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Interview: Ramsey Neville

today20/04/2023 14

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Hey Ramsey, how are you, what’s good and bad in your world right now?

Hey guys! I’m doing pretty well, looking forward to chatting today. Right now what’s good in my world is that I just got back from a trip to Costa Rica to escape the cold New York weather, and the bad is adjusting to that cold weather now that I’m back!

What draws you to the dystopian end of the techno spectrum?

That’s a good question and I think the answer is multifaceted. I’ve always been drawn to darker and more intense music in every genre I listen to, so naturally the heavier side of techno appeals to me. On top of that, I’m a lifelong sci-fi fan so I’ve always loved gritty, dark, futuristic soundscapes, so dystopian techno feels like home.

Do you find comfort in darkness or do you like the hostile vibes?

I love blistering energy and intensity in my music, but not necessarily hostile vibes all the time (maybe once in a while though haha). But I absolutely find comfort in darkness.

How much is Brooklyn an influence on you and your music? Has the scene made a big impact on you?

Brooklyn is a huge influence for me, and really New York City as a whole. Living here is a constant source of inspiration; just walking down the street you’ll see some of the most interesting people you’ve ever run into, or find creativity manifesting itself in different types of art or music around every corner. The fast-paced energy of the city is extremely seductive and drives my high-energy sound.

The music scene in Brooklyn is also a huge influence because there’s a constant stream of artists in every genre, whether they are New York locals or international touring artists, playing shows every night of the week, so I’m always discovering fresh new music that expands my mind.

What inspired the new one on Dubfire’s revered SCI + TEC imprint? Where and when was it written?

I drew inspiration for this EP from many places, but I really set out to channel the kind of vibe and energy I look for when I’m deep in the dance floor at a party. The kind of energy that’s both dark and brooding, but relentlessly hypnotic, where I can get lost in the music for hours at a time without coming up for air.

These tracks were mostly written over the course of the past year in 2022, and three of the four tracks were produced in my Brooklyn studio. The exception being ‘Münze’, which I wrote in my hotel room in Berlin immediately following the Pornceptual party because I was so inspired by all of the incredible sets I heard that night.

What’s your studio like – do you have one? Is it full of gear or are you a software guy?

My studio space is fairly minimal, I have a couple pieces of gear but it’s 90% software. My core setup is a MacBook Pro, Ableton Live, my old trusty Axiom25 MIDI Keyboard, Sennheiser HD600’s headphones, and a pair of Adams T7V monitor speakers. The analog gear I have is an Elektron Model:Cycles, Korg Monologue, and a TD-3, but I don’t use them as often as I’d like to.

What have been some of the key bits of software or gear in making your signature sound?

Some of the key pieces of kit I use in the majority of my tracks are: the Max for Live mk16 sequencer paired with instruments from the Arturia Collection or other VST’s, and then run through the iZotope Trash 2 distortion plugin, among other things. As for hardware, I use the Korg Monologue fairly often for creating my basslines. Aside from that, I can’t give away all of my secrets 😉

What does it mean to get high profile support from the likes of Hawtin and Monoloc?

Honestly it’s a really humbling feeling when my tracks get high profile support. It always motivates me to keep pushing my creative boundaries and to keep making more music!

What else are you working on?

Right now I’ve got a few things in the works, first and foremost I’m finishing up a ton of new music that I’m super excited about, as well as lining up shows in a bunch of new cities later this year. The other big project I’m in the midst of is building my new artist collective/ record label/ party series called IMPULSE CØNTROL, which will be launching in the next couple of months.

Where would you like to be in five years?

In five years, I want to be making better and better music, releasing great tracks, playing shows around the world, and building up IMPULSE CØNTROL to be a collective that artists are excited to be a part of.

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