Interview: N’to

N’to’s love affair with music began during his early childhood in his hometown of Marseille, France.

Influenced by minimal and techno artists such as James Holden, Extrawelt and Stephan Bodzin, as well as 70s rock, 30s swing, hiphop, triphop, pop, jazz, soul, classical music, the many shades of N’to’s electronic music are instantely recognisable through smooth melodies and efficient rhythms.

Having been featured on DHA before, N’to now gets us all ready for 3 September’s Pleinvrees Festival where he will bring his analog and electronic border blurring performance, N’to (live). Here, the talented Frenchman dishes on Marseille hot spots, goes in depth into his production approach, and gives us his impressions on Pleinvrees and Amsterdam as an electronic music center!

“I love the “human side” of electronic music. When the different elements sound autonomous and organic.”

What are you working on at the moment?
Right now, I’m working on many new original tracks. And I’m always trying to diversify my productions with different kind of music such as electro/acoustic elements or hip hop/jazzy tracks …

You are based in Marseille. What’s a proper night out there – can you feed us a few hot spots, maybe record stores, the best clubs, and what the hell do we do for an afterparty?
To me, the main places for electro in Marseille are Les Docks des Suds, La Friche, Les Terrasses, Spartacus Club or Baby Club, but there’s also many one-time events, especially during the summer, near the sea! And like in every other places in the world, to have a good after party, you need to have a flat, friends and good music :)

Your own music is mixed within a range of styles such as 70s rock, trip-hop, deep house, techno, jazz, soul, classical, and more – were surrounding artists you associated with typically eclectic? What influenced you to take a more organic approach to creating electronic music?
I love the “human side” of electronic music. When the different elements sound autonomous and organic. That’s why I often try to put some acoustic sounds such as guitars or real recordings in my productions. And it’s a way for me to honor my favorite bands or musicians.

Maybe you could describe how you get into the mood to make music and your recording process?
It’s really random by the way :) Sometimes I can start with a very precise idea. It can be another track that inspire me, a film, a picture, an emotion… It can be anything :)

Sometimes I just spend hours in my studio until something good finally comes out! There are no rules, that’s the game and that’s why it’s very exciting :)

When it comes to recordings – do you prefer a more spontaneous ‘improvised’ approach, or are you more considerate towards the design over differing periods of time?
Both are interesting, even if I prefer to think about the whole process before. But sometimes a spontaneous approach can offer you very good surprises! There are many happy mistakes in music :)

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