Interview with producer Gery Otis

We sat down with Gery Otis, the mysterious producer responsible for countless Drumcode promos and tracks like ‘Red Moon’ and his remix of ‘Vertical Smile.’ More recently, his track ‘Jazing’ will be featured on Part 2 of Volume 2 of the Drumcode A-Sides compilation, out June 23.

Many of our readers think you’re a pretty mysterious producer, so they will be excited to get to know you a little bit better. When did you start producing and what does an average day in the studio look like?

I started making music during the “analog era”, using exclusively a 909, a sampler and a 16 channels mixer including multi efx. Only in recent years I felt the need of showing my works to public, once considered my sound enough mature for mass listening. Still today my products are mainly analog made, but they couldn’t be the same without the right digital compromise. That’s what my studio sessions are focused on, as well as the constant research of an always original personal style, which reflects my individual emotions and not the machine’s.

We like to keep things a little light with our interviews. What’s your favorite meal to eat while producing?

There’s nothing in particular I usually eat while I’m at work. Rather, it’s not rare I neither have lunch nor dinner for remaining at controls

Tell us a little bit about your favorite recent set. Why was it so good and how did you prepare for it?

When I generally perform, I don’t use to define a track list, I usually bring with me all I need for adapting to the event, mostly my personal productions or unreleased of many genres. About my last sets, I spotted several positive feedbacks for my current musical style. People is your ultimate test, you can listen to a track which sounds pretty good in the studio but then it couldn’t work in the club, you know, is only there where you can find answers to your questions.

We are all pretty excited that your awesome track ‘Jazing’ will be featured on the Drumcode A-sides Vol. 2 compilation. Can you tell us about that track? How did it come to be and how long has it been in the works?

I can’t never get enough saying that taking part in this collection is for me as a official entry in a piece of modern history. All of us know Drumcode has been leader and inspirational label since the beginning of techno music. So, you can image how proud I am and what kind of satisfaction I’m feeling right now. The particularity of my track “Jazing” is its dynamic atmosphere. It’s the result of a long studio session and frequent adjustments. I’m honoured it has been considered at this rank.

Speaking of Drumcode releases, any word on when Sebair, BAHO, Some Contortion, or Constant Line will be released? Which of these is your favorite?

I’m really proud of “Some Contortions” , Adam started his set at Time Warp 2014 with it, but I’m now focused on current release, I would love to check Jazing feedbacks first, from public and DJs, trying to make only better the way to follow.

What’s in store for the rest of 2014?

Can’t say exactly,for now i still have somethings to define..Just keep on following next releases…

We always close our interviews with the following question. What tracks are you really excited about at the moment?

I’m literally going crazy for “Open up” by Adam Beyer, it’s essential and damn groovy, definitely one other Drumcode gem. I absolutely have to quote also “Kommen Zusammen” remixed by Joseph Capriati. i love it.

Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us today!

It was a pleasure.

Gery Otis ‘Jazing’ is out June 23 on Drumcode.

Interview with producer Gary Beck

Producer Gary Beck has been busy as of late, running his label Bek Audio and releasing tracks on Cajual, Suara, and Saved. We heard rumblings of a new release from him a few weeks ago, so we asked him a few questions about his upcoming release on the Drumcode A-sides Vol 2 compilation, all things Bek Audio, and what else he’s been up to.

Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. The Drumcode community is pretty stoked about the upcoming A-sides compilation, and of course we are excited to see your track ‘Marrow’ finally getting a release. How did this track come to be and where did the name come from?

This was something I cooked up in the studio almost half a year ago now, the production process flowed nicely and I was pretty happy with the end result. The reaction on the floor when those snares kick in is always nice to see. As for the name, I think it was just something I noticed on a newspaper at the time.

Speaking of your Drumcode tracks, we thought you might also have an EP in the pipeline. How’s it coming?

Actually this EP will not be happening, we decided Marrow was the only one suitable for release.

There’s a huge buzz right now about your track ‘Smiling.’ Could you tell us about this one?

This is a strange one. I made this track specifically as something to drop in my sets occasionally. Adam managed to get hold of it and since then, I haven’t stopped getting requests for it! There are a few things I need to decide first however this track should be available very soon for download.

We just watched your recent set from Awakenings and really loved it. What was it like playing there? And how does this compare to playing at someplace like Boiler Room?

Thanks 🙂 Both are fantastic to play and each one is a challenge. The fact that many thousands of people are watching online is just something you have to put to the back of your mind. The Gashouder, despite it’s size is also very intimate. You really can connect with the crowd. The Boiler room is slightly more difficult as the people are behind you..even though thousands are on front through the camera! I pretended I was doing a set in my bedroom 😉

Slam just released ‘Minor Interruption‘ on your label, Bek Audio, which is pretty huge. How’s the label going? What’s in store for 2014?

