Tegma in interview

Author: Roberdo
Date: Mar 4, 2008
Views: 2710

Extensive interview about the Swedish music scene, scene developments, top notch gear and really good producers

Around the beginning of the 21st century some new acts showed up in Scandinavia and formed an unique new style which rapidly established as Northern Progressive. This new style had a huge impact in the Pyschedelic Trance scene and is still very popular around the globe. Remarkably really lots of these nowadays big names hail from Sweden: Son Kite (aka Minilogue), Ticon, Vibrasphere, Necton and last but not least... Tegma! Omar Celli and Jason Orfanidis from Malmoe have been one of the driving energies in the Progressive Trance scene. They recently published their fourth album "Lo-Fi Adventures" on Tribal Vision Records. Roberdo met the dudes for an interview.



Your residency is Malomoe, Sweden. Actually quite a few top-notch progressive trance producers hail from this country: Son Kite, Vibrasphere, Atmos, Ticon… But not only trance- also for techno it seems like a real hotspot. Do you have any idea why there are so many good producers in Sweden?

One good reason to why there are so many producers is a simple thing, the weather. With so many dark winter hours and the cold climate one has not much to do but to produce music. It's also worth to mention that Sweden has a long tradition of music export, this goes back to the old days where the government funded and supported culture,music and art. Even though this is not the case anymore, the tradition is still going strong and Sweden is actually the third country in the world when it comes to music export.

What about Malmoe itself? Please tell us a little bit about the local scene, the club culture and special things about swedish nightife!
Unfortunately there is not so much to tell about the local scene, since we have a very tough police force, we have basically no underground parties going on. The police has succeeded in destroying a large part of the techno scene with their methods.
There are some parties going on every now and then, but they are held in clubs which are also restricted, meaning that they close around 3-4 am. There are also occasional forest raves during the summer but we don't know much about them, since they are mainly focusing on dark and psy/full on.
Speaking from personal experience, we haven't played in any Swedish parties since 2004.
The lack of parties in Sweden could also be an explanation to the previous question, since we can't party enough we try to party in the studio instead!

Well, so you guys are producing music for a pretty long time now. Actually when did you start?

We started around 1999, with our first common project, Epsilon, which was basically a goatrance project. It was nothing serious and we didn't have any expectations or goals with it. However, in 2000 we discovered the new wave of minimal/progressive trance and we totally fell in love with it, this of course resulted in the birth of Tegma and the death of Epsilon. With Tegma we had more ambition and we felt like this is the thing we want work with, so we gave all we had and started producing the project seriously.

Today there are heaps of ambitionated new producers and DJs. And quite a few of them dream of becoming famous, travel around the globe and play at every festival. You guys have come around quite a lot. What do you think: Is it worth aiming living only from music? What are your experiences?

It depends on what kind of person you are, if you're a person who want to earn big money and fame, it's probably the wrong scene to be in. To be honest we aren't really making any big money from this since we're two guys who have to split the profits, and we both have rents and bills to pay, not to mention the studio's expenses. Some months the economy can be good and some months not, however for us we think this job is worth it since we do get to travel a lot and see places which we would never had if we had regular jobs, and a big plus is that you get work with something that you're passionate about and love.

What do you think: What makes a real good producer? Does he / she need to be a computer nerd? Or simple have many connections? Is it possible to learn good production or do you need some kind of special skill?
What makes a good producer is a combination of all of the above statements, it takes a good amount of experience to be able to output ideas from your head to a sound. Another important factor is to have a lot of imagination and an open mind towards different methods and sounds. It is possible to learn to produce great sounds and putting down spot-on mixes by learning, but in the end it's that extra skill that some would call "talent" that decides if your music stands out or not.



There is a pretty interesting development going on within the trance scene: Quite a few of the former progressive trance DJs play real techno sets nowadays and also the productions differ less from original techno tracks. What do you think about this development? Where will the progressive trance scene go to?

We have always been openminded about music so we have never had anything against people who mix different genres, we see this as a good development that provides the progressive scene with a breeze of fresh air. We think that the progressive trance scene will remain rooted within the psyscene but it will perhaps be less easy to define it as progressive as it will draw more and more influences from current waves of electronic music.

You also released some pretty porgressive tunes recently. But your new album is a really cool mixture of modern, clubby beats and psychedelic deepness. What can we expect from this album, what from the future? Do you have any side projects also?
We decided to chose a different path for this album, as we hate to repeat ourselves and we believe that every album we make must have it's own specific sound. As for the future, we don't have any particular plans yet but to develop our liveset a little bit further and add some new toys and make it even more interactive.
Talking about sideprojects, we've had a more club orientated project named Homer & Lazon since 2002, however we never had the proper time to devote ourselves seriously to this project, so until now there has only been a few releases under this moniker.



Compulsory question: Hardware or software? Why?

This is a tricky question since we use both, but let's say we prefer hardware for the fatness of sound and the possibility to be able to touch the knobs and sliders instead of a mouse. However software is quicker to work with and easier to edit without losses of sound quality. So an ideal thing to use is something like the Virus TI which combines the best of both worlds.

Please tell us some words about your favorite gear!

There are too many to mention but here goes: Virus TI Snow, the great combination of hardware and software now available in a very compact format, making it perfect on the go or in the studio. Ableton Live, what a great software, how could we live without it? A excellent tool for live and a great tool if you want to put down some quick ideas for a track instantly.

Anything else left to say?

Yes, thanks for the interview and hope to see you all in a party someday!





Interview by Roberdo


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