DJ Emerson: "My music gets its kick out of repetition & loops..."

Words by: Henry McGraw
Posted: 17/11/16 10:42

Interview with German DJ, producer & label owner DJ Emerson

With a career spanning decades, it’s definitely fair to say DJ Emerson is hard working; the German artist has had a stream of quality releases on labels such as CLR, Analytictrail and Desolat, as well as his own imprints Micro.fon and Fast-forward 10 years to today he just comes back with a third full length album “Repetitive Music” on Micro.fon. We caught up with Emerson to learn a bit more about the new LP and to find out a bit more about what’s coming next from the producer in the future.

My music gets its kick out of repetition & loops & that’s also what kind of unites all the different styles of techno & house I like & love... Hello Emerson, thanks for taking the time out to chat to us; first things first, how has 2016 been for you so far?
Hello :) finally after more than 10 years I finished my 3rd artist album which makes it quite a happy year for me.

Could you tell us a little bit about yourself? How did you initially get into the music you play? Where did it all start for you?
I have been making music since I am 13, 14 years old. I've always wanted to be able to make the music I like myself, too, and with time my musical taste evolved and I got more into electronic music.

So who's been a massive source of inspiration for you over the years?
My friend Circuit Breaker with whom I have been sharing my studio ever since I started producing. Sound wise Dr Dre has been an inspiration or techno artists like Robert Hood, Steve Rachmad or Jeff Mills.

With your new album ‘Repetitive Music’ just out now, can you talk about the thinking behind the release? Was it a particularly long process compared with previous recording projects?
Well, my music gets its kick out of repetition and loops and that’s also what kind of unites all the different styles of techno and house I like and love. They are always very monotonous with very little melodies. In the end it took me longer than for my first 2 albums, about 2-3 years to put it all together.

Is it a fair indication of where you’re at right now musically then? How has your sound changed over the years?
Yes absolutely and 100%. My sound has definitely gotten more minimal and more defined sound wise. I put a lot of work into having a good & heavy sound.

Less is more. Focus on the parts that make the track work & make them as effective & as good sounding as you can...I gather you've been producing for a while now. What are some of the most important lessons you have learnt when it comes to production?
Less is more. Focus on the parts that make the track work and make them as effective and as good sounding as you can.

Tell us a bit about your studio… What hardware and software do you use to make your music?
Mostly everything happens in Ableton and pro tools. Right now I have a Moog Sub Phatty and some effects mostly delays and the Eventide Space Reverb. That’s the only hardware I use right now - but that always changes.

What's the most important lesson you've learned from running the labels and Micro.fon over the years?
It’s a tough business and you need to have a release schedule, top quality mastering, a good promo campaign and stuff like that. Then you need to hustle across all social media platforms and the artists should be involved too. I think the times where you just gave your music to a label and they took care of everything are long past.

Interview with German DJ, producer & label owner DJ Emerson

What 5 tunes and producers are you really digging at the moment?
Always digging anything by Steve Rachmad, Roland Werk is a top shot too, right now… Thomas Hoffknecht is super interesting

There are a lot of really good quality labels out there it’s just difficult to see through the fog sometimes...TOP5

  1. Ray Kajioka - The Ratchet
  2. Roland Werk - Ostbahnhof
  3. Dj Emerson - Black Dirt (Ilario Alicante Rmx)
  4. Thomas Hoffknecht - Roch
  5. Steve Rachmad - Sabre Song

How long do you spend looking for new music each week and where? Do you check a lot of promos? Do you think standards are generally good or weak?
From Monday to Thursday it’s usually around 1-2 hours a day mostly at home, in my studio or in a hotel and Friday and Saturday it can be up to 4-6 hours of checking and preparing music.

Yes I try to check most of the promos I get. If you select the pools and labels you subscribe to wisely the standards can be high. There are a lot of really good quality labels out there it’s just difficult to see through the fog sometimes.

Finally, what does the immediate future have in store- will there be an album tour and any more releases, events or projects you’d like to share with our readers?
I will have a track on the new Credo compilation which might surprise some people because it’s a really deep dub track, and I'm working on an EP with Thomas Hoffknecht, then I have a couple of new solo tracks finished which I want to release on Nachtstrom Schallplatten.

Artist: DJ Emerson
Title: Repetitive Music LP
Label: Micro.fon
01. Intro
02. Manuka
03. Baba
04. Lava
05. Bounce Back
06. Anonymous
07. Skyhigh feat Circuit Breaker
08. Call It What You Want (Album Dub)
09. String Theory
10. No Work Today
11. Nola
12. Outro
Cat.Number. MFLP002


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