Normanton Street – RouteNote Interviews

Photography credit: Myles J Burrell

Normanton Street are a soul/hip hop group consisting of Ned Archibong, Nicholson Davids, Phoebe Freya, and Nico Standing.  They stand out with 3 varied vocals from Phoebe’s soulful singing, to the lyrical raps of Nicholson and Ned – all backed by groovy instrumentation with a clear jazz influence.
The band have been making waves across the UK, with gigs and festivals across Europe taking them even further and massive support billings for acts like renowned rapper Talib Kweli and British spoken word artist Kate Tempest.
2016 has already been a great year for Normanton Street with the release of a 6-part documentary, a hot new single, and a performance at the massive US music festival SXSW in Texas. On the back of their rising success we got Normanton Street’s Nicholson to talk to us a bit about the band and himself.

How did you all meet and form Normanton Street?

Ned and I grew up together on the same street in Bradford from the age of 8. We moved to brighton in 2011 where we met Phoebe and Nico.

Normanton Street
Ned and Nicholson grew up together playing music – Photography credit: Oli Raven
What’s the meaning behind the name – ‘Normanton Street’?

It’s the place where we first moved to in Brighton. Just off Elm Grove.

The past few years have been crazy for you all with loads of gigs and supporting legendary artists like Talib Kweli, how has it felt for you guys?

It’s been amazing. Never thought we’d be doing so many shows, especially support slots like that. Much more to come though still.

How did your successful crowdfunder to play at SXSW come about?

We were asked to perform at one of the showcases over at the festival which was incredible. Unfortunately travel expenses were not included which was all good so we decided to do a crowdfunder campaign. Luckily we raised the full amount needed to get us over there.

Normanton Street's first US gig, at Botticellis before SXSW
Normanton Street’s first US gig, at Botticellis before SXSW
What has been your favourite experience so far making and playing music as a group?

Personally for me it was last summer being out on the road between loads of different cities and countries around Europe. It was one of those ‘I can’t believe this is happening’ moments.

If you could choose to work with any artist/musician, past or present, who would you choose and why?

There are quite a few and this answer is always different every time. Right now I’m going to say Fela Kuti.

Imagine you are stuck on a desert island and can only take one track to listen to and one possession what would you choose?
Doomsday – MF Doom

A laptop (providing it had a built-in soundcard, mic and ableton).

If you can choose, which of your own tracks would you say is your favourite or you are most proud of?

Our latest release ‘Take Time’. I think it shows the variety of our vocals, I like dancing to it and it also pops off live.

What can we expect from your upcoming EP?

The production of this next EP is real good. Shout man like Kristoff and Dyre. We were really strict with what the tracks we’ve selected to put on here so I guess you’re going to get our best stuff at the moment.

What advice would you give to any other aspiring musicians and producers? 

If you like every aspect of it, do your thing and never stop.

Normanton Street

Life’s Real EP – Releases July 15th
Normanton Street
Artwork by Ian Req

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RouteNote Interviews: Mike Emilio

Mike Emilio is a talented, popular Swedish producer and DJ. He’s amassed millions of listeners on tracks like his hit Fugazi on Spotify and SoundCloud. Mike has found his way onto top lists around the world including in the top ten Latin American charts and 2nd place at Spain’s biggest radiostation.
We managed to get in a few questions with Mike between producing his next hit singles.

How did you get into music, was it a natural passion or something you learned to love?

I grew up in a musical family where both my father and brother played several instruments, we built a studio and I got my first pair of drums when I turned six years old. I got raised with a lot of new metal and hard rock so that was the genre that started everything.

Over the years I started to produce hip-hop in high school and later switched on to EDM. I think my musical background is so important and I don’t want to label my music, I want to mix everything and produce music I love doing.

You’re part the recently launched Shape Music network and record label, what’s it like and were you a part of it’s inception?

I founded Shape Music now in 2016. Before that we were a music collective with four artists including Modo (NY), Tareq (SWE), James Wilson (SWE) and myself. I have been working on trying to cover every part needed, everything from producing to marketing – make everything from scratch and be able to finalize the product.

I have been lucky to be able to work with RouteNote that helps me distribute our songs worldwide. Music is so much more than just making the music, and that is what makes it so fun – to be able to be innovative and creative on so many levels.

You work with a lot of artists, recently you’ve worked a lot with Modo and James Wilson. How does working with other artists affect your creative process?

Connecting and working with other artists is something you must do, you learn a lot from the process and you reach sounds you never thought you would accomplish. Every artist is unique and when you finally feel that you have found the people you love working with, everything gets so much easier.

You stumble upon a lot of people that just want to use your ability of working without giving anything back, so I am happy to be a part of my team containing reliable and talented artists. Hard work pays off!

