For our 74th edition of Nightclubber Podcast we have a special guest from the Cocoon roster, Daniel Stefanik. Daniel was clearly born in Detroit because only so can that innate love of this sound scape be explained, but we will let you find out more about his past, present and future in our exclusive interview.
1. Hello Daniel how are you?
Everything’s perfect. Thanks!
2. Can you give us some insight on how did your musical journey begin?
I started playing the drums in a musical school when I was four years old. Later I taught myself how to play keyboard and guitar. I just love to play instruments. That’s my way of expression and I feel so relaxed in those moments. So music kind of accompanies me my whole life already and I can’t imagine it without music
3. As we reviewed your discography on Discogs one can say that Daniel Stefanik is, hands down, an experienced electronic music producer, can you please tell us how did the process evolve and what are the changes that occurred in the production process?
I use to be inspired by my musical idols and they are broadly based. I’m not able to limit myself to just one genre, because this would bore me pretty fast and I would probably repeat myself over and over again. To be precise: A wide range forces you to a new approach. A 4/4 beat at 125 BPM can be so simple and it still works. While trying to be more experimental you need to work and you have to be more creative. Good thing is, that you can implement your knowledge in the next productions
4. And since we are talking about producing, your second album „Confidence“ was released on Cocoon Recordings this month, can you give us some details about it?
The album is called „Confidence“. The actual story can be found in the name itself. Actually it tells my personal background in the Techno business. The tracks a sorted in a chronological way of important milestones. I didn’t want to invent myself in a new way but stick to my usual terrain. Nevertheless I wanted to produce a dancefloor-oriented album to fullfil the style of the brand Cocoon. But I wanted to abide to my principles as well. In retrospect I am absolutly satisfied with the result and I can say that it is a very honest album.
5. How long was the process and what inspired you the most ?
I was working on it about four months, but it also includes lots of ideas that I kept on my computer for about four years. The classical Detroit-sound is entrenched very deep within me, it influenced me a lot. But while producing the album I realized that I am also influenced by the sound of Frankfurt. Sven Väth, Heiko Laux or Ricardo Villalobos, just to name three of them, play a huge role at my musical background. Responsible for the experimental part is definitly Warp with its protagonists Autechre, Boards of Canada and Aphex Twin. I used to buy those records blind. It’s simply great music. By the way I’m not listening to Ricardo’s records anymore either, I buy them shrink-wrapped. I call it a duty-buy.
6. How did joining the Cocoon family change your life?
It feels great to be part of such a huge agency. You have so many more possibilities now. The whole perception is different. When I released my album „Reactivity“ in 2008 I gave one interview and that one was for a city-magazine in Leipzig. Lots of people noticed the album many years later. Even today I receive mails from people who discovered it now. But that’s ok that way. I like it better, if it takes time. Eveythings grows naturally and it doesn’t drive you crazy when it turns from 0 to 100.
7. What do you think about the Romanian electronic music scene? Have you played in Romania?
I’ve never played in Romania before. I’ve been there on vacation but that’s it. Of course I’m highly interested in what’s happening there. I’m a huge fan of Rhadoo, Petre and Raresh. I think that their whole surrounding gets influenced by them, so there are only good things with high quality coming up. „Understand“ is such a label, which I follow up. That are duty-buys as well. Unfortunately their records aren’t available here in Leipzig and at Freebase they are always out of stock, that’s why I’m still missing the last two records. That’s annoying if you are a hunter-gatherer like me.
8. We’ve seen several gigs where you’ve shared the booth with Matthias Kaden, what can you tell us about your “relationship”?
That’s a very special relationship. We met each other in 2005 and had a good connection right away. His background is more House music and mine is Techno, so it’s the perfect mixture. When we play together we really interact with each other. Besides that it’s important to know someone in that business who you can fully rely on. We are making a phone call at least once a week.
9. Can you name five tracks that you enjoy listening? Not necessarily dancefloor oriented.
Ricardo Villalobos – Koito – Perlon
Mark Broom – Satellite – Beard Man
DJ Q – Out – Strength Music
Oak – Escapist – Space Cadets 005
Flying Lotus – Until The Quiet Comes – Warp
10. How do you like to spend your free/off studio time?
I love sports – most of all soccer. I play soccer with a couple of friends each week. Of course I love my two dogs as well. Unfortunately they had to eat humble pie while I was producing the album, but we will catch up on it now.
11. Can you tell us what surprises can we expect from Daniel Stefanik in the near/not so far future?
At the moment I am working on the 3rd part of my series „In Days Of Old“ for Kann Records. I want it to be released next year. Generally I want to experiment a little more in the studio again. I’m dealing with Max/MSP at the moment and I’m fascinated of what you can do with it. Besides that I’m working on a modular system, which will open new doors for my productions.
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