Sitting at the forefront of the French techno scene is Antigone, a renowned DJ and producer who has been honing his craft over the years, producing some of the most intriguing techno the international scene has to offer. Having released on esteemed labels such as PoleGroup, Soma Quality, Idigo Aera and Token, Antigone boasts an extensive catalogue including collaborative work with the likes of Francois X and remix work for Slam’s classic “Positive Education”. A leader and mentor for a whole new generation of electronic music artists, Antigone continues to make a name for himself announcing his new project Selected Works Zero One due 10th February via his own imprint No Pain No Gain.
Taking a step into the world of Hard Groove and returning to his roots during the mid ’00s, Antigone seeks a more interesting direction mentioning, “I feel the techno scene is getting harder and faster with each release,. This sound has somehow almost become commercially acceptable and accessible. I’m not so comfortable being a part of this BPM race” he adds. “I need music to have a soul and for me, that only comes with groove”.
With three original tracks to be released on 10th February — the first being “Bahia” out today [listen here] — we caught up with Antigone who talks us through why he has returned to the groove.
Back to where it all started: My childhood memories
My techno journey really started in 2001, I remember downloading tracks on Limewire and particularly an Essential Mix from Carl Cox recorded at Space Ibiza. This set blew my mind like no other. Someone commented “the pinnacle era of house and techno”. It had a special mix of techno and house and this crazy groove which had a good impact on me as a DJ. It’s the exact definition of ‘la fiesta’ for me.
It’s funny how I still remember finding the tracklist on website called Troonik, and writing it down on a small piece of paper. I then went on my own to a record store at about 11 years old to see what I could find to buy. It gives me goosebumps thinking about this now.
Back to the groove
Honestly, I have got a bit bored of all the very hard music which is coming out at the moment. Don’t get me wrong, I love the energy of this harder techno vibe, but I just feel at some point it’s almost become a competition about who is going to deliver the hardest and fastest kick. We kind of lost the melody, the rhythm and all that was funky about techno. I want to see those feet shuffle and hips swinging again. And that’s why I have decided to get back to the groove.
Playing on 3 decks
What I like the most about Hardgroove music is probably the fact that it allows me to play on 3 decks because it’s very loopy music, so you can play around with layers and be very dynamic in your mixing. I have always seen the art of DJ’ing like an instrument, creating a new track by blending other tracks together, it allows me to be very technical and play around with faders.
Get house back in techno
Why should techno only be dark and rough? I just want to bring back something more joyful and organic. Play around with more tribal and house-based sounds, to bring back those old school sampling techniques and make something new out of it. I just love searching for old funk and disco tracks and sample, filter and chop them to create a perfect loop.
For the pleasure of digging back into my old records collection, but also back into the discogs madness and record shops. There was a moment in my life where I didn’t want to buy records anymore, but after a while this feeling of wanting to dig came back, and I just love it. The never ending record hunt. The techno records that came out from 2000-2004 were so good. You can be sure to always find something you have never heard before if you search, and that’s the true magic if it.