Atma returns to London for a music revolution!
Reported by Andy Force
Submitted 05-02-13 22:44
Atma becomes the latest delivery of raw psy trance talent to meet UK shores for Global Digital Masters presents: DIGITAL this Saturday 9 February at The Hackney Cut. Hailing from Romania and now based in Germany, Atma has successfully created his niche sound impervious to the tides and currents that dominate the underground psychedelic trance culture.
There are various layers to the pyramid of creativity, from the elementary replication of ideas, to the cross pollination of existing forms, and then, at the peak sits elusively the discovery and production of something original, something unheard of and untarnished, beautiful in its tangibility.
Manifesting this kind of ingenuity means breaking the rules that you have worked so hard to master, and inhabiting a space beyond the framework of firmly held traditions and tendencies.
Operating from a point of genuine creativity means to exist outside of the zeitgeist. To not be driven by fads, fashions or trends, but by the knowledge that the beauty of creativity is held in the process itself, and in the delivery of something unique, untainted by the limiting conventions of what has come before, and what is expected in the future.
Emanating from the deeper levels of consciousness, this capacity is a condition that is unique to the human species in its availability, and accessibility. It has the potential to drive forward our civilization, and the mere exhibition of it is enough to ignite the flame of creativity in others, accelerating the collective development of humanity itself.
It is perhaps the abundance of this trait within psychedelic trance culture, and the receptiveness of its people to new ideas that has kept the scene strong, rejuvenated and bursting with vitality since it left its roots behind.
Atma (Andrei Oliver) is certainly an artist who can be credited with carving his own path, bringing a definitive sense of personality and individuality to the music he creates. Few of his contemporaries could claim to rival him for the degree of originality, musicality and production quality that his music exudes.
Getting ready to alight in London on one of his many flights across Europe, Atma is preparing to deliver one of his show-stopping live performances at Global Digital Masters presents: DIGITAL. GDM has been instrumental in recently exposing some of the most talented and rarely seen artists to the UK scene, including Liquid Soul, Mad Maxx and Transwave to name a few.
This time Atma will be appearing alongside chillout maestro Human Experience, the one and only Liquid Ross, and some guy called Andy Force... There’s also a progressive room hosted by LiquidTek Records including Tongue & Groove, Ipcress, and plenty more talent from far and wide at an intimate venue in East London overlooking the Olympic stadium!
So, as preparations are well underway to create an environment worthy of the talent that the party will be hosting, we pinned down Andrei to fire some questions at him about his life and his journey through music.
Atma - There Is Still Hope
Did music play a big part in your childhood? What were the key moments in your development as a musician?
I was born in a family of musicians and most of my relatives are involved in jazz or classical music. My father was a pretty well-known guitarist in my country but unfortunately he had an accident when I was five years old, so he could not play guitar anymore. That’s the reason I never learned to play guitar, and I think this was a very good and important step in my life, because I started to study music theory and not a particular instrument as most children do at that age.
There is a huge advantage to learning how all instruments must work and fit together in a track in order to make a full story than to learn and play everyday, just a single instrument. I think that’s the secret behind my music.
Can you tell us about how you discovered psychedelic music; do you remember your first experience of it?
I discovered psychedelic music quite late, around 1994–1995 through acts like Eat Static, Juno Reactor and Astral Projection, but my journey with electronic music started a few years before. In 1986, I first saw a videotape of J.M. Jarre in concert and at that moment I knew what my future would look like.
In 1991 when the acid-techno and early trance scene exploded around Europe, I was already making electronic music. I was only 12 years old! I am proud to say that I was a small part of that electronic music revolution, when huge names like Sven Vath, Carl Cox and The Prodigy were born. Of course, because of my early age, lack of money and experience and political and economical problems in my country it was very hard to make myself known at that time. It took me a few more years and hard work to achieve that.
Why did you pursue this path as a producer? Do you make any other styles of music?
I’ve had many passions in my youth but I think music is the only one that allows me to freely express what they feel and think. I am also passionate about philosophy, science, science fiction, sports cars, 3D animation, football and much more.
I played professional football for a few years and I even had a chance to play in the Champions League for a known club, but I knew that my real dream is music so I quit football when I was 18 years old.
Beside psy trance I also work on movie music and I compose tracks for commercial bands – not as a main job, but just for fun, or when I need some extra money. For a moment my own music project takes up a lot of time so it is very hard to do anything else besides.
What was it like growing up in Eastern Europe? What was the music scene like there?
After the fall of communism in Eastern Europe in the early ’90s it was a difficult period with many changes and problems, especially financial. Certainly, the electronic music was not a priority for people in those days. We can’t speak of the electronic scene because it really did not exist until 1997–1998.
Who or what are your greatest influences and inspirations?
Star Wars was the movie that changed and influenced my life forever. That movie is my bible.
The second thing that influenced my life was the philosophy of Fr. Nietzsche. Both have also been a great inspiration for my music.
Atma - Secrets of Meditation
What is the key to creativity? Which part of the creative process do you most enjoy?
I mostly like the middle part of working on a track, when the idea itself starts to take shape. This is when I finally see that the track is no longer a mix of different instruments and sound effects but it starts to have its own life. It starts to breath like a human being.
The psy/Goa trance scene has been around for a long time, meanwhile other genres and music scenes have petered out and many have disappeared altogether. What do you think accounts for the longevity and success of this movement?