The label is going really strong now. I have great people working with the label and helping me with the management side of it. Next up is a pretty strong collaboration with Mark Broom. He has been a mainstay on the label and it’s great to have him onboard. I’ve also just completed a 2 tracker with wonderful vocals from Debra Debs. The release is perfect for the summer so we hope to push this one through pretty quickly as well.

That vocal release sounds awesome and we can’t wait to hear it. Now for a fun one, what are you favorite headphones to use while traveling?

I always use my Sennheiser hd25’s 🙂

To close things off, what tracks are you listening to at the moment that you are really excited about?

I just received the Kink remix of Zinc – Show me. It’s an absolute smasher, I love all his stuff.
Also enjoying material from Petter B, NX1 and many others.

Thanks again for taking the time to speak with us.

Pleasure! 🙂

‘Marrow’ is out on Drumcode A-sides Compilation Vol 2 (part 1) June 9.

Franco Cinelli – All Frequencies LP + Interview

It’s rare these days that artists put out full length LPs and albums, but one producer to buck this trend is Argentinian Franco Cinelli. Famous for his remix of Cassius ‘Sound of Violence,’ veteran Franco Cinelli has also released music on labels including AirDrop, Bass Culture, and Ilian Tape over the past 15 years. Dropping into our inbox a few weeks ago, we had a chance to preview his ‘All Frequencies’ album out later this month via his home base of Esperanza. ‘All Frequencies’ is Franco’s first album in 8 years since his 2006 ‘Profundo Amor’ on Alphahouse. This one includes 7 tracks, one of which is digital only. We had a chance to speak with Franco about the album, so check out the interview below!

Out NOW via Esperanza!

If you had to describe your music in three words or less, what would you say?

Twisted-Tek-Funk? Difficult to say…

Could you tell us a little about how the album came to be? How long have you been working on it? What was an average day in the studio like?

The LP was created based on a row over a year of work, which could make enough tracks and test them every weekend. This plan includes an overview of what I’ve been doing this last year. I started creating music without knowing the results, and this helped me a lot to leave any work structure and flow without boundaries.

How did you get hooked up with Esperanza? What was the process like trying to figure out what label to release the album on?

Esperanza is my family, we have an excellent relationship, back in the year 2005/2006, since then we have been working together as much as doing releases and showcases. Kasper and Papol trust what I do and make me feel free and “at home”. What better than this to realize the idea. We came to a long time with the idea of ​​doing an LP in Esperanza Label. The only thing I needed to get the time to spend and do it. After about 20 tracks we made a selection together, as well as with Kasper and Papol, Esperanza Label owners and we decided to put these 7 tracks that are in the LP.

Our favorite track was definitely Juno Talks. What’s the inspiration and story behind this one?

The song came from a day session in the studio, thinking of nothing in particular, just let the sound of my Juno106 flow.

Which songs are you really excited about at the moment?

Andres Zacco – The Box (Greener)
Sparky – Portland (Ricardo Villalobos Remix) (Numbers)
Leonel castillo – 77 Ks (Groovear Cd Limited)
Jeff Mills – Chronicles Of Possible Worlds (Axis)

Now that the album is finished and soon to be released, what’s next in 2014?

As a producer after the album (All Frequencies), comes a new EP Psynote, a new alias eh created to released a different side to my daily productions, this will be published this summer by the German label Chiwax. Also a new partnership for Greener label (from my good friend Andres Zacco) plus some remixes for different artists. As a DJ I will continue with my regular dates in Argentina and Latin America and Early June I will be going on a new tour of Europe almost three months.

Interview with Techno Producer M1KRONAUT

We sat down with M1KRONAUT (real name Connor Skidmore) before the release of his ‘Snareline‘ EP out July 3rd on Solid Groove Records.

Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. We are all pretty excited about your ‘Snareline’ EP coming out on Solid Groove Records in early July. Many of our readers know you for your Drumcode updates. How are you so good at those?

It began with me listening to Drumcode Radio, and noticing unreleased tracks that were signed to Drumcode in the track listings. Actually, the first one was Fight Club by Bart Skils (A really great person as well as producer, by the way). So I began to look for more information on these upcoming releases, and started “Drumcode Update” on Soundcloud. I got a fair amount of info from these track listings, but now I do quite a lot more research, looking through everything from interviews to track listings of other podcasts. I also message the artists themselves. And sometimes I just have to make educated guesses, because most tracks, even if they are planned Drumcode tracks, are listed in promos until a month or two before their release. Finally, I get help from some of the biggest Drumcode fans, including Prisoneer (unofficial Drumcode promoter) and someone who’s on the promo list.

