Interviews

Industry Insider - Tips for Approaching Labels (Pt1)

industryp1.jpg

 

In this series, we will be taking you behind the scenes in areas right across the industry.

This month we will be offering some insight into the beautiful minds of label owners to discover what they’re looking for when picking music for their imprints.

You’ve done the hard work, you’ve spent years perfecting your sound and you’ve finally got some ammo to show the world. But where do you start and what’s good practice when approaching labels

 

Burnski / Instinct  - Constant Sound / Aesthetic / Instinct

 burnski

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

It all just boils down to the music for me. I just listen for anything that really grabs my ear.

  • It's a competitive industry. How do you think artists can stand out?

Don’t treat it like a competition. I would focus on improving your craft and making your music as good as possible over trying to stand out. Compare your progress to your own, you’ll see it coming on each year and that should give you all the motivation you need.

One way to stand out is to trickle into the gaps of what’s out there at the moment. Usually, people start out emulating what’s hot at the moment. You play that game for a bit but then if you start going the other way to that, dig deeper into the archives of music out there, you probably start making stuff that isn’t the flavour of the month at the moment.

I feel you're more likely to stand out doing that as you're going off on your own away from the crowd. You might then find yourself doing something other people aren’t and people start playing that and all of a sudden you might be at the forefront of it.

I wouldn’t consciously try and do that to stand out though, do it just people you dig the music. You won’t suck all the magic out of it then and get caught in the game of making music to get somewhere.

 

 

 

  • A&R is a really refined process. How do you work with artists to get their best work from them?

I once asked a pretty known guy for a demo. He sent me 4 tracks and it wasn’t right for the label. I let him know politely and he kicked right off and blocked me. It really took me back and I thought about it a lot after. I didn’t think any less of him but I found it quite fascinating. There’s no point signing music that doesn’t really resonate with you.

On the opposite, I have worked with other guys and finalised an EP after back and forth for 6 months because they go away and want to get their head down and really crack it. Sometimes it takes a while to get the ep over the line. It’s got to feel right and you know when it does.

I don’t want to tell anyone how they should do things but you have a choice which mentality you want to have. Just ask yourself, does it serve you well? Will it get me the best results? Will this make me get better at my craft?

Constant Sound on Soundcloud

 

 

Cinthie - WE_R HOUSE 

cinthie

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

Soundwise I’m mostly looking for house music but it can be disco house, 90ies house, deep house, UKG, some raw stuff. But when I’m signing music, it has to work on the dance floor and I’m always telling people to get out of their comfort zone and don’t just send me the generic house track I've already heard 5 million times.

But the tracks can be the best in the world if the artist is an asshole, I don’t sign it. The vibe between us also needs to be right. Also, I love to have fresh artists first and don’t really like to release people who already had 20 releases in 4 months, it's nothing special then for me.

 

 

  • How do you like to be approached when someone submits a demo to you?

I like a friendly little mail with a private Soundcloud link with up to 6 tracks. If I want more, I will ask for more. But more than 5,6 tracks is too much in my humble opinion. Add a few facts about you, maybe name, where you are coming from and if you had any previous releases. That’s how I like it.

What I don’t recommend is to send out mass emails, send me a mail with “hello Frank etc etc “ (that’s not my name ), also I don’t really like to see 2000 plays already for the tracks on Soundcloud.

 

  • Any tips for artists when trying to get signed?

Always be friendly and send your best tracks and try to keep them a bit diverse. There seems to be a formula at the moment, that always works but it will get boring after a while, so please always get out of your comfort zone and try not to sound like everyone else. Do a bit of research about the label. Sending a banging Techno EP to a nice house label does not look very professional.

 

  • A&R is a really refined process. How do you work with artists to get their best work from them?

I usually always test tracks on the dancefloor, then I know if I wanna sight it or not. I also believe that after 24 years in the business I have some kind of experience of what works and what I want. 

So far every artist I signed has only released with me once. I just wanted to support as many friends as possible but I will start now to also have a second release by some artist, just to help them grow and maybe tie them a bit more to me. But I have to see, especially for the more unknown artists, releasing with me is sometimes a good door opener. And as I said in the question above, I don’t really like an artist that does labels - hopping. Because then it's not so special for me anymore and I rather release someone else.

