Solune: The Ransom Note Mix


There appears to be an ever blossoming string of new musicians within electronic music in the present day.

Solune is one who may just be about to break through the ranks. As one of the pioneers behind Berlin's Bass Cadet Record store and a producer in his own right his commitment to music is more prevalent than most. This week saw the announcement of a new EP on the London based record label Secretsundaze which is due for release in the coming months. It is a step up for the upcoming producer who has previously ownly released music independently through a label run by himself and a collective of friends including Laura Le Marchand. He has also worked closely with Alan Mathias under the guise of Arcarsenal who have released music on Rue De Plaisance and This Is Not Happening. 

We caught up with Solune who contributes to the Ransom Note mix series…

Please introduce yourself…

Hello Ransome Note, i’m a young-not young man beginning his 30's; soon dad but still a kid. As most of my peers i’m fond of music and my passion turned me into a DJ, record collector, now ex-record dealer, label manager, live artist and studio head. I also know couple of strings of the business so i have day jobs in the music industry since 10 years now.

Who are you, where are you and what are you?

My best friend Laura calls me “the idealist”. I think it's my true nature… I sometimes dream of an animist and socialism mishmash for better days for our society. I’ve been born and raised in south western France and I live in this never growing up city that is called Berlin since 6 years now, thus i’m in search of more sun, better food and smiles.

What does your music sound like? Can you draw what you think it sounds like for us (an image from the old internet is acceptable)? 

It would be the flap of a bird while ceremonial drums are banging the rhythm out in the jungle, then a soulful organ comes in and gives a warm signal to the dancers to lose their body to the music.

How did Bass Cadet Records come to be?

Friendship, human relations, and all what goes beyond that. It’s a story of human beings always evolving. It’s the brainchild of many but somehow i put more input into it. Now we’ll focus more on Orbits, the series which came out of the store, and with which will continue it’s legacy. Our new release just came out with Jenifa Mayanja delivering amazing music as always, while DJ Jus-Ed is on the remix duty. This EP has a true personal meaning and is a nice family story. Don’t miss it. And next, we have a great Alton Miller release coming up. More infos soon…

How would you describe the competition amongst music stores in Berlin?

Very sane. Even if it’s the city with the more record stores in the world, each one as still it’s own musical direction so it’s very, very positive. This way you can go record shopping different places depending on your daily feelings. It’s seriously amazing. 

There were reports recently that Record Loft would be closing, does external pressure affect your business? 

We actually closed the store because of roadworks… so clearly yes. Record stores  are kind of dreamlands anchored in a harsher reality… so sometimes reality catches up with you.

How would you describe your sound as Solune?

It’s different from what i can do with my brother Alan as Arcarsenal, but somehow bears the same DNA. I want it to be drawn by positive energies, and take my range of inspiration from jazz to deep house via ambient and soundscapes. I also try to build a deep story around each release, that make it readable and listened on different but coherent levels. I’m really grateful that i have the total freedom to do it on Bass Cadet.

Where was the mix recorded?

It’s the first mix i had to record since the store has closed. The first one in many years that i had to do on a different booth, as i've moved my turntables to our studio. So it’s was kind of a challenge to focus and connect to a new atmosphere for mixing. And i have to tell that it wasn’t an easy one. I still need to put some work on my installation there…

What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?

A nice hi-fi sound system, or the one that you prefer, with a bunch of friends gathered around a nice drink before going out to a good party.

What should we be wearing?

Comfortable but decent outfit. And please, get naked towards the end, do what you have to do, and finally fail going out to the party.

What would be your dream setting to record a mix: Location/system/format?

Actually, my living room would be dope… but it already has too many records and my girl doesn’t want me put more. And i wouldn’t find the place to fit a booth there, so it would have to be a temporary set up, for a special occasion. On the technical side, two Technics MKII, two CDJ 2000, a rane rotary mp 2016 with a good isolator, Klipsch monitors and a good amplifier (i don’t know anything about them tho…).

Which track in the mix is your current favorite?

Ron Trent – Boogie Down… how can you not dance to this ?

What’s your favourite recorded mix of all time?

I don’t listen to much mixes since years, so it would have to be an older thing which i can’t remember at the moment. But of recent times, i just went crazy for Volcov’s mix for Altered Soul Experiment cassette series. It’s a masterpiece.

If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?

One that would have been raised up with soulful jazz and disco but would have digest modern club sound design, so we could go through all dance eras without wondering if genres fit together or not, because obviously it would. But it would have to be on a great and precise sound system. And don’t read me wrong, i’m not willing to play rarities and obscure gems for the sake of it and showing off, this really doesn’t interest me. We would play dance music for people to dance to and have fun. Then Frankie Knuckles maybe… or David Mancuso for the vision, but mostly Ron Trent. Most specially since what i heard from him at the Young Soul party we organized together with our friends of JAW family.

What was your first DJ set up at home and what is it now?

I started with 2 x Stanton T.60 and a ECLER nuo2 and now i have 2 x Technics MKII and a ECLER nuo3. I always loved ECLER’s warm sound, i think it’s one of the best for mixer in their category and for that price. Though, i wouldn’t bring it in a club, the front panel is a bit fragile for heavy action.

What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?

The track you start with… Building up a good story always needs a great introduction.

What were the first and last records you bought?

The first one might have been the CD of Nirvana’s Nevermind, i think i was 9 or something, and the last one was at the great Vodkast Records out of Tbilissi, Georgia, Kaidi Tatham – The Extrovert City on 2000 Black.

If this mix was an edible thing, what would it taste like?

Berries and honey with a pinch of spices and a shot of mezcal.

If it was an animal what would it be?

A bear sitting comfortably, eating berries and honey, drinking mezcal, close to a nice little creek on a warm spring day.

One record in your collection that is impossible to mix into anything?

That Alton Miller thing coming in at 17:30 in the mix. The hi-hats and the kick aren't synced on the same groove.  

Upcoming in the world of… 

Check out that Secretsundaze release coming up in March !! And also keep checking the next Bass Cadet releases…

Anything else we need to discuss?

Capitalism, but that would take a bit of time, and we have a night to run !

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