Italian deep techno specialist Claudio PRC joins forces with Polish favourite Blazej Malinowski for an outstanding three-track hypnotic trip on Claudio’s very own 012 imprint. Taking cues from avant-garde and ambient music as well as the abyssal echoes of early hypnotic acid and dub, Claudio PRC has been in the game since 2006 and has released some formidable records on the likes of Prologue Music, Semantica Records and his co-owned TGP. In a similar fashion, Blazej Malinowski is notorious for his hypnotic and energetic productions and live performances, matching his productive workflow back in the studio. Having already landed releases on the likes of The Gods Planet, Kontrafaktum, Semantica and Silent Season, Blazej heads up his own Inner Tension label as well as founding the audio/ visual, ambient/ experimental series Why So Silent?
It is only right that the two hypnotic wizards come together and deliver a gorgeous collaborative effort by the name of “Future Retro”, containing three individually brilliant groove ridden and stripped-back cuts, served up by two of the hottest techno artists in the scene right now. The record is housed on Claudio’s 012 label, a relatively new space set up in 2020 dedicated to quality sounds and art, and drops May 14th.
How are you? And what have you been getting up to recently?
Claudio: Hi, thanks a lot for having us! Despite the hard situation I am constantly trying to stay optimistic and focused on the music, it has not been so easy but I want to keep a positive vibe at least through the music. So I’ve been producing and listening to records more than ever as well as taking care of the different projects I am involved in.
Blazej:Hey, thank you for having us. In the last few months I had my ups and downs but I still hope that the general situation will get better soon. I was focusing as much as possible on making music in the studio and working on future releases on my InnerTension label. I am trying to get my head around projects that I can finish and somehow keep moving forward.
What was the connection with you and Blazej? How did the collaboration come about? Is it the first time you have released together?
Claudio: First time we met was because I got invited by Blazej to play in Warsaw in 2014 and he was also playing that night. A very fascinating live set, music united us. Then our friendship become more stronger time by time and it was inevitable at one point also to make music together. The first collaboration ever that we did is a track included in my album “Volumi Dinamici” on Semantica back in 2017. Then “Future Retro” is the result of a deeper studio session side by side.
Blazej: We met with Claudio in 2014 when I invited him for his first gig in Poland. He played at one of the events I organized as a promoter in Warsaw. When I had moved to Berlin, we started meeting more often, and after a while Claudio invited me to release my music on The Gods Planet. From that point on, we have played together on many different occasions. All of the things above made our friendship stronger. Making music together was a natural step forward and I could not be more happy about it. Our first release together was at Claudio’s “Volumi Dinamici” LP, where we collaborated on one of the tracks. „Future Retro” is the first project that we made together from beginning to the end.
Was this record recorded before or during the pandemic? Is there any change in the way you are producing/ working during this time?
Claudio: The record was made before the pandemic so I was lucky to also try it out properly in some clubs before releasing it. It’s for sure that the closing of the clubs affected the way of producing music for me, a big part of the inspiration for creating it comes straight from there. Lately I’ve been more into listening slower, “comforting” and pitched down sounds then usual, I am following this spontaneous reaction to sounds honestly.
Blazej: We made the recording before the pandemic, so we had to wait a while to put it out. For me it is always a great experience to work with someone else – it brings new ideas and solutions to the creative process. From my perspective making music without the possibility to play it in the club environment made me focus more on deeper forms. I miss the crowd energy now more than ever I think. Usually I was finishing the tracks after playing them during my Live performances. Clubs always gave me a sense of inspiration, drive and direction for specific patterns, so they could be ready for release in the future. The exchange of this beautiful energy is extremely important for me.
What was the creative and production process behind the record?
Claudio: The first aim was to make music together and see where we could go. We liked it a lot so it took some days of studio sessions to finish it and have a solid project in our hands. Then that time I was setting up everything for 012 and it was fitting so much the flow I wanted to create between the releases, the name then came because the combination of the artwork and the sounds in our minds was very well pictured, retro futuristic.
Blazej: First what comes to my mind is that we did it super fast. I think we had 2 or 3 studio sessions and the release was basically done. That was different from my usual way of work. For me personally ideas come fast but finishing them takes me always a lot of time. With ”Future Retro” we had short jams in the studio but we recorded them straight away and postproduction went very smoothly. We did not have a specific plan of what we wanted to make or which direction to take, it all came very naturally.
If you had to pick a favourite track from the EP, which one would it be and why?
Claudio: I could say the first. It is solid with that trance feeling which I like a lot, I can’t wait to play it again loud on the dancefloor!
Blazej:For me it will be the first track for sure. It is different from what I usually make but it is somehow very addictive, at least for me.
Can you tell us a bit about the visual side of the label? All three releases are complementary and have a common theme – will this continue with future releases?
Claudio: The first 3 releases are made in collaboration with a long time friend and graphic designer Michele Zuddas, who is also from Sardinia like me. These works are a selection of handmade paintings printed then in a full color record sleeve. As the label concept is also related to arts, for the future releases there will be different series of artwork made by different artists.
What’s in store for the rest of 2021?!
Claudio: You will soon find out 🙂
Blazej:I have records in the pipeline ready to press or in production as we speak. I am working on my album that I would like to release soon and of course I am in the process of putting out my next record on my label. Also, we have scheduled a few meetings with Claudio, so that we could make new music together. Besides that I am dreaming about touring and playing again…
“Future Retro” will be releasing 12th May on 012 and is available for pre-order on Bandcamp.
Tracklist: 1. Future Retro I 2. Future Retro II 3. Future Retro III