We_R House on Soundcloud

 

 

Yaya - Tamango Records

yay2.jpg

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

I immediately know if a track can fit for Tamango or not. I've listened to so many records in my life that I kinda recognise in a few seconds if a track fits with the style of the label, both regarding the overall sound used and the mixdown part. I do basically the same thing that I do when I go digging in the record shop: picking 3 diff parts of the tracks and listen to them for a few seconds. If I like the track I listen to it more carefully to know exactly if it can be signed on the label. The main element that I'm the most interested in is the groove.

 

 

 

  • Any tips for artists when trying to get signed?

First of all, I really like it when they send their email to the correct one hahaha! (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). I also like some little introduction about them and about their previous releases. Please do not send me music through Facebook/Instagram. Also, make sure that it's a specific email and not forwarded to 100 contacts.

 

Make you sure that your music features a lot of groove, a good dose of energy and an infectious bassline. I'm a real house music lover in all the diff facets so on the label, despite the inevitable direction that I'm trying to do, I'm open to diff sounds and approaches.

 

 

  • It's a competitive industry. How do you think artists can stand out?

Nowadays, an artist needs first to do excellent music. There are a lot of you talents around and the competition is stiff. He should try to create a kind of cool-character, image and needs to work out on the social stuff. This doesn't mean to take tons photos in the studio or doing too much content but simply give a kind, nice and cool image out with some sick videos, memes or anything music and not music-related.

Tamango Records on Soundcloud

 

 

DJ W!LD - Dailycid Music

 djwild.png

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

Good music that fits with the line of one of my labels, nothing more. If it’s for an EP, I am trying to look for a few tracks with a different flavour but fits together in some way. If it is an album, something more personal with a few dancefloor bombs. I also look for artists where I see the good potential and who can fit with the spirit of my labels to make them grow with labels and create a solid crew around it.

 

  • How do you like artists to approach you when submitting demos? 

The best is by email but at the end, I receive them everywhere, Facebook, Instagram Messenger, WhatsApp ….The easiest is maybe with Soundcloud private link.

 

 

 

  • Any tips for artists when trying to get signed?

- Try to send the right amount of tracks (I did the mistake a few times to send too much then is really difficult to focus well on each one) 

- Don’t be pushy (at the end the people who want to sign you will get back to you)

- Try to make sure the people you send the tracks received them

- Try to send tracks which fit with the line of the label (otherwise labels will refuse the tracks and have the wrong image of your sound)

- Even if the label says no and gives you some tips. Use them and come back later with more tracks.

 

  • A&R is a really refined process. How do you work with artists to get their best work from them?

Most of the time I choose artists and tracks that fit already perfectly to my label, but also when needed I explain what I think could be done to fit better on my label. Using my experience in production and working the dancefloor for many years to give the tips and advice I can, to help the artist grow when I see this ability in them.

Dailycid on Soundcloud

 

 

SY - EWax 

ewax.jpg

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

As a label, we look for individuality and fresh creativity to the way music is made. For me, this is the key in finding new artists to work with.

 

 

 

  • How do you like artists to approach you when submitting demos?

Keep it simple and tell me about yourself. Add that personal touch. Which artists influenced you and your sound? Add an overview of the music you're presenting so we have an idea if it"s fitting to the label.

  • Any tips for artists when trying to get signed?

The main tip I always give is: Be yourself! Express yourself the way you want to be heard. Keep it friendly, courteous & confident. This definitely goes a long way when approaching labels & A&R's.

 

  • It's a competitive industry. How do you think artists can stand out?

It is a very competitive industry, yes. There are many artists coming through right now & the standards are incredibly high - the highest I've seen since I made music a full time career some 10 years ago, so I would say first and foremost: Let your sound stand out. If it's good enough that will do the talking for you. Secondly, in these times social media presence is everything, so ensure you're using the social platforms effectively to present and project yourself and your music.

 

 

EWax on Soundcloud

 

 

Dudley Strangeways - Leftback 

strange.jpg

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

The main thing for Leftback is that the music is good and fits with the labels sound but also the artists is someone we want to work with for a long time, this is usually down to if we think the person has something unique sounding to their productions. Most of the artists, but not all have a relationship with the label already mainly through being involved in events or through partying over the years.

 

  • Any tips for artists when trying to get signed?

