Italian Techno artist Uto Karem has released EP’s on labels including Richie Hawtin’s Plus 8 Records, Christian Smith’s Tronic, Dubfire’s SCI+TEC and his own Agile Recordings. Following a quiet couple of years where he spent time working on his recent debut album titled Waking Up The Neighbours, he is now back with a string of high profile gigs and releases.
October 2017 will see Uto Karem playing headline gigs everywhere from Hungary to Germany, and we caught up with him to discuss his latest release, which in stores now, is a collaborative EP on Loose Records with fellow Techno titan Mladen Tomic.
> For the people reading this who haven’t heard your music before, how would you describe your style, and the key elements that define it?
As an electronic music artist, DJing and listening to music for twenty years, I enjoy listening to all kinds of good music, that can go from high energy techno to ambient and downtempo, so it’s difficult for me to define a specific style, but when it comes to the dance floor I like to infuse my sets with plenty of groove, soulful elements and a few timeless tunes.
> Your most recent release was a collaborative EP with Mladen Tomic who has released solo tracks on labels ranging from Monika Kruse’s Terminal M to Sasha’s Last Night On Earth, how did you and Mladen Tomic meet?
Mladen and I have known each other for many years and we both have a mutual respect as artists and as friends. We have already collaborated in the past on my label Agile Recordings as well as shared the decks in many events around the globe. So as soon as the idea came up it was just a matter of time we would release a collaborative EP.
> Your EP with Mladen Tomic was released on Loose Records, was there a concept behind the release?
Loose Records is a well-known label that has been delivering quality music over the years, which is what we aimed for, to do something consistent and striking, so for us it was natural to output our EP on the label with that purpose.
> Could you talk us through the creative process and list any specific equipment used to bring sounds to life?
Over the years my studio setup has always been changing and evolving; nowadays I like to have a live approach to producing music in a more spontaneous and at the same time, fun way. On this EP the setup used was based around Ableton live. Drums were laid down on Maschine, synths were made with the new Roland equipment that I like a lot these days. Compressor and EQ’s were both done on analogue and software.
> I understand you recently released your debut solo album; do you have any other big projects you are currently working on?
Yes, my recent album Waking Up The Neighbours was released earlier this year. It was a challenging project and I am very proud of it. At the start of 2018 we are planning to have a remix series with selected artists that are going to rework the originals. We already have on board the likes of Paride Saraceni, G-Flame, Loco & Jam, Danilø Vigorito, Drunken Kong and Raffaele Rizzi, just to name a few. All of whom are both artists and friends I have huge respect for.
> Could you give some advice or words of wisdom to any aspiring producers who would look to your music for inspiration?
I’d tell them that to get inspired by others is always good and the key to keep motivation high. Especially at the start it’s important for the learning process, but they should also work hard to find their own style and discover new forms to express their creativity.
> Thanks for taking the time to speak with us today, we like to finish our interviews with a couple of questions that are a little bit light hearted… without getting to personal, could you tell us something many don’t know about you?
Well there are not many secrets to reveal. Apart from the music aspect and all the traveling, I like to keep my feet on the ground in the everyday life; I like enjoying my time with my friends, swimming at the sea and just try to keep a balance between a healthy lifestyle and a busy touring schedule.
> You don’t need to mention names, but what’s the most “outrageous” thing you have ever seen happen in a club… was it something outrageously brilliant, like a blindfolded DJ mixing seamlessly and scratching with his elbows, or something outrageously cringe-worthy, like some embarrassing drunk guy urinating on the dancefloor?
Once I saw a funny thing happen in a club. There was this girl leaning back on a railing about 2m high, and eventually she fell backwards. We all thought it was bad, but in a blink of an eye she got up and continued to dance as if nothing had happened. It was quite comical and we were all glad the girl was fine.