEOKO Exclusive

melodie

Cristi Turodache, better known as Melodie, has deservedly earned his status as one of the most exciting talents to emerge from Bucharest’s scene. Over the past five years, Melodie has injected the scene with a vibrant, fresh sound, incorporating new influences and exploring new terrain.  His polished, and continually forward-thinking productions, can be found on coveted releases across some of the scene’s most respected labels: Metereze, RORA, and Vivus, among many others. While his output positioned him at the vanguard of a new wave of Romanian talent, Melodie’s biography offers only a small glimpse of dedication to his craft.

An artist with an unwavering commitment to constant learning and development, Melodie’s most recent endeavour, the Redesigns album, is the conceptual realisation of his desire to continually offer something new. The digital-only release features refreshed ‘redesigns’ of eight of Melodie’s previously released tracks and is currently available via Melodie’s bandcamp.

We are incredibly honoured to welcome Melodie to our podcast series with two hours recorded from his set Saturday 9th of March at Club Eden. The podcast is testament to Melodie’s ability to create a sense of coherence amidst vast stylistic and emotional diversity. Traversing mind-melting textures from a range of genres and soundscapes, this mix is an escapists delight beggint the listener to get lost it. 

Accompanying the podcast, we are delighted to feature an in depth interview with Melodie about his Redesigns Project, his production processes, and his evolution as an artist. We are incredibly excited for what the future holds for an artist whose patience and passion are palpable. 

Melodie 284 MC

Let’s start by talking about your most recent project.  Could you tell us a little bit about the concept behind the Redesigns Album?

Some people, over the years, asked me for digital versions of the tracks, because some records were sold fast, or I don’t know, they don’t play records maybe, or they don’t collect vinyl. Digital is cool, sometimes I also play digital, and why not? Also it’s nice to have different versions, retakes.

What sort of things did you change up when you were ‘redesigning’ the tracks.

Well, one of the things was that the tracks were made many years ago, and over the years, I kind of changed the way I make music, and with the redesigns, I made them in two weeks or so, and they’re all more my recent take on music.

Could you expand a little bit on this recent take? What’s your new approach like?

It was more like the way I make my mixes on tracks, and the way I work now. I’m always into developing my workflow and the way I work, and learning more and better. And I changed some gear also, some tracks, they were with my old sound card, and I have a new one which sounds better. And most of it, this was the way I make the mix downs. Because of the equipment I use now, the overall sound of the tracks has changed. I think now I’m getting closer to a cleaner sound, more transparent, where you can understand all the instruments pretty well.

Yeah, I can definitely hear that everything sounds really refreshing and new – it’s exciting!

Yes, it was a moment idea when I thought initially to remaster them, but then I was like, “Why don’t I make them like new?” Some people tried to say, “This is the rework of that track,” but I wanted to perceive them as something different, new.

What about your workflow? How has that developed over time?

My workflow, yeah, it changed over the years, and since a couple of years, I’ve been trying a lot working with hardware synths more, and I guess because for many years, in the beginning, I used to work only on computer. And I kind of got tired of it, being always on the monitor, and clicking with the mouse. So now I try to make tracks kind of in a live session.

Yeah, so a lot of jamming?

I don’t do so many jams, but rather, I make the tracks like a piano player does. I just make live takes until I make the track the way I want it to be, from just one take, from one take. If I make a track and I make a mistake after three minutes, I just start it again.

That must take a lot of patience. Do you get frustrated, ever?

Not really, it’s interesting, because sometimes I do, but in the end it goes well, or if it doesn’t go in a way, maybe the track is not ready yet to be finished. I also feel that it helps me to understand better the trials, what the track actually needs as a build. I think I worked too much on the computer for many years in the beginning. Like on this album (redesigns), there are two tracks, I think it was six and seven, that I made with the mouse, like the block kind of arrangement thing, because yeah, I’m doing different things from time to time, because I don’t want to be stuck in just that thing. I want to expand a bit and try different things.

It seems like you’re someone who just loves constantly learning. Would you say that’s true?

Yeah, I like that. There is many things I know now that I had no idea in the beginning. Somehow they come with time, I think.

What was this process like for you?

At the start I thought I’m making interesting things, but actually I was just playing around with loops before I started to release anything. I think yeah, that’s why I started making music in ’98, when I was 13 or 12, I don’t remember exactly. And I got serious into it in 2005 or 2004, because for that period, I was just playing around with it, like you play a game or video game. And I guess also the internet brought a lot of knowledge available that you can read and find about.

In Romania also, if you are not in this environment already, I don’t know how easy it is to get in touch with people who have studios and great equipment. I mean, the first time I went into a professional studio was I think in 2005, 2004. I just was there for a few times, and it pushed me a bit to start to learn more, and to work more on music.

I tried many things: in the beginning, I was working with loops, and just putting them there together. After a while I tried some edits, like in that period, and then I worked with samples and presets, and it was just, I guess, I was still learning a lot.

What were your inspirations back then, and have they changed?

Yeah, I had a long time, I think, making music that I was not so satisfied with. I mean, it was, I guess, decent, but I was not so satisfied. The tracks I released on Metereze were the ones that I started to believe a lot in, and they pushed releases with other labels. But yeah, Raresh liked them. I think it’s the same now, it’s not the same reasons as there were at that point, but I’m kind of the same. I get inspired by many things, like by equipment, by sounds. That’s the thing with the acid tracks. I like = the acid style, and I was inspired by that. I just woke up one day and I was like, “Wow, I want to make an acid track.”

I know what you mean by that. It just comes to you sometimes.

And sometimes it’s just, I don’t know, some feelings or ideas about gear, or trying some new technique, or sometimes even what’s happening in my daily life, if I get inspired by that. Now I’m working more on sound design, and I feel have a more flexible way of doing things. I have this modular, and I’m kind of making sound from the scratch somehow. I don’t use presets anymore for a few years now, and for example, I was in nature last year, and I got so inspired by the sounds of the birds and the bugs on the leaves. And I came home, and somehow I managed to transpose that into a track that I’m going to release in a few months I think.

Awesome, that’s so exciting!

Speaking specifically of the Romanian scene, you would definitely be considered as someone shaped the direction of it and sort of filled the sound with this kind of emotional warmth. What do you think the difference is between someone who makes a good track in that style and someone who makes a really great track?

Oh, thank you. For me, I think I always felt like this when I started to go to parties. I felt that music has to create a build inside me. I want to feel exciting, excited about what I’m hearing, and surprised somehow. And also emotion, you have to have a feeling of something. I think music should have a story in it. Whatever kind of story, I don’t know, happy, sad, linear. I used to listen to minimal music in 2004, 2005, like Richie Hawtin, and there are a lot of other people. And even though they were minimal, with a few elements, they had a story, like a small build there. And nowadays, a lot of this minimal sound and tech house minimal sounds a lot like a loop and it doesn’t create a story somehow in it.

Yeah, that’s an interesting perspective, I think with the sheer volume of stuff that’s released now a natural corollary of that is that there’s going to be a lot of average, mass-produced stuff that doesn’t create a story, I guess. I definitely feel there’s so much to get excited about when it comes to the music emerging at the moment.

Yeah I do agree.

Changing direction a bit, let’s talk about your experience as a DJ. Do you think your approach as a DJ is quite reflective of your style as a producer? When you’re performing a set, are you trying to conjure similar emotions that you are when you create tracks?

Yeah, I don’t know. I’m trying to play music that I feel strongly about, and I don’t want to get into the hype. Of course, I’m getting inspired by othcer people. For example, I was out this weekend, and over the years, I went out to a lot of parties in Bucharest where my friends played music, and I was inspired. I guess you can’t avoid it too, you can’t not be inspired by the evolution, and the whole collective movement. Because I used to play rougher music, house, back many years ago, and now I’ve evolved. I’m still not playing minimal too much. I want to have a bit of diversity into my sets, but I’m not going too much into extremes. I think the one thing that I find I aim for in my sets, in my mixes, is a coherence, just like my tracks. I want them to have a coherent story, and the whole mix sounds more like a track somehow.

You mentioned you’re getting more and more into sound design now. what drew you to wanting to be interested in it? Was it sort of a natural progression from producing and DJing?

Yeah, I guess one of the things was being super unsatisfied with using presets, and the limitations it gave me. And also, sample packs. I don’t have sample packs in my computer, I have just a few samples like drums. You know, the percussion bongos, congas, and all these tambourines, because I feel like I had an idea, but then I have to go through some presets, and I feel like they always have to be different. And now, in the last two or three years, I started to make sounds specifically for a track, and many times I don’t use them again.

I mean, this is besides the drums, because you can have a drum machine and use the drums they make, you maybe process them a bit, put some EQ and compression, and you can’t get too far away. Many times, I find it easier to use drum sounds from a drum machine, and I don’t think they’re so important, like the basic kick snare, hi-hat. I think more of the synths, the bass, and some other percussive elements, you can play a lot with them, and with the effects. And you can achieve more interesting sounds, at least this is what I like. And like I said, if I’m not evolving, I get bored.

I feel like the possibilities for evolution are endless. There’s always going to be something new to create.