 Read the labels demo submission guidelines as it can differ for each label. Do some research on the label, hopefully, it’s a label you’re into and you already have some of their releases so it can’t hurt to mention a track you’ve been playing or listening to. It can show the label you’re interested in them and you’ve not sent another CC all email. If you create a playlist it can’t harm to create a specific playlist per label with their logo so it’s a little more personal as it may grab their attention, it just leads to shitloads of playlists!

 

 

 

  • A&R is a really refined process. How do you work with artists to get their best work from them?

It’s good to have a selection of tracks to choose from to make an EP up. It's always hard when you get sent a few bangers and nothing else that fits, not a massive fan having a load of remixes done on one track for a release. This is especially the case for wax as the DJ playing the record is mainly going to play one track from the release and sometimes space can be tight in a record bag.

Those are the records I will leave rather than a 12” that’s got 4 really wicked tracks on, but maybe that’s just me. Sometimes we may ask the artists to change something in the track but this is generally “a would you mind trying this and see if it sounds better”, but the artists will always have the final say if we didn’t like the track there would be no point in sighing it in the first place! We do mix the tracks on occasion if we feel that the music is exciting, but the mix is not 100% up to scratch and the tracks are all mastered in house giving us creative control over those elements, but again with the artist having the final say. Ideally, anything that needs doing to ensure that the release sounds and works as good as possible for what we’re putting out.

 

  • Do you offer feedback to demos submitted?

Not all the time, but if the person who’s submitted the demo has taken the time to send a detailed and personal email with the music something close to what we release I will always try and give feedback. I think this is important as it’s not an easy thing sending demos to labels and can be a fairly daunting process. You’ve put something you’ve created out into the world and don’t get anything back. It can really mess up some people’s confidence, and this is the sole reason Leftback was started as none of the larger labels would respond to demos sent from myself and Michael.

Leftback on Soundcloud

 

 

TC80 - Sequalog 

 tc80_copy_copy_copy_copy.jpg

 

  • What do you look for when signing artists?

Usually, it’s music from friends or people I meet. But I’m interested in artists who have their own signature, even if it sounds classic. I don’t really care about the trend, I prefer timeless music.

 

  • Any tips for artists when trying to get signed?

I would say don’t focus on the trends but develop your own musical identity. With time and practice, the quality will rise and it will sound outstanding compared to the mass. Even if it’s very special, better to stay true to the sound you like and resonate with. It’s also cool to receive tracks with playful arrangements, which captivate the audience, telling a story and keeping the intensity climax around the end, before the outro.

 

 

 

  • It's a competitive industry. How do you think artists can stand out?

I think it can be cool to work on some decent marketing to accompany a release’s artists. Nice artwork, story, music video, etc… But regarding the creative music process, I would recommend to not think about the result. More important to focus on the practice and natural expression, being present, crafting the skills step by step and being bold to sound different. With time all of this leads to quality. Then it’s about getting in touch with people/DJ/label owners resonating with artist’s music. If you can try your tracks in a real club situation, it can be helpful to identify things you might want to tweak or change.

 

  • Anything else you'd like to add?

Being aware of what you feel and going with the flow. Sometimes it can be chill downtempo, sometimes punchy club orientated, most important is to stay true.

To produce club tracks, I would recommend taking the time to listen to other types of music than exclusively dance music or trends.

For example listening to your favourite music from your childhood, adolescence, world-traditional music, etc… If you are deeply resonating with those different sounds/inspirations, it can naturally constitute the sonic palette that you can use to produce outstanding dance music. Ultimately practising to be in a creative state let things happen by themselves, witnessing presence and life itself. In this state, it’s not the self/ego trying to exist through expression anymore but pure flow.

SEQUALOG Soundcloud 

 

 

  

 

 

Words by Jordan Diston & Francesco Quieti

Number of Comments:

Between rolling beats and healthy food: Chad Andrew (mix included)

With a DJ career divided between Berlin, Ibiza and his hometown Orlando, Chad Andrew has rapidly worked his way into the house and techno European panorama. In fact, he's been a tINI protege since the first years of the last decade, later becoming also a fundamental element for Hector's Vatos Locos crew. His gloomy, dub and cavernous sound has gradually evolved into something faster and more rolling while still maintaining a sense of depth, leading him to release his music on Personality Disorder Music, VL Recordings, Druzhba, & as well as his own vinyl labels Retrospect & coast2coast.

