Endlich wieder ease up^ im Conne Island! Jungle und Drum & Bass stehen auf der Agenda, spannende Gefilde wollen ausgelotet werden. Schubladen sind Schall und Rauch, das Genre windet sich in immer neuen Etiketten: Tribal, Halfstep, Dubwise, Ziontific, … – und kein Ende in Sicht! Abseits der maschinenartigen Musikindustrie finden sich blühende Landschaften, die es zu entdecken gilt.
Unser Blick schweift jenseits der omnipräsenten Bassinsel zum "Tor nach Asien", gen Istanbul. Hier lebt und arbeitet Omer O. aka Flatliners, ein umtriebiger DJ, Produzent, Veranstalter und Radiomacher. Schon etliche Jahre widmet er sich der Liebe zur Musik und der Jagd nach Samples. Dub ist sein Steckenpferd, ein gutes Händchen bei der Auswahl und der Einsatz von analogen Hallgeräten zeichnen Flatliners Tunes aus. Jamaikanische Soundsystemkultur ist die Schiene, Drum&Bass gibt das Tempo vor und Jungle sitzt hinten im offenen Verdeck mit frischen Vibes an Bord.
Dazu kommt Fran aus Dresden, deren Selections sanft aber stetig auf sich aufmerksam machen. In vielseitigen Ausflügen jongliert sie spielend mit deepem Dubstep und experimentierfreudigem Drum & Bass. Grüße an die Headz mit den offenen Mündern in der ersten Reihe! Obendrauf wird LXC wieder ein buntes Potpourri der gepflegt beschleunigten Bassmusik präsentieren: Mit alten Bekannten des letzten Jahrtausends ebenso wie mit den Dubplate-Geschichten von morgen. Eingeläutet und ausgeschaukelt wird der Abend wie immer mit und von den ease uppers^. Zusätzliche Subwoofer garantieren angenehm wohlige Massageschauer im Nackenbereich - ease up^!
Hey, it's LXC from Leipzig, how is it over there?
Hello sir, all cool here. Hot and shiny in Istanbul…
Great to hear, summer is huge here as well. Tell us a bit about you, your first steps into sound, your roots…
Wow, hmm. Where shall I start… I started making music on Amiga years ago for cracktros (crack intros) and demos. At first I started with chiptunes. Then my big brother bought a sampler for Amiga 500, with 12 or 14 bit, I don't remember well. (laughs) I started to sample from Prodigy and the likes in 1994-95. Until I bought a PC I was using Amiga protracker for doing music. Then i met (Roland) Juno synths and PC… Fasttracker! I did some breakbeat tunes and chiptunes until I met Cubase 3. In 2002-2003 I started to produce Drum&Bass tracks.
My roots is Hip Hop, as a DJ as well. I started to DJ in 1999 at some local rockbar. I was trying to mix Breakbeats, Drum&Bass, Electronic and Hip Hop together. In 2001 I switched to jazzy and Liquid Drum&Bass as a DJ. In 2003 i did some Drum&Bass remix to turkish pop singers.
Then I met Loxy, on AIM, he was so supportive and friendly. I had made a tune called Rainmaker after I bought a Nord Lead 2, and he loved it. He supported me more and motivated me to do more tunes and here I am! (laughs)
How it went along into your Flatliners moniker, it wasn't always a one man project, right? What were your biggest milestones? And who is this King Fifi anyways?
Yeh, for some time Flatliners was me and my friend Golem. We were DJing together and I was doing tunes. We split off again. King Fifi is me of course. I just was called like that by my friends. All of them, even work buddies did it! Sometime later it became my name like an alias. (laughs) It is silly I know, but no one calls me my real name these days. So as a Dub producer I call myself King Fifi, just for fun.
My biggest milestone is meeting Loxy, of course. He was playing my tunes on early CX podcasts years ago. My very first signing was on Future Thinkin in 2010. Then I made Babel. Loxy locked it the very 1st moment he heard, for Cylon. Then I released my debut EP on Break Fast Audio. One of my biggest influence was our close friend Morphy the Dubmonger!
