"I think growing up in Ukraine has a big influence on what I do. There is a certain desolate feeling there which I think is complex and beautiful"
Antenna creates music that works in all settings and transcends genres. We had a chance to talk to him, so enjoy your reading and check out his latest releases.
Hi! How’s it going?
Hey! I am good!
What was your first foray into the world of electronic music?
It started in 1997, a friend of mine brought a pirate copy of the Prodigy. After that I began staying up late to listen to radio-shows where they played electronic music. I recorded pieces I liked on cassette-tapes. After that I was buying illegal tapes and CDs on a Ukrainian bootleg market. When I met this friend of mine next summer, I wanted to share all this new “knowledge” with him, but he had moved on to heavy metal.
In and out of the electronic music circle, who is an inspiration to you?
I think Aphex Twin (especially his early work), early FSOL, newer artists like Lnrd Croy and many more. I also like what my friends Palmbomen II, Betonkust, Innershades and Mark Du Mosch are doing. We often share unreleased tracks and demos.
What was the last record store you visited and what did you keep there?
I buy a lot less records these days then I used to. I recently ordered a few records on Discogs from a US label Ex-Perimental from the early 90s.
Are you particularly permeable to your environment, creatively speaking? If so, how does it influence your DJ focus? And producing?
I think I take more from my head, but in this process the outside world plays an important role too, places you see and moments that touch you. I think growing up in Ukraine has a big influence on what I do. There is a certain desolate feeling there which I think is complex and beautiful.
It’s also very important to meet friends, talk about music, share tips and so on. Although I really should do that more often.
You have a really eclectic sound when mixing, what has influenced you to be so musically varied in your approach?
I like to look at music through harmonies, melodies and atmosphere and not focus on genres and backgrounds too much.
What makes a good mix to you?
I think a good mix can take you along, has a narrative, is smooth but still unpredictable. Sometimes it is difficult to find a balance between playing good tracks that stand out, but also focus on a mix as a whole.
For people that have never heard you play before, how would you describe your sound to them?
In early 90s music, you could hear a lot of different genre elements like wave, techno and trance living together in one track. I like to take inspiration from that time and that approach.
So what music are you currently obsessed by? Have you picked up any records recently that you have been playing in every set or have been listening to every day?
I recently came across a small New York scene from the 90s, artists like Joei Beltram and Damon Wiber. It’s interesting to see how they were influenced by European music at the time, but were interpreting it differently.
Would you like to share a set? Can you tell us more about it? When and how was it recorded?
I came across this set on Operator radio in Rotterdam recently. I can remember that it was very hot for the time of the year. And I got a little bit drunk while playing alone in the Operator container.
What is the craziest party you’ve ever been to?
I think one of the last ones was a night in Saint Petersburg’s club Blanc, where we had a World of Paint label night. Palmbomen, Betonkust and I played all night, the energy was insane the whole time and we ended up playing till 10 in morning.
What are your favorite places to hang out in the city?
I just moved to Brussels. And I am still in the process of discovering favorite places. Confinement has made it also more difficult. Though I had plenty of time to get to know the park in my neighborhood.
How do you deal with C19 confinement with your work?
Actually it’s nice to have time and space to finish projects and think about things.
Has this situation influenced your creative perspective? What social and musical implications do you think this situation can lead to?
I had gigs cancelled and its still uncertain how long it will take to play again, but I think when it will be over it will make the scene more healthy again. Everything is going to be more down to earth and on a lower scale. I think that is a good thing.
I just released a digital only EP with Kate Bush and Lady Gaga covers. I though it was a suitable time for DIY, low key approach.
What tracks would you recommend us to liven up the confinement?
Skryabin – Ne Wmirai
Song from my favorite Ukrainian (and beyond) band.
Dj Spooky feat Elisabeth Fraser – Hypo Alergenic
A very nice blend between things I like that usually live in parallel worlds: electronic music, shoegaze and Cocteau Twins.
Underworld – Dark and Long (Dark Train)
Very euphoric and hypnotizing track, that goes on for 10 minutes and keeps on evolving.
What’s your favourite “save the dancefloor” song?
Near Dark - Heute Ist Ein Guter Tag Zu Sterben (Trancemental)
I’ve made a more minimalistic edit of this track. I like to play it somewhere around 1 or 2 AM and it feels like it takes the atmosphere to a next step. I think I play it way to often ☺
What makes you happy?
I really like to travel. Not specifically go on vacation, but just be on the way to somewhere, be on the train or a plane, hanging around in the waiting rooms. I really like that for some reason.
What pisses you off?
It pisses me of when I forget to do important things, or go into the obsessive working mode.
Can you tell us something about your current or future projects? Where can we continue to see and hear?
I’ve been working on new music the last couple of months. I’m finishing it right now. I am preparing ambient, more laidback version of my liveset, and I am also working on 3D visuals.
Finally, is a really interesting name, what’s the story behind it?
I though it would be cool to have a feminine sounding name for hard acid music. That’s the only reason I can remember, probably some Kraftwerk or X-Files inspirations ☺