You’ve already been very prolific this year. Can we expect to see even more releases from you in 2016?

We will have a lot of releases coming up, not in the same tempo as we started 2016 though. We had a project where the team made several songs (over 15-20 so far) so that we could reach out as much as possible. We have new projects ready to be released with some really interesting artists. Some tracks are signed at major labels as Sony Music as well, we want to try to be seen and heard everywhere.

If you could choose to work with any artist/musician, past or present, who would you choose and why?

If I had the possibility to choose an artist/band it would be MUSE, I have been listening to them for so long and I can always go back to their old albums and just get nostalgic – there’s no ‘Best Before Date’ on their songs.

If we talk EDM it would be Skrillex or Deorro, no doubt.

Imagine you’re stuck on a desert island and can only take 3 tracks to listen to and one possession. What would you choose?

Hmmm, three tracks:

Muse – Hysteria
Toploader – Dancing in the Moonlight
Jillionare & Salvatore Ganacci – Fresh ft. Sanjin

Pretty mixed genres! I would bring a guitar.

If you can choose, which of your own tracks would you say is your favourite or you are most proud of?

I would have to say Fugazi that I made together with Modo since that song opened so many doors and helped me in so many ways.

What does the future hold for Mike Emilio?

I’ve just signed a new song with Treyy G (Trumpsta) and Frankie Carrera at Sony Music/Disco:Wax and we are shooting the music video with the talented Samuel Leijon as we speak. Last weekend we also recorded the official video for Fugazi 2016 that will be released through Shape. Modo has been doing a great job together with his crew on that one. I am hoping to take Shape Music into the next level and we got several interesting things going on.

What advice would you give to other aspiring musicians and producers?

You learn as long as you keep doing what you love, don’t let other people that doubt you affect you negatively. We all start somewhere and you must try to find your own path through the labyrinth of music. There will always be people trying to stop you from doing what you love just because they haven’t found out what they want to do yet.

Believe in yourself and don’t be afraid of trying!

Mike Emilio

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RouteNote Interviews: Nate Maingard

Photography credit: Sam Garrett

Nate Maingard is a modern troubadour originally from South Africa who tells tales through his music. A man of the globe taking inspiration from the earth through his own eyes and channeling that into his voice and guitar.
With a new album coming later this year we managed to get the nomadic singer-songwriter to talk to us a bit about his life as a musician and traveller.

How did you first get into music?

I come from a very musical family. My dad was trained in music from the age of 4, his mom was a concert pianist and my ancient ancestor was Aimeric De Peguilhan, one of the great French troubadours of the 13th century!

Growing up, my dad and mom listened to great music from many genres, with a definite focus on the singer-songwriters and incredible bands of the 60’s and 70’s.

What really grabbed me was the lyrics, the stories being told in just a few words. Songs like Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds (Beatles), Sad Lisa (Cat Stevens), Black Dog (Led Zeppelin), Suzanne (Leonard Cohen), etc., really spoke to something deep in me.

Surprisingly, I only picked up a guitar when I was 14, thanks to my best friend Heyn starting lessons at school (especially surprising as my dad Marc Maingard, is one of the top guitar makes in the world). I immediately began songwriting and the rest, as they say, is historical.

You’ve travelled quite a bit over your life, are there any experiences or countries that stood out the most for you?

Arriving in San Francisco at midnight on a Sunday with $100 to my name and meeting some wandering monks on the quiet harbour-side is definitely an experience I will always remember and treasure.

Nate Maingard
Photography credit: Virginia Vivi Vitalone

Your latest album ‘The Wild Land’ is great. Was there any particular inspiration for it and how was recording the album?

That’s actually my first album, I just didn’t have it up online – hah!

I recorded it in 2011 in a friend of a friend of a friends underground home studio. Each track was one full take, no remixing, no cuts, just each song played all the way through until I got it right. The title track, The Wild Land, was actually recorded with the studio door open, and it was just the first test to make sure we had the sound right. It turned out being such a passionate take that we went with it as the final version for the album!

I was, and still am, inspired by the experience of being human. Falling in love, searching for meaning in life, feeling confused, feeling inspired, breaking hearts, being heartbroken… you know, all those archetypal things we all go through.

Being a troubadour sounds like a fascinating and rich lifestyle, how did you get into it?

Like I said, it’s in my blood. The idea of being a nomad, storyteller and musician has always appealed to me (probably fuelled by my dad’s stories of his nomadic youth).  I’m fascinated by the power of language (a limited tool with which we attempt to describe the impossible, miraculous reality in which we find ourselves), and so being a storyteller, a traveller and a songwriter gives me the opportunity to dive deeper into the experience of living.