First time we met was in Glasgow, for some other reason. I went to RJ's (Morphy) place to meet him. He was waiting on the door, outside, and smiling to me. The very first time I've seen him, and he was like the longlost brother. (laughs) We sat at the computer and made Abi Dub which is gonna be released very soon on Translation. Sometimes later we went to Poland on a minitour with Reza and other guys. Poland was amazing. It was like a vacation for us. Then he (RJ aka Morphy) came to Istanbul for 2+ weeks and we did some tunes.
Your music has a whole lotta elements known from Jamaican soundsystem culture. Is it just an eclectic way you deal with it or do you have a bigger connection from the heart? Is Fifi a rasta?
(big laugh) The thing is, the very first tune I heard in Drum&Bass was M-Beat feat. General Levy, "Incredible", in 1995. My brother bought some CD compilations from Germany and it was on one of them. The very first time I heard it I was shocked. I was 14 years old. I felt the energy. And something I don't remember right now. I fell in love with it. Then I heard some roots dubs and reggae stuff on compilations, thanks to the internet. Then I met roots dub, thanks to Digital, Loxy, Breakage and such. I was hearing loads of oldskool soundclash samples and was wondering where do they sample them. I started to buy 7"es and 12"es for sampling.
I have my own siren samples. And got some siren apps on my phone, and I got Nord Lead 2. Basically I'm plugging them to my Roland RE 201 Space Echo, voila! I'm more the hardware person. I use synths, echoes, tape reverbs and delays, I use computer to sequence and program the drums and for samples. I hate VSTs. ;) But sometimes Cubase's default reverb works amazing.
So I bet you have a big collection of toys? Is it important to have this vintage gear, do you feel it technically or is it just a matter of heart & soul?
Yeah, well, I have 3 tape echoes: two Roland RE 201 and one RE 101. Nord lead 2, Virus B, Microkorg, Yamaha DX7, Rhodes, Korg Prophecy, ... Technically, using vintage gear is a pain in the ass in my opinion. They need to be taken care of a lot! They are like old US cars. But I love the sound – and all the pain is worth it. So, yeah, it's a matter of heart and soul! (laughs)
As a DJ, you surely have contacts with promoters in your city and area. Is there a Drum&Bass scene, is there a Dub scene? Tell us about what's up in Istanbul! If I come over, which venues would you show me and why?
Istanbul is kinda weak on bass music. So, nottin gwan in Istanbul I'm afraid. The Dub / Reggae scene is bigger than the Drum&Bass scene here. There is movements, few soundsystems and some Reggae festivals going on here. Not so professional but I'm supporting them to the bones. If you would come over I would take you to my friends' clubs of course… House / Disco stuff and nice ladies. ;)
Are there other producers around which you dig? Radio guys, label makers, live acts, vocalists, promoters, street art guys, etc.?
As a street art guy I dig Turbo. He is killing on graffiti. And a very close friend as well. He kinda started the turkish Hip Hop culture 15 years ago. As a label im diggin Sublime Porte. That's Istanbul's very 1st internet label… and its free! Music from the heart, smashing down the babylon seen! Generally, here is few artists around me which I love: Gantz, Biblo, Unaware, Kaan Duzarat, Subsky, DJ Tutan, …
What do you feel at the moment? Which acts, tunes or mixes do fascinate you?
Do you see yourself more like a drum&bass artist or as a dub head?
I like all kind of music… but I'm a Dub head. (laughs)
What was your first vinyl release? Do you think this media is still of importance?
What do you think of the whole label culture… how should it be, what's great already, what do you miss maybe?
The only thing I can say is that tunes need to be released much faster! (laughs)
What can we expect for your set on saturday?
You can expect drums, dum dum bass, and dubbed out vibes!
Really looking forward for your appearance, cheers!
Thank you sir! Was a pleasure. :-)