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Feature: Thyladomid [Interview + Podcast]

23 min read

Thyladomid is famous for his forward thinking deep melodic dance music which earned him respect and support from many people in the scene and evolved also in cooperations with Adriatique and the singer Mahfoud. 

With his album "Interstellar Destiny" in 2015 Thyladomid changed towards more introspective music and you will hear a lot more of this. In comparison to his first album "places" refers to different places which inspired him to write the album. This album offers a higher level of complexity in the making of music which has helped Thyladomid to enhance the moody quality in a dazzling sometimes even in a spine tingling way, when you let yourself go to explore the abundance of the trax.

Hi Charles, thanks for joining us, how are you today and what are you up to?
Hey Guys, thanks for the Interview! I like your channel by the way. I am now having a small summer break before getting back to the studio in July due to the stress of my recently released album “Places”.

Tell us a bit about yourself, how did you discover electronic music and what led you down the path of wanting to be a producer and ultimately a DJ?
I actually started producing before even knowing how to spin a vinyl or a CD. I liked the way the computer was able to basically produce whatever you like.  It all started in 2007 I think. It was that Electro House time and I was really into that music, quite a while before discovering techno. I tried made music myself for many years until I finally knew I am going to stick to a music career.

Tell us about your record collection, where do some of your early influences lie?
Hard Question. I like every sort of music to be honest. Emotional stuff is totally my favourite. Therefore, I cannot say that there is some special artist who influenced me most. During the years there have been quite a lot of producers who impressed me a lot.

Your artist name is quite unique, is there a story behind it? and how did you end up settling on Thyladomid?
I am asked this all the time. To be honest it has no special meaning at all. I was a naive boy around 16 years old when I came up with this name. But I grew up with it and I will always keep it.

As you mentioned you played piano for 16 years, how important do you think it is to have a background like this to establish a career in electronic music today?
Well it certainly helps a lot. Knowing scales can raise the quality of your productions dramatically. Nowadays it is not mandatory to play an instrument or to know your scales. Based on software there is a lot of help today. If you cannot afford expensive piano lessons you can still learn scales this is the same for techno music, it’s not a deal breaker. I know brilliant producer who cannot even play one chord on the piano.

Your second album ‘Places’ was recently released on Traum, you must be quite excited. Tell us how it began to take shape? Was there an initial goal of writing an album from the beginning or did this happen organically in a way?
It all started with this song “a little church in Amsterdam” which I kicked of the album with. I had the feeling to create a smooth soft melodic and organic album two years ago, so I gave it a try. There were times I wasn’t sure If I would actually finish it, but with the influences of Mahfoud and Mario Hammer, I finished it finally.

The press release states it was inspired by places you have visited, so is each track linked to a particular place and memory or moment in time in way?
Due to my travels I decided to dedicate a few songs to special places I have been to many times. That’s how I came up with the album title.

Tell us about ‘Park Güell’ which is a quirky, reflective piece that sits around the albums halfway point. Walk us through the making of that one.
I spent a few days in Barcelona last year with some friends. After this beautiful trip I was totally inspired by this beautiful Park Güell. This song also reflects this quietness and peacefulness which you can experience in this park in Barcelona. It is also dedicated to the city Barcelona itself which I am in love with.

How did you end up with the final track selection and how did you go about cutting stuff out? There must be a point where it becomes quite difficult letting go of certain pieces?
Yes it is hard. I made it with the guys from “Traum”, otherwise it would have been to many titles. It is tough to let go of your songs when they came from the heart. I wanted them all to be released, but you have to make a decision. This also helps to focus the content.

How difficult was it deciding on the flow from a listener's perspective?
Also hard. When you produce you are actually too close to your own stuff. That makes it difficult to create a healthy distance to your productions. The flow was created step by step, together with the Label and friends who helped a lot in this case.

The percussion on most or all of the tracks sounds very organic, there’s an intriguing quality about it which is definitely ideal for multiple listens. Were a lot of the elements field recordings or what was process in getting that sort of sonic integrity?
I definitely tried to be as organic as possible. The quality of recording is very high due to good microphones and unusual field recording experiments which made it so organic. For example, I created a shaker loop with fallen leaves on the floor. This album also has a message for other producers, to really get your hands into experiments again.

Given that this isn’t really a club album did the majority of the tracks begin around a musical idea rather than something beats or groove oriented? Or is the process the same for you regardless?
In the Album process it all started equal. I created several melody lines and some sort of hook, just like basic song writing. Later I added grooves and percussions to the project. However, this way of working is not the way I create all the time. When producing basic techno songs I mostly start with some beats.

This is your second album, a follow up to ‘Interstellar Destiny’ which was released on Diynamic in 2015, how were the journeys to the end goal different? What made the process of this one unique?
Basically it is experience which makes the difference to the first album. A few years have passed since the first one was released and I developed a lot of different producing skills, which I have now integrated in the new album. It sounds more rich and the quality is totally on a different level now. This is what I love about creating music. After years you can look back in your personal history book and realise what changes you have been through. That’s also why I love producing full albums in comparison to EP’s because it reflects the stand of your emotions, producing skills and your life situation in very detailed way.

There’s a very genuine feel to the album, from a compositional perspective but also design wise. What are your go to tools in the studio and what featured heavily on this album?
I use Ableton live and several analog pieces of gear; Sub37, Prophet 6 and Prophet REV2 were mainly involved in the process. I also have a good listening room and high- quality speakers are essential to me for composing.

How much of an effect do other genres of music have on your own productions? And in particular the album.
There were many influences to be honest. I recently fell in love with ambient music for instance. Creating music with rhythms for the floor is truly liberating. Talking about this, I will be part of an Ambient album from Mario Hammer on Cocoon Recordings next year, which I am totally excited about. People like Dj Koze or Bonobo also had a great influence to my work.

This was a two and a half year project, now that it’s done and out what are your thoughts reflecting back on the process?
I am so thankful for this. It is such a nice and warm feeling working on a long project like an album. You also think more about the process of making music. It really opens your mind for being creative.

Will there be remixes from the album and if so what can we look forward to?
Yes I am currently working on this. In October there will be several artists doing club mixes of the album to generate club context for the album. Names are still secret ;)

How do you feel about your work being remixed in general?
I like it. It is always interesting how different artist interpret your material. It also feels a little weird because you have never expected your material being translated the ways the certain artist did.

Do you think the digital era changed the way we perceive artist albums? Do they still carry the weight they once did or should? Is this something that perhaps depends on who (record label) is releasing it as well?
Yes it certainly has changed. In a good way I think. Everybody can nowadays release an album if they wish. Due to the fact that many record labels only release digital it is much easier to convince a label to release an album. As you already mentioned, those who invest time and believe into that project are very important, otherwise your hard work will earn no attention at all.

So i guess we should expect to hear something a little more club oriented next? What are you working on at the moment?
Yes there will be a techno EP coming at the end of the year on Diynamic. I am happy to now focus more on techno again.

You’ve recorded the latest episode of our podcast which we’re quite enjoying, tell us a bit about the mix.
This mix is a bit longer than usual. I recorded it live and I tried to lead the listener through a typical dark club night I would sometimes play like. The mix also showcases a few of my forthcoming tracks and some special promos ;)

Where can fans hear you in the coming months, what does the festival season hold for you and there is an album tour starting after the season correct?
I am now taking a break after the album is released. In August my album tour starts throughout the winter. I am very excited to go on tour again J

Thx guys!!

Thyladomid's Album “places” is out now on TRAUM Schallplatten Get your copy here: Download


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