It just came naturally, is what I’m trying to say, hah!

If you could collaborate with any musician, past or present, who would you choose?

The Universe, which made the sound of Aum (the same sound we chant with while meditating) when it first came into existence. I’d be pretty stoked to harmonise on that note, ya know!?

If you weren’t playing music what do you imagine you would be doing, do you think you’d still be travelling nomadically?

I’d still be a nomadic storyteller, almost certainly. I tell people that I am not a musician, I’m a storyteller who happens to tell some stories through song.

Nate Maingard
Photography credit: Tom Jeavons

Do you have a personal favourite track out of the songs you’ve written?

They all have moments where they’re my favourites. A current favourite (it really does change, sometimes daily) is Lovers In The Morning Light, which is a gentle romance celebrating the vulnerable and sensual lovemaking shared between the sheets in the early morning (as I guess the name implies, hah).

What are your plans for the next year?

Show in the UK, travels around the USA, a conference or two, touring and festivals in South Africa later this year, recording my next album/EP.

What advice would you give to any aspiring musicians and artists?

Realise that as soon as you ask someone to pay for your music, a show, some merch or anything else, you are running a business. Either you educate and empower yourself about what that means and how to make use of it, or you don’t and you run your business badly (and then bitch about how no-one is buying your music).

Educate yourself, take action, remain humble, have fun and keep going!

Listen to Nate’s newest track ‘It’s the Little Things’ and his two albums on Spotify here:

Nate Maingard

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If you want to support Nate you can head to his Patreon page here:

RouteNote Interviews: Isaac Chambers

Isaac Chambers is a quadruple threat – Producer, performer, musician and vocalist. With ten years of experience creating music under his belt you’d be hard pressed to pin Isaac’s music down to a single category. Since beginning his musical career Isaac has headlined festivals, played in numerous clubs across the South Pacific, created a viral YouTube hit with Ruby Rose Mulcahy and collaborated with numerous artists including Antix, Hedflux, Loopus in Fabula, Spoonhead and more.
Isaac isn’t afraid to blend genres and produces using both live and electronic instrumentation. In just the past few years we’ve seen two full length albums, five EPs and over ten singles from the eclectic musician. With a great new collaborative EP made between himself and Dub Princess that beautifully blends dub and reggae vibes with Dub Princess’ soulful voice and another album on the way we wanted to ask Isaac a bit about himself and his music.

 How did you originally get into music, was it a natural passion or something you’ve learned to love?

I started playing guitar at age 9 and it triggered an unquenchable thirst for musical creativity. I performed in rock bands through my teens before discovering electronic music. Eventually I began fusing live instrumentation with electronic elements, getting to the sound I make today. I began very quickly to compose my own material, never really feeling a draw to perform other people’s songs. Every time that inspiration turns up i get to experience this creative bliss that only comes from making something from scratch. I live for those moments!

How did you learn your craft as a musician and producer?

Just straight up time and patience and years of listening to all types of music, gathering inspiration and techniques. I am self taught.

You recently released an EP you recorded with Dub Princess, how did that partnership come about and how was it working together?

We were introduced through a mutual friend from New Zealand. The recording process was easy and smooth. My music and her vocal style seemed to effortlessly mesh together. Dub Princess writes heartfelt, soulful lyrics and we both connected on a shared vision of spreading good vibes through music.

If you could collaborate on a track with anyone, past or present, who would you choose and why?

Bob Marley. Who else has made such a universal impression of Love and Unity. The world needs more Peaceful Warriors.

Imagine you are stuck on a desert island and can only take 3 tracks to listen to and one possession, what would you choose?

Way I Feel – Trinity Roots

A kiwi band and my personal favourite group of all time, their music has encouraged and inspired me at many points throughout my life. Pure Soul.

Slipping Into Darkness – Darker Than Blue: Soul from Jamdown 1973-1980

This is a Lee Scratch Perry re-make of an early 70’s soul tune. Pure Jamaican reggae gold.

Concrete Jungle – Bob Marley

To remind me what I have left behind

One Possession

One old fat National Geographic magazine, with long articles and map inserts.

If you can choose, which of your own tracks would you say is your favourite or you are most proud of?

Marahua from the EP Cicada Sessions. It was a beautiful flowing collaboration with Canadian musician Prosad. We created it in an old bus overlooking the ocean in New Zealand, a very inspiring musical moment for sure.

You’ve got another full album coming in the next few months, what can we expect from it?

The next album is a fusion of Conscious Hip-Hop and earthy downbeat vibes mixed with a good dose of Funk. Lots of songs featuring myself on the mic plus a few collaboration tunes with my musical Sista Hoop Dogg. She has one of the most unique voices I have ever worked with and super fun energy that always gets the place poppin’.

