At only eighteen years old, Paris DJ and producer u.r.trax has a C.V that would make most seasoned selectors blush. The young Parisian has graced some of Europe’s most presteemed parties and released on some of techno’s hottest labels right now.
Blending the innocence of youth with a ferocious production palette, the emerging techno star has already garced Concrete, Dehors Brut and La Toilette, and has released on Hector Oaks Kaos label, having become infatuated with the sound at a young age – even visiting Tresor at just fourteen!
Andrew Moore spoke to u.r.trax ahead of her release on Lobster Theremin which you can check out here.
You visited Tresor at the age of 14 with your mother, just how influential was that visit for you?
It was one of my first times in a club. At the time, I was watching hours of documentaries about the history of techno music and I was dying to visit the place I’ve heard about in so many films. I think I will remember forever that first time in Berlin. Spending a few hours listening to the music, walking around, observing the people in the iconic club planted a seed in my mind who never stop to grew. Since then, only Covid managed to keep me away from a club lol.
Further than that, I think brining my mom to such a club calmed her worries down. I reckon it can be scary when your 14 year old tells you she wanna make music for a living, especially techno music who can have a weird reputation from the outside… This moment participated in installing trust between us. And now she supports me 100% and is often there on my important gigs in Paris. This is very important for me.
How does the Paris scene look post-covid? Things back to normal?
I think there was a great turnover within collectives involved in the scene. Some died, some were born, some older ones literally exploded. A new generation of DJs has certainly emerged, almost popped. Thus, music is evolving and It’s cool and refreshing to have a new sound. However, now that the summer is over, there is less and less venues open (ZUT and Kilometre 25 were super cool) : we need more techno clubs in Paris !!
What was the inspiration for your release on Lobster Theremin?
I made this EP in Berlin last summer as I stayed there for a month with my best friend. This moment is associated with so good memories and awakenings, so inspiration was flowing. I had no studio so I made it all with a computer on my knees, often on a rush haha. I think it’s usually the best tracks because you don’t have time to think, you just do.
Track A1 Dying generation sets a really strong and suspenseful atmosphere. Hence, I immediately had the idea of a video clip (out 6th November). I was really inspired by this “film noir” vibe. This track reflects one of my obsession as an observer/actor of my “techno surroundings’ : the dying generation who lives by errance and nihilism by still being very political and who claims those values in a “generational war”. A2 What was on their mind is a rolling cyclic techno tool. B1 Race against the time, the titles tells it all. Electro but melodic track, about how much I love being always in the speed and the rush… B2 You are your own distraction is a sexy techno trance track with hypnotic vocals.
I’m also really happy to have this really funky and energetic remix by MRD ! And last but not least, I want to thank D.Dan for his really good mixing work. It’s an artist I really admire for his tracks and sets 🙂
How have you found navigating the techno circuit at such a young age? Has it been overwhelming at all, or are you taking it all in your stride?
I’ve always been surrounded with people older than me. As now “navigating in that circuit”, I don’t feel the age difference with my peers (except when I get constantly told about it… – in good or bad ways). Music is the only thing that unites us.
Do you feel that techno is still protest music? Can it still be implemented as a sonic voice against oppression?
Today, I don’t think paying 30 bucks a ticket to a warehouse party is in any way protest or a sign of “counter culture” and “marginality”. But after all, it’s an industry with people and jobs.
Maybe free party is a form of protest. Even more as it’s becoming harder and harder to organise legal or illegal techno parties for everyone. I think it depends more on the way to apprehend and celebrate the music than the music in itself.
People that make the club scene have for sure a voice against oppression : by creating a place where there is no oppression ! Night will never be 100% safe but by debating, educating ourselves and others, making making line ups not exclusively made of white dudes, cool staff, etc
What is next for u.r.trax?
Many things ! More gigs, more places, more music (lots of exciting releases who only wait to be announced), more video clips (wink, set a reminder for the 5th of November). These days, I have this thirst for learning. I want to work on new skills to keep developing myself as person and as an artist. I want to be able to propose a diverse universe and not just DJ Mixes and Techno bangers.