Yeah, I’m kind of losing my inspiration if I’m not into thinking too much on to it. Like, thinking up new things, “How can I approach these gears differently?” or what combination I haven’t tried. Sometimes, I just make some music just to make something, but what moves me the most is trying new things and getting new ideas.

I think I’m starting to focus even on making music, DJing is cool, but lately I kind of lost a bit interest in it. I find myself spending more and more time on making music rather than digging for music.

Do you find it more inspirational to sort of create your own stuff?

So and so. I mean, I like to listen to other people’s music, because sometimes I work on a track, and it takes me 10 hours, and I realize that, for the last 10 hours, I was listening just to this thing, and I want to listen to something else. Because, of course, if you don’t listen to anything it’s harder to get inspired.

I enjoy music a lot, I still go to parties and I find myself as a listener. When I was younger, I used to think, to listen a lot to what’s happening technically, like when I was starting to DJ. But now I don’t give it too much attention. I mean, you can hear, of course, things, but I’m not focusing too much on that.

That’s a much more enjoyable way to spend your time on the dancefloor, personally I definitely fall into the trap of letting my focus on the technical side of whats happening take away from the experience and story.

Wrapping things up, could you tell us a little about what you have planned for the future? Are there any releases you can tell us about?

I have some music that I want to release planned already, but I’m going to work on music for some other labels as well. The thing with vinyl, is it takes such a long time, you make some music, and then it takes three months or four months to release it. I feel like I want to release stuff that I’m super satisfied with.

Words by Lily Dalton

More Melody; Soundcloud / Facebook

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Meoko goes underground with the Bulgarian loop lover.

By Festival, Hot Off The Press, Interview & Exclusive Mix, Interviews, MEOKO Exclusive

10653376 565270396933334 7565682084935501139 nNo history of Bulgarian electronic music would be complete without a mention of Deyan Zlatinov. You might not have heard of him but there’s a good chance you’ve danced to his music – particularly when you consider that Loopdeville has been engaged with electronic music since the 90s. Deyan has kept a low profile for much of his career, touring only occasionally while remaining an active producer. In the past 10 years he has played in countries like Switzerland, Germany, UK, Romania & Bulgaria and played on festivals like Meadows In The Mountains plus other Open Air Parties. To hear a Loopdeville record is to peer into Zlatinov’s soul: every broken drum sound, every old school pad, every dusty sample reflects something lurking in his subconscious. His aesthetic has arguably been best showcased in his standout mixes, with efforts for Introspections (Half Is Enough) and Project London Radio in more recent years.

It was 2013 when he released his first digital and vinyl EP’s under the name Loopdeville, respectively Karton Label and Knock Knock Series from Kiara records, Body Parts and his own label Delooped Records which he launched that year with his partner in crime Georgi Panchev. Through Delooped he began putting out an array of new music from the likes of Sublee, Pepp, Anima Mundi, Anton Pau as well as his own music and soon developed a close relationship with kindred spirits such as Lorenzo Chiabotti, Suciu and Harry McCanna to name a few. In 2014 he released on Moss Co., Odd Music and a remix on a vinyl only release for Moral Fiber with one track on a VA for Karton (vinyl only), also with a remix for Body Parts and recently on Rotate 005 “Mini Rotations I”.

Like many producers, Loopdeville eventually wound up in London, and it was there that I met him for the first time about five years ago. Since then I have spend considerable amount of time with him at his studio, either observing him producing music or spinning records. What I’ve witnessed was a passionate collector with an extraordinary drive to take the crowd on a musical trip. In short, Zlatinov is an important ambassador for Bulgarian electronic music and is an artist with something to say, which is why we decided to sit down and have a chat with him! We also got him to record an exclusive mix for all of you so double treat right here for our Meoko readers!

Hi Deyan! Thanks for being part of our series! I appreciate that you made time out of your busy schedule for this interview! It barely took a pair of ears to tell that you have a real passion for minimal and techno. Can you tell us how all of this started and evolved over the years?

Hey Denny thanks for having me. Great to be part of these series for Meoko. Well, it all started with me wanting to be a singer actually. I tried, but somehow I could not see me practicing by myself at home singing to the walls. It all started when I joined a private singing school and at some point we went to a studio to record a dreadful song of mine… It was at that time when I had my first real touch with a studio and observed what the producer was doing.. since then everything changed. After a while I quit the singing lessons and got myself a PC, met another producer who was making music mainly for fun and he got me into music software so we started making beats.

What influences did your home country Bulgaria have on the music you make? Were there any particular people, parties, labels or moments that significantly influenced you in the early days?

Back in the early days of acid and techno / house music there was a very unique and famous club called Comics Club which was simply awesome! It was an old cinema theatre with high ceiling and some amazing DJ’s over the years. There I fell deeply in love with this music genre which inspired my productions and allowed me to develop a “old-schoolish, broken, repetitive & dusty” style.

Artists from Mazi a.k.a Audio Soul Project, Dj Ali (Canada), Hipp-E & Halo, Joey Youngman, Terry Francis, Nathan Coles, Eddie ‘Evil’ Richards, Tony Thomas, Silicon Soul (they were the city favs actually at some point) to some crazy techno DJ’s from the great techno scene that Sweden had back in the day; Cari LEKEBUSCH, Hertz etc. All these artist were from the beginning of 1990s when the club was active. Nowhere else in the country, was there a place like that…it was a sanctuary for the new kids on the block. I should also mention Club “Weekend” where it all started for me as a performing DJ. A  year or two after that I was playing b2b with the owner at that same Comics Club, presenting his new line of parties – we went on to have some glorious b2b with the guy and yeah it was a perfect beginning for me. If you add some broken beats inherited by my country’s folklor – (the roots you know) and the influence of hip hop, soul and jazz on top of everything else then you get the idea behind Loopdeville.

 

It’s been about 4 years now (more or less) since you left London and moved to Gibraltar. How do you find the city? Are you enjoying your life there? 

Yes we moved out of London as it was getting too much for us (me and my fiancée). We went to a place called Tarifa and there we decided it was time for a new chapter for us and I couldn’t have agreed more. We live on the other side of Gibraltar, which would be Spain and there we had our little daughter Sofia. I was devoted full time on raising my daughter, especially the first 1.5 years which was an amazing experience, trust me (laughs). Gibraltar is an interesting place I must say with a nice little scene that has some proper big names and also current underground figures are making their appearance at parties here and there. I have much love for the people who gave me the chance to play music here – the guys from Noroc, but it wouldn’t be possible without the kind help of a man like Rossko who introduced me to them as he played here too. Enjoying life here Denny you should come and experience the city yourself!

And what about your record label Delooped? What is the concept behind it and what should we expect in the near future?

Delooped is our baby – mine and Georgi’s! It is still kicking and will be kicking again soon as we have prepared a double 12” for our next release. This release comes from Bulgarian artists called Sumrak – a truly amazing duo – but more about them very soon… The idea behind Delooped is to stay within a small circle of artists and of course always push Bulgarian artists that make the kind of music we like and believe in.

We are also in the process of bringing back our second label Erorr or Catalogue Of Erorrs and we are working on a third label where we will be presenting a sound that would be similar to the one Delooped has already established after 5 releases. At the moment lots of things are being finalised and I will be revealing more when time comes. Erorr will be presenting slightly braver ideas and out of the box kind of productions – all mastered by our good friend Tom Gillieron. Just check our first release on Erorr and you will see what I mean. Vendi was the producer behind it and as always he did a flawless job.

You are also an artist in your own right – which of them two is more important? The label or your own music, or do they go hand in hand?

The label and my music both go hand in hand. I have always been interested in the idea of creating a circle of like minded artists who embrace the philosophy of having a good and clean relationship between us and also making sure everyone is appreciated by the label; be it artists getting paid or invited to a showcase party and so on. Surely we have made mistakes along the way but after all we are here to learn and we hope there hasn’t been any artist who we didn’t treat well.

What are you looking for when it comes to finding new music and signing artists to your label? 

What I am personally keen on is artists who got the “humpty dumpty” flow in their beats if I can say and it makes sense. There must be character in their music, funk, jazz, that techno-minimal magic dust; the kind of music where you can jack your body – don’t really care if it is minimal or techno or house or electro tango. If you listen to what we have released so far, or the music I’ve done, you would probably get a better feel of what I’m trying to describe.

In regards to your own productions, what projects are you working on at the moment? 

At the moment I’m not really working towards anything in specific rather than a remix I will be starting soon. Usually I would  sit down and make beats whenever I find time for it and let emotions do their job. It has always been more of a hobby of mine rather than a regular thing, even though I have had many unsocial months, maybe even years of my life devoted on crafting my sound and all the rest that followed. Making beats is probably the only thing I have been patient and consistent with in my life – in terms of interests and work wise too (laughs)!

Is there anything that you don’t see enough of in the music industry that you’d like to see? 

