Him Self Her - Double Touch

Double Touch is a duo consisting of Olsen who is a DJ/Producer from Sydney in Australia, and classically trained pianist Van-Anh Nguyen who is based in LA. The transatlantic duo have a unique blend of orchestral sounds and electronica, which was recently showcased via the new release they put out on the highly influential label All Day I Dream.

> 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?

Our main style for Double Touch is Melodic House with a blend of electronic and organic instruments. As we both love Classical music, we add a lot of orchestral sounds and try to incorporate elements of that music into our production.

> The first Double Touch release came out on All Day I Dream run by Lee Burridge and Matthew Dekay, How did you first make contact with the guys to send them your demo?

We did release one single last year called Broken Paradise but the EP with All Day I Dream is our first EP and second ever release. We actually hit up Lee Burridge over Facebook Messenger after he gave our first release 5/5 on DJ promo and we just wanted to thank him for the feedback. The All Day I Dream label has been a massive influence for us since day one of writing for Double Touch so that feedback meant a lot to us. We weren’t actually expecting a response at all from Lee as it was just to his artist page, but he did reply and a week later I sent him 4 demos we had been working on. He then said he wanted all four of them for an EP which was amazing!

> Talking of your release on All Day I Dream, please can you run through the tracks and the concept behind each of them?

1) ADAGIO – The opening track and title song off the EP is an ambient adaptation of Adagio in G MInor by 18th Century composer Tomaso Albinoni. We took a section of the melody from the piece, changed the time signature to 4/4 and transformed in into a modern electronic work. Van-Anh wrote the string arrangements and we recorded live Cello and Violin on the final version. We have always loved the original piece, so we wanted to bring the idea into the 21st century.

2) BAGHDAD – This track is mysterious Melodic House tune featuring ethnic instruments and melodies. We sometimes give the titles of our songs to cities around the world which remind us of the music. Baghdad seemed to be a great fit for this track with its rich history in the Middle ages and desert landscape.

3) CAPE COVE – The second half of the EP kicks things up a little. Cape Cove is another track with plenty of melodies which can be haunting but beautiful at the same time. This one is more synth focussed rather than live instruments. We were hoping to create a hypnotic dream-like state with this song while still being able to be played in a club or festival.

4) PIANO SINES – The last track from the EP is more of an “after dark” song. A touch darker than the other songs, but still very melodic. As a lover of funk music, I started this song off as a groove with the bass and the drums which by itself sounds quite funky. Then once we added the melodic instruments in, it changed it completely into more of a Melodic Deep House track.

> Van-Anh Nguyen is the other half of the Double Touch project. What influence does she have on the sound of the music you make together, and it there a story behind how you first met?

Van-Anh definitely brings an extra level of musicality into the project with her Classical Music background. She will turn a basic chord progression into something much more complex and interesting. She is a musical genius!
We actually met in the studio. We connected over Facebook and decided to get in the studio together and see what happens. That was day one for Double Touch.

> Could you talk us through the essential bits of studio equipment you use and how you normally start a new track?

We try to add in as many live instruments as we can on our productions, so our equipment is a blend of live instruments and synths/VSTs. We usually start writing a song with VSTs such as Omnisphere and Massive for the synth and bass parts, then LASS for the strings. Then we replace some of the sounds later on with live instruments and hardware. I usually write a drum groove with bass and sometimes a basic chord progression, then Van-Anh will come in and polish it up with nicer chords and adds Piano/Strings arrangements. The last process is making a final arrangement of the track and working out where to put the breakdowns etc.

> Could you give some advice or words of wisdom to any aspiring producers who might look to your music for inspiration?

Just keep writing as much as possible. As a producer you seem to learn something new every song you write – a new sound you created, or a new technique in the production. Also get in the studio with other producers and collaborate. This is a great way of sharing knowledge and techniques. Lastly, don’t think you need the newest, most expensive gear.. Great music has been written with just a laptop and headphones. The idea is the most important thing, not the gear.

> We like to finish our interviews with a couple of questions that are a little bit light hearted… without getting too personal, could you tell us something many don’t know about you?

Van-Anh and I are not just musical partners… We have been in a relationship for a few years now. Im not sure if people already know that or not?? Thats our gossip magazine inside scoop for you. 😉

> 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 their elbows, or something outrageously cringe-worthy, like some embarrassing drunk person urinating on the dancefloor?

I have seen something much worse than urinating on the dance-floor but lets not go there.. One other outrageous thing that comes to mind is Prince Harry playing my bongos at a club after the English Rugby team won the World Cup many years ago. They had the after party at a club in Sydney after the grand final which I happened to be playing drums/percussion with a DJ. I was on a break and looked over to see Prince Harry on stage playing my bongos. That was outrageous for me anyway..

> Thanks for taking the time to speak with us, is there anything extra you want to add before we wrap up the conversation?

Thanks for having us onboard for the interview! If people want to keep updated with our music, please follow us on Facebook and Instagram. We have lots more exciting things happening in 2019.

> You can buy Double Touch’s new release on All Day I Dream from …HERE…