How does 2016 look for Isaac Chambers, what have you got planned?

I will be performing at a lot of festivals here in Australia over the Summer season. On top of the full length album with Hoop Dogg I am releasing a 5 song EP with my Soul Brother Matt Hall (A.K.A Blue Moon) in the middle of the year and also a full length Techno album around the same time.

From June I will be on tour in the U.S and Canada for the Northern Summer. Then back to Australia to start working on a World music album that I plan to record throughout the Middle East in 2017. My goal is to bring together artists from different Nations, to spread a message of peace through the universal language of music.

What advice would you give to other aspiring musicians and producers?

Create soulful music that benefits humanity and brings positive energy to the planet.

Follow your passion no matter what.

Never give up.

Isaac Chambers

Check out Isaac Chambers’ ‘Dub, Hip-Hop & Downbeat’ playlist on SoundCloud featuring his new EP with Dub Princess:

Isaac Chambers

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RouteNote Interviews: Tundras

Artist credit: Cory Wicklund

Tundras are a psychedelic metal band from Rockford, Illinois. Made up by members Cory, Chris, Brian and Josh, they came together to form Tundras as the end result of two bands prior.
Fresh off the recording of their debut full length album we decided to ask Tundras some questions about themselves and the band.

How did you come together and form a band?

Prior to Tundras – Brian, Josh and Cory (myself) played in a psych/blues band called The Rough Tracks and Chris played in an experimental/metal outfit Indomitable Ancients. Chris was losing his drummer and the three of us were having issues with a rotating cast of 4th members. Both of our bands played a show together and decided to form Tundras.

What’s your favourite part of playing and creating music?

Playing and creating music!

If you could choose anyone, past or present, to collaborate with – who would you choose?

Chris: Charles Mingus

Josh: David Gilmour

Brian: Tony Iommi

Cory: Adam Granduciel

What do you imagine you would all be doing if you weren’t playing music?

Chris: I’d be touring as an instrument tech or back at home repairing guitars.

Josh: Out trucking across the grand ol’ USA!

Brian: I love breakfast food (as everyone should). I would run and own a morning breakfast spot from 6am-2pm. Northern Illinois does breakfast and pizza like no other!

Cory: I would be washing dishes in Brian’s diner. Playing guitar on my breaks.

If you were stuck on a desert island and could take one track each what would they be?

Chris: Bandage for an Iris by Poison the Well

Josh: Sycamore by Caspian

Brian: Lore by Elder

Cory: Sweet & Dandy by Toots and the Maytals – because I’m on an island all by myself!!!

If you had to choose just one of your own tracks that you are most proud of, which would it be?

Chris: Wonder

Josh: Wonder

Brian: Wonder

Cory: Maze

What have you got planned for the next year as a band?

We just finished recording our first full length album, which is a ton of work in it’s own right. 2016 holds the release and playing as many cities and towns as possible!

What advice would you give for other aspiring musicians?

You want to play music? Do it! Teach yourself how to play, form a band, play everywhere, realize that success is only measured by your standards, pay no mind to band image or making money, just do you, and never let the mainstream shove their values down your throat ✌

Tundras Illinois

Photography credit: Kevin Mandell

Listen to Tundra’s track ‘Prospect’:

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RouteNote Interviews: Kids Want Techno (Exclusive Mix)

Kids Want Techno are an electronic music duo from Washington, DC. Jordan and Adam, the producers behind Kids Want Techno, spoke to us about how they’ve come from bonding in high school over their love of music, the creative process behind their tracks, what song they would take with them to a desert island and more.
Make sure you don’t miss out on Kids Want Techno’s mix for RouteNote at the end of the interview!

How did the two of you meet and start making music together?

Jordan: We became friends in high school through lacrosse and got into electronic music together soon after. Next thing we knew we were going to shows and DJing in our bedroom. We knew music was what we wanted to do with our life and that creating original music was the quickest way to make it a reality, so here we are working to get there.


“We knew music was what we wanted to do with our life and that creating original music was the quickest way to make it a reality”


Adam: We were connected through a mutual friend freshman year of high school. I started to burn CD’s of euro-house music for Jordan and we would drive around blasting it. By our junior year we started to go to shows and, when we turned 18, clubs in DC. That led into us DJing in our bedrooms, and we soon realized we would only be happy doing music for a living, so here we are producing it!

What do you enjoy the most about creating and playing music?

Jordan: I think it is so cool to be able to create something out of nothing on the computer and then share it with people around the world. When it comes to playing music, I like to play stuff people may not have heard of before but will (hopefully) still enjoy. Sharing new music is the best part.

