Xan Müller Calling out to Animatic across the universe....!!! :)How are you buddy?

Animatic Hi Surveillance Party! Im great. Got some music playing in the background to get me in the mood wink emoticon

Xan Müller Hehehe... oh right yep the mood. Thanks for joining us here on Facebook. Since our radio show started I've been getting into interview mode, so thanks for humouring us and being a part of it. I see you have some mates tuning in...?

Animatic I may or may not be flying past Mars right now...

Xan Müller So on the note of interstellar audio, you’re a DJ based here in Sydney, playing a particular sound somewhere on the spectrum of psy to progressive trance, and I’ve heard you head into this jacking kind of funk-infused psytrance. One thing I noticed was your tendency to stick to very slick and clean production polish. Is this a conscious decision for you? What is it about that sound that appeals to you personally?

Animatic Yeah theres a few people who have been with me from the outset and really enabled this whole musical journey... I've been really lucky with the few people who have kept me on the straight and narrow with it... Im sure you know how that is smile emoticon

Animatic I suppose I have a low attention span when I listen to a track smile emoticon I gravitate towards ones that have a lot of development over time and present a whole range of musical ideas to you in one song. I would equate it to visual art. Some people are engaged with two black stripes on a white canvas, whereas I want the intricate detail visible over every inch of the canvas. Trance music is such an expansive genre as well… everything from commercial trance through to the deepest darkest psytrance… You can really get away with presenting some extraordinarily odd sounds and musical textures in a trance track and the audience are always very open to it.

Xan Müller You've touched on two aspects that really tend to ring true of trance: firstly the idea of maximalism. I've always enjoyed electronic music that is maximal in its approach, lots of parts floating around, integrated and stimulating movement. The other aspect is the idea of open structures, leaving behind typical song formats, taking tracks in unexpected directions. I've also noticed that you pay a fair bit of respect to those melodic and structural elements in your mixing - am I right that in-key mixing is important to you?

Dotmicro If you guys are coming past Pluto, hmu

Animatic Yes you are correct! I am a big fan of harmonic mixing... That could be and effect of the fact that the tracks I love always have a lot of strong melodic content in them, so if I didn't pay attention to which keys I was mixing between, it would be very noticeable to the poor unsuspecting ears of the audience. To me, mixing that is seamless is where I want to be.

Animatic Do you think most people notice harmonic mixing though?

Xan Müller No, but if there is too much of a key clash I think you will subconsciously lose a couple from the dancefloor. And on the structural note, I've also noticed that you tend to head the structural changes very well too, as in, following a buildup into a followup track, or waiting patiently until the right moment to throw in the bass of the next track at the point it's needed. As a DJ, do you meticulously rehearse this stuff or have you found a way to feel it out?

Animatic I think I've started getting a good feel for it without the need for a huge amount of rehearsal. I take time to make little notes on each track that I prepare to go into my record crate with any little anomalies to watch out for when lining up two tracks to mix together. Things like double drops just at the end of a track can derail things quickly if you don't see them coming... Or so I hear tongue emoticon

That isn't to say that I dont practice regularly. I just think that in order to be able to react to a live crowd, having a system of information on your tracks that gives you 70% of the information you need instantly will usually carry you through. DotMicro actually got inspired by seeing the system of key and BPM that I keep and started emulating it himself too.

Jessica Bartholomew Great system! smile emoticon

Xan Müller Aaah the ol' DotMicro... He smashed it up pretty solid at our last party, Emoji Rave. I must say I was completely stoked at what a great response all the individual artists got. I certainly heard a few murmurs about your set. Another standout seems to be Loveless, who span tunes almost in the opposite vein to yourself. That's what really makes me happy about throwing these music events... the variety. Where have you come from musically, like before you got into the electronic side of things?

Dotmicro i can vouch, its a good system smile emoticon

Animatic I actually played the trumpet as a young kid... That gave my some basic understanding of music theory and that there is indeed a structure to most music. I then went through your typical teenage years of listening to angsty alternative rock like Linkin Park (it was oh so good at the time, I promise!)... Then I kind of did a 180 and went towards the soft rock like Snow Patrol and 3 Doors Down (yes, yes, I know... But I'm all about the honesty!) But my musical awakening has certainly aligned with the electronic side of things. That's where someone switched on the light upstairs and slapped me across the face with what music can really be as an experience.