The music industry as it is stands has more than enough and as every fairy-tale you got the dark side of it – here too, but I am not going to elaborate on that as it is a long subject. At the end of the day it will be what it will be. We can only keep our heads down and work towards always changing things for the better for our environment and the industry as we know it. What I aspire is to create a sustainable life for the labels – me and Georgi are already presenting and investing towards this and will continue to do so in the future. We’ve been off the grid for a while, although behind the scenes we’ve worked hard in order to come up with ideas on how to reach closer to our goals. In addition we have always been on the look for fresh artists with fresh ideas.

Coming on to the mix you’ve made for us, what can you tell us about the music on it?

This is a mixture of the tracks I love listening and playing at the moment. Probably only one or two of them are released, again from artists whose music I love; Dj Ali, Afriqua and also this sick up and coming artist from Manchester called Samuel Padden feature in this mix together with my good friends Maruntelu with a cover of RHCP track by the end of the mix.

In the beginning of the mix you will find out a forthcoming track on our Erorr label from an artist that requested to remain unknown. Not only to us, but to everyone who is about to hear the music and we totally respect that as we absolutely love the productions and the final product. By mid way the mix builds up with tracks from forthcoming releases on both our labels. Those are productions from our newly signed Bulgarian artists that will be having a double 12″ for Delooped and later in the year on all other labels. Basically these tracks will be available at some point this year through our labels.

Words by Denny Kem

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BERLINER NEW LABEL PHONIK INTERVIEW

By Festival, Hot Off The Press, Interviews

Despite big head line ups, techno festivals and events, discovering, hearing and dancing to some tasteful rhythms remains the main goal of what we love and want to share. Techno is all about music and passion, a fact that we can’t deny. In this way, we choose to offer you something fresh, a brand new bangin label named Phonik, co-founded by Yoshitaca, Fasten Musique Concrète Resident DJ among Archie Hamilton, Verrina&Ventura, SIT or Roger Gerressen to just name a few – and friend and partner Julien Lucas.

One release and another one out since yesterday, we had a talk with this last one but least quoted, Julien. 25 y/o French young man livin in Berlin since few years now, talked us about Phonik origins and his vision of the music berliner way of life.

Capture decran 2019-03-07 a 23.09.50

Hello Julien, thanks for having us. I’m glad to exchange with you today.

Hey Dylan, thank you for your welcome and interest in our new project Phonik.

  

First of all, and as it’s the main reason of our venue, can you tell us few words about Phonik creation, aims and directions.

Everything started in 2016 when Yoshitaca and myself met at the club Hoppetosse in Berlin, during his first gig there. From this time, a strong friendship started and our love for the same music pushed us to make this project together.

In February 2018, we decided to create our own label Phonik. We could define our music by a mix between House and Electro, with some techno sonority.

  

We all know that the Berlin underground scene is pretty huge and various. It’s a kind of pilgrimage site for every DJ and ravers who want to become more imbued with the electronic music culture. How can you define your place in it?

First of all, Berlin always been for us “the” electronic music city, which is actually the main reason why we both moved here.

The rave culture always been huge here. Clubs like Heideglühen or Hoppetosse have been for us a lot of inspiration in our music direction.

But like we all know, the concurrence here is important and it’s getting harder to stand out from all of these new labels.

Our music wanna stay underground, in the way that we only press 300 copies for each EP and work mainly with new artists.

Phonik has for the moment released two vinyl records : PNK001 Thoughts or Feelings, an whole EP composed by Yoshitaca and PNK002 Members Only EP including four tracks by Mariano, Optique, Yoshitaca and Yoske which is out since yesterday!!

 PNK002

How do you feel about this second EP?

We are really excited to see how the public will react with this various artists composed by four very talented producer. The four tracks are made for the dancefloor.

 bikini

Bikini Waxx Records located in the famous Kreuzberg district, became one of the most popular record store in Town since there opening five years ago. 
A great selection from House to Techno with a warm customer service.
The team is composed by Yannik Zander, Alexander Skancke and the owner Gerd Tammist.
With their cosy mezzanine space, it’s feels good to listen records while drinking a tea or talking with friends.

You have the chance to have Bikini Waxx Records store for your second release party. Can you tell us more about this partnership? 

We really wanted to make a partnership with a record store in Berlin, and naturally our choice turned into Bikini Waxx.
We both are regular customers of the shop, and with the time became friends with the team. Like we said, it is really important for us to work with people close to us. 

On March 8th, so basically TOMORROW you will be hosting the PNK002 release party over there. What can we expect about it?

 PNK release

It’s gonna be a lovely event starting at (from) 6pm till 10pm. We wanted something familial for this one, and Bikini waxx feels a bit like home! For this event, our special guest will be the talented Velasco playing his finest records. 

Of course will follow our two Phonik artists Yoske and Yoshitaca. You will find some copies of the PNK02 directly there.

Fresh beer will be served as well! 

What is next for Phonik?

Working at the moment on the third EP, which will be out hopefully beginning of summer! 

We’re planning also to make really soon some merchandise goods Phonik T-shirt and tote bags.

Thank you for your time Julien, see you really soon.

 

Phonik02 Release Party x Bikini Waxx Records promises to be a lot of fun, a perfect way to breathe out after a long week, afterworks golden hours to enjoy with vinyl only sets from Velasco (Nil), Yoshitaca (Phonik) and Yoske (Phonik/LARK). 

And ‘cause we love to treat you damn well, one of you will have the chance to win the new PNK002 Members Only EP. One rule, like and share the Facebook publication, Julien will pick the luckiest of us with our help.

Words by Dylan Am

“The main element for me is groove” – Vlad Dinu Exclusive

By Hot Off The Press, Interviews, MEOKO Exclusive

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Bucharest’s Vlad Dinu has been inconspicuously refining his sound for over 10 years. His hunger for experimentation has led him to move beyond genre constraints and use music as a mode of emotive communication. Vlad Dinu’s artistry is an extension of his passion for the power of groove, and his expertly honed productions have found home on labels including Generatia’90, Synesthesia, Mihai Bravu, and Half Naked Dog. Vlad Dinu has also collaborated with the likes of Sublee and Iuly.B, releasing music under the Stedi and Nord Pipes aliases respectively.

We are honoured to have Vlad Dinu join our podcast series and delighted to have had the opportunity to talk to an artist whose drive and humility are palpable. For his MEOKO mix Vlad Dinu dives into the dancefloor-oriented side of his collection, building and sustaining an energy guaranteed to lift your spirits.

Vlad Dinu – MEOKO Exclusive 

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An advocate of the power of the groove, Vlad Dinu’s ability to extract new and exciting musical possibilities from his selections renders him a sought after presence in his local scene. Having appeared alongside Piticu, Charlie, Emi, Suciu, Cezar, Praslea, Kozo, and Ion Ludwig, Vlad Dinu is beginning to ascend on a promising trajectory of his own. Drawing from his multispectral influences, Vlad Dinu’s sets offer fresh and creative sounds delivered with an effortless veterans touch.

https://soundcloud.com/blazed-vd/

  1. Hi Vlad, thank you so much for your time. It’s a pleasure being able to chat to you and we’re super excited about the mix you’ve put together for us. Can you start by telling us a bit about the idea behind the mix?  

Hey guys, first and foremost, let me say that I’m absolutely thrilled and honored to be featured on your platform .

I’d like to think that the mix I’ve put together for you guys is somewhat representative of what I would play during a club set . I’m thinking this is a very good opportunity for people who don’t know me to get a small taste of what they might expect me to play during a club night . All together I hope the audience enjoys my selection of records and I surely hope to bring a smile to everybody’s faces 😀

  1. Taking a step back, how did everything begin for you and how has it evolved over the years?

Well I guess it all began in 1996 for me. I went on a trip with my dad to Philadelphia and I discovered a local record shop whilst exploring the city, which would later become one of my favourite shops in the world. That’s the spot where I got in touch for the first time with hip hop, as I bought my first Kool Keith record. Dr. Octagon which was released that same year Mo Wax .You have to imagine that I was 12 years old and I just bought myself a PG18 rated record . That’s the point where I started losing it and started buying as much records and CD’s I could afford. Hip hop was a big part of my life as a cultural movement and I sill feel culturally connected to hip hop through my music a lot ! High school later brought me face to face with electronic music , as I was constantly hanging out in one of Bucharest’s most legendary venues ( one that actually saw a lot of the legendary names in Romania play , guys like Dj Vasile, BogMan which was then known as Dj Sleek , Vexxatu Vexx, Blanoz Distrusoz , Suie Paparude or Unu, just to name a few ) . I’ve started playing dance records about 12 years ago and haven’t stopped ever since.

  1. What are your views on the current Bucharest club scene? Is there anything you’d like to see done differently?

Bucharest has rapidly evolved over the past 8 years into what you would might call “the place to be” when it comes to the clubbing scene. Clubs are constantly lined up with the best names in the industry, whether it be the local heroes or big names from abroad . Furthermore, I think that it recently became a more diverse scene than before as new and talented artists are diversifying their DJ sets with all sorts of music as a response to the massive growth in record acquisitions that goes on lately . Thus being said, I wouldn’t change much as I think that the local club scene is constantly developing into something better and better as time goes by. Only thing I would definitely wish for would be new venues as we have a lot of astonishing buildings and establishments that would easily fit a club event.