 

chad.jpg

 

  • You come from Orlando, FL. How did you get in touch with electronic music and when/why have you decided to move to Europe?

In the 90s most cities had the usual trance/house music scenes but what made Florida special was it’s very unique homegrown breakbeat sound. I was too young to get in the clubs back then but I was always tuned into the radio stations listening to all these electronic styles early on. After djing for a few years in Orlando locally, I made the decision to move to Ibiza in 2011 with Randall M, selling a majority of my belongings to finance the trip. After a few more summers on the island, I visited Berlin and fell in love. Decided that’s where I can be closest to the music.

 

 

 

  • How's the "underground" situation over there? Any cool parties or DJs that you'd like to introduce to us? 

The underground situation is getting better. There are more and more people throwing great parties bringing artists from all around the world. A few of those include Default, Eastern Bloc, & Rude Neighbors. There is without a doubt some amazing talent coming out of Orlando as well, Exander is one of them. South Florida also has some super talented guys making waves including Amo and Imbue.

 

  • Tell us more about your relationship with the Vatos Locos crew.

Well, I really love the Vatos Locos concept. We are just a group of friends that get together, goof off, and have fun playing music. It all basically started at a spontaneous party in Miami during WMC in 2014 and then really took off and began developing after our first VL BPM party in Playa Del Carmen back in 2015.

 

22382223_1499800466721848_7676408441882599144_o.jpg

 

  • I'm sure you've worked on so many tracks during this COVID time. Any anticipation of what's coming next?

The one good thing about this situation is having all the time at home during quarantine/lockdowns. When you’re constantly touring and on the road, there isn’t much time to sharpen the tools and learn new techniques let alone work on music without feeling rushed. Quarantine gave me time to really catch up on all of this. I’ve got an upcoming EP due out on EWax White and another on Dialogue coming soon.

 

 

 

  • Any interest aside from music production? Have you had the chance to dedicate yourself to something else during this period?

Anyone that knows me knows that when I’m not working with music I’m getting down in the kitchen.  I’m really passionate about finding creative ways to enjoy healthy eating. With all my extra time recently I’ve been able to hone in on that craft, create culinary experiences, and share it with friends and family.

 

  • Favourite healthy and junk food?

Well, my favourite healthy food is miso soba soup which I make regularly full of fresh-squeezed ginger. Favourite junk food will always be pizza.

 

  • One of your last videos on Instagram shows you on top of a dangerous old building! I guess you're not afraid of heights. Are you afraid of anything in particular?

That was my first Urbexing experience! So much of a rush exploring old abandoned buildings. Definitely can be dangerous but you have to pay attention and assess every structure before you enter it. The dangerous buildings are no problem, but spiders are a deal-breaker for me.

 

  • You're behind both the rɘtrospect and the coast2coast projects. What was the idea behind these labels and how did they come about?

Behind both labels, it’s actually me and Robin Virag (Just_Me).  Regarding Retrospect, we never had a plan to make an edit label like that but it kind of organically happened. We were working on an original track that reminded us of a popular 80s song and then decided to take it that direction. We both share an obsession for the 80s era and Retrospect was a great outlet to express that. With coast2coast we wanted to follow the same concept as Retrospect but the theme is 90s hip hop because this is also something we both really love.

 

 

 

logochad.jpg

 

  • Despite being the worst year we can remember so far, what's one the best track you've heard so far?

The best track from this year I have heard so far would have to be “Wax On Wax Off - Rural Red”

 

 

 

  • Any producer to look out for in the near future?

In addition to the aforementioned Amo and Imbue, I recommend you to check out my buddy Lulla! Also, I've really been loving everything coming out from Dutch talent Den Haas, very fresh sound!

 

 

Words by Francesco Quieti

Number of Comments:

Talking with Mathimidori (aka Mathias Kaden) ahead of "Akebono", his next LP on Echocord

We caught up with Mathias Kaden aka Mathimidori ahead of his next LP on Echocord to find out more about the project, his inspirations around the album and much more...

 

  • Hi Mathias, how are you today?

Yeah, great thanks!