When it was born Goa/psy trance was not just dance music, it was a way of life, a new culture, a new religion. The universe behind this culture was so large that everyone could find his own spot. For an artist or musician this Goa/psy culture it was an endless field of creativity. There were no rules at all! Now, things have changed a little bit, but there are still unexplored corners in this universe.
Having heard you play once before, I was very impressed by your performance, it stood out from other live acts that I often hear, but was not what I expected having previously listened to the style the music you’ve released. Can you tell us a little bit about it, how is your live act different from other people’s…?
Most people’s live sets today are pre-recorded because it is easier and safer to make it at home or in the studio, and then there is no risk of something going wrong when you play out on stage. But, personally I prefer to have all my channels and sounds under control so I can start different melodic lines or percussion loops, or maybe just repeat some parts in the track while I am performing. That’s why I split every track I play in different channels and sample loops, then I can rearrange them live using sequencer software with a midi controller or a hardware workstation.
Why put so much effort into it? You’ve already produced the tracks, why not just turn up with your laptop and click play?
In today’s music scene is it important to be competitive. If you don’t release anything new and of quality for more than two years than you are finished as an artist.
The competition is always high, there are many new artists every year and hundreds of releases so you must keep producing and improving yourself. The ’60s and the ’70s are long gone. Nobody can survive with one album for ten years.
You have done are fair bit of travelling and taken your music to different corners of the globe, what’s the craziest or funniest story you have brought back with you?!
I think the craziest thing I have ever done is to drive my car to a festival from Romania to Portugal and back. In total it was 11,000 km. It took me three days and nights just to get there. That was a once in a lifetime adventure!
Atma - Music Revolution
A few of your tracks have had vocal samples that reflect certain philosophical tendencies, sometimes political (i.e. the track ‘Freedom’) and sometimes more spiritual (i.e. ‘There is Still Hope’.) What is the inspiration behind using these poignant messages in your music?
That’s true. All my albums are built up as a complete story and with a very strong philosophical concept behind it. The first album Beyond Good & Evil, was inspired by Fr. Nietzsche’s philosophy. The second one The Secrets Of Meditation is more spiritual, it talks about the rise of the new man, ‘The Overman’.
The track ‘Freedom’ as you mentioned, comes from my 3rd album Music Revolution which has a rebellious message against modern music that has lost its spirituality and become empty, with no feelings and no emotions inside it.
It’s interesting to see that many people didn’t understand why I put the voice of George Bush in a track that talks about ‘Freedom’. The answer is simple: if I would make a track to talk about the good in the universe, I would put Darth Vader’s voice, to represent the evil. You always need something opposite to create a contrast... otherwise you don’t have a story!
For news and info about Atma check out his Facebook page.
And his Soundcloud
Atma is playing at Global Digital Masters presents: DIGITAL at the Hackney Cut this Saturday 9 February.
All images courtesy of Atma. Not to be reproduced without permission.
Saturday 9th February
The Hackney Cut [map]
21:00 - 06:00
GLOBAL DIGITAL MASTERS PRESENTS: DIGITAL
✰ ✰ ✰ SATURDAY, 9TH FEBRUARY, 2013 ✰ ✰ ✰
THE HACKNEY CUT, BEACHY ROAD, E3 2PA
★★★ MUSIC & VISUAL ARTS ★★★
★ ALCHEMY RECORDS ★ ASKARABASKARA PROJECT ★
★ COHESION ★ LIQUIDTEK ★ GDM ★
ૐ DECOR by PSYSPACE INVADERS ૐ
VISUAL INSTALLATIONS AND PROJECTIONS BY
OUR PROFESSIONAL & FRIENDLY SECURITY ARE THERE TO MAKE SURE THAT YOU FEEL SAFE AND WELCOME AT ALL TIMES.
☎ INFOLINE ☎
0758 377 1409 / 0758 387 6431
••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• •••
YOU CAN ALSO LEAVE YOUR MOBILE NUMBER TO HAVE MORE DETAILS OF THIS EVENT AND OTHER GLOBAL DIGITAL MASTER EVENTS SENT DIRECTLY TO YOUR MOBILE
Psy Trance. Prog House. Tech House. Deep Techno. Minimal Techno. Chillout / Leftfield.
||► HUMAN EXPERIENCE ◄||
(Human Experience Creations) - USA - ॐ LIVE
THA CAT'S PAJAMAS
(Human Experience Creations) - USA - ॐ LIVE
GLOBAL DIGITAL MASTERS PSYCHEDELIC STAGE
||► ATMA ◄||
(BMSS Recs) - Germany/Romania
||► LIQUID ROSS ◄||
(Liquid Records) UK
||► Andy Force ◄||
(Mutagen Records/Astral Circus) - UK
||► ॐ ThallOm ◄||
(Cohesion/Jet Events) - Brazil/UK
||► AZADEE ◄||
(Speedsound Recs) - AUSTRALIA
||► MELODIC NOISE ◄||
(Cohesion) - Brazil
▄▀▄▀▄▀▄▀▄· TECH PROGRESSIVE ▄▀▄▀▄▀▄▀▄
★★★ LIQUIDTEK & ASKARABASKARA STAGE ★★★
★★★ SPECIAL LINE UP ★★★ UPGRADING ★★★
|► TONGUE & GROOVE ◄||
||► NIMBUS ◄||
||► IPCRESS ◄||
||► MR BLACK ◄||
||► DRISAN ◄||
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The views and opinions expressed in this review are strictly those of the author only for which HarderFaster will not be held responsible or liable.