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  1. As a DJ, the breadth of your selections makes it clear you have an intuition for digging deep. What are you looking for when it comes to finding new music?

The main element for me is groove . If a track perspires groove, whether it be a minimal one, a housey one or why not even an experimental one, as long as it has groove it will definitely get me interested into it. Another thing that makes me buzz are the tracks that tell a story. You see, I also like to think that my DJ sets are about me transmitting my story to the audience , so therefore, a track with a good storyline and a strong groove is definitely going to have me buy it !

  1. Now let’s get into the production side of things. Your catalogue is very diverse, and I’m sure only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the music you’ve created. Did you get into production through DJing? How long have you been making music?

Hah, thanks, you make me blush 🙂

Production wise, I started putting out tracks 10 years ago so I would guess that makes me old now wouldn’t it? I’ve always maintained a low profile as I have been constantly working to perfect my sound both as a DJ and as a producer but now I feel I have achieved that which I was looking for and it’s time for me to put it out for the people to enjoy.

  1. Could you talk a little about the creative process behind your productions? What continues to keep you inspired?

I guess every day life is what gets me inspired. I always find myself jamming whenever I sit down in my studio, and it’s always based on how I feel at the moment. I don’t think that I have ever narrowed down my inspiration to on thing or another, it’s basically the sum of all my experiences since the last time I sat down to make music . So, in other words, my music is somehow my personal diary .

  1. What about your technical approach? Could you describe your current studio setup, and your workflow when starting a new track?

Being my dad’s kid, I grew up listening to Motown Records mostly every day, so you might say that my only technical approach is jamming till it sounds good . I currently work in a home studio which is basically pretty well equipped as far as my needs go. I have 3 samplers ( Elektron Digitakt / MPC 1000 / Roland SP 404 ) , 4 analog synthesizers ( Korg Minilogue, Roland JX-3P, Behringer DeepMind 12 and a Behringer Model D ) and a couple of other digital synths that I always go back to when I need that “extra something “ , a delay pedal from HardWire and that’s basically it. I also use a couple of VST’s , mainly the ones from Fab Filter but then again, I rarely use them as I like my sound to be as raw as possible whilst sounding pleasant to your ear .

  1. Do you ever reuse elements of unfinished or unreleased tracks while generating new ideas?

Once I have exported a track, as far as I’m concerned, that’s one closed story . I like to keep it diverse and so if a jam builds up into a track, than that’s that . If it doesn’t, I will probably later strip the instruments apart and try to rebuild it from scratch.

  1. Maintaining a distinct personal sound across a range of styles is something you’ve managed to master. Do you have any techniques processing-wise that contribute to giving you this distinctness?

Only “technique” I think I have mastered is the art of not being afraid to explore . I never set out to produce a track in a predefined way, whether it be in my mind or be it following a certain predefined arrangement that I earlier decided upon. I just sit down, jam , and let the music take me where it wants to .

  1. Thinking ahead, what are your goals for 2019?

I’m definitely looking to travel more with my music and put out more records as my track stash is currently busting open with fresh material. I’m also aiming to give a fresh restart to my own record label, Mihai Bravu Records, and put out some of my favorite artists’ music . I also look forward to collaborating with more people from the industry – I have been blessed enough to put out a tribute EP for Swayzak and also got a remix from them , also got  remixed by Tommy Vicari JNR ( again, a wonderful and blessed experience ) and I am currently waiting on a remix from the Italian duo Nudge , so that’s already a win for me this year 🙂 My main goal is to keep doing what I do no holds barred .

As Vlad Dinu :

https://www.discogs.com/artist/5567777-Vlad-Dinu

As Stedi (collabo with Sublee)

https://www.discogs.com/artist/3002139-Stedi

As Nord Pipes (collabo with Iuly.B)

https://www.discogs.com/Nord-Pipes-Nord-Pipes-01/release/10497532

 

Words by Lily Dalton 

Stepping Up The Scene – An Interview With Round Up Founder Bruno Curtis

By Festival, Hot Off The Press, Interviews

We catch up with DJ/producer and party promoter Bruno Curtis, founder of Round UP Agency and project director at the RTS.FM Prague studio. Based in Prague, Bruno has become a key figure for raising the bar in the city’s underground scene, both as a DJ and as a promoter with Round UP since 2016.

Into 2019 Round UP is stepping up its game with a series of special events happening both in Prague and around Europe –  in parallel, Bruno’s DJ and producer activities took off as well, with a schedule getting busy with performances, from London top notch events to an Ibiza residency at Ibiza Underground one Wednesday per month this summer, from June to September. We had a chat with Bruno to get to know his  plans for the warmer seasons coming up.

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Hi Bruno! Thank you for your time, it’s a pleasure to have you on Meoko.

Thanks for having me.

First of all, can you give us a little bit of background regarding Round UP? How was it born and what are its objectives?

Round UP started as a birthday event for me and Agustin Alvarez – our birthdays land on the same week, so we decided to do an event together. As you may have heard Prague wasn’t too big on the type of sound we play or present at the time so finding a venue was pretty complicated. We finally managed to get our hands on a bar owned by our now very good friend Claudio. Basically he’s responsible for starting the scene as much as we are, because without him we wouldn’t have gotten this far, or anywhere for what matters. After the first event in which we managed to sell out the bar we were offered to continue, and we did. Starting with small events, we added the visual concept into the events, which at the time wasn’t really a big component for these type of parties. We had a guy working with us named Orkhan, he would create the craziest of visual presentations either from lights, objects, or both… A seriously talented guy.

From then on we started presenting Round UP as more of an art-orientated organisation (yes, music in itself is already art), but we did bring that edginess to the events by delivering quality music alongside these crazy visuals. For example, when we had tINI over we built a forest on the stage with real plants and bought fake flowers etc and had them drop from the ceiling to create a jungle effect while we had visuals projected on them this in a warehouse. This was a very DIY idea that we had just hours before the event started.

So in shorter words, Round UP is an audio-visual presentation as most promoters these days, but we put a lot of work on the visual side with objects and projections. That and the overwhelming good vibe. Every single person that works with us needs to have this sort of attitude: be nice to each other, respect each other. That’s the recipe for a perfect event!

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On the 15th of March you are collaborating on an event with MU, a venue in the industrial district of Istanbul. How did this collaboration start? Is it the first event you host in Turkey?

This year we have made a lot of changes in our team, work method, events etc. With that changes came the partnerships with new bookers that assist Round UP outside Czech borders. One of these booker is Muge Tuzer, who happens to also be the booker at MU. She gave me the idea of doing something in Istanbul, and it’s been a city I have wanted to visit for a very long time. We agreed on Barac to be the guest, I got in contact with Nicu and that was it. It has been very spontaneous as the whole thing unfolded in 10 minutes… I can’t wait for that one.

FB: https://www.facebook.com/events/2058668790866778/

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Then on the 29th of March you will be back in Prague with a Resolute collaboration. The line-up for this one is stunning, with Sonja Moonear, Francesco Del Garda and Shonky headlining the event. What guides your booking choices?

We always try to book artists that are either very close to us personally, or artists that completely embody the energy that all of us put into what we do. In this case specifically all of the guests are personal friends and have some of the best smiling faces present in the scene – always delivering that good energy that can light up a crowd. It’s not all about standing there dropping the best tracks for 2/4 hours that get you to the next level of being a good performer. The aura, the energy that you yourself transmit into the crowd is very important, something as little as eye contact and a smile can make someone’s day.

It’s important to be conscious of these kind of things, people rave because they want to escape and feel like they belong – we can help this with music, but these type of details can also be very helpful. A simple smile can literally change everything about a set. That’s the type of artists that we want to book, the ones that are able to connect on a personal level and bring a lot more than just mixing tracks.

FB: https://www.facebook.com/events/247458025930554/

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You will also be hosting the first-ever Cocoon showcase in Prague on the 10th of May. What are you expectations and what information can you share for now about this massive event?

Well to be honest we’re still working out the details, but I’m very much impressed with the entire Cocoon team. They’re all super organised and it’s all going smooth like butter. The visuals for this event will be massive… Like festival style massive. Super excited for this.

FB: https://www.facebook.com/events/375648483233274/

What’s the underground music scene in Prague like at the moment?

The scene in Prague is actually very vibrant at the moment, not internationally acknowledged but still vibrant. There’s a lot happening all the time, promoters are booking more and more interesting and good names. The guys at Ankali club lead the way in this subject. The Komiks crew always throws massive warehouse parties once every 3 months that are somewhat part of the veins of the city itself. Then there’s the Harmony crew, all young and super talented guys, and the XYZ guys also… I mean there’s a lot happening. I’m very confident that sooner rather than later the door will open. That’s always been our mission after all.

You are playing at the Half Baked x UP Festival Easter showcase in London. What are you expectations for that? What other upcoming events or releases are you looking forward to?

Yeah, thats sort of a gig that i’m still to digest, the whole past 2 years really. Always followed closely Half Baked and the entire team and having had the chance to befriend them and now play for them is as cool as it gets, all in all I’m thankful and focused on all of whats coming my way, really can’t wait. In terms of releases we have (on our ANBC project) 3 releases now on the pipeline, first already found its home the other two are still in the engine room, lets see prefer not to jinx it and just go with the flow on this. Have been playing a lot of my stuff in my sets recently and been surprised with the reaction so can say I’m excited for what 2019 will bring.

