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Marc Romboy - High Contrast

Author: Scott Henderson
Monday, 7 July 2008
With his second LP in the bag, Marc Romboy is a very happy man. 3D’s Scott Henderson took some time with the man behind Contrast, daring to ask: when can we expect album number three-

How does it feel to get that tricky second album under your belt following 2006’s Gemini-
Very, very good. I’m very happy that the new album is finalised and out now. A very important step for me and my musical activities, as I wanted to release a LP in one go but still with a lot of differences and contrast.

Gemini was really well received, how much pressure did you feel from that success and how much did that feedback equally give you confidence working on Contrast-
I didn’t feel any pressure at all. Every album stands for a different period of time. 50% of Gemini has been co-produced by Stephan Bodzin; this time the album has been entirely produced by 45 Rocks and myself. I’m always quite relaxed when it comes to producing. Besides my office job and daily obligations it feels like holidays to me. Each second was real good fun and no stress.

You definitely seem to have recaptured those dirty, flowing bass lines and synth sounds that made Gemini stand out, can you tell us what you were looking to create musically with ‘Contrast’-
Yes, you are totally right, the new album is more dirty and clubby, whereas Gemini was nicer and cleaner and more disco and deep house. I have also played a lot of gigs in cool and underground clubs, not in clean and nice Ibiza venues. But with the combination of the soulful voices I feel very happy with this result of club music with roots and soul, yeah.

Of the vocalists you worked with on Gemini, Blake Baxter is the one you have worked with again here on Fly Away. How did that come about and what was it like working with him again-
Well, Blake is one of the most important protagonists of techno house music ever. He built up this scene with his countless great releases on Tresor and Underground Resistance. He is a living legend and a very nice guy by the way. And his voice is so sensitive, soulful and touching that I could produce a million tracks with him. It’s unreal!

Fly Away really jumps out from the album, but other tracks from Contrast, for example Iceland and Karambolage, have equally great, driving house sounds. What were you influences in putting together this album-
Basically I’m really influenced by my musical education with Chicago and acid house on the one hand and Detroit techno and breakdance on the other. That’s something you will always hear out of my production. With Iceland and Karambolage we wanted to try out new possibilities and constructed surprising moments you normally won’t expect in electronic dance tracks.

Is there any one track from the album that you are particularly proud of or that really encapsulates what you wanted to achieve-
The standard answer might be: all. Yes, I like them all! It’s a part of me and it’s my heart and soul. But I’m really into Elif, the last track on the album containing the saxophone.

Between DJing, producing and running the Systematic label it must have been really difficult to find the time to work on Contrast and develop it into the final product. What was your trick for finding the time to really focus on making and completing this album-
Yes, that’s a question I hear a lot. Well, I don’t know. Music is my life. My family and the music mean everything to me.

The house scene is as dynamic as it has ever been, what music are you listening today that has really influenced your current work-
I’m heavily influenced by Björk at the moment. I had never been a huge fan of her, but when I saw her live show I was like, yes, that’s your way. Don’t give a shit what people say, look into the mirror and tell yourself what’s best for you. That’s essential.

Do you have plans to get back into the studio any time soon to start work on album three-
What a nasty question. I really don’t know. We will see what happens. I wanna play lots of gigs and we are talking already to Australian organisers to schedule a new tour for 2009. The last one over here was wonderful. Australia has very cool clubbers.

WHO: Mark Romboy
WHAT: Contrast through Systematic recordings/Intergroove
WHEN: Out now