Terminal V Podcast 012 || AIROD
French techno artist Airod doesn’t just follow one path when it comes to his musical style. Regularly stepping outside the boundary walls of techno into lesser treaded avenues. This is especially noticeable when taking in one of his breakneck DJ sets. It is clear that there is a number of influences working away under the hood of this well-oiled techno machine.
Switching between truly unique textures and more ‘mainroom’ styles Airod is deft at juggling energy like few others to have arrived on the scene in recent years. Not to say he has been an overnight success as the Frenchman has had his share of hardships, twists and turns to get where he currently is. What becomes apparent from listening to his EP’s for the likes of Lenske, Exhale and his own Elixyr Records Airod is able to straddle many sub genres with ease. This is a promise he intends to make good on when he turns out at our Halloween Festival.
What has been happening in your world recently?
My world which is music and more particularly the art world is living a very complicated situation. I think that artists are very limited in their process of creation and even diffusion, not being able to share their art live, to be connected in reality with people, it’s complicated for most of them, also not being able to make exhibitions or even go to the cinema. It’s a very difficult time for art and culture in general I think.
Tell us how you find your way in the French techno scene?
I don’t think there are really any recipes to follow, it’s a combination of circumstances and of course a lot of hard work and motivation. It’s all about meeting the right people, making the right decisions, staying authentic and doing what I love above all else.
What has been your experience and is there anything you would change about it all?
From my personal experience, the road was long, some disappointments, but also wonderful encounters and moments. But you must never give up, be patient and believe in what you are doing. I won’t change anything ahah, I have no regrets and I can’t wait to see what the future will bring!
Moving on to your own productions tell us a little about your creative process and how you start and finish a track?
In general I produce only when I feel like it (that is to say almost every day ahah). A very simple scheme: I wake up in the morning, and often the inspiration comes directly from the bed, and I rush in the studio. I often start with either a melody directly if I had one in mind, or a rhythm and drums, while doing the structure and effects/EQ, I do everything at the same time, which often makes me finish tracks very quickly, in one morning when I’m inspired I would say.
Do you have a label in mind when you begin writing a track?
It depends! I produce a lot of other music outside of techno, when it comes to techno it’s either a track where I’ll see myself playing it on tour somewhere, or yes, a track for a label that I like and that inspires me
There is a distinct old school thread that runs through your music, especially your DJ sets. Where did this affinity for the older shades of techno come from?
I’ve been listening to The Prodigy, Fat Boy Slim, The Chemical Brothers and so on since I was young. I’ve always had an ear for this kind of sound, and when I discovered some tracks from the Stay Up Forever label, it spoke to me right away, I found the same ambiences, the same universe but transcribed in techno.
Was there a specific artist or track(s) from your youth that informs your style?
I don’t think it’s any particular artist or song, but an era that has marked me and interests me in all styles of music (the 90s-2000s).
How important do you think it is for a producer to have their own label and having your own outlet such as Elixyr Records?
I think it’s important to assert your identity, and to have a certain freedom on what you want to do. Even if on the labels I collaborate with I have a lot of freedom, the fact of having your own structure allows you to test new things that don’t necessarily speak to the others. I imagine it as a laboratory of ideas.
How do you separate your own label output from other releases on labels such as Lenske?
I’ve always liked a lot of different styles in techno, with the label Molekul for example I’m very focused on old school techno, which is the identity of the label. When I had the opportunity to work for Lenske, I think it was exactly what I needed in terms of artistic direction, to balance the old school techno that I produce elsewhere, and a style of techno more “clean” and I would say “mainroom” that has always inspired me and that I love to produce, while adding my old school touch that makes, I think, we recognize my style quite easily. So to answer the question, I think it’s not really separate, it creates a balance between the two styles and I’m very happy!
Amelie Lens has been a pretty big supporter of yours, how important has this been for your success?
I think that the fact that an artist such as Amelie supports my music, brought me an audience other than the one I already had, and obviously a significant visibility as well as a certain stability. I am happy that my music pleases everyone, and I thank Amelie once again for believing in me. It’s very motivating for the future!
Tell us more about the podcast you have just recorded for us?
I recorded this podcast as if I was playing for you guys at Terminal V ahah, big crowd and goosebump all the way!
We need to know more about those tracks, without giving too much away where do you source your bangers from?
I produce a lot, so most of the tracks are unreleased from me, or friends of mine!
What can we expect from your return to Scotland for Terminal V?
You can certainly expect some big energy and a set full of bangers, I can’t wait to be back behind the decks, I can assume that it will be a memorable event!
Interview by Stu Todd