FB: https://www.facebook.com/events/622666794832952/

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Tell me more about ANBC, the collaborative project with Alex Neivel. How did this collaboration start and what are its objectives? 

ANBC was more of a logical step in terms of music production and progression. Alex basically pushed me into diving deeper in the studio and he’s been the one pushing me from day one. After a lot of after party jams or late night studio sessions we figured out that the compatibility was just there and joining forces made sense. Since then we’ve been making a lot of stuff – we built an additional studio in my house, so we pretty much live and breath music from Monday to Sunday. Our musical direction? We’re very classically orientated, jazz infusion as well, experimental, so we try to bring those components into micro-house and just try to approach it in a way that what doesn’t make sense then starts to make sense… a bit hard to explain. In the mix we gave now you can ear a lot of our own productions, won’t say which but you’ll find out soon enough.

 
 
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Could you tell us your highlight moment/story from 2018?

UP FESTIVAL!!!! (link here)

You are also working at the RTS.FM Prague studio. When did this start and what do you have upcoming on this side?

This was what got me more involved in music, it was roughly 2 years ago and it all started out of me being discontent with what was happening musically in Prague at that moment. I always felt that Prague could go further, so I’ve always been trying to find a way to get the music out of here in some form and RTS.FM came along and provided that gateway for me to start putting some Czech artist on camera, in a way pushing people to try and be better.

It’s different when you’re playing for an audience much bigger than your normal bar crowd, you tend to put a little bit more effort. For me if I could just push people around me to that point then the scene all together would grow. I couldn’t do it alone, either we all move or no one moves. Nowadays it’s a little bit more stagnant due to the amount of projects I’m working on, which are all very time consuming.  

Thank you again for your time Bruno, we really hope to catch one of your sets soon!

 

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 Interview by Giovanni Bodrato

 

 

Who are ‘Where We Met’?

By Hot Off The Press, Interviews, MEOKO Exclusive, MEOKO Presents

MEOKO Discovers the Forward-thinking Sound Which is Reshaping Underground House and Techno, infusing it with Break-beat and Electro

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Since 2017, Re-UP and Riccardo Piazza teamed up on a new project, forming the Venice based record label Where We Met. Distancing itself from the old minimal tech background that distinguished Re-UP, the multi-faced project is not only a ‘traditional’ record label, but also an independent DJ act, as well as a promoter entity. More importantly, WWM is pushing a forward-thinking sound which is reshaping current underground house and techno, infusing it with break-beat and electro.
Just listen to the first 2017 release from Reedale Rise; the ‘Broken Land’ EP throws a captivating amen break into its first track with impressive smoothness, but also includes minimal house tracks that sound closer to the micro-house style we often hear at our favourite parties lately. Or their last release from 2018, ‘Where is my Prisma?’ by Chicaiza – the astonishing title-track is just something else, a spectral groove which convinces us the label is really doing something special.
We were certainly impressed by the ingenuity of their nearly 2-hours exclusive recording for Meoko. Creating a flow with broken beats is not an easy task for any DJ, and WWM do it beautifully. 10 minutes into the mix and you will be sucked into a space wormhole of rolling electro basslines and lysergic atmospheres. As the mix progresses, house comes onto the game; steady 4/4 kicks and neat hats build an infectious groove, without switching off the note of deepness that characterizes the WWM style. To accompany the mix, we had a chat with Where We Met regarding their upcoming releases and events.
WWM mix cover
 
Hey guys, first of all, thank you for your time. We are very happy to have you on Meoko! 
Could tell me a bit about your background? When was WWM born, and how?
 
Hi, It’s a pleasure to chat with you, guys! As explained in the introduction, WWM is a blend of Re-UP and Riccardo Piazza. Ricky’s history with electronic music had a serious turn when Leo and Omar asked him to go out a dinner in 2.  “I remember I was back from an important business meeting in Milan” Ricky says, “dressed like a boring suited jacket man and I said “let’s meet up with the guys!”Until that moment, I was just a guy with a lot of passion for electronic music, now I can say I have a way to express and share his passion with others. So I really have to thank Omar and Leo who gave me this opportunity, I’m sure that I’m now a better DJ / promoter / whatever you want because of them.” On the other hand, the Re-UP project needed a reboot. The duo, founder of Kina Music, had been around for over a decade. After joining Music On between 2014 and 2016, they felt the need to step back from a mainstream brand that went too far from their musical taste. We’re plenty of good memories of this period, lot of fun and most important, we had the opportunity to see how a big agencies works. Ricky’s has been fundamental to help the Re-UP rebranding because He enriched their musical knowledge and thanks to his different background, he contaminated Re-UP’s sets which are now more sophisticated but still effective.

The name Where We Met celebrates a specific moment in which the three of us had a mind-blowing experience all together, surrounded by inspiring music and funny scenes. Sunwaves 14 is Where We Met and that’s also the story behind the name. Zip’s magical 5 hours set and the unforgettable Ricardo Villalobos set in the middle of a storm were both essential for understanding that we were feeling the same energy , and from there our friendship has been growing with mutual respect and with the security that we share certain human values which are at the core of the WWM project.

That’s why Re-UP suddenly decided to invite Ricky to that dinner. As soon as the meeting started, things flowed naturally. Omar already had the name in mind, ‘Where We First Met’, so we just shortened it and here we are, ready to go!

WWM
What is the fundamental vision behind the Where We Met project? What are your goals?
 
In the beginning we wrote a sort of WWM manifesto that we thought we would have to present to the artists. The picky and meritocratic process we use to select the music for each release allows us to be like a super selector which is composed by our 6 ears and 3 hearts.
WWM’s vision is set on human values first and foremost, and as a reflection we work with artists we empathize with. Our goal is to release high quality music that match our taste. Something to be played in different moment of the day, something that people will hear in 20 years and still enjoy it.
Some of the label releases show a Detroit old-school electro influence, other feature broken beats so neat that they almost sound like they could have been released on Hessle Audio. What inspired you to go in this direction?
 
Thanks for the comparison, hats off to Ben UFO and whole Hessle Audio crew! We know that music is cyclical so it was about time that electro and old school music became popular once again.
What inspires us is the message behind a track and that’s why we didn’t set any limitations to the label. Obviously the first release was an electro package that surely put the label on the map, but after that we felt the need to explore a more deep influenced sound.
With the third we returned into a techno electro mood and luckily, one tracks has been selected by Craig Richard on his Fabric Mix. We will never thank Reedale Rise enough for this! WWM004 represents an excursion from breaks, deep and techno while the 5th was meant to be a dance floor-oriented release.
The Chicaiza EP is very important for WWM because it is something we needed in order to be a bit less predictable. The label was becoming an almost pure electro one because the best music we found at that time was electro, which kind of attracted similar music to us, but it wasn’t completely reflecting who we are and the range of the music we play and like. So We want to have different genres coming from WWM and we would really love that in each of our releases you are be able to hear our trademark which will always reflect our 3 different visions!
The first record of 2019 is already being released in February – the ‘Event Horizon EP’ by Tonnovelle. Can you describe the record for us?
WWM006 is the most rave-ish on the label, an expression of our techno side and something you will need when you play peak time. It’s an intelligent release, pretty contemporary music, something that might have been out on several current “trendy” labels, but beware the A2. 😉
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The influences that Arman and Kamyar had for this one in regard to the Vienna/Berlin connections are pretty clear to us even though it’s a pretty personal record. We also love the energy on this one!
Ricky adds I’m really happy to have Arman on board because he is a longtime friend that I met in a special city, Vienna, and a very special place Metz. It’s a second home for me and it was so important to help me define my taste in music and also what is nightlife to me. I’m so thankful I’ve met the Funkroom crew and all the people that I can now call friends!
 
