With the upcoming release by the Greek-born come UK resident, minimalerror, LABEL sat down with Kostas Apostologlou, the man behind the sound.
LABEL: I understand you moved from Greece to Bristol, UK to study. What are you studying?
Kostas: I have moved from Athens to Bristol to study Psychology. I had to put my studies on hold due to some personal matters (but I’m resuming in October) and I have been working as a community outreach support worker. I support people with autism and challenging behaviours.
L: Your musical focus is minimal techno, with maybe a bit of minimal house in there. Minimal techno is generally composed in two ways (and I’m generalizing here), either: a) loops remain constant with flourishes, or b) things are layered over time. Do you have a specific approach?
K: When I produce, I like to build something and have it transformed over a prolonged period of time. Getting a bit dizzy in the continuous loop, you can then pay attention to details and every element, introducing or removing itself from the whole. It gives me a sense of unity.
I sometimes imagine myself playing a record at home, or spinning it at a mate’s house party, or even being in the front left speaker in a massive club and depending on that, I somehow create a mood. I’ve been thinking about the beach a lot lately.
I mess around with my tempos throughout my production and I run it over and over until I figure out how I like it best. Sometimes just 1 bpm could present sounds in a very different way!
When it comes to record sampling, I just go for what I normally never would! You never know what you can find and you can always have a listen again. I have on occasion found myself complete denying some sounds or samples and then return back to them when I was going through a different musical phase in regards to my production.
L: Does the differences between the Bristol and Athens nightlife have an impact on your sound or approach?
K: Parties in Athens were always great but very “genre specified/predictable”. Parties in Bristol are nearly every time a mystery and a surprise to me as the “techno soundscape” is way wider than back home. I see a techno night for example and sometimes the last thing I’d hear is a 4 to the floor beat, in contradiction to what “techno” was in Athens. I’ve heard lots of live acts and experimental genres all under the “techno umbrella”.
My musical background has shifted a lot throughout my upbringing. I was exposed to electronic / dance music at a very early stage but didn’t quite stick with it (consciously) but it has always been a thing within me. I was always attracted to the repetition, beat, and grooves and house music would always make me smile. I have gone from hip-hop to metal to jungle into psytrance to eventually settle down in techno. Artists I really admire would include DVS1, Delano Smith and DJ Sprinkles.