We have a chat with rising star from Cologne born artist Adryiano along with an hour long Global mix.
I’ve always had my eye close on Adryiano, more often on his productions and very enjoyable mixes but also on his ability to maintain an exciting and relatable persona online.
Throughout the course of the interview Adryiano and I talk about the current age of social media playing a part in electronic music and the effects it has on artists. We also discuss the necessary traits of a good producer along with a house-infused mix provided by the artist himself.
Elliot: Good afternoon Adryiano! Thanks for joining us. Where are you currently based at the moment?
Adryiano: Hey there, it’s a pleasure – Thanks for having me! Right now (while writing this) I’m on the train from Berlin back home to Cologne.
E: Your social media is very down to earth and very easy to relate to. Do you think it’s important to keep your social media relatable and not ‘robotic’ and repetitive?
A: Oh, that’s nice to hear! I’ve always been trying to keep my social media activities as low as possible and not to waste too much time getting lost on the platforms. You can easily become a victim of consuming way too much information and too many opinions that can affect you and your work in a negative way. So I try to keep it on a low and just post spontaneously what I really feel. I have to admit, that since I found out about Instagram stories, the bullshit factor has risen quite a bit, though.
Whatever. Whether it’s relatable or robotic depends on your own paradigms. If you see yourself as a product and the music scene as a cow that has to be milked, you definitely should promote your album twice a day or post studio selfies on a daily basis. I heard that works pretty well.
E: How do you feel social media is shaping electronic dance music at the moment?
A: Well, it’s no news it has become the central playground of our lives. Sadly it seems to me like that it has become a valid substitute to what is happening outside or let’s say more important than real life activities or face to face human exchange. People let media define their taste and suggest what’s good and what’s not. Not only in music but in all the other territories – be it fashion or lifestyle – as well. Unfortunately, the worth of something is mostly based on likes and shares rather than quality and value. And that makes everything become very unreal and suspicious.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to brag about how great life has been before the internet or come up with some “open your mind and set yourself free” hippy theories. Media has always been the invincible giant and having so much power, it has always been deciding what’s the shit right now. But for each of us as an individual, it should actually be quite easy to define an own personal taste in order to support what we really like, instead of what is being pre-selected by others or even what others like.
Anyway, to get a positive twist and most important thing – social media has some great potential for sure to open boundaries so everyone gets access to explore and share music, knowledge and so on. Without platforms like SoundCloud (e.g.) a vast amount of talents would have probably never been discovered and therefore would have never shaped the music culture to what it is right now. In everything bad there is good and in all good, there is bad, right? Okay, it seems like it’s turning into a hippy direction now.
E: Say you took away Facebook & SoundCloud, what do you think would happen to electronic dance music as we know it?
A: That’s a tough one. People would probably have to talk more to their friends or people in general in order to exchange about their latest music discoveries in the internet or record shops? Or read more zines and magazines to find out what’s going on? Or go out to events they would have nowadays avoided because they only have like “10 going” on Facebook, but surprisingly turned out to be the best nights of their lives?
I don’t know. Most probably new similar platforms would appear – which is actually kind of a good thing as they would emerge new trends to influence the whole music scene in another direction. Like HiFi House or something.
E: Do you think some artists rely too much on their social media/press shots/look more than their actual music, the one thing that needs to be perfect?
A: I may sound like an old frigid purist, but sometimes it seems so. Some people pop up with a footlong biography and a bunch of press pictures before they even made one track or mix. But that’s just the times I suppose. As the whole electronic music thing has become such a big business in the last years – of course, it is not only about the music, but more about the image you virtually create. So, therefore you need a sedcard of 28 press shots, a profile on every single platform and a certain flow of visual content. The music is just the door opener to a vivid career of fame and glory. Just like the drink you buy the hot girl in the club. It can be a shitty 3 quid martini, but if the rest of the package is amazing your night is saved. You get the point.
But you know, luckily we’re living in a free world and in the end it’s up to everyone individually to decide which path to go. Some prefer to pay huge amounts of money for a promo campaign to conquer the market – others invest the same amount to put out another EP.
E: For you, what makes a good artist?
A: A great Instagram profile is something that I would put a huge focus on. Some gear photos here and there, some #ootd shots and you’re almost there.
Jokes aside. To me, good artists just do their thing – whatever it might be – without betraying their principles. People who stand out by doing things differently. Who always challenge themselves rather than doing what is convenient. Those who explore and reinvent themselves. Where you dig through their (previous) works and be like “Damn, how come did I not come across that before?” or “Wow, I didn’t expect that”.
E: Your track ‘On My Side’ resonates with us greatly in Ireland, tell us a bit about how it came about?
A: To be honest On My Side was one of those tracks that didn’t take too long. I was fooling around for a while (as always), did the drums and vocal chops on the MPC and added some pads. I used an M1 to get the piano chords done and then I suddenly felt like “this is it!”.
It’s funny though, that for three years almost no one would care about the track. It has been released in 2013 and literally laying around in the shelves for some while until the whole thing kind of exploded. I still don’t know what really has been the cause or trigger, but suddenly it was everywhere and the record got repressed like three or four times until now. I’m happy that things turned out so well. Note to me: Never underestimate the power of the internet!
E: What kind of music are you working on at the moment?
A: Everything, really! I’m trying not to put myself into boxes when making music as there is too much good stuff around that always kind of gets me hyped. Besides electronic music such as house, techno or ghetto I am really into a lot of different styles of other music. Whether it’s the 60s / 70s Jamaican Ska and Reggae, Boston Hardcore, 80’s Punk rock or even South American folk music. Too much good stuff to limit yourself to an explicit genre.
I’m like continuously working on house and techno tracks with this moniker and there’s a bunch of house, techno and ghetto house tracks on tapes and on the hard drive. Every now and then I tend to remix commercial tracks just for fun to find out how I would have used the vocals. There’s, even more, music around as well which I made with other monikers. And I’m playing guitar in a punk rock band, which is about to record their first mini-LP. So, to sum it up I’m down for whatever. Let’s see where the whole journey is going.
Q: From personal experiences, I’ve been using Ableton for the last 2 years and ever since purchasing some gear like a Korg Minilogue and an Arturia Drumbrute I’ve started to enjoy producing more two-fold. Do you think having the human aspect to when making music with machines is a big factor for you?
A: Yeah, definitely. I’ve started to work fully digital with a DAW as well and it worked out well for me back then. But, when I got my first piece of gear, which was the MPC2000XL, I was like totally stoked and spent all my free time to explore this machine. It was a completely different approach to making music. Being limited to the possibilities, in general, has a big impact. When working too much on screens, I tend to overthink things and get lost in parameters (which is totally annoying).
Nowadays I limit myself to only the personal essentials, that fit on my wooden table in the studio. The helps me a lot to dedicate my time to learn the full dose of each single machine and work within the technical boundaries.
In the end, it’s a personal thing just as the medium you use for deejaying. Some like to show up with two USB sticks. Some carry two cases full of records to gigs. And some just play premade mixes. The medium is not important if you fist pumps like a champion. It’s up to you. Inspirational quote of the moment: Do what you love. (Thank me later)
Q: Here’s one for you… analogue or digital?
A: The safe things happen digitally, the magic things happen analogically. Boom, mind blown?
Q: You’ve presented us with a mix, tell us a bit about it.
Interview conducted and written by Gareth Elliot.
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