Pleasurekraft: "If you're not going to do something different - you shouldn't do it at all."

Words by: Tom Jones
Posted: 14/7/14 9:32

PleasurekraftSummer 2014 is another busy one for tech house outfit Pleasurekraft. Ramping their Ibiza presence up a notch for the season, the Washington and Stockholm based duo will be following up their excellent collaborative remix of Cajmere alongside Tiger Stripes with plenty of new music too. It feels as though the pair are currently on a hot streak with new productions too, hinting at some big tunes on the way later in the summer.

Their unique working relationship, which sees Kaveh Soroush who lives in Washington handle touring duties and Stockholm’s Kalle Rönngardh taking care of production work, strange as it may first appears, clearly fits well with these two individuals.

Relishing the challenges of the circumstances and even managing to turn them into positives, Pleasurekraft have fostered a work ethic that when combined with their undeniable talent, is fast making them amongst the most vital players on the scene.

I Voice spoke with Kaveh to find out more about Pleasurkraft’s working policy and to discover what plans they have for Ibiza, new music and the year ahead!

You guys have had some killer records and remixes for 2014. Do you feel as though your recent releases have been amongst the best of your career so far?
I would like to think our best is still ahead of us! And you will have to take my word for this - but the remix that's almost done for Pete Tong that will be on Coyu's Suara imprint is in my personal opinion, one of the 3 best tracks we have ever made.

We definitely aren't going to play the 1 release a month game which has now become somewhat of an industry standard...What strives you to make new music and get it released? How do you strike the balance between quantity and quality with your musical output?
It’s quite difficult to be honest. On the one hand you want to stay vital in the midst of so much great talent out there - but on the other hand you don't want to just release records for the sake of releasing records - which believe me - if I could go back in time - there are at least 5 records of ours I would love to banish from our catalogue. But you learn as you go on with a lot of these things - and I think instead of trying to appease the masses who are always clamouring for new material because the average consumer's attention span is so short - you have to decide what is going to help you in the long term.

Our good friend Technasia does about 1-2 records a year - which is well below what most people would expect from someone at that level - but when he puts out a record everyone notices because its fucking amazing - and he tours for 12 months on the back of 1-2 records. So while I'm not saying we will only put 1-2 tracks out a year - we definitely aren't going to play the 1 release a month game which has now become somewhat of an industry standard.

You guys obviously really embrace collaborative work. With recent music with Cajmere and Tiger Stripes for example, what is it that draws you to working with other people?
Sometimes it's just more fun to take a journey with other people because you're even less unsure of the destination - and there's a magic that can happen in (good) collaborations that is unlike making music on your own.

I mean for us every Pleasurekraft track is a collaboration because its 2 of us - but even more so when we work with people like (the incredible) Tiger Stripes.
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PleasurekraftThe fact that guys live far away from each other must play a big part? You have been well used to working in this way right since you first became a duo. Do you get to spend more time together these days?
More time than we used to but still not a lot - and still not as much as I would like - but we make do and as long as we aren't racing to finish tracks its fine. Obviously sometimes it can be frustrating - but often the distance plays a positive role as well because it prohibits instant feedback and sometimes you really listen and think about parts of a track before deciding what to do next - whereas in a studio setting together you might just do something and the other person is like - "no" and you move on without any moment to contemplate those musical decisions.

Is there more cross-over in your roles within the duo lately, or is Kaveh still handling the DJ gigs and Kalle more working on productions?
Yeah at this point right now we have reached a balance where I do all the touring and Kalle is in studio full time in Stockholm and will send me stuff on the road. Its been working for us so no complaints.

How does your work ethic or approach change between when you are producing a remix or an original tune?
Well obviously making an original is more difficult as every element has to be created from scratch so its definitely more trying creatively. With what we tend to do with remixes (which is not very efficient) is essentially make entire new tracks.

We haven't ever released a remix that sounded remotely close to the original - and while its definitely more labor intensive - I think in the end everyone from the label to the original artist appreciates it more because you are really putting your own stamp on someone else's record and expanding on a single theme from their track.

Sometimes that might even bother people - I remember reading David Keno's feedback for our remix for Booka Shade and he said something like "poor Fritz got his voice altered" or something like that because of the vocal effects we put on Fritz' voice - but the fact of the matter was there were like 8 other remixes of that record on the same package all with his normal voice so for us if you're not going to do something different than the other people around you - you shouldn't do it at all.

Are you looking forward to 2014 Ibiza’s season? What are you most excited by?
Yes very excited for this year in Ibiza. Playing for Suara, Ants, El Row and Defected. Have to say each one is exciting in its own way - I know that might be a cliche answer but its true.  Somewhere like Defected I have to play housier and a bit deeper - at Suara I can do whatever I wanna do, El Row at Space - well c'mon - its the craziness of the wonderful El Row crew inside arguably one of if not the single greatest room for techno music on the planet - what's not to like?! And of course with Ants - I'm really looking forward to playing for an outdoor crowd in Ibiza so that will be a whole new vibe.

Pleasurekraft @ Suara Opening Party @ Booom! Ibiza - 4th June 2014Do you think Ibiza still has the same pull that it used to? Please explain why or why not.
To be fair I have only been going to Ibiza for 3 years so I'm not sure I'm really in a fair position to comment on that one way or another.

Where are you favourite hidden or unknown places to relax in Ibiza away from music?
I love the northern side of the island for relaxing because its much less crowded and I love that since I'm in clubs all the time.

As DJ’s, what are you looking for to make for an amazing party?
Reallllly simple. Packed room with the right crowd who isn't there only to hear huge breaks and drops, and a killer sound system. Really you don't need much else from those 2 things for a great night. At least I don't!

What have you got coming up for the rest of the summer and 2014?
A remix of Format:B's "Gospel" will be forthcoming in August - a remix for Pete Tong in September - and 1 last remix for the year for Stacey Pullen's Blackflag imprint. We are also hoping to have 2 originals out before the end of the year as well as we did a few too many remixes this year. As far as Kraftek goes - lots of great stuff including a track by a Sicilian producer named Paul Ursin that is just incredible that will be out Jul 21, then also welcoming to the kraftek family Paul C & Paolo Martini, Smash TV, Bimas from Desolat, Oliver $, Harvard Bass, Hanne & Lorre, Piemont and some more stuff I'm forgetting I'm sure!

Pleasurekraft - Ibiza Dates
16th July - Suara Music @ BoOom Ibiza
29th July - Defected In The House @ BoOom Ibiza
09th August - Ants @ Ushuaia Ibiza
20th August - Reverse @ Vista - Privilege Ibiza
30th August - Elrow @ Space Ibiza
24th September - Suara Music Closing Party @ BoOom Ibiza

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