Our good friend Forest People joins us for our Sound Sensible Radio 59th podcast episode. After being enthralled by his 21st Floor mix, hosted by F2t4, there was no way we could let this DJ slip through and not visit South Africa. A few months later, Forest People was on route to play at our CATALYST event at And Club.
His style of harder edged techno captivated both us and the dance floor, with his vision of deep and dark sounds. This Bosnian DJ and producer if not already is at the forefront of a new age of techno music in Europe and around the world.
We would like to thank Forest People for taking the time out to answer some questions for us as well as put together a great mix of Forest People and Olēka music. Read the interview below.
SSR: When or how did you first hear about dance music?
FP: I had some friends in my hometown and they were into goa trance, stuff like that. But one time they gave me a cd by Mauro Picotto and it was so pleasing to my ears. From there I started to explore all kinds of electronic music, but techno was my only true love from the start. That was 15 years ago.
SSR: What came first for you Dj’ing or producer?
FP: DJ’ing came first. Got 2 Numark turntables and a mixer from my parents. It was my 18th birthday and I was the most happier guy in the world! That was the start of my DJ carrier. It was really hard to beatmatch on those turntables but I tried really hard. Later on it was much easier to mix on Technics or Vestax. After that I started collecting more techno vinyls and playing at some bars in my country.
SSR: When you were in South Africa you told us an interesting story of how you first produced music, can you tell that story to our listeners and readers.
FP: I had a really slow and old computer so it was really hard to work with any music producing software. The only thing I had was some program for mixing tracks so it was time for MacGyver style. I was mixing and recording loops in that program then cutting them in Sound Forge and building my tracks like that. That was the start of my producing carrier and it was really painful, haha!
SSR: What software or hardware did you move onto from that?
FP: I bought a better computer but it was still too slow, so I worked in Reason for a first few years. After that came Logic Pro and now in last few months I produce only in Ableton, which I recommend to everyone! Amazing tool.
SSR: How many years of producing did it take before you could play a full DJ set with all your own music?
FP: I guess 5-6 years because you can’t play everything you make. I always tried to select most interesting and nicely produced stuff to put in the mix. But now there are plenty of releases to choose from.
SSR: When you were in South Africa you played a DJ set consisting of all your own music. You have now started playing live sets. Do you only play live sets now?
FP: I still do DJ sets because not every promoter wants a live act and for me its more interesting to have that change from time to time. Live act is usually around 1 hour and a half and I really like to play long DJ sets. So its good to have both.
SSR: Olēka is your new alias, can you tell us your thought process behind this and what is the difference between Forest People and Olēka?
FP: Olēka is a project for my deepest and dirtiest feelings to be expressed. Its a no compromise project and I can do anything I want with it. Lots of recorded live sounds going trough all kinds of distortion and effects, my vocals, different instruments… Its a more industrial techno project with lots of experiment. Forest People is more subtle in some cases, and I can do more softer and more “commercial” tunes with it. But most of the time its a straight techno style.
SSR: What is coming up for Forest People and Olēka in the next few months?
FP: With Forest People I am releasing a 2 track EP on Arts and also one track on my own Prbtape VA together with some young and upcoming artists from Sarajevo, Berlin and Belgrade. With Olēka I signed 3 new releases, 1 digital and 2 vinyls for some amazing labels but the are still secret.