Welcome to the Future Podcast #001 + Exclusive Interview With Alex Niggemann
You have two labels: AEON and Soulfooled. Since you’re not a big fan of sub-genres. Can you describe the style/musical concept behind your labels?
Because sub-genres are something where people place music in their subjectivity and their opinion about music saying “this is tech house or deephouse” or any other word you can give it. I think there is a difference between music, because music causes moods and feelings. There’s music that makes you want to dance, dream, cry and so on. So I think that these feelings are my sub genres. If we’re talking about Soulfooled I could say that it has a more positive melancholic sound and Aeon has the darker melancholic sound with bigger beats.
What is your vision to the so called “underground” scene playing the big commercial main stages for enormous fees?
I don’t really have an opinion about that actually. I’m also not someone who’s complaining about EDM. Because I think the good thing about music is that everybody likes different styles of music, otherwise everyone would run for the same train and we won’t fit on that. So I’m fine with the so called underground playing these stages. I like musical diversity and even though I don’t understand some music or that I think it’s a shitty production. But it’s a democratic system so if someone likes this or that kind of music they should go for it. The house scene is becoming big and in a way commercial like rock music was in the 80’s or 90’s.
Most of the festivals that are running nowadays are electronic music festivals. So you can not talk about underground anymore, because the real underground doesn’t exist anymore. Maybe the underground are people that produce and maybe sell only a few records. We are in a way commercial already, but I don’t call it commercial in a way how you see pop music. The good thing about being “commercial” is that people are willing to travel to listen to their favorite music in comparison to 10 years ago. That’s also the reason why there are much more DJs nowadays, it got more competitive and less long lasting as it used to be. The mid-liners on the line-ups are with so many that even promoters don’t know whom to book anymore.
How do you see the future for yourself?
I’m being realistic about it. I know the music and entertainment industry. And if I’m one of the happy guys that could say it would be life lasting I would be very happy with that. But I actually don’t believe in these things. People are always looking for something new. You also don’t use your old Iphone when you have the newest one. I studied audio engineering so I’ll be always producing music. Besides making music that I play in clubs I also produce music for adverts, TV or movies.
If you had your own festival, how would you describe that? And if you think out of the box, whom would you program?
That’s a tough question. First of all, I never would like to become a promoter, although I highly respect them, but the risks that they are taking or the influences they have to deal with to make a festival to a success, like weather conditions, wouldn’t be something I could handle. But if I have to program I would definitely book NAS, Depeche Mode, Daft Punk (only playing their old productions!), Pharell and of course a lot of friends from the industry. But I don’t like to drop names or put out favorites. What counts most is that people enjoy a good day and enjoy good music.
You will be playing at WTTF this summer. When not playing, at whose set will we find you dancing?
I did my homework on the festival and its looks pretty dope. I wasn’t playing a lot of festivals in the Netherlands in the last 2 years, but this year I’m doing a few. WTTF looks very colorful and open minded so it will be fun. I had a quick look to the line-up, but I don’t know if I have the time to stay, but if I do, I would def have a walk around and dance to whatever sounds good. That’s something cool since it can be very interesting to figure out who’s playing, can be really surprising sometimes. I would suggest anyone to do it like this, forget the timetable and just walk around and enjoy what your ears like. Then you can have your own impressions and not just go to what the media sort of tells you what to like or hear.
Every artist has certain DJ’s or producers they looked up to when they were starting their career. But are there any new artists you look up to nowadays?
There are a lot of people that I look up to that are great producers, but they don’t have the platform yet to show their music to the people. For example David Durango, Jona and Salvatore Freda are amazing, but do not get the attention they should get. There are some upcoming new guys like Jona, Francys, Denis Horvat, Speaking Minds, P.Lopez or Locked Groove who are really cool. And of course I like the music of people like Frank Wiedemann (Âme) or Mathew Jonson. There are so many talented artists and producers nowadays that are inspiring and great influencers. It’s not that I have one favorite artists in general, the production just need to attract me .
Can we expect a collab. with any of the guys mentioned above?
Yes there’s something happening, but with who is still a secret.
You’re working on a new album. Can you tell us something about it?
Well I’m working on the album already for a while and I hope it will be there by next year. I started with some ideas and I have in mind how it should look like, but I need to make sure I have the right tracks. At the moment I’m more focusing on my own tunes since there’s a lot of stuff ready, but like Dennis Ferrer once said to me “not every track is a release”, I keep it like that. So I’m trying to find the right tracks for the right labels for the right time. If this is sorted I’ll be focusing on the album again. It won’t be a club album, you can describe it a bit more poppy, still a few tracks where you def can dance on. It will be an Album with tracks of my own and collabs.
Can we expect another club banging EP on Pokerflat like Materium was last year?
Yes, Pokerflat is always on my list.
What’s the most important personality trait every DJ should have?
His own personality.
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Seth Troxler | Hot Since 82 | The Martinez Brothers | Art Department| Chris Liebing | Tom Trago |Green Velvet | DJ Sneak | Andhim | Alex Niggemann | tINI | more