 

  • Mathimidori is such a unique name. How did you come up with this?

 

You know for the past 25 years I was normally touring as Mathias Kaden. I had a time when I was playing a lot in Japan, back in 2007 and all my Japanese my friends call me Mathi. It's very easy for them to say. There was a girl in the crew who called me ‘Midori' which is a woman's name. I was like, I like the name Midori, which actually means Green in Japanese.

The area I live here in Germany is called the Green Heart of Germany, and my eyes are green. So, I said, why not Mathtimdori and the name has stuck there ever since. So the first track I released under this name was 2009 for my first Mathias Kaden album. It's always hard to think of track names or artist names for a new project, but this fits so well with the rest of the concept.

 

cover_copy.jpg

 

  • This is certainly a new concept and sound for you compared to your previous work. What inspired you to go down this route?

Around 2008 my Japanese friends invited me to a festival in the Kawaba Mountains. It's like three hours from Tokyo to a festival called Labyrinth. At that time I was playing like more than minimal Berlin techno. We had a label called Vakant in Berlin. So I released a lot of stuff there and the Japanese people liked it. But at this festival there we're all the Dub heroes like Echochord and Pete from Hardwax. So they all played Dub the whole day and I was like, oh shit, I have to start soon to play but what shall I go for, this really got me into dub music. That weekend was like four days and after that weekend, I started to produce more this style. 

 

 

 

  • You’re working with some incredible artists which are all very different in their own right throughout the LP. How did you come to collaborate with them?

 

I always try to work with Japanese artists. So one of the first people I worked with is DJ PI-GE. He's a WOMB resident from Tokyo. With the girlfriend of DJ Pika, she called Shoco I made with her two or three pieces on Mule Music in Japan.

Yeah, I met them through some parties, but also contacts I have. There's a girl on it on my album called Tomomi Ukumori. It's the 3rd track on the LP and we got introduced through a friend In Tokyo, she's normally a pop singer, she sings like pop songs in English. So then I asked her if she can sing Japanese, but to speak and she liked ‘what I have to speak?’. I said yes, don't sing but I would like you to speak all Japanese poems… It worked perfectly as many people would not have heard these before and we did a wonderful track together.

 

 

 

  • Do you find it easy to be inspired when creating music and what kit did you use to produce the LP?

Yeah for me I am still new to producing this sort of music so I have a lot of ideas and a lot of inspirations. For some producers who have been doing this for like 20 years, they might be like, Okay what should I do?  I want to keep producing this type of music in the future compared to my Mathias Kaden things as well.

In the studio, I have the new TR-8S from Roland. I started to use my old 808 but then I used the new one and to create the beats and harmonic, hi-hats. And then I have my old Space Echo here in the back which I use for all the dynamics and the dub chords.

 

mat1_copy.jpg

  • Can we expect to be able to see Mathimidori on dancefloors when the time is right?

Yes, I really want to do this. I already have a release party planned for a couple of dates in my hometown which will be in a Planetarium. It will have 360-degree visuals with all the dub chords and we also hope to bring the singers over from Japan to Germany to perform live as well. This will create a really immersive experience to chill and listen to music. I have also got plans to do some things over in Japan and Canada as well. 

 

 

 

  • The world is a bit strange at the moment. How have you been spending your time in lockdown

I’ve spent time in the studio, with the Mathimidori project it was perfect to come down to chill. I am also working on an album for Mathias Kaden for REKIDS. For all my dancefloor for music, it's really hard to be inspired... I come here often but I do a lot of other stuff in my studio but no music. So I've spent time with my family, and I have a house and a garden, which I've enjoyed more because normally I was travelling a lot.

The last money I earned was on the 28 of February. Yeah. So even if I now have the chance to see my friends and I am spending more time with my family, if you get completely bankrupt when you have no money then you also can't enjoy your life. It means I can't be relaxed and I'm looking for a job because I have some savings, but I want to still keep my savings for the future. 

 

 

Words by Jordan Diston

 

Number of Comments:

From New York to Berlin: quick Q&A with Öona Dahl ahead of her Watergate Records EP

  • Hi Öona! Glad to see this release! Tell us more about the EP.

"Godtripper" EP is a cosmic trip through inner space. Using sounds and frequencies to induce visions to the listener that can guide them to an altered state of consciousness while still fluent for the dance floor. 

