Deo & Z-Man

Hamburg duo Deo & Z-Man have a diverse and unique production style due to their heavy upbringing in hiphop. Now with a release on the Jeudi imprint ‘Southpole EP’, we sat down with them to discuss their past and what they have in store for the rest of 2016…


Interview by Ian Fleming


Do you remember the first track that first got you interested in electronic music? If so, what was it, what made it so special and what or who was it that first made you decide to start making your own music?

No, we can’t remember, as teenager skateboarding was our passion. Of course we also watched skate-videos from the US. That opened the door for HipHop music to our small town skate-lifestyle. We used to listen to acts like Mobb Deep, Wu Tang, A Tribe Called Quest, Tha Mexakinz. In fact this was the first electronic music we listened to even when you might not consider HipHop as electronic music. After a couple of years just as a fans we started to do our first steps of making our own music in the small studio of our father. There we formed a hiphop band, started producing and djing, got into clubbing and after years of having fun with different kinds of electronic music we ended up with the Jeudi clique.

As a duo, how do you operate when it comes to producing music.. do you each have specific roles?

We are switching our studio roles all the time. The first idea for a track is the most important thing and sets the direction. As we use a lot of analog gear we usually just put together some machines and jam till we have a first nice idea for a track. From this point on we just flash till the idea gets a track.

What is the one piece of gear in your studio that you could not live without?

Roland SH101. We love it. A jam-monster which is so much fun in different kind of setups.

Can you tell us a bit about your latest EP on Jeudi Records – what were your thoughts behind the two original tracks Relentless Wilderness and Bocko Schons?

We can’t tell that much about it because we don’t figure out what we wanna do before we start making music, we just put on our machines and jam around. After all the result is the result. We play music, we don’t work music. And playing has to be fun and has no master plan. ‚Relentless Wilderness‘ is the first track we did with our new bass machine ‚Bolsa Bass‘ by the sweet little brand Critter&Guitari. Check their stuff! After we made this drum’n’bass kind of bassline with it we thought about adding some vocals and ended up with a freestyle vocoder story about a lovebird searching for his lost wife. ‚Bocko Schons‘ is somehow the speechless little brother of the A1 and is inspired by one of our favorite sweets.  And by the way: there is a little easter egg build in one of the tracks. Can you find it?

You also have two great remixes on the EP from Eddie C and Zombies In Miami – what made you choose these particular producers to remix?

All of us suggested a couple of remixer ideas and we ended up with these 2 quality acts. We are absolutely happy with the result.
If you had to describe your sound in three words – what would they be?

Warm, dusty and ironically.

Where is your favourite clubbing location in the world?

Currently still out of order but the best place for clubbing is still the Pudel club. Absolutely no musical boundaries on every day a week, open minded people and the only good reason to visit St.Pauli / Hamburg.

DJs, producers, singers or bands – who would you say are your biggest musical influences?

To many to name them it. Our life with music influences us all the time. From early Italo Disco music to Memphis Underground rap, from Turntablism to analog machines. Everything is ending up somehow in our tracks. And there is still so much more to discover. As a fan and as a musician.

And finally – what else can we expect to see and hear from you this year?

As this year is nearly over you can expect some nice Deo& Z-Man gigs and probably some more music and mixes. But first we need to celebrate the Southpole EP.

Deo & Z-Man’s Southpole EP is out now on Jeudi Records
Grab it here –