Novi Sad (Serbia) based DJ/Producer Space Motion was responsible for the most popular release on Paul Hazendonk’s MNL label in 2017 – the rather huge ‘Green Waves’ – and now he’s back with his highly anticipated follow up – ‘Tribe EP’. Having also caught the attention of the very astute and experienced Kevin McKay, Space Motion recently released a selection of excellent tracks on the much-revered Glasgow Underground label, further raising his international profile. With numerous projects waiting in the wings as 2018 starts to unfold, we thought it was high time that we caught up with this exceptional creative artist, because it looks like being a big year for Space Motion…
Atila, a big welcome to DMCWORLD and congratulations on the release of your new ‘Tribe EP’ on Paul Hazendonk’s MNL label – how did this project come together?
The pleasure is all mine, I’m glad to be part of it, and thank you for the congratulations. It was my big wish to be part of the MNL label family, so l stayed persistent, and my wish came true! Also, ‘Tribe’ is a really good song 😀
Talk us through the making of these EP tracks? How does the creative process work when you’re in the studio?
The ‘Tribe EP’ consists of three tracks – ‘New Mountain Calling’, ‘Stress’, and ‘Tribe’, of course. I’m not actually sure how my inspiration came to me, l don’t have a specific model for that, I can only say that the music just happened to me. My every emotion – my happiness, my anger, my sadness, everything that life throws at me and l survive – it turns into the music that I create.
The ‘Tribe’ track, for example, is a mix of everything. A funny fact about Balkan people: when we celebrate something, no matter if it’s a birthday, or party, or wedding, or whatever, we do loud whistles. That sound is a sound of celebration, and I wanted to pass this idea into the song, and so on the audience. In ‘Tribe’ as well, you can feel a little bit of Africa, you can feel a little bit of ethnic Balkan music.
Can you put your finger on the elements of your music that make it so distinctive and engaging?
Hmm…l do prefer melody, emotional melody, the one you feel deep in your body. l also love ethnic sounds and instrumentation – African, Asian etc.
Is defining music by its genre useful or limiting?
It’s useful, of course. And generally, genres are there to give a basic definition, not there to put limits on creativity.
Kevin McKay recently released a selection of your tracks on his revered Glasgow Underground label – how did that come about?
I’m very happy about the cooperation with Kevin, for sure, having my music on Glasgow Underground means a lot to me as I continue to build my career.
Which track would you say is your most accomplished creation to date? Why?
A year and a half ago, l had a big surgical operation and it was super complicated and a lot of things happened. So, l was inspired to make a song, a song for my doctor, who actually saved my life. That song is called ‘After The Storm’ and is coming out in February 2018 on the Manual Music label.
What piece of studio equipment could you not live without?
Definitely, Traktor Maschine!
You have also collaborated on projects with other artists – such as The Dealer, Rectoor and Siguiente Tecnologia. Is there a certain magic involved in creating music with other artists? In what ways is it more interesting or challenging than working alone?
Yes, all of them have that special unique sound that l prefer and like, so it was my wish to collaborate with them. In some ways its harder to work with another producer – everybody has a lot of ideas, and eventually it should be one, and then that idea needs to be a brilliant one – so each of us needs to be on the same wavelength and think the same. So, yes, it is a challenge, but it is a pleasure as well.
If you could work with any artist (ever), who would be at the top of your wish list?
Solomun and Black Coffee.
Let’s rewind for a moment, what are your earliest musical memories?
My first memories about music come from when I was 4 years old – my father played vinyl on the gramophone every day to me, and it was our time, so was really special to me.
What was it like growing up in Serbia?
Honestly, really hard and difficult. But, it made all of us strong people, and who we are now.
At what point did you get into producing and DJing? Who have been big influences in your music career?
With DJing l started when I was 14 years old and that was in the year 2000. Then, 3 years later, I started producing. At that moment in time, it was people such as Jean Michel Jarre, Paul Oakenfold, Tiesto, and Paul Van Dyk, who were my early influences.
Having witnessed the evolution of the underground scene in your home country of Serbia, how do you view where things are at now? Is the scene healthy? What could improve things?
The scene is definitely strong and growing bigger. Consciousness about electronic music exists and EXIT has definitely contributed to that. But, honestly, the way things are going right now, l don’t like it too much, l don’t find it very healthy. There’s not a lot of people who make the music l do, so l hope the new generations are going to look up to the artists that are out there now and push the scene forward more positively for the future.How important has EXIT Festival been to the scene?
The advantage of EXIT, first of all, is that we have an opportunity at least once a year, to listen to and experience some big artists here in Serbia. Especially, back at that time in 2000 when EXIT started, it wasn’t easy like it is today, to hear all that music. Some of us have been lucky to work at the festival, to be part of the big project. In that case we could talk with an artist, exchange some ideas, and just have the best time ever! I have a special bond with EXIT and take that really personally, l grew up with it over the years, both personally and professionally. My first performance at EXIT was in 2006, l was only 20 years old, and that was one of my favourite performances ever.
And in your hometown of Novi Sad, what’s going there right now? What places should a visiting electronic music fan check out?
The scene exists for many years and people are fans of electronic music. Unfortunately, Novi Sad only has two underground clubs – the oldest and longest running is The End Club, and there’s one inside the Petrovaradin Fortress called Club Tunnel.
Where have been some of your favourite places you’ve played recently? What new places are you looking forward to experiencing in 2018?
It’s always a pleasure to do the ‘Obssesion’ parties, first of all because of the audience. The atmosphere is super nice, the energy is on the big level, so it’s always a great party. Also, performances that I’m looking forward to coming up include shows in Tunisia and Egypt in February, and definitely the summer season 2018 in Ibiza.
What new projects should we watch out for from you in 2018?
Apart from the MNL/Manual Music releases I’ve mentioned, another release to watch out from Space Motion is coming out soon on Atmosferic Records in March.
Any other Serbian artists that we should keep an eye on?
Ilija Djokovic, Danijel Cehranov, Nikola Mihailovic and Coeus – they are all excellent!
And finally, what’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
To listen, to stay consistent in one’s chosen genre, not to stray and start to play in another genre that in that moment is the popular one. And just stay persistent.
Space Motion – Tribe EP (MNL) – Out Now