Adam: Every aspect of my life is so structured. Music is the way I can let loose and be creative. Being able to introduce new music to people is one of my favourite things to do, and it has been since middle school when I used to burn CDs or rap songs for my dad.

” Every aspect of my life is so structured. Music is the way I can let loose and be creative.”

Kids Want Techno
Photography Credit: What Do I Wear DC

You’ve become pretty popular on SoundCloud. What was the moment where you realised people really love your music and how did it feel?

Jordan: We started getting messages from our fans telling us how much they enjoyed our music and to keep doing what we were doing. It feels really awesome to get messages like that. One our fans actually put the KWT logo on the status bar of his jailbroken iPhone so that was pretty cool to see.

Adam: In the grand scheme of things, I still don’t think we are that popular. It’s nice to see our remixes are finally getting some traffic and I hope that in time we will continue to grow.

What is the creative process for when you start completely fresh on a track, how do you get the ball rolling?

Jordan: I like working with the vocals the most so I will usually start building chords around them and move on to writing the melody. From there I can write out the arrangement of the track and then I will start to fill out the “skeleton” of it.

Adam: Since we usually do remixes I will look for acapellas that would work well for a remix. From there I usually like to try and write a chord progression to go with those. If I can’t get a chord progression to work, I will usually just play around with drum loops.

If you could collaborate with anyone, past or present, who would you choose?

Jordan: Doing something with The Killers would be pretty cool.

Adam: Porter Robinson.

If you were stuck on a desert island and could take one track each to listen to, what would you choose?

James: Circles by Audien, everything about it is perfect to me.

Adam: The Battle of Evermore by Led Zeppelin. I am a huge Lord of the Rings fan.

If you can choose, what track would you say is your favourite/you’re most proud of out of your own tracks?

Jordan: Definitely the remix of ODESZA’s ‘Say My Name’. I had been having some major writers block and Adam sent me over the vocal since he was having trouble writing something that worked, and that same day I was able to create the whole track. The melody is my favourite part, I think it is still the best one I have been able to write. Also the remix passed over one and a half million plays on SoundCloud, so that helps too.

Adam: Without a doubt our remix of ODESZA’s ‘Say My Name’. I fell in love with the original as soon as I heard it and when I saw they released the stems, I knew we had to remix it. I had been struggling with the acapella as I couldn’t get a chord progression to work, so I sent it over to Jordan and he finished the whole structure of the track in a day I believe.

What advice would you give to any aspiring musicians/DJs/producers? 

Jordan: Focus on yourself and your music, don’t worry what everyone else is doing, and finish music! It is one of the best ways to better your productions. Also, you have to be the one to believe in yourself when no-one else can, no matter what.

Adam: Make sure you’re getting into this for the right reason. With the explosion of dance music in the U.S. it seems as though everybody and their mother wants to be a “DJ” now. If you want to do this for any other reason than your passions and love of music, please don’t.


“Don’t worry what everyone else is doing… You have to be the one to believe in yourself when no-one else can, no matter what”

Kids Want Techno
Photography Credit: What Do I Wear DC

Kids Want Techno – RouteNote Mix

00:00 Ariane Grande – One Last Time (Kids Want Techno Remix)
3:15 Aristofreeks feat. Next Step – Good Times (Emrik Wilzon Remix)
8:30 Owl City – The Verge (Halogen Remix)
11:35 ODESZA feat. Zyra – Say My Name (Kids Want Techno Remix)
14:55 Sigala – Easy Love
18:30 Audien feat. Lady Antebellum – Something Better (Shemce Remix)
22:35 Glen Check – The Coast (Glen Check “Summer Remix”)
28:00 Just Kiddin – Thinking About It feat. Matt Lappin (Kids Want Techno Remix)

Kids Want Techno

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RouteNote Exclusive Interview: Churchyard

Churchyard are the pop-grunge band currently making waves across Nashville, Tennessee. Said by local critic to be “fast approaching the femme fronted Nashville garage rock throne” the four-piece have just released their eponymous debut album online with a physical release later this week.
With the release of their new album, which blends pulsing basslines and post-punk/indie guitar riffs with the harmonic vocals of Churchyards frontwomen, we asked them a few questions about how they met and just how big a role music plays in their lives.

How did you all meet and start playing in a band together?

Alice went to see Meghan’s old band play at The Basement in Nashville when she still lived in Memphis. We had an instant connection. We kept in touch for a couple of years, scheming musical endeavours until finally Alice moved to Nashville and Churchyard happened. We recruited Rachel, who played in college orchestra with Alice, and Joey, our longtime friend.

What is your favourite thing about playing music?

