The Amsterdam based artist released a new EP on HAYES and launched his brand new label, OOM Records
TWR72 pioneers a forward thinking approach towards electronic music: a fusing and pulsing rhythm with a cutting drive, binding it with a strong signature groove. Amsterdam based TWR72 premiered a collaboration with Truncate in 2014. This was the same year in which Float Records was established.
This month (October 2020), he launched his new label OOM Records and released a brand new EP on HAYES.
TWR72’s Whir EP floods our sonic receptors with a multitude of thick and compounding grooves. The clean but energetic cuts exhibit a contemporary drapery, properly executed for a ritualistic machine-dance. Closing the package is a dancefloor-grinding remix from HAYES Collective’s VIL.
Hello Roger, thank you for your time. First of all when and how did you got in touch with techno and electronic music?
When I was around 6 years old I had my first experiences with electronic music. I always joined the niece of my father in the car during the summer holidays when we were on a campsite. And they always had these house cd’s “Turn Up the Bass” turned on in their car. I remembered the electronic sounds always made a huge impression on me. Later on when I was 13/14 years old I bought my first turntables and started out with a huge variety of music going from techno to house to hiphop. And I remember that I did go out on a pretty early age to some big techno warehouse party’s in town. Funny thing is that this was with the designer of Float Records, a close friend of mine. One of our parents drove us to the events and waited outside to see if we came in, as chances were small at this young age, but luckily we always managed to get in!
For how long have you been active as a DJ and producer?
As a dj it all became serious around the age of 17/18 when we (with my former dj partner in crime Tom) had our first gigs. We saw so many beautiful places around the world at such a young age that when I look back to it it’s actually pretty surreal. We had so many adventures, so many impressions and so many lessons learned. Such a beautiful and fun period.
Producing is not something you learn over a day. It really takes effort and persistence to come to a certain point you feel comfortable about your own creation
As a producer it started to become more serious at around the age of 24 I think. I suddenly felt the urgency to play my own music. I already produced music at the age of 16, but that was all very naïve. And producing is not something you learn over a day. It really takes effort and persistence to come to a certain point you feel comfortable about your own creation. Since 7 years ago I’m really producing on a daily base, which gained me so much knowledge, confidence and above all, pleasure. But still there are so many things to learn. My goal is to never stop learning.
You also have your own imprint FLOAT Records. Tell us about it and how did you come up with idea to manage an own label.
FLOAT was started out of an urgency to change something in the techno landscape. We had a couple of reasons to start it. The first reason was to give ourselves a platform and to be fully in control over our music and how it would be released. Why wait before that label you always wanted to release will bite and sign your music. Which leads me to the 2nd reason. I had the feeling that there was a lot of talent out there that didn’t get a chance in the techno scene. Purely because they were unknown, didn’t had gigs or only a handful of followers on social media.
The last reason was to give the scene a breath of fresh air regarding branding. I was so fed up with the dark black & white, let’s all do the same vibe of artwork. Why not start something new. Bring a little color on the table.
And what about OOM Records ? Is this a brand new label or a sub-label of Float Records ?
OOM Records, yes! It’s my brand new label (not a sublabel) that brings back the late 90’s, early 20s. The golden era of techno for me. I had this idea for a couple years already as I played a lot of records of that era during my dj sets. At a certain point I felt I found all the goodies from that era and there was not much left anymore to discover. (I’m still searching though!)
So I thought, why not start something new, because I’m sure there are a lot of enthusiasts that are into this particular sound. And I’m sure a lot of artists want to take up the challenge to create something that is linked with that particular era.
And as always everybody is welcome to join. If your music fits I’m happy to sign it.
What is also quit worth mentioning is that I’m doing a crowdfunding method with the first release on vinyl on Diggers Factory. So if you love the first release you can pre-order it here. Once all pre-orders are sold, in the amount of time of 50 days, the vinyl is getting pressed and shipped to you directly.
Techno as a musical subculture has undoubtedly grown in popularity in the past 10 years or so. What do you think is next for the genre? Where do you think it will go?
That’s hard to tell, especially during and after the covid-19 period. But what I hope and what I see around me is that a new generation is standing up. A generation that is open-minded, is capable of sharing, helping and supporting each other.
I might be wrong (and being in my own bubble) but my experience over the last 10 years is that the techno scene can be a very closed scene. It’s hard to be part of it. Like you can only be part of it if you follow the “rules”. It feels if everybody is keeping the goodies for themselves.