WWM also has a sub-label, Spaziotempo. It only had one release from Freddy Fresh in 2018 so far, which sounds as brilliant as inventive. It definitely makes us want to hear more!
How does Spaziotempo differ from Where We Met? Do you have anything scheduled for 2019?
Spaziotempo is hard to describe…We felt that Freddy Fresh EP would need a different home rather than WWM. At the very beginning we wanted to create a label for represses and reissues but we immediately realized that this concept would be a limit. As soon as we worked on the Spaziotempo002, the division between the 2 labels was getting clear to us – and if you read between the lines you can spot the artist already. 😉nds like Freddy to be hosted
You are active as a record label and DJ act, but also as promoters in the Venice area. 
How is the scene moving nowadays in Italy? Did you find any particular difficulty in promoting your projects?
Italy is trying to reshape a club culture and many good producers are coming out. At the same time, people are understanding that music and small venues can be turned into intimate spaces that fits perfectly with the party experience we aim for. We had few great shows in Italy last year, there was a living connection with the dance-floor, almost tangible at times. 
Luckily we’ve shown up on Michele’s radar, the owner of Veniceberg, who invited us to host a showcase series in his club. Since the first event, the relationship with Michele grew and we managed to understand the right steps to introduce the WWM project. There’s a mutual faith, he trust our bookings because he knows that we understand his club.
The music we love is neither easy nor popular, so it’s normal that not so many people would enjoy a 3 hours IDM/breaks/whatever set as we do. What we are trying to do is to offer quality music, always making sure that people have a good time at our parties, that’s the key! Behind a successful event there’s a motivated crew which is able to transmit energy and passion, hooking people and giving them the right tools to join the experience. How to do that? Passion plus smiles plus respect to our followers.
VENICEBERG
Your next party will be on the 18th of January at Veniceberg, the venue you just mentioned. The underground space in Verona provides quality acoustics thanks to a purposely hand-made sound system. You will play alongside Gwenan, a daring artist who plays tracks ranging from techno to more experimental beats. What is your expectation for this party?
Can you imagine the most comfortable situation in which everything works perfectly? That’s Veniceberg! With this scenario, you just need to focus on being the perfect host for the artist and the people attending to the party.
Gwen is a great Dj, one of our favorites for sure. We love her selection and flow, you can feel a personal touch in her sets and she’s always able to make a good connection with the crowd. Empathy: one of the skills every dj should have!
GWEN
Other upcoming parties also have intriguing bookings; Freerotation resident Jane Fitz and Madrid DJ/producer Corp will play respectively in March and May, also at Veniceberg. What guides your booking choices?
As for our releases, we want to book artists that we would love to see at other people’s parties. Being a DJ means to connect with the people and not everyone have the ability to bring the audience through their journey.
Jane needs no introductions, she’s one of the best in the business and it’s such an honor to have her with us: I can’t wait to hear her on the Veniceberg’s sound-system! Ricky still remembers her debut at Panorama Bar, at the end of her set there were literally 15 people waiting in line to hug her (including him): we think that this tells you a lot about the great human being she is (and of course…how good that night was!).
Corp is our bet this year! He’s surely a superb producer, his works for Libertine are outstanding but we heard he’s a good DJ too and we can’t wait to listen to him in Verona! We would also like to give a special mention to Chicaiza, who did a superb set in November. We knew he was skilled but he really nailed it!
Can each of you tell us your favourite record from 2018?

OMAR:

LEO: 

RICKY:

 

And favourite party?
OMAR: Checkpoint meets O300f Recordings at Backyard Barcelona Villa. I
oved the energy all over, especia
ly w
en Kashawar played one of the best sets i’ve ever heard!
LEO: Experiment Intrinsic France where Gwenan shaped such a lovely and intimate trip through techno, ambient and IDM…
RICKY: Riccardo in Brooklyn (Decantour), amazing vibe, great people there, so many new friends and 2 super acts from Riccardo and from Rasho, a guy we would really love to bring to Europe!
Thank you for reading and enjoy the Where We Met podcast!
Upcoming WWM parties:
15.03.19 – w/ Jane Fitz @ Veniceberg, Verona IT
17.05.19 – w/ Corp @ Veniceberg, Verona IT
EVENTSWWM
Article by – Giovanni Bodrato

Genuine, Humble and Down To Earth’ A Decade of Wareika – Interview & Exclusive Audio

By Hot Off The Press, Interview & Exclusive Mix, Interviews, MEOKO Exclusive

wareika interview

There is really no need for introduction when it comes to the unstoppable fun trio that is Wareika. For the past decade Florian Schirmacher, Henrik Raabe and Jakob Seidensticker have been at the forefront of electronic music, consistently developing and pushing their signature sound in every corner of the world with great success. Their finger work is finesse itself and has been universally appreciated, also and foremost by Visionquest, Perlon and all the labels they have charted on. Wareika are more a band that has fun experimenting with electronic music, but has a musical culture that goes well beyond it. Listen to any of their productions and you will discover atmospheres which refer to their own world and personalities.

From London’s iCAN Studios where I first met them 4 years ago, to Funkhaus in Berlin (for the 20 years celebration of Perlon), to London again at Ministry Of Sound and back to Panorama Bar in Berlin this August (for Get Perlonized) – I’ve been travelling between cities in order to get to know them better and witness them perform live. Trust me when I tell you this; I have rarely come across such masterful artists. However, I believe the main thing about them is that despite all their fame and success, despite all the collaborations and all the world class labels they have released their music on, despite everything that comes with it – these three individuals are genuine, humble and down to earth. Their love for music is fundamental, a sacred value that leaves no space for anything pretentious. To my eyes this is a rare quality, especially nowadays..!

As we say farewell to 2018 we had a proper catch up with Wareika in order to find out what they’ve been up to lately! In addition to the interview the trio teamed up with Meoko to deliver a “goodie bag” of exclusive audio & visual material for our readers, just in time for Christmas and New Year (well almost…)! 

Afternoon mighty Wareika! It’s a great pleasure to welcome you back to Meoko! So, you guys toured South America recently for a duration of two weeks. How did it go?

Florian: We played in lovely Colombia and Mexico. Colombia is one one of our favourite countries. From the first time we were booked to perform there few years ago we fell in love with the people and their mood. Since then we go back regularly and always have a great time.

And what about Mexico? How was it there?

Jakob: It was a fantastic short trip to Papaya Playa Project in Tulum. This spot is like a paradise and at this time with not so many tourists. The dance floor is open air and just 30 meters from the sea. It was a full-moon Party with lots of people and we played very well. As our gigs are always different and not always perfect, I can say that it was a special one and we really want to go back asap, especially as it is fucking freezing here in Europe for the next months.

What do you think of the club scene in South America? Is it any similar compared to the club scene in Europe?

Henrik: It’s different for sure and it’s way smaller. The positive effect of this is that you have a very intimate feeling when you are clubbing there. Everybody knows each other. There is competition too but way less if you compare it with Berlin e.g.

You have travelled quite a lot these past years, is there any specific country that you would like to visit / perform and haven’t done so yet?

Florian: The electronic music scene is still young just like many countries in the world. For example Estonia had its hundredth birthday this year. Good reason to celebrate there. Cuba, Peru, Ethiopia, Ruanda, Armenia would also be interesting for me.

2018 marks 11 years (more or less) since the three of you formed the band. How has this journey been so far?

Henrik: First of all, AMAZING! It feels very special to share such an intense experience (like touring the world with your music) together with such good friends. I think I couldn’t do this on my own, like many DJs do it. I am so grateful to have… a BAND! Of course it is often not so easy, especially when you play mostly in smaller clubs, where even doing a proper soundcheck is nothing usual. Beside that, if you work together you have to find solutions together, you have to discuss things… It’s a family thing and that’s not always easy, but it is so beautiful!! From a musical perspective I could say, that none of us would have done what we could have done on our own. It has been possible because we did it together.

Did you expect back then that things will develop the way they have?

Jakob: When the three of us met about 10 years ago in Hamburg we had no idea of what was going to happen. We first experimented with different drums and percussions and recorded everything. The result was our debut single „Men Village“ on Connaisseur. Shortly after this release we met regularly in the studio of Henrik and mine. We were also trying out vocals with Florian for the first time. This mixture of different kinds of instruments and styles has probably brought us where we are today.

Henrik: Honestly, in the beginning all of us were really keen on making it out there and touring the planet. When that started to happen it was still very exciting, but also felt very natural in a way, because it was just what we wanted and what we worked very hard for. Everytime when we have the chance to go somewhere, and play our music for the people, it feels like part of the dream becoming reality, and that’s what life is worth living for, isn’t it?

If you could go back in time 11 years ago, what would be the one main advice you would give to yourselves?

Henrik: On a band level I have nothing to admit, we did exactly what we had to do together. Maybe for myself I could say that I started a bit late the process of going in depth with learning certain musical basics, so I still struggle to really play what I want to play, because I cannot play it yet. But I am on it!!!

On your set-up there is always some sort of little custom-made modular boxes that you build yourself Henrik. How do you do that? You’ve even built a custom-made lute, now that’s even more impressive! Do you find it easy building your own instruments? looks so difficult to me!

Henrik: Playing electronic music LIVE simply calls for very special needs in the field of instrumentation. You want to have lots of control about many musical as well as mixing aspects in real time. That led me to spend a lot of time experimenting with hundreds of different devices and their possible combinations, and even building things myself, because I could not find what I needed out there. But after all that process I have to say, that music comes first and foremost from your heart. We had some gigs where parts of the machinery decided not work with us, and we felt pretty naked on stage. But then we played the best music ever with very little technical stuff. 

Back in February you released your 5th album “Water Sky Sun Wood” on Japanese imprint Mule Musiq. Could you give us a bit of an insight?

Jakob: We recorded a long session of about 1-2 hours at Henrik’s Studio in Bingen/Rhein (near Frankfurt). First I wanted to delete it because it had some crackle sounds in it but Florian insisted to keep it and this was a good idea. 

Florian: Yes, I took the whole project to Berlin and worked on it for quite a long time. It was a bit like Chinese whispers, so Henrik got it back! (Henrik laughs)

Henrik: I took the whole Opus with more than 50 channels and bounced them in about 3-4 Stereo Channels and started to add new elements from zero. In the end I sent it to Jakob who speeded the track about 10 bpm up, added some more elements and did the mixdown. That was it! The album sounds like a 60min jam but it was lots of work (even though it was a 60min jam)! (Henrik laughs)

Also this year you have released many EP’s with the most recent being the Shamania EP on Sleep Is Commercial, expected out very soon. How did that come along?

