Loco Dice: Hip-hop, vinyl and Desolat
Thu 13th Sep, 2012 Features 918 viewsin
It was decidedly good news when Loco Dice was announced as part of the 2012 Stereosonic bill. With a background in hip-hop but status as one of the most forward-thinking names in techno, the German innovator’s had a long working relationship with Carl Cox, founded label Desolat alongside Martin Buttrich and holds residency at Ibiza’s Amnesia. So there’s no doubt the Stereo crowds will be in very accomplished hands come November – in the lead-up to the festival tour, inthemix caught up with the producer from his studio in Düsseldorf.
Obviously it’s been a pretty busy summer for you, things like Movement, Sonar and a whole bunch of other things. What’s stood out as a highlight?
Oh I mean, every weekend is a highlight you know? They are all so different. You go from festival to club and everybody’s so excited. Especially in the summer, you have all the people from South America, from Australia, from North America…everybody is in Ibiza and around and trying to catch their favourite acts or favourite festivals in Europe. It’s just great. Just to pick one highlight, it would be always Ibiza of course. My residency at the Cocoon Terrace, Amnesia. But like I said, every gig is unique.
I watched the session that you did with Carl Cox at IMS back in May and he was kind of joking with you that you’re never happy playing just one or two hour sets. How do you make the festival thing work when you have a really short amount of time to work with?
You know, it’s a long process for me to learn how to play on festivals. A lot of people think you just go and play your set, but that’s wrong because you have just one hour, two hours. So to try to combine all my tracks that I really want to play in two hours would be difficult. What I do is I don’t stress myself, I don’t think about it. I just go there and I suck the energy, which is always immense. That’s the great thing about electronic music, you never know where the road leads. You try to follow a way, but you shouldn’t.
Yeah for sure. Obviously Carl Cox is a special figure for you, you guys go back a while.
He is like a daddy, like a big brother for me. When I met him the first time, it was just amazing it clicked immediately together.
Coming from a hip-hop background, was it guys like that you sort of watched for their DJing style? Did you take things from people like Carl Cox?
Well, what did I take? People like Carl Cox were giving me the confidence that there are DJs out there who are very similar to hip-hop DJs. I got to know Carl Cox when he was working with turntables, mixing fast two minute track after two minute track, which to me was simply like a battles hip hop DJ you know? These days, he’s taking it much easier, using just two turntables, sometimes still three…but for me, it was just a simple thing to say, “OK, there are no rules. You can do it the way you want. It just has to groove you know?”
Until now, the way I mix, you still find a hip-hop style in it. I’m not that clean mixer who will mix a track over a track over two, three minutes. Sometimes it happens of course, but I’m still having these fast rubs and fast crossfader moves, hip-hop style, without being, I never was and never will be a battles DJ, but I am a club DJ.
When you’re settling in for a six, seven hour set, do you take longer mixes and things like that? Or are you quick the whole time?
It depends. When you play longer sets, you try not to interrupt the track so fast. But sometimes you have only tracks that you have to interrupt, that you can only play one and a half minutes. I mean with the techniques these days, we can do that. You can loop a bar and mix a whole track over that you know? That’s the beauty of electronic music. There are no rules! You are free to do whatever you want to.
When I play 6, 7, 8, 9 hours, I have all this freedom in the world. I can start my set slow, go fast, go slow again…I do what I want, and the people go with me. And that’s the great thing about long sets. You and the people, you are one. You follow the groove, and that’s what we do.