Italian duo Aki Bergen and Richter are long term friends who share a huge love for all musical things electronic. We check in the lads to see what’s popping as they continue to evolve their forward thinking sounds with a superb new EP, ‘Moments In Time’ on Favouritizm…
A huge welcome back to DMCWORLD guys, where on planet earth are you today?
Thanks guys, glad to talk with you again! A part from traveling here and there like many of our collegues, I Aki), have just moved outside Rome in the beautiful city of Perugia. And i (Rich) i’m still living between Milan and Berlin, where I will move soon.
What have you been up to since the start of the year?
Sorry we can’t give you many details right now a part of saying we’ve been focusing on producing new tracks for a few months now.. We’re still working with Luben along with some new singers we’re having the pleasure to work with. We are moving towards a new sound compared to our usual one you’re used to hearing from us, with more pop influences.
What is the best piece of new music you have heard recently?
You mean our tunes apart, right? Ok, ok let’s stop being fool! The whole Vanco’s new ep on Afrocentric is really beautiful. We will play it massively for sure in the next couple of months.
You’re releasing ‘Moments In Time EP’ is just out on Favouritizm, tell us about the tracks and what we can expect to hear?
“Moments in Time” is part of that musical research and development we were talking about earlier. With “Falling” we wanted to contaminate pop and electronic sounds in our way, using real instruments and specific synths. We shared our idea with Luben who did a great job on adapting his voice. “In A Distant Place” is simply a tribute to our love for 80’s music, especially New Wave and Italo Disco.
You’re know for making Tech and Electronica, on ‘Moments In Time’ you can feel a distinctive 80’s vibe to the tracks with an indie twist. Who were your musical heroes growing up and have they played a big part in your sound today?
Aki: David Bowie, Depeche Mode and The Pet Shop Boys. Artistically speaking, I am what I am because of them all.
Richter: Joe Hisaishi, Elton John, Phil Collins, Genesis, Marillion, Yes, T-Square, Franco Battiato, Koji Kondo, Hirokazu Tanaka and many others.
You’ve got regular cohort Luben on vocals who features on previous releases including ‘A Thousand Years’ and ‘Pictures Of You’, how did you guys meet?
Aki: I met Luben about 18 years ago when we were a lot younger! It’s been a long-term friendship I’d say. So when I introduced him to my partner in crime Richter, he loved his voice too and here we are!
Who else would you most love to collaborate with?
Anyone who’s got talent, very productive and last but not least, being able to express love and positive vibes. We’re fed up to negativity and bad feelings. There are too many ass-wipes around, we need the good people to work with.
Whats the secret to your production partnership.. Who does what in the studio and how do you typically go about writing a new track?
Our secret is mutual respect and loyalty, it’s all about that after all. We do not actually have a very specific way of working and as we live in two different cities, we normally exchange ideas and files thru the net. We don’t like daily routines, it makes us bored so we tend to go with the flow. It doesn’t really matter who does what as we only concentrate on the final result.
What do you most like about each other and what bad habits get on your nerves?
Aki: I don’t want to appear like a sick, lovie-dovie girlfriend, but since I met Rich few years ago, I’ve never had anything to complain about. The truth is we’re very different animals, but we respect each other and our own private spaces and so far everything has worked at best.
Richter: He plays with Ps4 rather than Nintendo Switch. I really can’t stand it! I’m just kidding: Aki is a good friend with whomIi can be myself and talk about anything I want. I have really nothing to complain about him and considering i’m a susceptible person, that’s really a good thing.
You’ve released on labels such as Lauter Unfug, Tretmuehle, Budenzauber among others, have you got a personal favourite release and why?
Aki: I do like all what we do or I wouldn’t do it! If I’ve gotta pick one, I’d choose “Distance” on Armada Music. It was one of our good starting points when we joined forces as a duo.
Richter: I’ll go with “Distance” on Armada as well. That track brings back good memories, besides the Armada crew are really professional.
Looking back on your career so far what piece of precious advise would you give to yourselves back then?
Aki: A lot of people will try to take advantages of you for a number of reasons, take note I have a list! Joking aside, be surrounded by people you can significantly enhance your potential. Learn from the best and remind yourself to get grounded.
Richter: Avoid people who promised me great things and weren’t able to accomplish anything due to their incompetence. And of course blaming others for the bad luck for it.
How’s your own Neurotraxx label going and what’s coming up there?
In May we will release an EP by Audera, an Italian producer based between Rome and Los Angeles. Among the demos we received recently, this is the one that impressed us the most, that we decided to release it. It’s a cool example of deep-tech that works very well everywhere.
Have you any plans for an Aki Bergen & Richter album?
Well, not yet as we have been working on tons of music and projects at the same time for months, but you never know what’s coming up next.
Name three big tunes in your record box this weekend…
Aki: German Brigante – Indira Gandhi, Jochen Robberecht – Unconscious, Fat Sushi feat. Archivist – My Empire (Township Rebellion Remix)
Richter: Vanco feat. Njabulo Seh – Lutho. Brigado Crew & Crisstiano – Safari and Maksim Dark – Radium War
We come and raid your record collection, which piece of embrarrsing vinyl do you need to chuck out the window as we arrive?
Aki: amn it, I knew I would have done it before! It’s called “Kiss Me Licia” from 1986. Google it and go nuts.
Richter: If I answer this honestly, we wouldn’t work anymore, haha!
DJ wise, what gigs are you most looking forward to playing this summer and are you also playing live sets at all?
Wherever you can look at the sea as we ready to get tanned! We’re mostly into djing to be honest. Live sets are cool (sometimes) but the most of the time you can find it as a supa dupa tedious performance in front of a laptop, where the guy hit play and the job’s done. Although the vinyl era rarely survives, we prefer using them and pendrives tho. It depends on the club, the soundsystem and how many times we went to the gym before carrying the record bags.
Finally, what’s coming up next for you that you can tell us about?
That’s a real, very, actual, proper, true secret!!!
Aki Bergen & Richter ft Luben ‘Moments In Time EP’ will be released on April 6th Traxsource promo / Full release April 13th on Favouritizm.