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In the Black Zone: A Conversation with Dan Sushi

Dan Sushi, renowned for his contributions as one-half of the Swiss duo Fat Sushi, steps into the spotlight with his latest solo endeavor.

After a storied career spanning nearly two decades and boasting a repertoire of releases on esteemed labels, Dan Sushi unveils his third EP under his own name. Following the success of his previous solo releases, the producer marks his debut on Katermukke with the highly anticipated EP titled ‘Black Zone.’

Join us as we chat with Dan and explore the inspiration behind his latest release.

Dan Sushi’s  ‘Black Zone’ via Katermukke is now available for download and stream.  

EG: Hi Dan, welcome to EG! Where are you joining us today?

Dan Sushi: Hi, I’m sitting in a restaurant directly by the lake. It’s not far from my studio. So, I’m just enjoying the summer weather, that finally came to Europe to recover from my latest 4-hour studio session this morning.

EG: Nice. Your upcoming EP, “Black Zone,” marks your debut solo release on KATERMUKKE. What inspired the direction and sound of the title track?

Dan Sushi: I’m a big sci-fi fan. So, I was inspired by movies and TV series coming out of this genre. Sometimes, it’s just a feeling or a mood that I get during the viewing, which I then try to transpose into musical vibes. This inspiration makes my music kind of individual at that moment. For my new solo project, I tried to develop my Fat Sushi signature sound a little further and follow the current trend slightly. Fat melodies and banging basslines. I’m very happy with the result and love that it landed on Katermukke.

EG: “Ram Core” is described as a rhythmic and captivating track focusing on bass and drums. What was the creative process behind this track, and what elements did you prioritize in crafting its sound?

Dan Sushi: The idea for this track came to me by chance while browsing my Serum Preset collection. At this time, I was working on another track. And then, when I played the harmonic on my keyboard, I immediately had the idea for this brand-new bassline. Realizing the feeling, I immediately recorded the bassline. Since the theme didn’t fit at all with the track I was working on, I immediately exported the idea to a new project and continued working on it immediately.

EG: This EP represents your third solo release under your own name. How does working on your solo projects differ from Fat Sushi? Are there any specific aspects of solo production that you particularly enjoy, or don’t?

Dan Sushi: Studio work is not that different. Under the Fat Sushi label, I almost always worked alone in my studio. The main difference for me was that I always had to take care of my partner Ralph’s wishes and music tastes, though he wasn’t often there with me. The fact that we didn’t work enough side by side has become increasingly difficult for me in the last few years. This mainly has prompted me to start my new solo project.

“When I make music in the studio, I don’t think about labels or where or with whom the track could fit – I try to make music and have fun hearing the melodies”

EG: What was the process like transitioning from releasing as a duo to working on your solo side project? Did you encounter any challenges, and how did you overcome them?

Dan Sushi: At Fat Sushi, my partner Ralph took care of the whole business and social media part so that I could concentrate entirely on production. At Dan Sushi then, I had to handle all the business and social media stuff, which took me some time to familiarize myself with.

EG: You’ve released music on many respected labels. What excites you most about working with different labels, and how does this influence your creative process?

Dan Sushi: When I make music in the studio, I don’t think about labels or where or with whom the track could fit – I try to make music and have fun hearing the melodies. Only when I’ve finished a few tracks, and I spontaneously think of a match with a label the track would fit best, do I begin to think about it more seriously.

Since my musical output has always changed slightly, it makes my music suitable for many different artists – what I love about my style.

EG: Can you share any other upcoming projects or releases with us? What musical direction or themes are you currently exploring?

Dan Sushi: After spending another month on Koh Pangan this winter, I was inspired by indie dance music. Recently, I finished a few tracks in which I worked on this inspiration. But now, there are no concrete plans for a release. I’m working on another EP, which I hope will be released on Purified.

EG: If you could collaborate with any artist (living or deceased) on a track, who would it be and why?

Dan Sushi: I’m a big fan of Monolink. As I love vocals, It would be great to do a track with him one day.

EG: What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not making music? Any hobbies or interests that help you relax or inspire you creatively?

Dan Sushi: I get to the gym 3 to 4 times weekly and go to the sauna afterward. Alternatively, I go biking, especially in the summer; I love to chill at the lake and swim. Besides sports, I also love cooking Thai meals.

“Art is individual and reflects the character of each artist”

EG: What is art to you? How do you see your work fitting into the larger landscape of contemporary music and art?

Dan Sushi: For me, art is individual and reflects the character of each artist. So, I don’t have any clear preferences – it must capture me and trigger my feelings.

EG: To wrap up, can you tell us something surprising about yourself that most people might not know?

Dan Sushi: I love doing music and having gigs – maybe it’s not surprising, but that’s my real love.

EG: Thanks for chatting with us, Dan! We wish you all the best.

Dan Sushi: Thank you for having me.

Dan Sushi’s  ‘Black Zone’ via Katermukke is available to download and stream

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