Interview: Declan Harrick
Autosea are excited to host international house and techno producer Oskar Offermann in April. The Frankfurt born and now Berlin-based act has played the most notable clubs in his own hometown and major parties and festivals around the world.
We spoke with Offerman about Australia’s music culture, working with friends and losing his virginity on exchange in Australia.
Hi Oskar, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions. First off, how are you feeling about coming to Australia?
Great, I’ve been in love with this beautiful country ever since I lost my virginity there as an exchange student.
Obviously you’ve been here twice before for shows, is there anything in particular you are looking forward to seeing again?
Of course, the party scene in general is very lovely in Australia. It feels very homey, everybody is very chilled and down to earth, just very easy people to get along with I guess.
Reading an interview with Resident Advisor I couldn’t help but be drawn to the story you told about your friends from Closer in Kiev last year. You mentioned it as being one of your most memorable moments of the year, has anything topped that since?
There were so many great moments last year… many parties in The States or Mexico, like Resolute in NYC, or Un_Mute in Miami or Communite in Tulum… a young crazy club scene in Asia, and of course lots of madness in Europe as well, like Closer in Kiev, Block in Tel Aviv or tINI’s gangs moments in different places!
Speaking of friends, they are obviously an important part of your life, with your Friends + Values blog highlighting this. It’s been inactive for a while now, yet ultimately it acts as a platform for DJs and Producers to get away from the intensity that being a full time musician obviously entails. How important is separating your professional life from everyday things?
Actually I don’t separate that at all. Since I do my passion for living, I never stop working and all my friends are involved in that process. So living together in the tiny city of Offenbach, we party together and of course we end up in each other studios at times. It is hard for me to separate that, because every day pretty much feels like summer break.
Your professional life differs from others though, with your own releases coinciding with running WHITE. Recently you’ve shut it down, how big of a change has that been for you?
Great! we started WHITE out of a necessity… but now there are so many labels around me and it was hard for me to concentrate on my own art and run the business side of things also for other people. Now I release on befriended labels and feel so much better with it.
You are also good friends with Edward. With the end of WHITE, is there any chance we might see you with Giegling in the future?
No, I don’t think this is an option at the moment.
One of the reasons I asked is because your most recent album ‘Le Grand To Do’ takes the same minimalist approach that Giegling is known for. I saw that restricted your studio setup to cheap drum machines and synths for this. What was the thinking behind this?
I just wanted to produce a modern kind of music with the old-school soul of old drum machines. That was probably the main approach behind it. The skits were laying around since 2014 and Toshiya Kawasaki (the guy behind Mule Musiq) approached me to finish the work and to make an album out of it.
Most of your music and mixes take this same deep, moody approach. Is it difficult making music considering that you play most of it in the early hours?
I do produce music in the early hours actually! I am a early morning person. So maybe you are right about this.
With your mixes I read that you “couldn’t stand this poppy, trance-y vocal stuff.” Yet, in reading your sole post on Friends + Values I couldn’t help but notice you drew on your first love songs (sorry to hear about that girl from school). Being that they are typically a bit more poppy, how do you take this interest and put it into your own music without over doing it?
These are 2 very different things. There is this tendency in modern club music, which I dislike, because I find it too cheesy for the club. But on the radio I love to listen to pop. I love pop from the fifties because it is so innocent and naive. In my own music, I usually end up killing the more poppier moments, because I think in the club it can be too fast!
2016 was another big year for you, what do you have planned next?
There is a double 12 inch planned for Mule, which will be released in March this year, and decorating my new apartment with the final touch finally.
You can catch Oskar Offermann at his only Melbourne show at Boney on Friday April 7.