Jakob: Not too sure how it happened, like I remember Henrik and I played together on his piano in his studio, the rhythm was so strange that we had no idea of how to loop it… in the end it was a 5/7 bar measure as far as I remember. 

Henrik: Or was it 4/11?? 

Jakob: Maybe it was. Once we figured out what loop and bar measure it was we slowly started to build the structure around this first piano idea. 

Henrik: Usually Jakob and Florian have strict ideas about what labels are suitable for our music but this time it was me that thought of Francesco Assenza from Sleep is Commercial. We have known each other for years and as you can see he was into it. 

It’s not the first time we see Ricardo Villalobos remixing one of your tracks. This time he teamed up with Thomas Melchior and delivered two remixes. Whose idea was this?

Jakob: Mine (laughs). 

Henrik: The guys from Sleep Is Commercial asked Thomas Melchior for one Remix. After a while the information came that he did two remixes together with Ricardo Villalobos. We don’t know what happened in between! 🙂

Do you have more releases coming out this year?

Florian: The year is almost finished, yet there are so many things coming up for Wareika it feels like spring-time. The Ricardo Villalobos & Thomas Melchior Remixes are for sure upfront and we are happy to release this double 12” as this was a process of about two years (to make this release with all the remixes happen).

A beautiful Remix will come out this month also: Its for our friend Sary called „Hear & Hakim Murphy – Motion Currents („Wareika’s Moon Aligned Remix“). Its a link between different worlds as well…

Jakob: The whole bunch of releases will come straight early 2019.

Is there anything particular you would like to see Wareika getting more into in the future?

Henrik: Taking over the groove from those machines. I love all kind of electronic music devices and my studio is full of them, but still I find the best grooves are played by humans, not by machines. Somehow we left the groove to the machines and sometimes we become slaves of the machines, without realizing it. Let’s free ourselves from that!

Last time I saw you perform live was back in August at Panorama Bar for Get Perlonized. That was an insane live set and the vibe was so special! From your perspective how does it feel when you perform there?

Jakob: Oh my god that one was fantastic! Everybody was sweating to the fullest, three o’clock in the morning it was still 34 or so degrees outside. So you can imagine the vibe inside. Insane. For me it was one of the best gigs we ever played! We also played about one hour longer. The people were just too hungry (laughs). Playing for Get Perlonized is always special though. It’s just a guarantee for a good party. Thanks to Tomo and Sammy for keeping it up for such a long time now!

I also remember the day I came across Florian randomly at Panorama Bar in January. How often do you go out clubbing?

Florian: I like to go out and experience new things! For example I also enjoy dancing to Salsa.

Jakob: I try to keep it low between the gigs, but it doesn’t always work as I like to visit my friends in clubs and dancing to good music. Henrik is rather in his family thing, less clubbing, more music production and making music with his refugee friends from Syria.

For someone who doesn’t live in Berlin what would be the top 3 places you’d recommend them visiting while in the city?

Florian: The Philharmonic Orchestra has a special sound. I also like the Teufelsberg, it’s such a cool venue and it has open doors for visitors. Also the Loop Gallery! It opens randomly but it is very special.

Jakob: For clubbing there are obviously way too many venues one could recommend. I like Club der Visionäre in summer best.

Henrik: For food there is also loads of good options. We often stay at Michelberger Hotel, Warschauerstraße when in Berlin. As I almost always ran out of time, I end up at the Haloumi place next door. That’s a good one too (laughs)!

As we speak of Berlin, Jakob when are you moving there (laughs)? Jokes aside this year you’ve been playing music in Berlin almost on a weekly basis, would you consider relocating or you’d rather stay in Hamburg?

Jakob: Yes! 2018 was intense. I was DJing as Jakob Seidensticker a lot besides our live gigs as Wareika and Silky Raven. I love Berlin but I also like to leave Berlin once the work is done (laughs). I love the city but it’s also too grey and dangerous for me. Coming back to Hamburg from all over the world has always given me a feeling of relief. I was born here and i will die here hopefully – (everybody laughing)!

What shall your fans expect from Wareika this coming year?

Jakob: As we are making music as Wareika for more than 10 ye
rs now, w
are celebrating this with a huge collaborative double album with loads of brilliant musicians, friends and other inspiring people, such as Sonja Moonear, Maayan Nidam, Shonky, Radio Slave, Kalabrese, just to name a few…

That sounds brilliant! We’re definitely looking forward to that! Anything else you would like to share with the world before we wrap up?

Jakob: Merry Christmas! Enjoy the holidays with your loved ones. In case you don’t celebrate Christmas, just have a wine on me 😉

Florian: Peace!

Henrik: See you somewhere on this lovely planet at the weirdest dance floors.

Thank you so much for your time and pressies Wareika! It’s been fantastic having you back! Merry Christmas from Meoko!

 

Words by Denny Kem

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MEOKO | Epizode Festival | huge lineup with [A:RPIA:R], CRAIG RICHARDS, GUTI, PAN POT, PEGGY GOU, STEVE LAWLER, THOMAS MELCHIOR

By Festival, Hot Off The Press, Interviews
Epizode is one of the leading festivals in Asia, taking place on the Phu Quoc island in Vietnam for eleven consecutive nights, between the 28th of December and the 8th of January. While the northern hemisphere will be freezing into the new year, on the beaches of this mesmerising island underground electronic music will be celebrated dancing under palm trees with sunglasses on. The festival’s line-up ranges from house and minimal to harder techno and drum n’ bass, including plenty of electronic music icons such as the A:rpia:r sound system, Ricardo Villalobos, Sonja Moonear, Maayan Nidam and Pan-pot, among many others. We are delighted to host the organiser Artem Kharchenko for a few words and insights on the festival.
 
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Q1: Hi Artem! Thank you for taking the time for this interview, it is a pleasure to have you on Meoko. Epizode is now at its third edition! I guess it has been a huge challenge to organise this kind of event in a country where it’s not too usual. Why did you choose Vietnam and what was the biggest obstacle in planning a leading festival in this country?
 

Hello, and thanks for the invite 🙂 Yes, organization of Epizod3 is challenging and sometimes unpredictable, but also rewarding in the same time. We’re creating something completely different in the region, a format new by it’s length, music, concept. Lineup that we’re presenting consists of many artists that never played in Asia, or they do it rarely. Some of them are playing music that people from the region are not that familiar with. So we have a big task: not just to locally promote a new sound and concept, but also to educate and hopefully, broaden horizons of the crowd. Also, we invest a lot into local community, showcase many regional acts. Underground scene is emerging, so does Epizod3 🙂 We see this relationship as a two-way street, and it’s exciting to be a part of one growing organism.

Circumstances in the region sometimes can be unstable and uncertain, indeed. Rules and laws are not the same as in Europe, neither the treatment of the big music events. Phu Quoc is a perfect place though, as it’s big island, well geographically located, prices are much lower than in Europe and USA and, needless to say – it’s stunningly beautiful. It has international airport and all important infrastructure, hotels, transportation, exotic food and friendly locals 🙂 So far we’re happy to be having Phu Quoc as Epizode home.

Q2: The line-up of this year is astonishing. The festival will feature some legends such as Villalobos and Sonja Moonear, however I see some huge acts from different genres such as Goldie or Black Sun Empire. I think it’s great that you cover such a wide spectrum of quality dance music. What is the aim of your line-up choices and where does the inspiration come from?

 We are focused on the quality sound from different electronic genres, indeed. We do have house, techno, minimal, but also d’n’b and breaks, as an important part of the lineup. The idea is, simply, to gather top-notch artists from different music worlds, Dnb and break artists that we booked this year,  are the biggest legends of all times in their genre; they will set the beach on fire and we’re happy to welcome them.
 
Ricardo Villalobos
use, techno, minimal, but also d’n’b and breaks, as an important part of the lineup. The idea is, simply, to gather top-notch artists from different music worlds, Dnb and break artists that we booked this year,  are the biggest legends of all times in Q3: Art installations and daytime workshops on site are also a great part of the festival. What do you have in store this year for this aspect?
 

On the territory of Epizode, the construction of art installations and architectural structures is already in full swing, the infrastructure is getting more comfortable and intuitive. Artists and architects from different countries are taking part in this magic work. The festival literally turns into an incredibly magical place –  in our eyes, all the details are piecing all together, and it seems that Epizode is about to breathe, like a huge fairy-tale creature.

This year we are planning a diverse daytime program. In addition to sports activities, which include yoga, volleyball, SUP, frisbee, there will be creative workshops, body art, a movie theatre, colorful Holi battles, other fun activities and of course open decks for those who have always wanted to play at Epizode. We want people to come to the festival not only for night dances, but we also want them to discover and to be adventurous during the day. Epizode is a 24-hour fun 🙂

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Q4: Is the festival on site preparation and assembly something that happens just the weeks before, or progressively throughout the whole year?
 
