Pleasurekraft are one of the most recognisable house acts on the planet right now.
The production duo, made up of Kaveh Soroush and Kalle Ronngardh, absolutely exploded onto the scene with their Tarantula EP, and it’s only been up from there.
Ahead of Kaveh from Pleasurekraft’s descent down under, we managed to speak with him about shit music nowadays, success, and what makes a ‘talented’ DJ.
HR (Henry): With the huge success you’ve had in electronic music, where did it all start? Were you always involved in electronic music?
KS (Kaveh): Yes and no. I was a fan of electronic music but I never got into actual club music until much later. Once I got into learning how to DJ on vinyl is when the club music bug really got me.
HR: What were some of your biggest inspirations?
KS: Well, not counting things like Depeche Mode which had electronic elements, the first piece of true electronic music that really left an impression on me would have to be Jean Michel Jarre’s “Oxygen” album which my uncle had a copy of on vinyl. If you have no idea what I’m referring to as you read this – you owe it to yourself to go find this incredible piece of music which sounds as current now as it did when it first came out!
HR: You’ve had such hugely successful tracks – has this influenced your musical direction at all, in terms of what you’re more inclined to make, or do you really enjoy experimenting?
KS: Whenever one of your very first records has the kind of success ‘Tarantula’ did, it’s hard not to be influenced by the same things you did to re-create that kind of success again. But eventually we grew out of trying certain things as they felt a bit too formulaic for us, and if you look at the music we are making now (‘All Bite / No Bark’ EP on Octopus records; ‘Defiler’ EP on MOOD, and ‘Dopefiend’ forthcoming on Drumcode) it is light years away from that sound. I’m quite pleased with the diverse styles of our music; however, it does become tiresome when some fans clamor for you to keep repeating yourself all the time. That being said, the majority of music fans enjoy when artists they like push their musical boundaries!
HR: Because you and Kalle are from such different areas, how did you end up collaborating?
KS: Initially just sending wav files back and forth, then doing Skype screen shares, and now we typically just work separately on project files we share. Technology is an amazing thing! 🙂
HR: In your opinion, what makes a DJ and a producer ‘talented’?
KS: Beat matching isn’t an art, but creating a vibe, flow, narrative… all of that takes skill and talent. Most people who think anyone can DJ just think it’s about beat matching and playing records – which in a sense they would be correct to think that as just about anyone is capable of doing that!
HR: What are your thoughts on the current electronic music scene? Any specific artists that stand out to you at the moment particularly?
KS: As much as music production technology has advanced and allowed anyone with a laptop to make music, it has also created an endless ocean of mediocre to downright terrible music. To find the gems now really requires effort on the part of the listener since the quality standards have been categorically lowered. That being said, it also enables the smaller group of people who are gifted and have great musical ideas to find the limelight. I guess like anything else in life it has good and bad elements.
Off the top of my head these would be my picks as currently I’m playing a lot of their records: Tiger Stripes, Weska, Pig & Dan, Mark Reeve and Monoloc
HR: As a duo, what’s your creative process like?
KS: We work well separately and together, and each project we work on has its own unique set of issues. But I don’t think how we work has really changed THAT much from back when we first met when we just sent files back and forth. It’s really rare for us to be in the same studio at the same time.
HR: What’s next for Pleasurekraft?
KS: We have an remix on Octopus forthcoming in May, a single on Drumcode which I don’t know the release date for yet, and there is also a full EP for Drumcode which is currently being worked on.
HR: Any tips for other aspiring producers?
KS: Don’t drink your own Kool-Aid, know and respect the past, and don’t imitate what others are doing. Delete your first 100 projects, no matter how good you think they are! Unless you’re an absolute prodigy it’s probably not good enough to stand above everything else that’s already out (most of which is also crap!)
You can catch Kaveh from Pleasurekraft this weekend in Melbourne, Geelong, Brisbane, and Sydney. Full tour dates are below.
Friday, 15th April: Brown Alley, Melbourne
Saturday, 16th April: Quban, Geelong (Day)
Saturday, 16th April: Coco Lounge @ The Met, Brisbane (Night)
Sunday, 17th April: S.A.S.H, Sydney