 

 

 

  • What about your project Slumber? What led you to find a new name instead of just running as Öona Dahl & Amber Cox?

Slumber is a name we gave ourselves when we first started working on music together in 2009. This pre-dates both our individual productions. Slumber embodies its own aesthetic and world separate from our own. 

 

95215768_1478280762334014_7268680197937823744_o_copy.jpg

 

  • Which artists would you like to collaborate with and how the collab with Dance Spirit was born?

I'm working on a few collaborations right now especially with vocalists that I love. The project is secret though and I am unable to say whom. Dance Spirit organically came to be since I see Chris and Reagan in the LA scene often when I visit.  They invited me over to their studio one day before one of my shows. We started working on music and we flowed together naturally. Besides my Slumber project and a couple of others, at the time, I was rarely collaborating. Opening up to collaborations has been a beneficial experience for learning new techniques.

 

  • The role/position of female DJs in the house and techno panorama is always a spicy argument. What do you think of the overall situation at the moment? I've heard about labels doing "female only" compilations. Do you think this is a good initiative or maybe this could work in the opposite direction?

Overall I think everyone should stop putting "female" before DJ or "female only". We must never stop our efforts towards diversity and equality. No matter how much things may improve we have to keep the momentum going.

 

  • I love to ask about "ones to watch" for the future (DJs, producers or both). In this case, following the previous Q, I'd like to change into "women to watch". Name us your top 3 colleagues that are going to smash in the next years.

Aurora Halal

Haai

Amber Cox

 

67792889_1135894406602925_7164711598186037248_o.jpg

  • What should we expect for the end of this quite weird year? Any upcoming release on the pipeline?

This year has really allowed me to do a reset and to catch up on my work. There's a lot on the horizon including remixes from my 2017 "Holograma" album, my sophomore album, and ambient works release and a Slumber release or two. 

 

 

 

Words by Francesco Quieti

Number of Comments:

Meoko pres. the Boris 'WipWap' Werner Show (part 2/4)

The 'WipWap' show is back! After a successful first episode that literally got millions of people glued to the television, we're back with our second episode. As usual, with your host straight from the Dam mister Boris Werner.

 

WipWap show means 5.30 hours of the finest house and techno from the good (old) days as Boris has shared with us an unreleased long marathon recorded at Studio 80 in the XXX city. Click here to relive the first episode if you've missed it. Alongside with the mix, we've prepared some question for the man... let's get into it!

 

BorisWerner.png

 

  • What happened to you? You look pretty good with that hat!

I don't know man... It seems like I had a fusion with Ren from The Ren & Stimpy Show. Another lovely show! I really enjoyed this cartoon. It's from the 90s and featured many tripping scenes. So I'm kinda ok with the fusion ah!

 

 

 

  • Besides this weird fusion, how are you? How’s your life changed during this recent extended-lockdown period? Are there things you (re)discovered?

I'm doing ok now. Always busy with the music in any aspect. The first month in lockdown was so surreal to me, luckily I was still able to go to the studio and make music, otherwise I would've gone craaazzyy! Since the dancefloor wasn't going to be around for a while I focused on more dubby music, some breakbeat stuff and more trip-hop vibes. I did this already in the past but that's what I rediscovered musically. Regarding the everyday life I, like many other people, discovered we take so many things for granted in life, having said that I really hope something positive comes out of all this mess.

 

  • Many have spoken about this “corona-situation” as the perfect chance to re-invent the clubbing scene? Do you believe it? What are your thoughts for this second part of 2020 and for the next year?

Personally I think this reset isn't that bad for our scene. The cards will be reshuffled, and all the posers and people who are just in there for the money will hopefully stay away. The big festivals are forbidden in the Netherlands and we are still not sure if they can take place next summer, so it will all start being more local like back in the days. It's So good to see that there are some places all over the world that slowly but steady are able to do small gathering and parties again, working with the local DJ's and just try to see how far they can go without getting in trouble with the local authorities. I just really hope that the governments in any country will value our culture, as it is so much more important than they realise.

 

  • Have you had the chance to play since then? If so, what's the first track you've played?

I already went to some small private parties, hush hush :) I think it was "Everybody Loves the Sunshine" from Roy Ayers. 

