Cocoon Artist Booking is happy to welcome Oliver Huntemann in the Cocoon family. The electronic scene can't be imagined without the native of Northern Germany: with his tours around the world, his releases on Cocoon Recordings, his own label Ideal Audio and much more, he has gained a big fan base. The list of his collaborations and remixes is long and farraginous. His production partners are artists from the likes of Dubfire, and with his remixes for Depeche Mode, Underworld, Extrawelt, Chemical Brothers and 2Raumwohnung, the Hamburg resident proves that his interests are widespread.
We are very proud to welcome such an experienced and versatile artist among us!
Booking Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
(scroll down for the playlist)
Oliver, can you tell us a bit about your personal relation to electronic music? What is fascinating about this music, how does it spur you?
From the very beginning, it was the pushing aspect of electronic music that fascinated me. On the one hand, you have this driving and monotonous groove, on the other hand the constant search for the new. Above all, everybody is still looking forward, that's what I like. This applies for the work in the studio as well as for the nightlife. For me, the electronic scene is still the most creative one within the music business. Here, the trends that are later seized by commercial structures, are emerging first. This includes sound design, light and video installations, artwork or fashion. That's why I was really happy about the offer to become a part of the Cocoon Heroes, because here they have the whole package.
You have set up diverse collaborations with many different artists, such as Dubfire or Stephan Bodzin on the one side, and on the other side you made remixes for Depeche Mode, Underworld or 2Raumwohnung. What is, for you, special about these different cooperations and remixes?
I like to exchange ideas with other artists, whereas I keep an eye on the fact that it doesn't get too much. For instance, there is always only one collaboration at a time. For many years now, this is the cooperation with Dubfire, and prior to that it was with Stephan. Dubfire and I are in the middle of finishing the "Elements" series. "Aire" is almost ready and "Aqua" is already equipped with beats and bass lines. I enjoyed doing remixes for some time in the past, but now my studio time is so limited that I almost exclusively concentrate on my own productions. However, I generally find it interesting to rework other artist's music according to my taste.
Your mix series "PLAY!" has just seen its fourth edition – everything started back in 2007 at D-Edge in Brazil. What is the idea behind it?
In the course of the digital revolution in DJing, I wanted to step back a little and record some very classical DJ sets in the club at various stops of my tours. A musical world cruise, so to say. Initially, I would even set up microphones in the club in order to record the atmosphere, but I don't do that anymore since the last PLAY! as it is very difficult to capture the complete club feeling, especially because the concept aims at small but beautiful clubs such as D-Edge, Rex Club in Paris, Cielo in New York or the Roxanne Parlour in Melbourne. And somehow as a compensation, the CD has now turned out to be a double one, as I like to play really long sets, and 90 minutes are simply too short for a good cross-section. By the way, I just read that PLAY! 04 Live in Melbourne was nominated Best Compilation/Mix-CD in this year's Partysan Magazine poll. That's delighting, of course!
You are known for your fondness to take new paths, for instance, you have included the ReacTable in your live show. How does technology affect or change music, according to your opinion?
I'm not a tech nerd at all, I'm rather a slave of all this. I love electronic music and in order to produce it, I have to deal with technology. My partner André Winter is quite different to me, he always knows about the latest plug-ins. However, we have in common that we like to reduce ourselves. Putting your focus on fewer things often leads to a deeper intrusion and thus a better understanding. My first aim is to create a certain mood and this is not necessarily connected to the latest technical achievements. Ok, new ideas often come with new sounds, that's clear! But I think, it's all in the mix. If you concentrate too much on the technical part, the whole thing soon becomes too mathematic and the feeling gets lost, but if you're not taking care for the latest hard- and software, the production will suffer, on the other hand. So, keep cool and just go for it: with selected quality equipment and a free mind!
However, you are mainly known and touring as a DJ. Where is the difference to your live show, both technically and musically?
On the one hand, I see myself as a classical DJ who is working with Traktor and two turntables within the tradition of giving room to the tracks and also letting them run for longer, if possible. Each track for itself is telling a story, which I only reluctantly interrupt but rather blend together by a certain dramaturgy during my mixing. On the other side, I try to be open for new technologies. During the production of my last album "Paranoia", when I thought about presenting it live, I came across the ReacTable developers. As its process of arranging is very simple, I was immediately enthusiastic about the ReacTable and was even able to help to refine it, due to my experience. Meanwhile, there's even a Oliver Huntemann App for iPhone and iPad – of course with the original sound files and Qube configurations that I'm using myself.
Playlist: In The Spotlight ... Oliver Huntemann
01. Heiko Laux & Theo Schulte - Polyrhythm - Rejected
02. Namito Invites Sasse - Sustain - Systematic
03. Dubspeeka - Lily Of The Valley - Skelleton
04. Boris - Foul Beats - Sci+Tec
05. Gregor Tresher - Warpaint - Break New Soil
06. Maurizio - Vainqueur-Lyot (Christian Smith & Whebba Remix) - Promo
07. Gary Beck - Before The Crash - Soma
08. DBX - Losing Control - Peacefrog
09. Oliver Huntemann - Melbourne - Ideal Audio
10. Maetrik - Envy - Dumb Unit
11. André Winter - Blackmail - Ideal Audio