On site preparation starts with a field visit in the summer time, and building of the new site and all production starts 2,3 months before the festival. We are in Phu Quoc for a while now, building our new house for this edition.
 
Q5: You will also perform at the festival with your solo project Tyoma. Why you decided to settle on it after performing and producing under different monikers? What can we expect from your set at the festival?
 
II have a theory that, the first record that’s played at the festival, needs to be the right one, as it will define the energy of the whole festival. That’s why I do the first soundcheck, and then the first sunset – opening set of the festival. I will play a few more sets, as for me as a general producer, it’s important to feel the crowd, to get familiar with the vibe, to know what’s going on on the other side. 

tyoma press 2

e a theory that, the first record that’s played at the festival, needs to be the right one, as it will define the energy of

Q6: Epizode is hosting some cool pre-festival parties all over Asia. India, China, Thailand, Singapore… How is electronic music perceived in Asia nowadays? Is there an underground music scene you would like to particularly recommend our readers to check out?
 
Underground scene in Asia is definitely emerging. Some countries are already developed and pinned on a world clubbing map, hosting various artists, underground as well as headliners. Big party brands and festivals are coming to Asia as well. Some other places though, are developing in a moderate pace, but getting there. There are more and more artists, clubs, promoters, and they are all contributing to the growth of the scene. All this is not just important, but also revolutionary, as Asia is known for it’s massive EDM scene, and 20k people events happening every week. That circumstances makes growth of underground scene more difficult, and certainly more valuable. That’s why, our job is not easy, but it’s simply rewarding to help bring and build a new music trends, focused purely on quality.
 
Q7: Could you share your own personal highlight from the last edition of Epizode?
 

ll afterparties last year were off the hook. Needless to say – the epic Ricardo’s morning set was the one for the books, as well as Luciano’s sunset set. Then, all Asian artists at Eggs stage, really showed what quality sound and good fun is. Also – I will never forget the moment when I walked in at the venue, heard many different languages and realized we created a truly international event. 

Q8: Can you summarise the vision behind Epizode for the readers? What makes it different than other festivals?

 
Apart from the fact that we are a long running and unique music and art spectacle in a paradise island in Vietnam –  we are also a parallel universe bringing cinematic experience, as the title Epizode says. We call our visitors – actors, superheroes, directors and the lineup is – soundtrack. Everyone can write their own scenario and enjoy in all frames of Epizode.
 
Thank you again for your time, we wish you all the best for this year’s edition.
 
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art from the fact that we are a long running and unique music and art spectacle in a parad
 
Epizode2ise island in Vietnam –  we are also a parallel universe bringing cinematic experience, as the title Epizode says. We call our visitors – actors, superheroes, directors and the lineup is – soundtrack. Everyone can write their own scenario and enjoy in all frames of Epizode.
 
Thank you again for your time, we wish you all the best for this year’s edition. 
GET YOUR TICKT NOW AND DONT MISS THIS INSANE WAY TO SEE IN THE NEW YEARS – CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS o f
 
 
Words by Giovanni Bodrato

I want to keep learning everyday – learning about people, about myself, about music. ‘ Oskar Szafraniec Mix & Interview

By Hot Off The Press, Interview & Exclusive Mix, Interviews, MEOKO Exclusive

oskar

It’s not everyday that you come across a DJ that has had an EP release to their name at the age of 13, but Oskar Szafraniec has done just that. Now 24, the Polish-born, classically-trained musician has 11 years of music production experience up his sleeve. Since then, he has been dedicated to the studio and the continual growth of his musical abilities releasing solo records with RAWAX, Cyclo and Closed Circuits.

In 2015, Oskar spent time in the studio with Ricardo Villalobos, and afterwards they produced separate tracks on a split record on RAWAX. Since then, Oskar has also collaborated and on several records and produced an album with Pier Bucci, as well as touring and working closely with a Guy Called Gerald.  Now living in Berlin, Oskar has been busy collecting records and working in the studio, perfecting his sound.  As can be deduced from listening to Oskar’s creations, he is very honest to his craft, and draws inspiration from a range of different musical genres, adding subtle yet unique elements into his distinctive minimal style.  In the near future, Oskar Szafraniec is teaming up with Perlon’s Wareika, and also Caruan to produce some exciting new with an Italian jazz ensemble – definitely some projects to keep your eyes and ears ready for. We sat down to take a chat with Oskar to find out more about his career and life. 

Click for Oskars Exclusve MEOKO Mix 

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1- Hey Oskar. Nice to speak with you! How are you doing? What are you up to right now?

I’m fine, thank you!  I am currently visiting my mom in Poland as unfortunately she has been fighting with cancer recently. She is in recovery right now though, which is such a relief. In these moments, it is very important to stay close to your family. My friends have helped me a lot, which I am extremely grateful for. I have my studio equipment here with me in Poland so I have been doing a little bit of work on upcoming projects where I can, and driving back to Berlin if I have any gigs on.  I’ll be playing at Watergate this Wednesday, supporting System of Survival and Alexandra – I am really looking forward to dance with all those creative people at such a great location.  I’m thinking I may play a bit more of an interesting set on Wednesday as my music selection will usually be a reflection of my personal life it – so let’s see where I’ll take it!  I always believe that the best release for your emotions is to tell your story through music.

2- Very sorry to hear about your Mother, Oskar. But we’re glad you’re still powering through and making music. So tell us, you’re only just turning 24 but you have 11 years of producing and DJing. How exactly did you get into electronic music at such a young age?

It’s quite difficult to really pin-point point a single thing. I was always very musical, but became very curious listening to different types of music on the internet and it just escalated form there. I started researching about electronic music, getting inspired and trying to understand what electronic music was truly all about – looking back, I was definitely a big music nerd – I still am, really!  I began to produce music, experiment with different instruments, sing, and eventually DJ… I got my first DJ gig when I was 14!

touring with A Guy Called Gerald 3

3- That’s pretty impressive! After all these years, do you have any rituals before going into music writing process?

I hope this doesn’t make me sound too OCD, but I have to admit I like to reorganise the studio room a bit before I start; put the cables and machines in the right place, clean up. A clean environment means a clear mind to me. Before I start recording I also like to finish all private things I have scheduled to do, I really need to feel free from distraction. 

4- We know that you’re pretty experienced with using serious studio equipment; I believe that Roland once asked you to test out some of their new kits! What is your favourite piece of studio equipment right now?

At the moment it’s Space Echo. I’m actually using it on nearly each track I work on right now! My favourites come in waves though. A while ago it was an old Electribe ER-1, and before that, the SH-101. I really love sampling though as well. Anything what helps me to write beautiful stories with sounds. 

5- Let’s talk a little about your inspirations then. What factors in your life influence your music the most?

It is usually the people I meet, situations, new instruments, and music I’ve never heard before. Recently it has been difficult for me to focus on new music and find inspiration as my mom has been sick but I have been trying to work with this as much as possible.

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6- I guess it can’t  always be all easy going in the studio sometimes and there are days where you struggle to find inspiration. How do you overcome writers block? 

I don’t like to push things. It’s not like I’m working everyday on music trying to get the best out of it. I need to feel it’s the right moment; be inspired, be free. I believe if you push yourself to write, then your art sounds pushed, not honest. If I’m not inspired, I find other ways to spend my time. It is important to take breaks and come back with a fresh mind!

7- What have you got in the pipeline at the moment – can you tell us more about your upcoming projects?

There’s actually a lot of projects I have been working on lately! I have an upcoming release for Barac’s Moment Records, which I am currently tweaking some details on. I have also recently teamed up with Wareika for a new project, and I’m working on a track with the Swedish singer, Sailor & I. I have been collaborating with Otake Record’s owner, Piotr Bejnar, Round Up’s Bruno Curtis, and also the young artist, Assal (who I worked on the Meoko free release with).  

There are several solo projects, too –  records coming up on labels like Skylax, and some very high secret ones that I can’t mention yet (Ooooh!). I’m very fortunate to be working with such an inspiring, talented people with strong character. To be honest, I work only with people I personally like;  people I can talk to about everything, whether it’s spirituality, family issues or art, people who has slightly different view on things and can’t be put in any frame. Oh! I am also travelling to Italy soon to work on a very, very special project with my dear friend Caruan and an Italian jazz ensemble. There’ll be no limits! We’re mashing up the styles: lots of instruments, bass guitars, piano, singing… I can’t wait!

producing with ron trent 2

8- Sounds like you’re going to be incredibly bust for the foreseeable future then! What are your goals for the next few years?

Constantly make music, be a better person.  I want to keep learning everyday –  learning about people, about myself, about music. 

9- Alright, a (not) very serious last question now, haha! If it was the end of the world and you had to throw the last party, where would it be, and who would play?

I would have to go with a beautiful private Island in Africa with a line up full of young passionate musicians who haven’t had the chance to get heard yet, and crowd of true music lovers!

If you want to catch Oskar playing, he will next be playing at Watergate’s Mittwoch night on the 21st November, supporting System of Survival and Alexandra. Also keep your eyes out for his releases dropping very soon!

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Words by Mikhaela Gray