The new guys from The Netherlands that everyone are talking about…

 

Interview by Dan Prince

Guys welcome to DMCWORLD! Where on planet earth are you today?

We’re based in the Netherlands and we operate from a small home studio in Utrecht.

What is the best piece of new music you have heard today?

We love the new ‘Center Parcs EP’ that Palmbomen II recorded together with Betonkust in a deserted holiday park.

You have just released your debut single ‘Congo Hills’ on Subjekt, we love it. Please talk us through the sound and history of the track…

We like to go on Youtube and search for obscure African vocal music. For Congo Hills, we used an old recording from the Zulu tribe, that was actually very catchy. In general, we work from a live approach, building the arrangement on the go in the studio. When we came up with these synth chords, the track suddenly got this melancholic vibe that we immediately liked.

We all know the mystery novel series Psychic Detective Yakumo who was born with a red eye and able to see ghosts and spirits. Have you ever seen anything from the afterlife…

No, and it doesn’t sound fun really!

What is your earliest musical memory as kids?

Chris: Queen on New Years Eve and I listened to gabber in primary school.

Atser: I was pretty much obsessed with Beethoven’s Mondschein Sonate, which made me want to play the piano.

Your music has been described as hypnotizing and mesmerizing…who were the artists you were loving back in the day…

We used to be into punk and new wave. We listened to Joy Division, New Order, The Sound and The Ramones a lot.

How did electronic music first appear on your radar and when did the idea of a career in music first start to form in your heads?

Chris: New Order’s Blue Monday was the first thing that got me into electronic music. And I have had the idea of a career in music from the moment I bought my first instrument.

Atser: I think Boards of Canada and Kraftwerk were my first electronic loves.

How did the whole Yakumo journey begin?

While playing in our previous band Daily Bread, we were starting to get interested in synthesizers and production. So when that band stopped, we immediately hooked up all kinds of synthesizers to an old mixing desk and started playing around with this more loop-based approach.

“Yakumo boys got some new toys” you hollered on Facebook last week. What are your latest additions…?

Well, we had saved some money so we bought this Vermona DRM-1 Mk3 drum machine last week, an amazing machine that you will probably hear on our new tracks. We also bought a new modular synthesizer, so the Yakumo boys are very happy at the moment.

Tell us about your live show…

Our live show is based on drum and synth loops that we play around with. Basically, we make all the synth sounds live on stage, and also do all the mixing and effects. We decide on stage what kind of loops we want to use at any particular moment, so each live show is different from the other and can be as wild as we want.

So we come back to the Yakumo crib after the club…what do you spin us to mellow the mood…

We love the mellow, dreamy vibes of Tycho or some Washed Out and The Field.

Where can we catch you playing live over the coming months?

We’ve got a tour planned with OIJ in May and have some awesome festival shows coming up in the summer that we cannot yet tell you too much about yet.

Gotta ask, where do you keep your Friesland Talent Award you won in December. Most artists keep them in the toilet…

It has a very prominent spot in our studio. Fryslan boppe!

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

“Start buying modular synths.”

And finally, what is coming out next from you studio wise?

We’re making some new tracks at the moment, but we’re not really sure when we will release them.

 

soundcloud.com/yakumoband