Could you tell us a little about your background? When did you start producing and how did you get into it? What do you do now?

I began to produce music when I was very young. My dad played around with Fruity Loops 3, a very early version of what I now use, FL Studio. I watched him and wanted to try it. Back then, I wasn’t really serious about it. I didn’t produce seriously until a couple of years ago, when I got (re)-introduced to techno by Drumcode Radio. Now I just start new tracks when I’m inspired, and finish or mix old ones when I’m not.

And what about your labels? How did you come to found them and how are they doing? Any advice for those who are looking to start their own?
At first I released music on Bandcamp, but I saw that all the “real” producers were releasing on sites like iTunes and Beatport. I decided that to really get my music out there, I needed to release on a label. At that point, I wasn’t a good enough producer to get signed, or so I thought, and I didn’t bother to try. So I decided to start my own label so that my music didn’t have to go through picky A&R. That’s how my first label, Nollij Records, was founded. Now I see it as a mistake, and wish I would have waited until I was a better producer and gotten signed to a label with higher standards. But it turned out to be good, too, because I met a lot of great artists and made essential connections. With Nollij, I did most things my self, and wasn’t always happy with the results. Recently I decided not to do much with Nollij anymore, a decision that resulted from wanting to start a new project, as well as a couple of artists moving on. However, there are still a couple of upcoming releases on the label.
Now I have turned my focus to my new project, twin labels called iq140 and Recursive Records. I plan to release techno music on iq140, but I am also interested in drum and bass music, which I want to release on Recursive. I am setting a higher standard for both labels, and the first releases are coming from excellent producers who I really respect.
As for my advice for those looking to start their own, I have to say that it’s not as difficult as it sounds, but it does require some effort. I’d suggest finding a good distributor (mine is Label-Worx). The most difficult part for me was the contract, which I wrote myself after looking at a lot of other contracts. Some distributors will take care of this for you. There isn’t really anything official that needs to be done to create the label, unless you sell enough tracks to require a business license. And my biggest piece of advice is to set a reasonably high standard for the label, at least if you ever want to become a well-known, well-respected producer. Don’t release anything that is badly produced, and always let other people listen to the final masters!

We couldn’t help but notice you are from Minnesota (we’re Boston based, so we are super please to see this kind of music coming from within the US). What is the scene there like? Has it been more difficult to produce when you are not surrounded by so many popular influences?
It is probably more difficult to produce techno music here than in another country (like one in Europe), but I haven’t tried, so I don’t know. Only one person in the area who listens to techno music comes to mind, and he has been very supportive of me. There aren’t many techno DJ’s that come here either, aside from Dustin Zahn, who was based here for awhile. It helps me to think about the fact that there is a Minneapolis-based Drumcode artist.

Let’s talk about your ‘Snareline’ EP. What was the studio process like? How did you meet the folks over at Solid Groove?
The Snareline EP started as just an idea I had one day, which was an idea for a dark track with a snare-roll over the beat. I immediately began producing it, finding the right samples and fine-tuning the kick and bassline. It was a lot darker than most of my other productions. When it was finished, I decided to send it to Solid Groove Records, who had released my track Middle Initial last year. The manager liked it and said he wanted me to do an EP. So I began work on Vertigo. I liked the bass line on Snareline, so I copied it over with some adjustments and worked with that. Finally, I wrote my favorite track on the EP, Steampunk, which is a little more like my typical style. I sent the finished EP, he said that he liked it, and the rest is history. I will point out that this is my first EP on a “real” label, meaning one that isn’t Nollij Records.
I found out about Solid Groove Records because one of the Nollij artists had the first release on the label. They were holding a competition for their second release, so I entered one of my finished tracks, and it was chosen as one of the seven for the compilation.

Finally, wrapping things up, what tracks are you really excited about at the moment?
My favorite tracks to play right now are probably Timmo – Bloom, Sasha Carassi & Jay Lumen – Cube, Sam Paganini – Black Leather, Bart Skils – For Your Eyes, and both We Are Forever Young and Confessions of a Wanted Man by Alan Fitzpatrick. As for the upcoming tracks I’m most excited about, they would be Bart Skils – Acid Horizon, Gary Beck – Cherub, all of Sam Paganini’s album, and, as a surprise twist, Deadmau5 – Avaritia.

Thanks again for taking the time to speak with us! Cheers and best of luck with the release.