10-10-2013 | 10.29
The personality of a DJ is of lesser importance than the music he plays. For all of you who may have forgotten that over the years, Deetron will put things back in perspective with his Music over Matter tour. But not before he satisfied our curiosity about some non-music subjects.
Did you name your Music over Matter album after the Music over Matter club nights that you host in Bern?
‘Not only. It’s more a concept than just the name of the night. It’s about putting the focus back on the most important thing, which is the music rather than all the stuff that’s happening around it and that has become so important in today’s club culture. I’m talking about huge PR-campaigns, big shows on stage, some guy saying this and that on whatever social platform. Basically when the importance shifts from the music towards the figure of the artist. I want to be a counterpart to this.’
Do you have any specific acts in mind when you say this?
‘Oh no. *laughs* I wouldn’t name any specific acts. I’m Swiss, you know, I’m neutral!’
Your gig at Trouw is the only all night long set for the Music over Matter tour. Does this ask for a different preparation?
‘Of course I pack a lot more records... And I have to think about the whole spectrum of the night. I never plan the order of records, but there has to be some sort of plan. When I organize my records I make sections with music that I think could work at this or that time of the night. I begin with beatless music, which can be used for transitions or for the beginning. I also organize by tempo, at least with the digital files. And then finally by artist, that’s the last section I make. But a lot of times everything is mixed up, and the concept is all over the place. I mix quickly, so often I don’t even have time to put the record back in the sleeve. I’m somewhere in the middle between organized and chaotic.’
In the middle... Ah, that’s right, you’re Swiss.
How did you approach the artists that are featured on the Music Over Matter album?
‘Andy Butler from Hercules and Love Affair requested a remix from me for one of his tracks, and I told him that, rather than getting paid, I would like to have a contribution from him for my album. When I asked him if I could have a vocal appearance, he first assumed I wanted vocals from Antony Hegarty. But I wanted him! And Seth Troxler and I have worked together before, on our EP for Circus Company, so it was quite obvious that we would make another song. He even had time to come to my studio in Bern to record. I wanted to have Jamie Lidell, but I thought: ohh he is gonna turn down my request and then I’ll be super disappointed. So I never actually got to asking him.’
Would you say there’s a theme in the album?
‘As you can hear I really wanted to do vocal tracks with a chorus and a verse, and then stretch these traditional song structures to club versions. I like to take the harmonic presetting, but then go as far as possible in terms of rearranging everything.’
Although you prefer music over matter, what material things do you value highly?
‘My studio gear, especially the Moog Voyager. I couldn’t make music without it, really. And I like industrial design a lot. The Eames lounge chair, for example, is like a piece of art to me. And my vinyl, how could I forget my vinyl! That’s probably my biggest material investment.’
Vinyl actually something where music and matter come together...
‘That’s true indeed. And I still prefer analog ways of enjoying music. I have the original KMS pressing of one of my favorite techno tracks, Pump the Move by E-Dancer. I don’t bring that to gigs, although I have 3 copies. Back in the day it was very common to buy multiple copies of a record. When I was still playing really fast techno, this raw energy cutting up hip hop style, I would do lots of doubles with 2 of the same record and then play them off beat, go back and forth with the fader and that kind of thing. The technical side is still present in my sets, but I don’t play as wild as I used to.’
Text: Tessa Velthuis