Interview with Synchro

Synchro and Candyflip Records

Author: Sequential-X
Date: Feb 21, 2003
Views: 2272


February 20, 2003 - Text: Sequential-X

Along side Lorenzo Zoeter, Shorn Doda, Lucas Mees and Patrice VD Berg, J Van Garling akA Synchro was a pioneer of the breaks introduction to the psychedelic scene, his much acclaimed album "Science Friction" was a truly forward thinking album back in times when acid analogue sounds and huge breakdowns emphasized by relentless drum rolls was the order of the day (not to mention that the word drum programming was something that the psychedelic community wasn't very familiar with). The Dutchman delivered an album full of digital trickery and funk that moved trance away from its analogue universe to the more free world of digital sample manipulation. A truly multitalented man that has even worked as a make-up artist… Ladies and Gentlemen make space for one of the most influential figures of the trance scene.


1. Jeroen, I would really like to ask you about your music background but since I know much of it, I am familiar with the fact that we would need the whole interview space to cover it all. Please in a very short way try to give your musical stigma to people that may not know much about you.

I started playing drums at the age of 18 and played in: Reggae, New Wave, Punk and 80's Pop bands.. Through recording in studios I got introduced to Electronic equipment.. I have always been interested in Electronic Musik... from stuff like Donna Summer (I Feel Love...) Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk.. had a break from music 2nd half of the 80's in which I worked as a make-up artist, worked at a club in Amsterdam (Mazzo) from 1993 until 1996, they started a label in 95, I made 5 records for them in the 1st half year... in 96, I quit the day job!


2. My first contact with your music was through M-Track which released very interesting music (Metal Spark came from the M-Track camp too) back then, a whole different view to the psychedelic sound. Do you miss times like that when things weren't so professional ?

Mmm I thought my first year was very "professional"... My music was more "hard-trance" then and there wasn't such a clear separation, I can remember talking to Carl Cox in 95, he was still working at Zoom records and he bought my record for the shop, I got to know Billy Nasty (big techno DJ), Mark Williams put some of my stuff on a compilation (he's a Techno DJ/producer), I met Sister Bliss (Faithless)... I know I am name dropping but I like knowing people from different styles because IT'S ALL MUSIC. I also played the two biggest festivals in Holland (Dancevalley/New Frontier) because until 97 they would have "psytrance" areas, now they don't anymore.


3. Through time you have been like the Christian Vieri (yeah, the well-known soccer player) of trance, you changed many labels and released a great amount of music, do you regret for anything ? Meaning is it something that seeing it now you believe it shouldn't be released or wasn't a good deal to make ?

I have never regretted releasing ANYTHING... I mean, I might think it's horrible but that's not the point. Over the years I have been quite blown away by people telling me how much my music means to them, and I think it doesn't matter if your music touches 1 heart or 1 million hearts... If somebody really enjoys it then that makes it worth it... Not the money or the fame. (Though some of my records have sold well and there's been money - hey great!)


4. Last year found you releasing an album through Avatar Records, "Born In California", are you satisfied with it ? Did it fulfilled your plans ?

I find it's best not to have a "plan" because things are always different than you expect them to be and that way you don't get disappointed... I am never satisfied with anything I do but every time I meet someone who likes this or that track or this or that CD I've done, it makes me very happy.


5. New year though finds you doing business with our boys Candyflip Records which have included "About Time" in their last compilation "Candy". What is your opinion on Candyflip Records ?

My opinion is that I really like Alex (who I mainly deal with), I got a really good vibe from him and his crew. Good deal, honest, professional, correct. He likes my "groovy" style and we are very seriously talking about an album in the style of the "About Time" track.


6. In "About Time" there is a nice female vocal sample. Have you ever done any full on vocal work. If not, do you see yourself experimenting with song lyrics and signing ?

I used to write poppy/housey/clubby tunes before I started releasing records, none of it really got past the demo stage... Would I consider doing that ? Yes definitely... Let me put it this way... I like variety... I get bored quickly. When I released "Science Friction" on TIP I got a lot of attention, played a lot of gigs and I had a very recognisable sound... and to me it was pretty clear that it was a formula... and I made quite a conscious decision not to repeat the same thing too much. I am not saying this is "better" that is just who I am...


7. Please share with us your future plans in general ? What will be the next Synchro step ?

Give more Love and get more Love! Love is what binds the whole Universe together, it is the energy that everything is made of... even this material world. Choose Love over Fear every time and you'll be well on your way to becoming the Buddha.


8. What you think will be the future of psychedelic music ? Which direction you believe the scene should follow ?

First of all... I can think of some very psychedelic music that I wouldn't play at a Psy-Trance party because people would complain and not be dancing! I don't have any ideas on what other people should do or listen to... I will keep experimenting, personally I like my music like my food, varied. The thing that has caught my attention recently is the "Electro" movement. I like it!


9. Once I have read in an interview of yours that you are interested in poetry is such a thing true ? If such thing is actually true, have you ever published something we could check and how does poetry reflects itself into your music ?

Mmmm I am not really "aware" of poetry... except HipHop and song lyrics... of course! But yes I am interested in spoken words combined with music... to my mind the most interesting thing! I have released 3 tracks so far (Next Stop Oblivion, Destination Devastation, Born in California) that have a complete "poem" on. There is one that is still not finished with a French vocal that is fantastic if I say so myself... but I can't seem to finish this track Aaaah!!!!


10. Final question… Is there a chance of working again as a make-up artist ?

If I returned to it again (and who knows what the future beholds for them) I would certainly ENJOY it more... As a person I was very confused at that time. Also I had expectations about everything and therefore had to deal with a lot of disappointments... whereas now I do things and however they turn out, I look at it and I always think of it as "interesting".


Closing this interview I would like to thank Jeroen for being very polite and a highly interesting person not to mention that he provided me with everything I wanted regarding questions clearance. I leave you with some words from him I gathered through email exchange and I consider being words of wisdom.

"...My opinion is that there is only music... and good or bad is a point of view... My personal shortcoming is that I tend not too like a certain style if I've heard the way it's produced (the "formula" if you like) a lot already... I like Thai food but not every day... I like to hear NEW things. Teaching yourself to appreciate a piece of music you don't like, is opening your mind to another point of view, and that is tolerance... But yes, I come across music I don't like too..."


Check "Candy" Compilation Review...

1. "Society Fw (Pumpin Pad Remix") by Charasmatik
2. "About Time" by Synchro & DJ Nina
3. "Matrox" by Kuro
4. "Progress Stop" by Sententia
5. "In Search For" by Drone
6. "Tarnkappe" by Igneous Sauria
7. "The New You" by Phacelift
8. "Malice In Glunderland (Starspine Remix)" by Sent Sentient vs Pied Piper Paul
9. "Panfilo (Fucked Remix)" by Loopus in Fabula


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