What I experience today is that things starting to opening up more because of this new generation standing up. We’re helping each other out. Giving tips, share each others content. And although it sounds super cliché it’s so true: the more you give, the more you get.
When starting a record label, what advice would you have to someone who is looking from the outside in?
You have to feel a sudden urgency to start a label. Make a solid plan and ask yourself how your label will standout next to the thousands of others that already exists.
Although people probably don’t want to hear that running a label is also business related. It actually is. Even if you want to start a label for the love of music and don’t care about making profits you still have to deal with business related elements to run a label.
After several releases on your own labels (Float Records, OOM Records) and on different labels around the world, your upcoming release coming out on HAYES Collective. Seems like a perfect combination! When and how did you got in touch with the label?
Well, I got tipped by Robbert, who is close to Float Records, that I had to talk to Nørbak for a possible release on Float. So after chatting with Nørbak and signing an EP I also got in contact with VIL and Temudo from HAYES. So you can imagine the ball started to roll and we all kind of connected. We all stayed in touch, played each others music, had chats and at the start of 2020 they asked if I wanted to do an EP on HAYES. An offer I could only say yes to of course, because HAYES is one of my favorite labels out there. I love their passion and ear for that typical sound they present. Plus they are all outstanding producers. I don’t think they even know I’m learning a lot from the way they produce.
HAYES is one of my favorite labels out there. I love their passion and ear for that typical sound they present. Plus they are all outstanding producers. I don’t think they even know I’m learning a lot from the way they produce.
It seems like you have a faible for bleeping sounds with hypnotising rhythms. How did you approach making this EP? How was the work process and how long did it take?
How I normally work is that I make around 10 different short tracks of 30 seconds. I let them rest a week and start picking out which of the 10 still works and make full tracks of them. Then I let those full tracks rest for a week again and see if they still hold up. Et voila.
With the EP for HAYES the timing was perfect. I had just finished a bunch of 26 full demos to send out when HAYES asked me. So luckily for me they had plenty of choice.
Which pieces of gear or software did you use for this EP on Hayes?
I only use software for my productions. In the past I was always a bit anxious to tell I’m only working with software, but nowadays I’m pretty comfortable with the idea just using software. Also because people are always surprised to hear I work with software only. They always tell my tracks sounds super analog. Although I’m not sure if they say this just to be friendly or really mean it hahaha.
For the EP on HAYES, I basically only worked with NI Massive as an experiment. The old Massive, so not Massive-X. I wanted to see how far I could push Massive to something I’d really like. So with loads of tweaking and diving into all the options Massive has, this is the end result. That said I also use a lot of others plugins to achieve certain effects. Echoboy from Soundtoys is my to go tool for example.
Do you feel that you have expectations for yourself in terms of how you would like your sound to develop or do you just let it unfold?
Like I said before, my goal is to keep learning until the moment I stop making music. Furthermore I pretty much let it unfold. Not that I don’t care where it goes, because I care for a certain quality and direction, but I’m also not afraid to make a mistake once in a while. Or to make something different than people would expect. As time goes by I also learned that it’s so important to know that you don’t make music for others. The most important is that you love it yourself. If you love it yourself the others will follow.
The most important is that you love it yourself. If you love it yourself the others will follow.
With the closure of almost every club and festival: What do you think are the consequences for the club culture and how can the damage be prevented?
The damage is already done and with no help from our governments it’s almost undoable for existing clubs/venues/organizations to survive. People will, or already, loose their jobs. That’s pretty much the downside of the situation. It’s sad to see this happen.
And it’s hard to tell what will happen next when we eventually can go to venues again. Perhaps what could be an upside for the scene is that it has to build from scratch again. So others will get a fair chance of participating, because it won’t be money driven. To be fair, the scene before covid-19 was going the wrong direction in my opinion. On every festival you saw the same big artists over and over again. The visitors got spoiled and it felt if the only thing that matter was that there were at least 2 big names on the line-up to make money. And I’m not saying all the big names have to leave or don’t deserve a spot. I’m just saying it will be good for everybody to reset the way we look towards the scene and music again.
To be fair, the scene before covid-19 was going the wrong direction in my opinion.
[…] I’m just saying it will be good for everybody to reset the way we look towards the scene and music again.
What are your projects at the moment and what can we expect from you in the future?
Well, I’ve just signed a lot of new releases on Float Records until the end of June 2021. With OOM Records I’ve just finished the 2nd release and it’s going to be fire! As TWR72 the EP on HAYES is out on the 2nd of October and I’m working hard to finalize my EP that will be the 50th release on Float. That’s going to be quit special.