Patrice Bäumel roars loudly on this cat-themed RA podcast.
The surprise of the summer? The best DJ tool out there may just be the one without a kick drum at all. "Roar," Patrice Bäumel's debut 12-inch for the Get Physical label has been turning heads from all corners of the DJ universe, earning raves from jocks as varied as DJ Hell and Erol Alkan.
"Mutant pop" is what Bäumel calls his productions. But that same satisfying blend of melody and rhythm that has infused his work for Trapez and Get Physical could just as easily describe his DJ sets as well. As a resident at the sadly departed Club 11, Bäumel along with his DJing partner Nuno Dos Santos, focuses on the melodic side of things and here on his RA podcast, you can hear the long sweeping chords of DJ Koze's remix of Sascha Funke's "Mango" and Jens Zimmermann's "Heaven." In between all of this uplift? Snippets from a BBC documentary on cats. We'll leave that one to Mr. Bäumel to explain…
What have you been working on recently?
I've just finished a new track for Get Physical's next Full Body Workout compilation. I used it in the mix, so that's a sneak preview for RA listeners. I have also been spending a large portion of my time on a new EP for Trapez, which is planned for late 2008. It's not all work, though. I really try to enjoy the summer as much as I can and not get too carried away with production and DJ duties.
Now that Club 11 has closed, where's the new hotspot in Amsterdam?
Right now, I do not see an immediate successor for 11. The focus mainly shifts back to the more established venues, like Melkweg, Studio 80, Paradiso, Flex Bar, and Sugar Factory. It's hard to tell right now, a lot of the action is taking place at the big summer festivals. The good news for punters eager to check out the Amsterdam nightlife is that there is a thriving scene with lots of quality parties waiting for them! Some really good summer spots are a city beach called Blijburg as well as Woodstock 69 right on the North Sea coast. Also keep your eyes open for some semi-legal afterhour options.
You've mentioned early in your career Riley Reinhold gave you some production coaching. Is he still as hands-on?
Nowadays a second opinion, a few words of advice here and there are enough. It's pretty smooth-sailing. The same can be said about Thomas (DJ T.) from Get Physical. These guys have been in the business for so long that they know what works, so any remarks from them are valuable. But there is a lot of trust and they mainly let me do my thing.
What do you have against kick drums?
I love a big kick drum! That is the exact reason why I made "Roar" without one, to build up some tension that can be released with the first kick of the next record. Dance music is about dynamics, so a massive change from 5 minutes of no kick to a pounding beat has more impact than a constantly ongoing kick. If you listen to classical or jazz music, they use the entire dynamic spectrum, from really quiet to extremely loud. This is what makes music expressive. I see a lot of potential in that area for techno and house music.
Can you tell us a little about the idea behind the mix?
Together with my DJ partner Nuno Dos Santos I have been making monthly mixes to promote our "360" nights at Club 11. To make things more interesting we started using audio fragments from movies or radio shows. A mix turns into a story with audio bits and music going hand in hand. It's also more recognizable. I am trying to showcase that in this mix as well. I also wanted to create a mix that represents what I do as a DJ but works well in a listening environment, like your iPod or home.
Where and how was the mix recorded?
At home in my studio. Lots of editing work went into the tracks to make them fit better with each other. After the basic mix was finished, I added the audio fragments from the BBC animal show.
What are you up to next?
A new record for Get Physical is in the making. I am also working on a remix for Marc Romboy on Systematic. And I finally want to take some time in the studio with Nuno to work on a release for our "360 Soundsystem" project.