Xan Müller Yeah something about it... just grabs you at a point in life and says "honour me, I am new and different". Hey I had a thought the other day, the synthesiser is the only inevitable instrument other than bashing two rocks together. Like, on any given alien planet, the synthesiser will eventually be invented, given that civilisation develops electronics. Nothing else, the guitar, the harmonica, the trumpet for that matter, is inevitable. But a pure sine wave dropping from 10khz to 40hz within 200 milliseconds is extremely likely given a flexible timeline. So the aliens probably are listening to psytrance...

Xan Müller Got a fave track at the moment at all?

Animatic I like to think that someone put some psytrance on the Voyager space craft that had the sounds from Earth baked onto the golden records with a map of where we are in the universe...

Well one track that I am listening to on repeat at the moment is New Ways by Ranji and Tezla...


What do you guys think?

Animatic Its got some real swing in it doesn't it? I can't sit still to it even when listening to it for the 10th time today... mmmmmmm smile emoticon

Jessica Bartholomew Great track! They've got a very distinct sound don't they? smile emoticon

Xan Müller It's certainly slick production and infectious. Interesting hearing the various genres like psy heading on a collision course with the EDM vibe... Likewise seeing the various elements of glitch and more "traditional" dubstep plus drum n bass head out into the bush in the doof scene. Obviously doof is a world you've come from... what has been your favourite experience there gig-wise?

Animatic Bush doofs really feel like home to me... When I hear or play this music I definitely visualise a dusty dancefloor in the middle of nowhere under a scorching sun...

My greatest experience at a bush doof has to be the very first Rainbow Serpent festival I went to. It was actually my first ever electronic music event (where the light upstairs was switched on!). It was so different to the Sydney night club music events I had gone to previously that it really changed my view of the dance music community in general, in a HUGELY positive way. So many bouncing people and smiles in abundance! So many colourful faces and creative costumes... For those who have never ever been to one, imagine Emoji held outside and you camp 100m from the stage... Can I officially make the request for a Surveillance Party bush doof?

Xan Müller Yeah I would love to do something outdoors. One thing I will say is that we've been able to bring a degree of that aesthetic into an urban environment with some success. With decor from Nefarius Gelfling and visuals from Bernie Davies, plus cool lights and dancing from Jen Electra Kemp, we've been able to get some of those visual elements happening, as well as pulling the soundscapes into the mix too with performers such as yourself. But I don't wnat it to stop there. I love that we have folk, drum n bass, garage house, indie, all lined up for SP#3, and once again, that's my great love with these events. The idea that you can create a magical experience and a sonic narrative without restricting your artistic headspace. But yeah,,,,, outdoors. Nothing beats the pure acoustics, the fresh air, the scent of the earth. Let's make it happen! What do you have lined up for SP#3 music-wise anyway? Don't forget, we don't restrict our artists... what do you really want to play?

Animatic I completely agree... It's really refreshing to be at such inviting events in the middle of Sydney. The people involved in the event's you've hosted that I've been able to attend have definitely made it something special. I got into a discussion with Haptic while we were both doing a sound check before Emoji and he had nothing but time to talk to me about all things production... That kind of attitude of inclusion is something that can't have a value put on it.

I think I am definitely still feeling the progressive psytrance for SP#3. People seemed to be having a great time with it and I definitely have a blast playing it. I've actually got a couple tracks that I want to have completed by SP#3 as their first completed debut!

Would you guys like to hear the WIP? It's a little rough around the edges but I think it will be great when finished.

Xan Müller Yeah I dunno how Haptic musters the energy to talk shop during our setups, I'm usually the guy running around like a headless chicken wondering how we are ever going to fit everyone.... You wanna show us the track NOW!?? Fuck yeah lay it on us!!!!

Animatic It's a remix of Above & Beyond - Counting Down the Days

Turn your speakers right up as its not yet mastered wink emoticon


Hope you guys enjoy it! Feel free to throw me any feedback you have.

The completed version will be coming at you at SP#3!

Counting Down The Days (Animatic Remix WIP)

Xan Müller Ok brilliant mate .... full demo styles, no mastering!! Thanks so much for having a chat, Animatic. You're a true professional of your trade and a great guy to party with smile emoticon Folks, let's all put our Thursday feet up and have a listen to this bootleg, and don't forget, you absolutely must buy a ticket to Surveillance Party #3 in November, as they have been truly flying out the door! Double passes are available, so grab one for you and a friend and save some dollar. Thanks Animatic.... feel free to chat amongst yourselves party peeps! smile emoticon

Animatic My pleasure. I'll see you all in November for a stomping good time!


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