Roma Zuckerman is an established producer hailing from the cold Russian city of Krasnoyarsk who has dedicated much of his life to creating music. From an early age, it was his father who inspired his interests in areas such as art, books and culture, influencing the young Roma’s creative process. Since, he has been able to hone his unique soundtrack that consists of hypnotic and repetitive elements, creating a feeling of isolation whilst keeping the listener in a suspenseful state of tonus. Now able to share his music with like minded people, Roma clocked two stand-out appearances on Nina Kraviz’s Trip label in 2015 and 2016 respectfully, followed by his debut EP on the imprint. Now he returns to Trip with an exceptional record called “stage of loyalty”.
Regarded as the trippiest artist on the label, Roma follows up previous releases with a nine-track thriller. Nobody quite knows what is on his mind when recording his next thirteen minute long compilation at home in Krasnoyarsk, but his signature slow-mo murkiness and Roma-like mental groove are unmistakable throughout. Containing a plethora of minimalist techno tracks and a wonderful italo-esque sounding anthem “i like you”, the release is rather spectacular.
How are you? And what have you been getting up to recently?
Hello friends. In general, I am doing well. I am in Siberia, it’s extremely cold and there’s a lot of snow but Spring is just around the corner. I have just come back from St. Petersburg and Moscow. In Russia, daily life has picked up again but of course my heart is with everyone who is now in the hotbed of the pandemic. I am still sending a lot of time at home though, working and recording new music.
How have you found the last year and how has the lockdown period impacted your creativity and motivation levels?
Like everyone else I was at home a lot more than I anticipated and worried about my loved ones. Unfortunately, the pandemic took my grandmother. The pandemic has forced me to make big adjustments to my daily life, I stopped going to those places where I was most often and I became more sensitive to myself and my health. We changed our lives and entered a new life with the standards of fighting this infection and now we have to live with it. Creatively, I wrote new music and also explored new factors. I wouldn’t say I wrote more or less music though as I kept my typical ‘studio schedule’, I think music is valuable when it is done for a reason. I have worked on a lot of ambient and also a lot of deep tracks. A few days ago I had a scare as I thought I lost my recorded which I use to record random sounds in daily life to use for samples – thank God I found it again!
Your new release “stage of loyalty” is a wonderful listen. How would you describe the album?
Thanks a lot! I’m happy as well with how the record turned out. I wanted it to be a connection of times so it’s probably one of my most honest and pure releases.
What have been your key influences for producing music in general and “stage of loyalty” in particular?
The strongest stimulus for my work was probably given by my father, who taught me how to enjoy art, read books and take in culture. He shared a lot of his own experiences and knowledge with me from a very young age. After his death, I continued exploring, remembering what he had taught me and I started recording sound. Time set its own test, the sound changed from year to year, but in the end there was a merger and the synthesis became more homogeneous and stable, “the loyalty stage” is a very serious job at times and I think it is one of my strongest works. To me it is a conceptual work and a narration of me and my sound.
If you had to pick a favourite track from the EP, which one would it be and why?
Good question. I would have to say Frequency Hole. We humans are in a frequency hole. We have skills to create, make dreams come true with the help of ourselves.
You’ve been part of the Trip family for a while now, how important has the label been for you and your musical development over the years?
Trip, and in particular Nina, were and will always be important to me. We don’t get tired of each other. If we are a family then we are together. I respect each member of the Trip family very carefully. Everyone has their own huge potential and I’m very grateful to be part of the Trip family. It has taught and brought me a lot and still does to this day.
Can you share any plans you have for 2021 with us?!
I might move to a Western part of Russia but for obvious reasons it’s still a rough plan as it’s impossible to plan ahead right now. I really look forward to the normalization of the situation though. Then all my plans, planned a year before the pandemic, will come true. Now it is very difficult to plan something with friends.
“stage of loyalty” is out on Trip Recordings and is available to buy from Bandcamp.
Tracklist: 1. syntax process 2. ask vahid for hit 3. disposition 4. frequency hole 4 5. digitalization 6. disposition part 3 7. if i could find out something about the future 8. i like you 9. frequency hole