We are each other’s best pals! What’s better than playing music with the people you love?!

If you could choose anyone, past or present, to collaborate with – who would you choose?

We are all classically trained, and love so many different types of music, from different genres and time periods – but our favourite thing right now is collaborating with our friends. Recently we put out a split single with the band Idle Bloom and played some songs together on a joint tour. We love the act of creating and the community that comes from it.

Churchyard band
Photo by EJ Holmes

What do you imagine you would all be doing if you weren’t playing music?

This is hard, because creating music is the biggest part of all our lives. We’ve all played music since we were children; we are all in multiple bands, Alice is a music teacher. Picturing what we would do, without creating music as an option, is pretty impossible.

If you were stuck on a desert island and could take one track and one possession each, what would they be?

Coconut oil, xanax, booze, eyebrow pencil. As for a track, we don’t know – knowing us we would just make up our own weird songs and sing them for each other until we died on the island.

If you had to choose just one of your own tracks that you are most proud of, which would it be?

Definitely ‘Staring at the Sun‘, because it’s the only song on this album that we wrote 100% collaboratively. Usually, Alice and Meghan write together or separately, but this song was written with all of us together. It was challenging, but fun and inspiring.

What advice would you give for other aspiring musicians?

We have so many things to say – Don’t give up, and always believe in yourself. Don’t let the men tell you that you don’t know how to tune your guitar. Practice everyday, all the time, whenever you can – and by yourself too! Don’t take yourself too seriously, but know your self-worth.

Churchyard band


If you’re lucky enough to be in Nashville on the 7th of November then head to Drkmttr for the release show of Churchyard’s new album!

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RouteNote Exclusive Interview: Maximus MMC

French producer Maximus MMC has come a long way since entering the world of music production 5 years ago. After deciding he needed to shake up the music scene and bring something new to electronic music, Maximus MMC has played sets in the Netherlands, UK, France and Finland.
Today is the release of his excellent new EP ‘Kinship‘ in which he blends experimental trap and hip-hop with oriental themes to create the most unique sound in electronic music we’ve heard so far this year. Never one to settle for mediocrity, ‘Kinship’ sees Maximus MMC come together with fellow Parisian Fab for 4  tracks that culminate the talent and experience of both producers into an atmospheric experience not to be missed.

Kinship Maximus MMC Fab

With the release of ‘Kinship’ we asked Maximus MMC a bit about his journey to the present and the experiences and artists that have influenced him along the way to become the talented producer he is today.

How did you first become interested in music?

I’ve been into music since my youth. My parents have always been playing music regularly, both at home and in the car, from post-punk (Joy Division, New Order, etc.) to more soulful/funky artists (Janet Jackson’s Velvet Rope, Bootsy Collins, Barry White, etc.). 

Going from there I picked up on Hip-Hop, thanks to my brother that is a bit older than me. He would come back home and bring so many cool records in the late 90’s (Outkast, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Dr. Dre), allowing me to develop a certain passion for music.

Throughout the 2000’s I dug deeper into the rap scene and got into Southern rap (UGK, Three 6 Mafia, DJ Screw, etc.) and later trap music (Young Jeezy, Gucci Mane, Crime Mob). I ‘ve also learnt music theory and played piano for about 6 years.

When did you first start producing music and why did you want to start?

I came to a point in my life (about 2010-11) where I just couldn’t stand sitting here not bringing anything new to what music had to offer. That’s pretty much when I decided to start doing music. To do so, I went to a music gear shop and bought myself my very first MIDI controller. I was so excited about it that I quickly came back home, installed Logic 9 and started working on my first beat. The whole DAW environment was very weird and new to me, but thanks to the Internet and YouTube I found my way around it.

I was living in the Netherlands back then, finishing my studies and the vibe that the country brought to me was just so much different from when I was in France. I would say that their musical culture is somewhere between the UK and the US. I thought that having this mixed background between my French roots and the Netherlands would be pretty interesting to develop.

Who were your influences when you started out? 

Back in 2009-10 I was super big on the whole new rap scene movement. I remember Wiz Khalifa making waves with his mixtape, Curren$y was just out of his Cash Money Records deal and was building hype around his Jet Life movement (I was big on that Trademark Da Skydiver off-beat flow). Big Krit released this K.R.I.T. Wuz Here project that was sounding crazy and the whole OFWGKTA movement was blowing out of nowhere.

Apart from that I had mad love for the late Jay Dee (J Dilla) and some other big names such as Kanye West, who dropped his biggest masterpiece around that time – 808’s Love and Heartbreaks.

Are they different today?

