There’s always simple Q&A but why settle for that when it’s André Lodemann in the hot seat and we can go deeper. Shortly after the completion of his upcoming album, ‘The Deeper You Go’, a deeply-rooted project that since 2012 transcended from mere music production to a sort of an intuitive and self-reflective journey. Torture the Artist sits with the label owner and established DJ Producer and gets right to the heavy stuff, and as the new father reveals more about his artistic approach, his commitment to detail, intuition and music as art, the more his character aligns in sync with the sound and atmosphere depicted through his productions.
Torture the Artist: Name a track that shall set the mood for this interview.
André Lodemann: ‘Connected‘
Torture the Artist: You started working on ‘The Deeper You Go’ in 2012, basically the same year when your first long player, ‘Fragments’, was released. Did the idea of another album, your second one, grow during the time you were working on the first one, or how did the idea of starting to produce a second album come about?
André Lodemann: ‘Lost In Your Eyes’ was the first track I have been working on after releasing ‘Fragments’. I knew immediately that this was the start of a new album. It didn’t feel like a track for an EP. Since ‘Fragments’ was more some kind of a compilation I felt it was time to work on a full body of work. It was also clear that it would take some years to finish it.
Torture the Artist: ‘The Deeper You Go’ is not only the album title but also the opening track, does the title hint to previous works as in ‘going deeper’ with your music or a certain production process/ technique etc. or what is the story behind the name?
André Lodemann: The idea for the title came when the album was almost finished. It was in my mind all of a sudden. We live in times of overstimulation. Many listeners have a very short attention span and just skip through the tracks of an album. I would describe my music by subtle development and constant change. So many things happen within my tracks so that the listener really has to invest time to listen again and again in order to discover all the details. ‘The Deeper You Go’ is an invitation to listen intently. The title is playful and open to interpretation. I think it suggests that it can be rewarding to ‘go deeper’.
As opposed to Kafka I aim to dissolve these moods into a feeling of warmth and a sense of security.
Torture the Artist: Frank Kafka’s novel ‘Metamorphosis’ was written in 1912, 100 years later you started working on your second long player. How much Kafka slumbers in ‘Metamorphosis’ as well as in you as an artist?
André Lodemann: The inspiration for the track name came more from the meaning of the word itself. Of course I was aware of the provocative nature of its connotation with Kafka. And if you have a listen you will often discover elements in my music that create that uncanny, threatening atmosphere. However, as opposed to Kafka I aim to dissolve these moods into a feeling of warmth and a sense of security.
Torture the Artist: Musically you cannot pin down the album to just one genre as it is too versatile. What unites all the tracks is the vibe and atmosphere. Is this intuition to set a mood key for your work and which track from the album hits closest to your feeling when you finished it?
Andé Lodemann: I really produce what I feel. Music is an art for me. I transfer my moods into the tracks that I create and try to find an essential main vibe. This process also helps me in my day to day life. It helps me to understand situations and the emotional movement involved. ‘Connected’ was really close to me in the final phase of the album-production as it was the last one I created. For me, the track and its name stand for a moment of inner calmness combined with clarity and satisfaction. The track also reflects my creative connection to Huw Costin. I felt this is a worthy track for the completion of the album.
Torture the Artist: Knowing you pay a lot of attention details, what personal experiences or events do you come to terms with the album?
André Lodemann: My creative process was interrupted by 2 key events: the birth of my daughter, which changed my life completely, especially my daily life. I was deeply inspired but at the same time sometimes exhausted. The other event was a very strong burst of Tinnitus.
I tend to get too overly intellectual over doing things.
Torture the Artist: Do you find it more comfortable to express yourself with music rather than with words as music offers an intimacy within an anonymity and therefore is more likely to be safe heaven?
André Lodemann: For artistic expression I prefer music over words. I feel more authentic in my expressional means. Often when I am looking for the right words I tend to get too overly intellectual over doing things. Music offers me the means to express myself in an intuitive way connecting to my inner self. On the contrary, I actually don’t feel anonymity – if you listen closely you will learn a lot about me and my world.
They would remind me of who I am, like actual memories waiting to be a part of a new whole body of work.
Torture the Artist: Except for ‘Treasure’, the album focuses on instrumental music. Did you mean to keep it as ‘Lodemann-ish’ as possible without too many further influences?
André Lodemann: You are right. It‘s really important for me to have the biggest artistic freedom possible. Many of the tunes were hibernating on my hard-drive for a long time but these were more important and essential than others. Often in quiet moments I would go back and listen to them without further working on them. They would remind me of who I am, like actual memories waiting to be a part of a new whole body of work.
Torture the Artist: Was working with Huw Costin an artistic frontier you wanted to cross with your music, or how did the two features come about?
André Lodemann: To be honest I didn’t have many thoughts on it. The music of Huw Costin simply impressed me when I first discovered it on the Claremont 56 label 6 years ago. I asked him spontaneously if he would collaborate with me. While I was working on the songs, I sensed it would be a challenge to combine Huw‘s music with my style of electronic music. Certainly this was not a really obvious constellation.
Torture the Artist: Generally speaking, what’s an artist you would love to work with in the studio, and why?
André Lodemann: Mark Hollis. I grew up with the music of ‘Talk Talk’. The first albums of the band was some of the best pop music I heard in my youth. The musical developement of Mark Hollis and Talk Talk deeply impressed me. One after the other, their albums became more complex, profound and in the end avantgardistic. Hollis has a rare intense voice with a certain fragility.
Torture the Artist: Where did you produce ‘The Deeper You Go’? Did you travel to different places or lock yourself in the studio for some time over the past year for example?
André Lodemann: Some of the tunes I initially started to produce on my tours around the world, mostly on long-distance flights or in sleepless hotel-nights. The main creative output happened in my own home-studio – ‘I locked myself in’ is a good way of describing it. I need my familiar surroundings in order to work diligently and lose myself in every little nerdy detail.
Torure the Artist: With you delivering quality remixes for artists such as Marc Romboy & Stephan Bodzin, Fred Everything, Hyenah or Jimpster, whom could you imagine to remix a track from your album, and why?
André Lodemann: Indeed there is already a new remix compilation in preparation. But at this stage I will not reveal more.
Being successful with your creative output doesn’t necessarily express anything about the quality of your work.
Torture the Artist: What’s the thing most people think they understand about being an artist but don’t?
André Lodemann: Probably ‘success’. Being successful with your creative output doesn’t necessarily express anything about the quality of your work. To me it is in fact the willingness to take chances in order to create art against all odds.
Interview by Holger Breuer