Swedish Electronica: 1987 Interview & Playlist Takeover

1987 Victor
This week the Swedish Electronica playlist is taken over by Victor Holmberg aka 1987. He chooses some warmingSwedish-Electronica melancholic tunes by Swedish producers (and even some hip-hop) to make your november evenings a bit more bearable. Follow Swedish Electronica playlist on Spotify / Deezer.

HMWL: Tell us about what got you into music, and your first experiments with sound…?

1987: Well I grew up with a brother who is a music nerd, he was listening to everything new and religiously reading all the important culture and music magazines at the time, I remember lying in bed reading his old POP and Bibel like it was pornography, i was mesmerised. So I think he was my main supplier and filter of good music. I have always looked up to him and trusted his judgement when it comes to music and trends. It was a very good thing for me i think, it made me listen to all kinds genres i think i wouldn’t have listened to. I ended up coming to school at the age of 11 and playing Kraftwerk during the lunch break and preaching to my classmates trying to convince them how good this is. Then I started playing the piano and guitar and tried to learn Belle and Sebastian songs, then at one point i got some kind of Yamaha synth and started recording on tape. Then my brother bought a Roland MC-303 and as soon as i got a computer basically i started recording everything i came up with. I was very inspired by Kraftwerk and beastie Boys at that point.

We know you’re close friends, with Johan Cederberg (HNNY), could you tell us more about growing up together and the kind of music you used to make…?

1987: We started making music together when we where around 12. We where very ambitious, started a band with a couple of friends and started producing together and writing all kinds of songs. Johan is an extraordinary producer, even back then he could sit all night just tweaking and playing around with samples. He thought me everything i know about producing, every time I’m working on a track i hear his voice in my head giving me comments and feedback, even though I’m just imagining it, I feel like I’m still working with him.

You formed the group, Montauk with Johan. Tell us what that was like and why, eventually you decided to go down separate paths?

1987: We started writing all these different tracks and wanted to do something bigger i guess. We had many ideas, we wanted to be a band at one point, produce other people and we wanted to remix and do edits and instrumental music. It was our playground. Our music school I guess. Well everything good at one point has to end.

Your sound, as 1987 – has a real sense of Swedish melancholy, but also something worldly. Do you think living in London has influenced your musical and creative direction?

1987: I can’t really hear my own sound, I guess this is just me. How I sound. And it’s hard to say what influences me but I think living here in a new place, away from family and friends in my very small apartment, working alone has absolutely made this album sound the way it’s sounding. I think it’s been good to have been somewhere else. And look back.

How would you say the music and creative scenes differ between Stockholm and London? Which parts would you like to combine…?

1987: It’s hard for me to say really, I’ve been so busy ever since I came here. But of course London has an enormous music scene. It’s crazy to see how many bands, writers, producers that are here and creating amazing music. It’s also inspiring to see how hard they’re working and how seriously they’re taking it. I like the Swedish music scene because it’s small and it’s kind of picky. I find Stockholm and Sweden very inspiring. I find myself, almost every time, looking back at memories from Stockholm and Skåne, south of Sweden where I spent most of my summers growing up. So I think I have best of both worlds.

Finally, what does the future look like for 1987? Can you tell us a bit about the album coming up?

1987: I just finished the album and I feel a bit empty at the moment. This album is probably as you said melancholic and very Swedish. But I hope I bring in something new. Something interesting. But at the end of the day I’m just writing songs from me and who I am. And I hope they will speak for me. I’m so happy to able to do this album, I never thought this would happen I’m really grateful and sometimes feel like I’m in a dream. This is a childhood dream of mine coming true.

About Alex Esser:

DJ, surfer and entrepreneur residing in Malmö, Sweden. HMWL label daddy. My music network is always open. Holler at alex@hmwl.org