 

 

  • Moving from the DJ into the producer side, two sides closer and closer now, do you there's something missing in today’s tracks?

A lot of music to me sounds like people following trends too much, everything sounds the same which makes it very boring for me. This mainly happens because nowadays it's so easy to make music, taking some loops here and there et voila. Not saying its wrong to do so but it just lacks creativity. But luckily there are still producers that just do what they want to do without thinking they need to sound like this or that.

 

    • Like?

Among all the good names I have in my mind, I'd go with Ion Ludwig, Arno and Ricardo. I'd love to have them on my label in the future!

 

Wipwap-79.jpg

 

That's it for today! We will go deep about Boris' label and many other themes in the next episode... Stay tuned!

 

 

Words by Francesco Quieti

Number of Comments:

Meoko pres. the Boris 'WipWap' Werner Show (part 1/4)

You're slowly descending the already slippery steps, making your way between a little smoke and the poor lighting of the club. Little by little you begin to hear some distant jazzy notes and you already feel at home. Once arrived in front of the stage, you sit on a rather comfortable stool. The 'WipWap' show is about to start.

 

We continue our Meoko presents Series with a very special performance from none other than Boris Werner, presenting his infamous 'WipWap' show. This is the 1st of 4 parts recorded from a 22-hour marathon set recorded at Studio 80 in Amsterdam from way back when in 2014. 

 

It sets like these that define a DJ’s ability to control the room, taking us on a journey, connecting with the crowd from start to finish. Part 1 kicks things off; teasing us with sounds you might not normally hear on the dancefloor including Jazz, Funk & Soul and Hip Hop. Unusual beats that slowly give way to slow, dub and deep vibes. A master class from start to finish. Boris Werner at his best. 

 

Alongside the mix, you will find some questions we had the opportunity to ask him in between the show. Enjoy X

 

looney tunes meoko

 

  • Tell us about that period... 2014. It isn't too far from our time but I guess you can still tell us many differences.

Back then you still would have the Studio 80 and Trouw, those two clubs played a major role in my career as I was resident at both clubs. But if I'm honest I would say the biggest difference is social media, in 2014 Facebook and IG were already there but didn't play a big role in the music scene compared to as it does now.

 

 

 

  • Are there any videos of the party? Do you miss the old days with almost no phones on the dancefloor?

I do miss the old party days without phones, I think people now are more looking at their phones to see what people are doing with their lives instead of enjoying their own. Just embrace the fucking moment already!

 

nl-0315-555572-282381-front.jpg

 

  • What kind of vibes atmospheres did that club transmit?

Studio 80 was mostly a platform for upcoming Dj talent and that combined with more known DJ's made it a really cool club. It's one of those places whereas the lights would go on and the place was empty you would be like: what’s so special about this place? But the moment when the crowd and DJ would come together it all made sense: a black box where you could lose yourself in, at least I did many many times :)

 

  • Were you supposed to play for 24 hours or did it happen spontaneously?

It was a yearly thing, the first time it was 10 hours, the 2nd 12 hours, the 3rd 15,5 I think and the plan was to go over the 20 hours. I didn't want to stop when Tessa, the manager at the time was told to do so. She was like to save something for next year, but unfortunately, we did not have the opportunity to replicate the show

 

Wipwap-94

 

  • The show is about to start and we don't want to take up any more of your time. Just tell us more about what's going on in these first 5.5 hours. What kind of music should we expect? 

I knew it was going to be a long ride so I wanted to start the first hour or so with some music that I also listen to at home. So you can expect some jazzy/electronic chill vibes. After that more dubby sounds emerged and the dancefloor slowly came alive...

Karotte once told me “if you gonna play marathon sets wait as long as possible before you start drinking alcohol”. In this case, it was 4 hours in the mix that I actually had the first one, and in retrospect, these have been the most difficult 4 hours of the whole set, haha...

 

Thanks for your time, sir! Stay with us, the Boris 'WipWap' Werner show will be back next week... 

 

 

 

Words by Francesco Quieti & Jordan Diston / Interview by Francesco Quieti 

 

Number of Comments:

Wlad: "hedZup Records is all in one, label and family..."

