Hailing from Paris, Popof is one of the most widely recognized names within the world of house and techno. He has been appointed as the official mentor of the Paris Techno Parade 15 year anniversary, as a “historical actor and witness of the techno scene in France”. Between touring and producing he found some time to chat with us…
Electronic Groove: Hi Popof, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions. You’ve been djing and producing for a long time now. What are your thoughts on the current status of the dance music scene compared to when you started in the industry?
Popof: You’re welcome 🙂 Well, for the past twenty years the electronic music scene has constantly evolved, everywhere around the globe. It’s a genre that has risen from marginal to fully integrated. Nowadays everyone listens to it. Electronic music has become part of our culture and has reached all classes. The genres/subgenres have also evolved in terms of sounds and ideas, although, obviously, some genres come back and become the trend of the moment… And the cycle is complete.
Electronic Groove: Can you tell us about your days with the Heretik System Collective? There must be some great stories from that time…
Popof: We were a tight-knit collective; we organized Free and Rave parties. There were two sides to us: the partying and the music on one side, and a more serious, politically-oriented aspect on the other, as we had an ideology and expressed it strongly. There were no formally-written laws in France at the time forbidding electronic music parties and we totally took advantage of this legal “grey zone”. We’d invade any given place, party hard and wait for the consequences, if there were any. And so for many years we witnessed super highs – memorable events in railway stations or the gigantic Molitor public pool invasion – and also many lows, such as being arrested by the police or friends passing away… This said, it was a truly magical era and I’ll never regret anything about it.
Electronic Groove: Over the years you’ve played at some amazing venues and festivals. This summer it’s no exception with the closing duties at Space Ibiza alongside Julian Jeweil. Is there a special preparation for Back-to-Back set?
Popof: Absolutely. We’re preparing something very special – for a very, very special event. We are taking this project at heart, as it means a lot to us, and we are super-motivated.
Electronic Groove: We really like your latest Hot Creations album “Love Somebody”. What was the initial approach to produce this record? How’s your relation with Jamie Jones and Lee Foss?
Popof: There was no approach, really. I’d come up with about thirty tracks which all sounded different, having been created depending of my mood du jour. Then I sent these tracks to Hot Creations who responded very positively. Afterwards, we sat down together and selected the tracks we deemed fit for a full album. My relation with Jamie and Lee is great, both professionally and on a human basis, they are really cool people.
Electronic Groove: How was the experience of working with Arno Joey and with Miss Kittin? Did you have the time to record in the same studio or everyone did their own part separately?
Popof: Most of the tracks I did with Arno were directly recorded in my studio, as we really get along musically and in terms of production. As for Miss Kittin the process was different; she recorded the vocals at her studio, then she sent them to me for the final mix.
Electronic Groove: The album has some superb remixes by Carl Cox, Kerri Chandler, Magda, and Shaun Reeves and Tuccillo. Did you provide any input or direction to them or just their own track interpretation?
Popof: The concept of a remix is that the producer redoes the track the way he or she wants it to be. It’s a totally personal process, so I did not give any directives. They were all 100% free to do what they wanted and I think the results are fantastic!
Electronic Groove: What are some of your favorite albums and artists influences to listen to outside of House and Techno music?
Popof: Outside of electronic music I listen to lots of vocal jazz, funk and hip-hop. I particularly love Marvin Gaye and Ella Fitzgerald.
Electronic Groove: Finally, what’s next for Popof? Are there any particular shows or other releases we should be looking out for that you’re excited about?
In parallel, I’m working on new material in my studio… Some dancefloor tracks, taking me back to what I used to do in terms of minimal – but with a more modern touch. A few collaborations are also on the way… Lots of exciting stuff, that’s for sure!
Popof new album “Lidl Girl” is available on Hot Creations: http://btprt.dj/1UDjQwE
For more info visit: http://popofofficial.com