Nowadays I would probably be digging this whole new Atlanta rap scene (Awful Records, Father, Key, ILoveMakonnen, ETHEREAL, Sonny Digital, Metro Boomin, etc.) along with the classic OG heads (Dungeon Family, Goodie Mob, Outkast, etc.).

If you could collaborate with anyone, past or present, who would it be?

If there was one person that I would have loved to collaborate with, it would have definitely been J Dilla. The way he worked with samples was flawless. His sound structures were so unusual and his music has so much soul to it.

Nowadays, artists that I would love to do studio time with are Kanye, André 3000 (of Outkast) and Pharrell. I picked these three incredible producers/musicians/rappers because they’re my main inspirations in terms of pushing music forward. Their work ethic is incredible and they are always bringing something new to the scene.

In your music career so far what has been your favourite experience/moment?

Touring is the most enjoyable thing that a musician can experience, in my opinion. Meeting all these people that are supporting you, in real life, is incredible. It’s like you feel an aura that you cannot see anywhere else, like some sort of spiritual connection.

I also enjoy the time that I spend in my home studio, it really allows you to evade your mind in some areas that you aren’t even aware of sometimes.

If you can choose one, what would you say is your favourite track of your own?

I would probably go for a very unknown track that I released way back, early 2014, in my Shenmue EP. It’s called ‘Cherry Blossom Wind Dance‘. As a fan of one of Sega’s greatest video games ever released, sampling the Shenmue OST was so enjoyable and it reminds me that I loved the game in my youth.

This specific song has so much to it, it is very ambient and experimental, the type of sound that will take you on a journey.

If you were stuck on a desert island and could take one track to listen to, what would it be?

Woah, that’s a pretty tough question. I think it would be Joy Division – ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart‘. Seeing my dad dancing to it every single day since my childhood, without getting tired of it, probably plays a big role in my selection. This track is also very deep and really tells a story about Ian Curtis and what he was going through back then.

What are your plans for the next year?

More original music, starting to collaborate with vocal artists, rappers, singers, and putting out a solid project, like a debut album. Keep on working with my mates from Flow-Fi trying to bring the label up with solid project releases.

Developing the brand/image around my artist name and starting work on my first live set (I’ve only done DJ sets until now). Oh, and travelling the world 🙂

What advice would you give to any aspiring musicians/DJs/Producers out there?

Never give up on anything that you’re doing, keep on working hard, craft new materials every single day. Push your limits, try different genres and also, don’t rush things, take your time to perfect everything you do. It will all pay off one day and it is worth the wait and struggle.

Maximus MMC

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RouteNote Exclusive Interview: Nevercold

In 2006 three men came together to jam metal. With the addition of a bassist they became the French “Rock’n’core” metal band Nevercold.
Hailing from Rhône-Alpes in the south-east of France Nevercold released their eponymous debut EP in 2007. Since then the band have spent their time playing numerous concerts and have recorded three full length albums.
The track ‘My Bleeding Remains’ was used in a compilation of the best tracks in the French metal scene. This release expanded their presence outside of France and they have since gained fans in Switzerland, playing gigs at various arenas there.
Nevercold have just released their killer third album ‘Rebirth‘ online with a physical release due on the 31st October.

How did you meet and start playing music together?

It wasn’t a conscious attempt to form a band at first. We were trying to jam some metal riffs just for fun while there were just 3 of us. We weren’t taking this too seriously but we quickly wrote some catchy tunes so we decided to give it a go – and one bass player later we were ready.

Nevercold metal play live

What has been your favourite experience since being in the band?

The last studio session was a real blast for all of us, we pretty much got rid of our creative limits and every one of us was really involved in the overall production. Things like clean vocals all together (Lonesome Ranger) or a quite unique song intro (Under My Skin) were stuff we’d never have done before. It took us years to develop our own personal sound, but we took a huge leap forward in this direction when writing and recording this album.

If you could choose anyone to collaborate with who would you choose?

Having a song featuring Phil Anselmo (Pantera vocalist) would definitely be like the dream come true when thinking of great names in metal we could collaborate with. Not only for the vocal performance but also for the man himself.

Phil Anselmo Slayer
Nevercold’s dream collaboration would be with Pantera’s Phil Anselmo ©MarkScottAustinTX

What do you imagine you would be doing if you weren’t doing music?

We’d probably do absolutely nothing together because we’re so different individually. Music is the only thing that unites us. Basically, it works for us if we start to jam; If we start debating over something, nobody knows where it will lead but certainly not to a killer new song! You get the idea…

If you were stuck on a desert island and could take one song each to listen to, what would you choose?

Wow, tough one! Most of us vote for ‘Ring of Fire’ by Johnny Cash

Do you have a favourite track out of all of your own music?

