As co-founder of Sleep Is Commercial alongside Francesco Assenza, he’s orchestrated one of the more consistent bases for some of the most relevant and futuristic electronica. It’s home to the likes of Hubble, Akiko Kiyama, & Fedon, and after playing alongside the likes of Richie Hawtin, Marco Carola, as well as regular appearances at Ibiza’s DC-10. Futhermore, a steady release schedule across imprints such as Freak n’Chic, Mindshake & Prisoner Of Love have reinforced his success over the years, and his latest release this year on the latter, ‘Thinkings’, is as good example as any.
The rest of the year is already mutating into a deep incursion into tomorrow.Andrea Ferlin guides you through the drugged vibes of Kana Broadcast 048.
EC: Andrea there’s been a lot of great stuff coming from your side of late. I remember listening to a great mix of yours sometime ago, but it was a little different to what you’re playing now which a lot of people are loving right now. Can you run me through how things have progressed over the years, the tides of influence and change for you personally?
AF: The sound that I have at the moment is the mixture of everything I’ve produced and performed in the past decade, and it’s the fruit of a long and endless pursuit of atmospheres and sound.
I think that my influences stayed more or less the same, jazz, concrete music, the first electronic experiments of the 60s/70s passing from African music and ritual to get to the psychedelic rock of the 60s and scifi movies . I try to find these elements in the music that I produce, and consequently in what I play in my set. Many of the things I play now make me remember what I was playing many years ago, this time with more modern sounds.
EC: No doubt SIC, the imprint you co-founded, played a big part in your direction. How did that project arise and the concept that drives it? (who was a part of it and where are things going?)
AF: There is no doubt that Sleep Is Commercial plays a major role; much of the music I play comes from the label. The project of Sleep Is Commercial was born five years ago in Berlin. Together with my partner and best friend Francesco Assenza, we felt the need to have a platform where we could release in complete freedom and without any constraints our music. Then slowly over time, the heart of the project became always bigger to become what it is today. The core of the current labels is formed by ten artists who are those on which the label is focused and the artists who produce all releases on vinyl and cd. Then there are many other producers who gravitate around us whose releases are released in digital format. The artistic direction of the label is currently going towards a timeless music not tied to the trends of the moment and the charts.
EC:…and the phases of how you released a record probably would have shifted a little over time too. If you were plot a timeline from when you received a piece of music you were really interested in, how would it look? (ie. received music, mastering, etc)
AF: This phase takes some time….We receive a lot of demos everyday, but a very little amount of these demos has an impact on us. I usually check the demos, when I find something interesting, I share it with Francesco and if he likes it as well, we start listening to it several times together. We then decide together which platform would be the most appropriate for the release. Then we talk to the producers and share with them our ideas. If the artists thinks the same, we send the track to the mastering and in the meantime we choose the artwork, to then finally release the tracks. The tracks have to be tracks I really want to play.
EC: There’s been a fresh movement lately of artists setting their music up to be distributed electronically by themselves. Is this something you’d consider doing, or see some benefit in? If not what’s your ideal scenario and platform for an artist to release music under.
AF: Yes, a lot of people distribute themselves their music. Especially young producers. I think that all the ways to promote music are good, the problem with that way, is the quality (often very bad) and the amount of music released everyday. Most of the tracks become like drops in a huge ocean.
The ideal platform for me is the vinyl or the cd. I like the feeling of touching the music, the digital files are too ethereal.
EC: This is a great mix Andrea, so with that is there anything you’ve got in the pipeline that we need to be across? Releases, tours, project news etc.
AF: Thanks!!! Many things are coming…I just released my Sicltd with the remix of Ion Ludwig, In september we will release my upcoming album on CD and then the vinyl extract with remixes from Akiko Kiyama, Sammy Dee and Cristi Cons. Our online store will be soon online and a new label is on its way. As far as my gigs are concerned, you will be able to find me at the Club der Visionaere in Berlin twice a month, the whole summer and around Europe for solo gigs and for Sleep is Commercial showcases.
Elliot Clarke, July 10 2014