Mollono.Bass can undoubtedly be described as an outstanding artist with a unique sound and should not only be known to fans of the magical Fusion Festival, where he performed groovy and memorable sets.
His deep passion for electronic music caused the foundation of Acker Records in 2006, which he leads as its mastermind, as well as the launch of 3000° Records in 2008.
The never tiring DJ and producer is also involved in the projects Rundfunk3000 and Eulenhaupt & Mollenhauer. Behind the turntables as well as live, Mollono.Bass presents minimal Techhouse beats which directly aim the dance floor and therefore always contain a proper portion of bounce.
Mollono.Bass embeds warm, groovy and driving drum sets into a dubby, harmonic and emotional soundscape. His organic tunes with a touch of atmospheric sounds take the listener on a journey through time and space.
We sat down with Mollono.Bass in his cozy hammock and talked to him about the past year, lockdown and his plans for the future.
How did you as an artist and your label got affected by the dark year of 2020 where hardly anyone got to do any live performances?
It was a dark year in many respects, no doubt about that, but in other respects it turned out a rather bright year. As the saying goes: Where there’s light, there’s shadow – and I believe that goes the other way round, as well. Where there’s shadow, there’s light.
Economically speaking, it’s been a very negative period of time. Speaking in terms of creative freedom, on the other hand, it’s been a great year for me. No gigs, no touring, no parties or festivals meant that I had plenty of time for the studio. And actually that’s exactly what I’ve been asking for.
It felt as if a huge pressure had been lifted off my shoulders, I was finally free to just let my creativity flow, let my ideas develop and take shape in their own pace rather than struggling with deadlines all the time. It felt a bit like the time before I played so many gigs. I also think it’s been good for my health, at least physically.
Mentally I do miss the dancefloors and the travels.
Of course, I’m really looking forward to playing live again, hopefully one day soon – but it’s been refreshing and very productive to have this off-time in lockdown.
And what do you think some of the long-term implications of this will be regarding the scene?
It’s January now, I think we will have to live with this whole situation quite a bit longer. It won’t be over with the snap of a finger. One long-term implication I see already is that some promoters, crews, DJs and producers are getting into serious financial troubles. Some producers might not have the money to pay the extra rent for their studio or for the mastering service they’ve been using, which might or might not cause a change in production standards.
Some clubs will have to close down for good, some promoters will have to find a new crew because their old crew members took other jobs to get along. Finding a good crew is not to be underestimated, so that might have some long-term implications.
One aspect that is both good and bad, depending from which side you look at it: The artist fees will probably drop. The good part about that is that hopefully the less commercial promoters will be able to book names that have been playing exclusively at major events with huge budgets during the last years.
Last but not least there’s the most important part, the party family. Some people will remain cautious about the risk of infection, and they might avoid clubs. Considering the huge amount of clubs this will have consequences, of course.
By the way, to support the underground scene in these difficult times we just started subground.org – a streaming platform that is independent from the algorithms and advertising of “main stream” media.
Were the months in lockdown or restricted social activity what spurred you on to make the album called Woods, Tales & Friends being released mid of 2020? Or was this planned long before any of this kicked off?
The album was pretty much finished just when the first lockdown was put in force, there were just some minor edits left. It took shape over three years, and the title is pretty much programmatic because it summarizes the three main sources of inspiration. There are the woods.
I’m blessed to live in the middle of nature and that really sets my mood and the vibe for many of my productions.
There’s tales, which I try to tell through my music – it’s very important to me to create this narrative that takes you from somewhere to somewhere else. And finally, there’s all the lovely people I met and worked with over these last years, my friends. Collaborating in the studio and on stage is a huge source of inspiration for me.
In which mood do you produce the best and why?
I like the mood of the morning. That’s when I feel well-rested, which is perfect for structured work. Being in the studio at night is more about experimenting and trying new things. Obviously both situations have their own benefits. I also love working on new ideas while travelling to gigs or, even better, when I have some time to spend on my little houseboat. There’s absolutely no distractions there, it’s just perfect for making music.
Do you have a certain defined studio routine or time frames?
Well, I’m also running the labels, the booking agency, and various parties and events. So usually I only have Monday reserved for the studio. Which brings us back what I said before, about the positive creative aspects of the otherwise rather dark year 2020.
And which is your favorite plugin or hardware at the moment?
I really love my Toft analog mixer. It looks fantastic. It sounds fantastic. It really adds warmth and character to my sound, especially when I run my Moog Sub 37 through it. The bass in Mollono.bass just has to be analogue!
You are currently releasing various remix packages of your album – can you tell us something about that?
I love remixing, and I think it’s also really exciting what other producers do with my own productions.
I’m happy to say that I found a few really talented producers for the remixes of my album, all of them are people I really appreciate.
For instance, it’s the first time that I’m working with Super Flu, and that’s a dream come true. I already did a remix for Einmusik, so it’s just as great to hear him creating a beautiful remix for me. Paul Ursin and Matan Caspi are two producers I really respect, and last but not least there’s my old friend and studio partner Stephan Zovsky.
What’s next in the pipeline? Any releases or remixes coming out in 2021 you want to reveal?
First there’s the sixth part of my Remix Collection coming out in February on 3000Grad.
Among many others, there’s two previously unreleased remixes in there which I did for jPattersson and Bummelzug:acht.
Then I did a track for The Outlaw Ocean Music Project, a great project initiated by investigative journalist Ian Urbina who wrote the great book with the same name. The sea, human rights and environmentalism are three things I really identify with, so I’m proud to be a part of this.
Then there’s spring and the 100th release on 3000Grad records. For that, I am currently finishing a previously unreleased Kombinat100 track that used to be a real anthem when we played a lot back in the day. And I’m working on a very emotional track that aims to summarize the unforgettable, golden memories of 20 years on the dancefloors.
Speaking about the good old times and old friends: Green Lake Project is remixing a track from Der Dritte Raum’s classic Raumgleiter album from 1998 – and no, it’s not Hale Bopp! Not only me, but a collaboration of many artists and crews: Our project subground.org is an independent playground for the underground in these unusual times.
And finally, I’d like to mention that we are organizing a small, family-style party in Croatia in June.
Explore more about Mollono.Bass on his website.