In a music world and a society that’s now controlled by likes, shares and reposts, it’s refreshing still to see a bunch of captivating artists intent on pursuing their own individual ways of working. One such man is The Alexsander, a techno producer who gives little away but is more than capable of conjuring up memorable techno cuts. The owner of the fast-emerging Hypnotic Rhythm label, he’s a diverse producer with a melodic touch that courses through his releases. Indeed, it’s for these reasons that he’s signed to some of the biggest labels in the game – including Coyu’s Suara for a start – and with much more sure to come from him in 2021, we decided to check in with him for a quick natter. From his new EP on his home label to his plans for the year ahead and his thoughts on the marketing game, he’s nothing if not an intriguing mind. Here’s what happened when we caught up with him recently…
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Hi Alexsander, thanks for taking the time to talk to us. Let’s start with an obvious one — how has your year been? Did you manage to stay productive with all that’s going on?
It’s been a weird year and sadly everyone feels it. Up and down trying to be in balance. I must say I was even more productive during this time than before. Working on more releases for me, the label and with other artists. For me, 2020 was a productive and mind-expanding year with new knowledge and self-insight.
You tend to work behind an alias. This is obviously pretty common in electronic music, but what’s your particular reasoning for this?
Everyone does everything to get famous today, by exposing themselves to the fullest, during a time like this, being anonymous is like a superpower. I like that idea of privacy and why not be different at the same time.
So have you been involved in electronic music long before you recently cropped up as The Alexsander?
Yes, in various aliases and genres. But this project is the one that’s been the main focus the past 5 years.
Does your work as The Alexsander differ hugely to what you’ve released before? And what’s the ultimate aim with the project?
Throughout the years I made all kinds of music, played piano and guitar and started to produce hip hop/r&b, electro, nu-disco, big room-house to house and techno. I see a vision of an audiovisual live show as the main goal and focus on this project, which I’m looking forward to establishing in the future.
Going back to your alias for a moment, do you think too much is made of DJs who focus on social media etc these days? Has marketing badly impacted the electronic music scene do you think?
Marketing is a key in anything, but I wouldn’t spend my time screaming with a weird face expression on a video and making fun of myself to get more likes, sales etc. That’s not me. But some do and I don’t mind. We are all god’s creation and an expression of him.
You run a really awesome label, Hypnotic Rhythm. Can you tell us a bit about the label? How it came to be? Who else is involved? How do you sign artists etc?
Thank you! I’m thankful to be surrounded by so many talented people that I get the chance to lift up and showcase to the world. That’s one of the most important values of the label, to lift up new talent and co-create. I always wanted to have control of my own releases and to be able to release anything I like, in a nice package of experience.
All releases with a touch of disco, experimental music, trance, techno, tribal and house elements. In Lakech, Rob Kali, Ve:Modet are some of the artists on the label, super great producers and DJs. They are some of my personal close friends too so I didn’t have to look far to find talent. All artists that step into the label have to remix one of my songs before releasing originals. That’s my first rule.
Indeed, you have some really brilliant remixers on your latest EP, the brilliant Eternal. What are you looking for in the artists you sign?
Thank you, they are great producers! A unique sound and a sound that I think is in the path with the label. Usually, I find them when looking for new music and in promos. I usually approach them for a remix to the label. There’s a lot of talent and music out there and for me is kind of responsibility for the electronic music community to give, create, lift up, push forward the music and talents. Especially times like these. We are most powerful when we create together.
The Alexsander’s Eternal EP (incl. remixes by SEB, Ito Cekaj, Rasange, Milkwish Remixes) is out now on Hypnotic Rhythm. Buy/listen to the release here.
The label – and The Alexsander — seems to adopt quite a techno heavy approach. Would you ever deviate away from these sounds? And what other artists have influenced you in this regard?
I like a progressive, disco, cinematic, minimal techno mix of sounds, that kind of is my main sound. And I will always have them in my productions for sure and less digital and more analog.
Are there any other artists you’d love to work with? Do you set yourself goals in this regard?
Yes, many of them, in different genres also, but mostly vocalists. There’s a few I would collaborate with, just to experiment what we would be able to create. Florence Welch, Lana Del Ray, would be a dream collabs.
If it happens, it happens, life is full of synchronicities, we just have to be alert and catch them.
You’ve also put out music on the likes of Suara and Spinnin’. How did you come to those guys’ attention?
Through years of work, hustle, networking and timing. A got the attention from their main A&Rs and rest is history.
What’s next for you that’s keeping you excited outside of music?
I’m moving back to the country I was born in. And I’m setting up a new studio, a new home, new ventures on the side of music and hopefully peace of mind from this Covid thing.
Finally, can you let me in on some of your favourite pieces of music (electronic or non-electronic) from the past year?
The Alexsander – Eternal (MilkWish Remix)
Sault – Free
Nils Frahm – A Shimmer