For this week’s Waveform mix series, The Waveform Transmitter’s Ste Knight welcomes French techno legend, Electric Rescue, and talks the Parisian techno scene, record labels, and growing up with techno.
It isn’t often you get the opportunity to converse with an individual who has well and truly represented a scene from the outset. One such person is Antoine Husson, who you will more than likely recognise as Electric Rescue. His involvement with the French techno scene, particularly in Paris, has allowed the sound to flourish in the city and wider area.
Antoine is also a man with his fingers in many separate, but closely related, pies. He runs the Skryptöm record label, which has recently enjoyed its tenth year in operation; an anniversary that was celebrated with an outstanding 10-year compilation featuring artists who work, or have worked, with Skryptöm over the past decade.
In addition to this, Husson regularly busies himself by putting on nights for Parisian ravers in the likes of Rex Club, one of the city’s most prominent nightclubs. He has many side projects that act as avenues through which he, and his cohorts, can express themselves via musical pursuits.
We are lucky enough to have been given a mix for our Waveform Mix Series, which is an excerpt from a recent DJ performance at Rex Club. Believe us when we tell you we’ve been incredibly excited about releasing this to you all, you’re definitely going to enjoy this one.
Before you listen, though, our Ste Knight took the opportunity to chat with Antoine about his life as a Parisian techno paragon. Here’s what he had to say:
Waveform: Hi Antoine. Thanks for contributing an excellent mix and for taking time to talk with us. Before we chat about your recent releases, let’s talk a bit about you. What was it that attracted you to production and DJing?
Electric Rescue: It’s a life project. When I was a child, I was attracted by music generally, I always organised some small parties with my buddies around the street where I lived. Then later during the 80’s I fell in love with electronic music; before techno I loved Kraftwerk, Depeche Mode, Jean Michel Jarre, Vangelis…Then at the end of the 80’s I discovered house music and the first techno sounds through one of the first techno club in Paris, Boy, and few months after, Rex Club.
Quickly in 1990 I bought my first records and decks to start mixing, naturally, nothing worked but it was stronger than me, I had to push music for the others. Then in 1994, I bought my first equipment and started productions without any plan. I started to organize parties too, the first one in 1992. I always needed to do many different things, touching different aspects of the techno scene, just by passion and love of the music.
I think music is in me, I always want to create and develop new projects, always. I have Electric Rescue, Re.Kod, and other unrevealed names projects, and also collabs like Möd3rn (with Roman Poncet and Maxime Dangles), W.L.V.S (with The Driver aka Manu le Malin) but also projects as duo with Maxime Dangles, Remain, Tarlouf, and now a new one who’ll arriving soon Laval with Kmyle. I always need to create fresh and new music projects.
Waveform: And what made you move into running a label?
Electric Rescue: It’s the same, it’s stronger than me, I need to be involved into many different aspects of techno, and having a label to propose my own music selection in this way was evident and logical for me. I started end of the 90’s with a first label Calme Records, then middle of the 2000’s I stopped Calme to found Skryptöm as my musical wishes and development had evolved into something different and I wanted to push a label more professionally and develop artists career like I did for some Traumer/Roman Poncet, Maxime Dangles, Kmyle, Julian Jeweil, and some others.
I always need to exchange with artists and I appreciate to develop artistical projects through the label with the artists. So, I give them my experience to build something strong with them and push careers. It’s really exciting to see the birth a new project, see it grown up and then explode. I love to create new artistic experiences.
I really wanted with Skryptöm to create a real label. Not like most of the actual label who are pushing the founders of the labels and just use the music from the artists to finally only push the founder. I really wanted to create a real label to build a team who became a family and everybody help the others to go higher and higher and create a real family, global feeling, nice ambiance and a great dynamic around the label.
Then I think now Skryptöm is recognize like a real label. It’s far to be the biggest, it’s a small label, but a real one with a real identity I think and not just a selection of cool tracks to make releases, but a global label project.
Waveform: Talk us through your studio set-up.
Electric Rescue: I love to use all possibilities for creation. I use Computer VSTs, analog synths, Modular system, but also digital synths. I use all the technologies, not only the analog system. Today there is a fashion around modular systems but I don’t care about it, I use it because sometimes it’s cool, but it’s not a way of life for me.
Synths are gear to obtain sounds and create music, it’s not a religion and I don’t especially need to have a looooooot of gear, just the one I need to create the sound I want to do. I don’t have a collection either, I just need instruments and I mix all the technologies.
Waveform: You recently released your ten-year anniversary compilation for Skryptöm. How did you possibly manage to select who to include on the record? You must’ve had a difficult task!
Electric Rescue: On one hand, it was really easy to manage because I just needed to choose my favourites artists and asked them, but on the other hand, I love soooooo many artists that I had to make a first choice, it was super difficult for me.
So, I decided to give the priority to the ones who already gave me their confidence and participated into Skryptöm in the past, like Laurent Garnier, Inigo Kennedy, Johannes Heil, Truncate, Zadig and I added the label artists Maxime Dangles, Wlderz, Kmyle, Scan X, Leghau, Paul Nazca, Roman Poncet aka Traumer, Moteka, and me.
I was super lucky as all the artists answered me positively on the first hand, without any reflexion, from Laurent Garnier to Zadig, they all said “yes” right away, it was incredible. I thought, I would need a lot of energy to convince them and, finally, I think it was easier than finding sometimes a remixer for only one EP.
I love when things happen naturally like that, it means a lot to me coming from them and make me think that it will be a nice adventure. It was from the beginning to now, hope that it will be the same for the release….
Waveform: You produce, DJ, and run your own club nights. Do you feel that the three separate elements all complement each other? What do you like about each facet of your job?