That would be ‘Lonesome Ranger’ from our last album ‘Rebirth’. We had lots of fun writing the lyrics all together and this song really feels like a wild and lonely trip in the west. It would really fit a movie’s ending sequence. We played the track live a few times and it’s a song that pretty much wins the crowd over every time.

What advice would you give for other aspiring musicians/DJs/producers?

No matter the level you’re playing at, amateur or pro, it’s a lot of work to be able to rock the stage, but those moments when the band and the audience suddenly become one – it’s a feeling worth every sacrifice. Never give up!


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RouteNote Exclusive Interview: More Plastic

RouteNote Interviews
More Plastic are an EDM duo formed by brothers Mathias Vasiliadis and Marco Vasiliadis. Growing up in Denmark both brothers shared a love for music and after gaining a reputation for their individual talent as dj/producers, inside and out of Denmark, they came together to make music as More Plastic.
The brothers started making music in 2013 and since then have gained a loyal following of EDM fans. More Plastic just released their latest track ‘Don’t Stop (Under Pressure)‘, a more experimental track to previous endeavours that is as brilliant as it is unique.
We asked More Plastic some questions about making music together as brothers, who their idols are and what they have planned for the next year.

More Plastic Logo

How did you both get into music and start creating it together?

Marco: We grew up in a musical family which led us to download our first program, Virtual DJ. The more we played with it, the more we liked having our hands in the making of music. We got a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) from one of our friends, which was FL Studio, and since we both loved it we started creating music together.

Mathias: Well I started working with music when I was around 10 years old, Marco was 6 then. I got my first DJ equipment when i was 12 (two CDJ 400 turntables and a DJM 400 mixer) from our father. My father was living off of being a DJ when he was young so I guess it was in the blood.

I started making mashups/mixes and then I started making contacts and found out very fast I didn’t like mainstream music. Then I fell in love with happy hardcore, hard dance. When I was around 16 and my brother about 12 I started producing and he wanted to learn to, and became very good, very fast! Our father and mother always supported us and helped us the right way.

We started as Amateus & El Greko but when people started telling us that we had talent we wanted to make a duo but had no ideas. One day my brother was in Thailand and I was home in Denmark. He sent me a SoundCloud link to an artist – “More Plastic”. I loved them, their tracks were sick. Some weeks later he told me that he was More Plastic. I loved the name and we started taking music more seriously and releasing music as More Plastic.

Did you learn from teachers or from teaching yourselves?

Marco: Ourselves – Help is very important but at the time we learned everything by videos and just trying it out.

Mathias: We learned DJing from our father and producing by ourselves. Our father always tried to help us with our tracks but we never went to production lessons.

If you had to choose just one of your own tracks that you are most proud of, which would it be?

Marco: Shadows


Mathias: That’s so hard haha. Well I’m very proud of our new track – Don’t Stop – cause it’s something different and not close to what we usually make. But the track I’m most proud of must be Warriors. Not because I think it’s our best track, but because I think we found our style and did it good!


What’s your favourite piece of equipment to make music with?

Marco: Our keyboard (m-audio keyrig 49) and our studio monitors (yamaha HS80M)

Mathias: Our computer, I don’t need anything else. On there I use FL Studio and Sylenth 1.

If you could choose anyone, past or present, to collaborate with – who would you choose?

Marco: It’s no secret that we would love to collaborate with our idols – Snails & Botnek.

Mathias: It would be a dream to collaborate with Snails & Botnek, and KSHMR. That would be the biggest dream!

What do you enjoy the most about making music?

Marco: The whole feeling of it, we love trying something different and work a lot on the atmosphere and how the song comes out.

Mathias: Wow that’s a hard question. I always loved music and can’t imagine a world without it. I don’t care if it’s EDM, country, disco, rock. Music inspires me, it helps me get through the day. I really don’t think i can answer the question any other way.

If you were stuck on a desert island and could take 2 tracks each what would you both take?


Mathias also chose ‘Pump This’ by Snails & heRobust – you can see how these brothers get on so well.

What are your plans for the next year?

Mathias & Marco: Keep releasing music to the people following us, get our first gig as More Plastic, collaborate with some idols and play at a festival!

What advice would you give for any other aspiring musicians/djs/producers?

MarcoKeep working. Always make what you feel like making and not what everyone else is making. Everything is not about fame but about talent, so take your time and read/play/study music all that you can.

Mathias: If you really love what you are doing don’t rush yourself. Don’t make something you don’t want to because it’s more popular or there’s a bigger chance for you to get out there. Do what you love, the way you want it and it will pay off in the end!

More Plastic

Listen to More Plastic’s latest track ‘Don’t Stop (Under Pressure):
More Plastic
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