Born in the south of France, Hemissi (Anouar Hemissi) was first influenced by an array of different genres including hip-hop, funk, house and techno, devoting most of his time towards his passion for music. Inspired by some of the best techno artists to date including Jeff Mills, Ben Sims and Luke Slater, it was his project with Anemone Recordings last year which put him on the map, resulting in further releases with established labels such as Symbolism, Mord, Olympian and Edit Select Records.
However, it is Hemissi’s most recent record on Jeff Mills’ esteemed Axis which must be highlighted. Containing nine tracks, Primitive Atom serves up a slew of high-quality, otherworldly soundtracks intricately-interwoven by the French producer – ranging from the spacey and atmospheric samples of opening track “Planck Era” to the more upbeat yet sinister techno pounder “Nucleosynthesis”. Focussing on the Big Bang theory as the main concept, we caught up with Hemissi about the ins and outs of his impressive record.
First of all how are you? And what have you been getting up to recently?
I’m fine, happy to do this interview with you. It took me a few days to recharge my batteries, but I am happy to return to my secret garden with the machines, computer and all these cables.
How have you found the last year and lockdown in general? Of course, you have a brand new release but how has the last year been in terms of motivation and creativity levels as a producer?
It was strange as if time had stood still. My motivation to create music is continuous. I never get tired of being in my studio, but I tried new things like ambient music and it’s a concept that I like because there are no real rules.
How are you finding the return of events so far? Have you managed to get back into the groove?
To be honest, right after finalizing the album I needed to breathe a little bit and spend some time with my family. I went to some local events to listen to some good music to and now I am slowly resuming my habits back in the studio.
Your new LP Primitive Atom is a wonderful listen, can you tell us about the inspiration behind the album and how you would describe it?
It was precisely during confinement that I started to indulge in conceptual music. In my studio in the the evenings I find inspiration to record pads and all kind of noises.
We’ve read you have a really cool concept behind the record, can you explain that to our readers?
It started from reading up on the different Bing Bang theory where I came across the astrophysicist “Georges Lemaître” who had given his version of the bing bang. Thus my album starts from this point, arriving at our time in the present day. It effectively traces the chronology of the universe since its creation.
If you had to pick a favourite track, which one would it be and why?
The first track “Planck Era” because it is the basis of the concept. It was from this moment that I thought of the chronology and was the starting point of my project. I am happy with the end result.
Can you tell us about the production and creative process behind the track of your choice?
I don’t really have a process. I normally focus on feelings but, for example, the second track showcases the meeting of several synths and pads working with textures which intersect each other to create this atmosphere or the impression of several matter of the universe which is created.
Having worked with some big labels in the past including MORD and Symbolism, you’ve now joined Jeff Mills’ esteemed Axis Records. How important is this release to you and what’s it like working under Axis?
It is a great personal satisfaction to sign on Axis Records. I took a lot of time to put everything in place and I think this is the most successful project since I started my “Hemissi” projects. I learned a lot chatting with Jeff Mills.
As we return to normality, what have you got in store for the rest of 2021 and when’s the next Hemissi release?
At the end of September there will be a collab release on Soma containing 4 original tracks.
“Primitive Atom” is out now on Axis and is available to listen and buy here.