Electric Rescue: Yes, I think everything complement each other. When you have a label it’s important to have some showcases. When you do some music it’s important to have gigs to express it. And organising parties and doing DJ are nice possibilities to expose this music. It’s a global dynamic music/Live or DJ/Party/Label every part is important and I love to do all.
I really love all the aspects from all these jobs. I love to create music, I love DJing and making people happy, I love live acts with all their risks, I love to organise events and all the things to do inside and meeting people. I love to discover artists, meet them and push projects with them, promote these projects, every part is very exciting.
Waveform: Do you feel that running a label gives you a greater understanding of production and DJing, particularly thinking from an artist’s point of view?
Electric Rescue: I think all the parts of all jobs of our scene are important even managers, bookers, promoters, technicians, musicians, all the jobs are important in our scene, everybody needs everybody. And I take inspiration in all actions I do. All the actions put influence on the others.
Yes, I think it’s helpful to understand our scene more. It’s not easy every day, and it’s sometimes difficult to make people understand that everybody can evolve in time, sometimes people are focusing too much on small things and sometimes people are a bit too much internal and stay only in their world and don’t think about others and just do things egotistically.
I think it’s important to do different missions into music, to be more open to the world and touch different levels of our scene, open your mind to the others and to yourself.
Waveform: You obviously put on a lot of events in Paris. What is it that you feel is special about the Parisian club scene?
Electric Rescue: I think that the Parisian scene is really huge, if it’s not the biggest it’s among the 3 top scenes I feel, maybe I’m wrong but I don’t think so. It’s cool to be part of that, I had the chance to know the scene from the beginning at the end of the 80’s to now and it’s a big pleasure to see the Parisian scene like this today.
I think today it’s really easier to organise things in Paris, because people accepted techno in France, and especially in Paris, people see this more as an art today – it wasn’t that situation during the 90’s or 2000’s – so it’s cool that France and Paris took that open-minded direction for techno. And as things are more open, people are more in contact with that music and it created a special dynamic in the city.
On my side, since the beginning I always naturally needed to have parties. At the beginning from 1992 to 2001 I only needed to push some rave parties outside from clubs. Rent a special venue like castle, church, factory, old cinema, any strange or special place for a party, I really come from the legal rave scene.
It was difficult during that 20 years to organise things here in Paris but we fight and succeed now it’s won. I really love to create special atmosphere for a party and I never stop as I wanted to keep it alive. Since 2014 I stopped organising such events, because there is enough now in Paris and I prefer to concentrate on myself, the labels and club events who are really easier to manage so I have more time to give to musical projects.
Waveform: Do you have any hot tips for the rest of 2017? What artists do you think we should be keeping an eye on?
Electric Rescue: I think for Skryptöm artists, Kmyle will destroy a lot of dancefloors with his new album who’s coming on Skryptöm in June, but also the last newcomers on Skryptöm, Wlderz, will do the same with their album who’s coming in November, I feel they will be very very huge in the near future. But I also think of a big comeback from Paul Nazca, each track he sends me kills it. I also love Moteka… all the Skryptöm artists. Maxime Dangles who’s also coming back with new weapons.
I also feel Leghau who is going into a new personal direction as he did on the 10 years album. Scan X is in the studio these days and I have the feeling it’ll be good. So finally, I feel that all the Skryptöm artists can make big things in the next months, really. Even Shekon who’s not on the Skryptöm compilation but is in the family too.
Outside from Skryptöm I feel good vibrations from YYYY, Rhubarb, Alpi and many others I can’t tell you all as I would need more space on your article. I receive so many good demos every day I can tell you that I listen to a lot of good music and choices are very very very difficult. I always think about creating a new label for all these artists I received demos from but I would risk failing on Skryptöm, so I prefer to concentrate on it and do it as good as I can.
Waveform: April 2017 sees the release of Trois, your LP as Möd3rn, which sees you collaborate with Roman Poncet and Maxime Dangles. What brought this ménage a trois to fruition?
Electric Rescue: We’ve been friends for almost 10 years now. I was doing music with Maxime and Maxime was doing music with Romain, we thought about doing music together with Romain but we finally thought that it was better to do all 3 together.
Then we did a first live set 4 years ago which was a big success, so we thought naturally to push a first record, another success, then a second record, then other gigs arrived, records, gigs, records, and now we have 7 Eps and the album idea came naturally, so we did it.
Everything arrived naturally and friendly, it’s simply möd3rn, now it’s not easy everyday as we are all busy with our other projects. Maxime, Romain, and I have a lot of different projects so it’s not easy but we speak every day and try to manage as well as we can. But today we are happy to propose this real album, not only a techno record but I think it’s more like an electronic journey.
Waveform: What have you got lined up next for Skryptöm and Möd3rn? Any exciting developments in the pipeline?
Electric Rescue: For Skryptöm after the 10-years album I have the Kmyle album, then an EP from WLDERZ to announce their album coming up in November and maybe another EP in October, depends If I feel I can push it correctly if not it will be for 2018.
On the möd3rn side, we will surely have some nice gigs if everything and everybody works well. No records are planned yet after the album. The album has to live before we plan something else.
I also have my other projects like the forthcoming Misericordia EP with Manu le Malin for our W.LV.S project. A new project, Laval, with Kmyle that will be released on Stockholhm LTD. And solo Electric Rescue EPs on Gynoid and Rexclub Music. And few remixes.
Waveform: Thanks again for chatting with us!
Electric Rescue: Thanks to you for talking a bit about my projects and expressing it on your media!
So, you’ve heard what Electric Rescue has to say. Now it is time to hear what he has to play. Get your listen-holes around this extra-special Waveform Mix from the man himself.