Jun 16, 2014

Oh Oh: A drenched interview with Noisia


I just found out that I’m missing both the Calcutta and Bangalore editions of NH7 Weekenders this year. So I’ve dug up some of the craziest interviews I had done back then, half drunk and fully drenched. This one’s with Nik Roos of Noisia! (Oh oh, and check out their new material. It’s pretty f***ing mental)

What’s Bangalore been like for you guys?
It seems like the city is incredible. It was so crowded but the atmosphere was more relaxed than it is in Europe. Here, people look at each other but there’s no anger or aggression. We also loved the little nod that Indians do. Even the auto drivers talking to us shook their head in this particular way.

On collaborating with Foreign Beggars:

We’ve always wanted to work with vocals. But the vocalists we’ve tried out didn’t get our music. With Foreign Beggars, it was different but cool in the way it worked out. We’ve worked with vocals before but never as a full album. This is very different production-wise. We’re writing new material and hopefully, Noisia will write their next album in the coming year. We’ve been very busy with our label and touring of late.

How does a Noisia track come into place?

To put it simply, all three of us are perfectionists. At the same time, perfection is the most boring thing. So we’re never trying to reach a point of perfection but trying to make something better and better till the point of abandoning it. Personally, I always love doing whatever I’m doing better than the last time because I feel that I owe that to myself. It’s amazing to build an identity as a group - so even our label is quite international but we run it from home.

Do the three of you fight much?

Sometimes, there are fights. But the cool thing is that all three of us get into it. So if someone has an idea and one of us likes it, it’s up to the third person to take a side and make a final decision. We go back a long way and went to high school together. We became friends first and only later did we start f***ing around with music. So essentially, we’re running a business based on close relationships. We never set out to make a career of this. In school, I’d go to Tys’s house, smoke some weed and do the usual teenager things. We didn’t realize that somewhere along the way, we’d actually start loving it. Once I got older, I started feeling better than I did in my mid-20s. I’m healthier now. Time and energy have no autopilot and that’s when people start to fall off.

So what are the challenges?

Time is the enemy and continuing your personal life and balancing it with work is also tough. Sometimes, even if you’re home, a work day might mean 13 hours in the studio after which you just have to sleep.

What are your current influences? (back in November)

A lot of John Hopkins - he’s techno but very sensitive. And Tame Impala. The thing about the music we listen to is that it might be great on holiday but it might not come back into our music. But we are doing a lot of label work and have a lot of records coming up. We we’re always on the lookout for guys like Neosignal.

What’s the music scene like back home?

Holland has a lot of EDM. The difference between doing production or DJing solo versus the experience we have is in the splitting of the money and more importantly, the workload. I mean, Holland is crowded with EDM at this point. We’re from a small town in the country doing our thing and it will always be an island. Things that are boring are taken care of by the management. But there’s a big boom in EDM and it’s hard to keep your eye on what you want to make but not imitate or patronize them. I don’t mind experimenting with other genres. But what I’m enjoying at this point is the juke influence from USA, which is based on dancing completely. I don’t know whether our influences come back to our music but it’s all about dancing. A lot of EDM is just stadium-based. My hope is that out of this energy comes a scene that isn’t relying on hype but the right music that’s based on love. There’s a big wave in EDM but it gets pulled from the roots because of the cash flowing into the industry. I hope solid movements come out that produce solid music. Making a song with your heart is better than saying that this is how a song should be, this is how a scene should be. It’s great that EDM is getting the exposure that it deserves. But in Europe, Eurohouse has been around for years. It was big in the 90s and today’s music sounds just like that but with a twist.

The overly edited interview came out on December 4. Read it here if you must.

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