For today's talk, we've invited Wlad, 1/2 of the HedZup record label alongside his partner in crime Mancini. The Frenchies have built a solid label/family over the last years, affirming themselves as chiefs of one of the most respected labels in the deep and tech-house scene. In fact, HedZup has seen steady growth, releasing quality tracks from the likes of Fabe, Rich NxT, Toman, Chris Stussy, Tuccillo, Diego Krause, Josh Baker, Ray Mono and many more. 

 

  • Hey Wlad, great to chat with you!

Hi guys, thanks for having me. 

 

  • What would you say you have learnt about yourself during the lockdown?

I think it made me re-focus on myself. I had a lot more time to take care of myself, cook and call my family, my friends, even over long distances. In fact, I did not at all feel locked up as a bad thing. I am a great traveller, I have done 2 world tours and I really have this notion of letting go. I live in Paris which is a megalopolis and it’s easy to get into the rhythm of being frantic and not stopping for time for oneself. We must constantly run and outdo ourselves. So this period really allowed me to find what I have on a trip and especially to concentrate on music production and the label.

 

  • What has been the thing you have missed the most?

Of course, even if I didn’t really suffer from this confinement, being able to play music especially at parties outdoors was really strange. We have so many great terrasse in Paris to play. It was very nice and warm in Paris during the confinement. We also had several international label showcases postponed and especially the big come back of our famous HEDZUP party in Paris with Rossi, and DJOKO cancelled on March 14, day of official French lockdown :(

 

 

 

  • In your opinion, will dance music be very different or will it get back to normal after this?

Of course, it will return to normal. The music and the strength of people are stronger than anything. It is obvious that it will take time and that we will have to adapt. Personally I think it is a good thing because it allows you to surpass yourself. Always find new ideas. We must not wait, we must always innovate, it will make us even better.

 

  • Tell us about your hedZup label you run with Mancini - what is the sound, the vibe?

Originally, Mancini and I only made vinyl. Then we started to get known and get lots of great demos, we didn't have enough space on a disc to put all the music we wanted to release. So we decided to start digital in September 2018. We are still keeping the format of our vinyl releases, 4 pieces per digital release. It’s quite difficult to give a real style to our label. Mancini and I release the music we like, and even if we have our own style of productions, we are in perfect harmony with the musical choices. 

 

 

 

  • Do you want to build a label family and bring them all through with more releases or is it just about the music at the moment?

hedZup Records is all in one, label and family. Mancini and I went out a lot in clubs and other parties around the world. Every year in Ibiza, Sonar Barcelona, ADE Amsterdam. We build our network like that. We have lots of friends everywhere. We only look for friendships. So all the artists that release on hedZup become part of the family. If they become part of hedZup, it means that they still release on the label if the music is good and also play on the label showcases.

 

HDZDGT17_carré3000px.jpg

 

  • About your own new ‘Full Squad’ EP - what inspired or influenced it?

I want to tell you something, it is the very first time that I release a full EP on my label, so I’m quite happy! I was a breakdancer when I was younger and I come from a Blues, Jazz, Funk and Flamenco musician family. I play African percussions myself. So I always have a pretty funky and dancing touch in my tracks. I added a touch of sunshine too because it comes out at the start of summer. It must be my Mediterranean origins ;)

 

 

 

  • Is your music made for a certain club, moment, party? Are those things in mind when writing?

Definitely, I really love music make me dance, so I try and try always until I feel this dancing feeling. Because in this music when you producing one little element can change all the feeling of the track. So probably make more peak time music but this is not me has to say

 

wlad.jpg

 

  • How did you choose the remixer Rich NxT? What did you think he would bring, and did he?

I chose Rich NxT because I am a big fan of his music and of the Fuse London label. Rich has a good approach in his music and whatever the track is, it's always a treat on the dancefloor. He already had great success on our vinyl part with his track "Come Alive", so it is just a pleasure to have him again on the label. He is a very talented and busy guy and I really thank him to considerate to remix me on this EP. Big up mate x

 

 

  • What else have you got coming up?

I have a remix on Surge that we will release this summer and have my EP with Mancini with a remix by iO Mulen and our Parisian friend Djebali. We are working on the 5 year anniversary double vinyl with some amazing artists and my digital collab album. So many good stuff is coming this year on the label with some good surprises. Stay tuned, Wlad :)

 

 

 

Words by Pete Downes

Number of Comments: