Tell us about your early beginnings and how you got into music and DJing.
I grew up in a small village in the middle of nowhere in the north of Germany. We didn’t have access to clubs, which meant I literally started clubbing when I was in my 20s, but I bought my first vinyl when I was 14, which was in 1994/95, after I watched Mayday at home with chips and coca cola. After that I wanted to be a DJ too. From this point on I started to buy vinyl, while also listening to hip hop and electronica at the same time. At the age of 22, I moved into a flatsharing community and we finally had two turntables.
You have an upcoming Australia tour coming up very soon! Tell us about how it came together and what we can expect from it.
I already played for example at Revolver and Strawberry Fields and really liked it and it went also really well. Also the promoters from Thick As Thieves who organized my tour were pretty happy so we definitely wanted to make this happen again!
How has the scene changed since the release of your debut track back in 2006?
Oh let’s say it has changed 10373% from underground, vinyl only, almost no social media and being able to just be a great DJ without having to have massive releases, to the total opposite. But don’t get me wrong, I also like how it changed. Now nearly everybody has access to all the music and also people who never had access to vinyl can be amazing DJs nowadays. But you still need to have a good unique taste and to find the perfect tracks for the perfect moment to make it.
You have a beautiful new track ‘ Hope’ with Ryan Davis that features on the upcoming Watergate XV compilation, how did this collaboration come about?
I was always a fan of his more orchestra-influenced music and last year I did a remix for one of his tracks ‘Brun’. This went really well and was easy to work with ‘cause it has a track without drums, just bass and an orchestra score. When I worked on my idea I really missed those kind of elements, so I asked him if he is interested in doing this one together and it worked great. One of the highlights in my sets and also one of my fav tracks that I’ve produced in general!
What influenced the writing of this track?
We both fans of movie soundtracks and my idea was based on a sample from a movie, but in the end I removed it and we wrote a whole new score on top.
What equipment / programs do you use for producing and DJing.
It’s funny I took the opposite way. I grew up with software only and now getting more into the analog world. I use Omnisphere on almost every track for example and still use the Arturia V Collection all the time. I begin with ideas in Ableton and finish sometimes in Logic for the mixdown. Hardware wise I use my Prophet 6 and an old Roland string machine pretty often. I’m now starting getting into the modular world to build my own groove boxes.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Actually I don’t really listening to music at home, but when I do, I listen to more ambient, downtempo and orchestra music .
You recently had your debut Ibiza residency at HS82’s Labyrinth party – Pacha, where your masterful brand of atmospheric house saw you play on 7 occasions through the season, epic! Please tell about your experience playing these shows?
Yes it was an amazing opportunity for me. I met and played with so many great artists – some of whon I never met. All parties were super packed really early. I think it’s still great for a DJ to be there ‘cause there are so many people coming for vacation from all around the world who probably never saw me live. So I hope they went back home and had a good memory from Ibiza with me/us playing. I hope I will come back next year!
It was Watergate’s 15 Year Anniversary – the club that you have been a resident at for the last 5 years and where you performed closing sets that stretch right through to closing, the stuff of legends, how do you keep your sets and material fresh each show?
I always play different slots at Watergate so it’s not always the closing to the very end. When I play two hours peak in the main room it’s quite different. But yes I feel more comfortable and fun playing the long closings on the waterfloor. I can play more deeper music I really like. I have quite a few ones and every situation is always different. So it’s not too bad!
What has been your favourite show of the year and why?
All the Pacha shows were amazing and also our Brazilian tour was my favourite in general; we had 6 amazing parts – it’s hard to pick a fave. If I have to pick just a single gig then I would properly say the Cityfox Experience closing in New York a few weeks ago. This venue and the production is just incredible, never saw something like this before. They actually build a whole city from scratch. Was an outdoor area with 3000-4000 people. That was insane.
What influences your sound?
I grew up with different genres. Hip hop, Electronica, old French house and deep house. I used to live in Hamburg for a long time and I was always influenced by Hamburg’s deep house and electronica like DJ Koze, Lawrence, Smallville my old home label LiebeDetail. Also the years between 2006-2009 really influenced my music.
You remix of Butch’s ‘Shahrzad’ became a bonafide Burning Man anthem, why do you think this remix in particular has been such a hit?
I quiet knew it before because the melodies are really ear worm like, I just had to put these elements into a longer part. Unfortunately the original melodies were just featured in the break. I really wanted to make a whole track of it!
How did you learn to remix?
I never actually learned to remix. I just like to put a track from another genre into more my kind of music.
What’s planned for the future?
After our long 1 month trip I am happy to have a break and finally work on new music in the studio. Then I just have lots of amazing news but I can’t tell right now.;-)
Favourite food and place to hangout?
I am a big Seafood fan, so I also like to hangout at the water. Not always interested in get into it but still like to be there. I like to have break in Asia like Bali, Vietnam and Thailand. Also really like India and its food!
Matthias Meyer & Ryan Davis ‘Hope’ is out now: https://www.beatport.com/