Omnipresent _ Interview with Roebin de Freitas

How do you feel when you get that kind of praise yourself? Does it make it all worthwhile or are you uncomfortable with it?

I have had various discussions with my partner about this very subject. She has a difficulty with praise in this typical setting.  She thinks it’s all ego driven. Whoever denies that ego plays its part is deluded or lying. Let me be clear about that. There is more to it. I’m convinced that people create because natural selection makes them do it, because it’s a way to express emotions, because it reduces stress.

I have had offers by women just because I was spinning records. Men also! That is a very confusing experience. It’s both flattering and disgusting. So it can be uncomfortable. However, I do feel energized when people put some effort in their praise.. And by effort I mean that they convince me by somehow knowing what they’re talking about.

So will you tell us a little about how you approached the mix?

I certainly wanted to showcase some artists I’m very fond of lately as well as tracks from my forthcoming release and recently released album. For instance, both Borealis tracks are by Jes Somfay whom I mentioned earlier. He will create one of the Radio RdF episodes. I’m very curious what he will make of it. Sagat has made a remix for my album but has also made a whopper of an EP on Belgian imprint Vlek (meaning: stain). He is so versatile and his sound design is impeccable. I’m a fan.

I also used some tracks from the Subsist label as it has got an interesting back catalogue. Also I couldn’t resist using some Surgeon.

We were speaking a while back about the tracks on your album and how your produced them. I thought it was refreshing the way that you had an open approach to the equipment / software you used to create music. Will you tell us a little about how you approached the album and maybe talk a little about some of the gear you used.

I’m not sure what you mean by an open approach. You can’t help but making choices and choosing means closing doors. So, perhaps a bit cheeky, my approach is closed just as much as anyone’s.. But perhaps you are referring to the whole analogue-digital or hardware-software debate which carry the same weight as the nature-nurture discussion: it’s a non debate.

Yeah.. haha – Well.. I meant that you had a broad approach to what you used. As long as it worked and was good, you were open and versatile to experimenting and using a wide variety of tools..

Well.. A track like ‘Tjingel Tjangel’ was made in Fruity Loops with some freeware. I’m pretty sure this is not obvious when you listen to it. ‘Scraping the Callus in an Ode to Vlet’,  is just three tracks recorded in one take from my machinedrum with a shifted delay effect. It can be simple and made in 2 hours…

I said before that “Nobody..” was the album that I wished Xhin had come out with, instead of Sword. What has the reaction been like to the album?

I can’t complain about the exposure. With no money and a minimum of effort there were reactions… ripples in a pond of course. It’s that promotional pit fall again and me being stubborn. It will take some time before and if I ever take on a similar project. I do see myself producing another couple of albums though. There is never a lack of ideas, just a lack of time management and lack of energy in playing the networking game.

I heard Surgeon playing some of the tracks.. how did that come about? Does stuff like that happening have a noticeable impact, or is it a case of “it’s happened.. now, ok. Business as usual”. Does such support have much conversion to sales?

Surgeon was so kind to get back to me when he was putting a mix online which had a track of mine in it. He was gathering the playlist and wanted to check the correct spelling. I’m glad he did as there was an error when he posted it on soundcloud. It’s funny to see how people visited my site using the erroneous title through search engines.

When it comes to sales it’s harder to pinpoint the direct effect. But actually, I wasn’t hoping to get more sales. To me it was such a surprise and an honour to see him playing my stuff. I hope that I can convince him to do so again with my future releases.

What’s coming up next? Has everything been released from the album now? What are you going to follow up with? Are we going to see you on any other labels?

I have been spending so much time on this album because I did it all myself it’s ridiculous. But I’m starting to see the end of that chapter. There’s a release ready for Subsist records, a 6 track EP that will be released next week. So there’s your scoop!

I’m also working on a remix for a Spanish producer. When that’s ready, we will shop labels. Besides that I will focus on some EP’s and my live act. I would really like 2013 to be a year where I surface some more.

What do you make of people “recycling” other people’s tracks an all that stuff that you see online at the moment. There never appears to be any repercussion for these actions. Does it matter?

I have come across this online on a few occasions. Artists wanting to prove it all, sharing the original files or recordings. I think I would be mad as well.

In a way both ‘recycler’ and ‘originator’ are being placed naked on the town’s square as it more then often unravels in rotten tomatoes being thrown to the excitement of the masses.

Not sure whether I’d organise an online rally to tell people about it though..


Roebin’s brilliant album is out now & available from Bandcamp
subsekt is a blog, forums & online network focused on Techno.



Music production and history are my biggest passions in life. Though people often say that Techno is faceless and should be about the music blah, blah, blah.. I believe in the need to document the people and stories behind it. Techno is a very small world in reality and I think it needs a proper resource. I hope that everyone who is interested in Techno finds this blog accessible in terms of the way that it is written. I personally prefer to hear the artists voice as loud as the music and never enjoy synopsised and pasteurised versions of old conversation; the sort that's peppered with the occasional quote here and there.


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