If you havent heard of Disko then you have a lot of delving to do. Daniel Solar is a DJ, producer, label owner and A&R intent on bridging the gap between disco and dance music and I’d say he’s doing a pretty good job so far. Daniel has been involved in music for a long time and his productions have taken him through a series of genres that has brought him here, sitting somewhere near the top as one of the most exciting producers of mid tempo house out there at the minute. Daniel has cobbled together a really solid mix of some of his favourite tracks at the minute and you may be surprised at how uptempo and eclectic it is. It starts with an absolute bang, a statement of intent with Andy Hart’s – ‘Tell Her You Know’. The set proceeds with a steady pace until Daniel smears on thick clumps of atmosphere with Daniel Dexter – Cherry Blossom offset wonderfully by Kollektiv Turmstrasse – Was Bleibt (Jimpster Vocal Remix) to lead the atmosphere into a climax. It’s an interesting journey, with a few surprises and one of my favourite tracks at the minute, Noir and Haze – Around (Solomun Vox Remix). When you listen to Dikso’s releases you can really hear the influence that Daniel has on its releases, all the better for it. Taste is something we’re all born with but very few people have.
Your from Hannover, why did you leave?
My mother’s family is from Berlin, so I’ve been here a lot. I just love that city. So it was always the plan to move here in case I’m leaving Hannover. And it’s obviously a nice place to stay if you’re involved in electronic music.
Basically there was a point when I had the feeling that I needed a change. In the end everything happened very fast. I decided to move, quit my job, found a house and now I’m here. I’m still very often in Hannover though, as I have many friends and my family there.
You used to produce stuff in a very different genre with Solar&Poppcke. What made you settle on mid tempo house?
That’s true. Thing is, I just love music and I’ve produced music for a pretty long time now. My taste in music is pretty versatile and my productions just reflect that. It’s not that I sit here and I think about what I should do next. I just do what I feel like, and in the end the results are pretty much a representation of myself at a certain point. Actually, it bores me to always just walk on a beaten path. When this whole disco and slowhouse thing came up, I was pretty bored again by everything I heard and did, so it was a welcome change for me.
Do you think that you’ll stay within this style or move on to something else? Is it better to be a master of one or mediocre at many?
At the moment there are a lot of good house productions again, and I’m feeling that I’m tending a bit to that. As I said, it’s rather a personal thing that just happens to me. It not that I’m thinking about it and tell myself that I gonna do a certain style from now on. So I’m pretty sure I won’t stick with my current sound forever.
I’m aware that it is sometimes a problem for people, if you’re changing your style too often. But I think it is always about good music. The genre may differ, but I like everything I do and I hope there are people out there, who feel the same.
You used to release only vinyl over at Dikso, why did you change this policy?
Being vinyl only has never been a policy actually. We never wrote something like a business plan or something like that. We started the label and we both agreed that we want to make a vinyl label. We just think making vinyl is a special thing that makes your music and the music you release more significant in a certain way. We always thought about starting to sell some tracks digitally, as well. And we felt like it is time now to start with it.
Do you and Andi (the other half of Dikso records) play back to back much?
We both really like to play together. It’s always funny if you have something you can react on in a DJ set. It adds that unforeseen part to it So yeah, we are trying to play together a lot.
Wheres the best place you’ve been and heard one of your productions played?
Interesting Question. I think it was the very first time when I ever heard on of my productions in a club. It wasn’t probably the best place, but the best situation for me. It was in a small club in Hannover and Marc Poppcke played the very first track I ever showed to someone. We did not really know each other at that point. So I was kinda felling like “Yeah, I made it!”. From a current point of view it wasn’t too important, but it was when it all started and I got to know all the people and friends I’m with today.
Are you all digital in your production or do you have an analogue addiction like so many producers?
I’m really a fan of digital productions. When I started making music i just had a four tracker, a sampler and a cheapish synthesizer. I always hated recording and routing and pretty much everything. It was so time-consuming and annoying. So the first time I could really work with a DAW, it was like changing from a VW Beetle to a Ferrari. I mean the Beetle is beautiful, but I just can’t compete.
Anyway, lately if been persuaded by some people I’m talking to, and especially Matthew, our mastering engineer, to give it another try. I’m currently looking for some outboard things to buy. Like I’m looking for an old vintage synthesizer and an analogue filter at the moment. And maybe a reel to reel. You won’t probably see me arranging full tracks on an MPC or something like that.
Whats your favourite 2 tracks at the moment. One house and one disco?
That’s hard to tell. I mean if I’m looking at my own charts there are rather artists and labels that stand out for me. I really love Andre Lodemann and Prommer&Barck productions at the moment. The guys are just killing it. I definitely have to mention Retreat and Session Victim as well, as I’m playing a lot of them. On the label side I would like to point out my good friends at Sleazy Beats and Kolour, which I’m really playing above average.
Have you got anything coming up that we should know about?
If you haven’t noticed it yet, there is the first artist EP on Dikso at the moment which is done by me featuring some neat remixes by The Revenge and Pional CHECK IT OUT HERE. Besides that there is an EP coming (probably next month) on Defected’s Tenth Circle Sublabel.
Andy Hart – Tell Her You Know – The Melbourne Deepcast
The Noodleman – Lovers Dub – Sleazy Beats
Norm de Plume – Steady Teddy (Franc Spangler Mix) – Kolour LTD
Matthias Reiling – Apology Girl – Giegling
Daniel Solar – A Walk In The Park – Dikso
Cole Medina – Buffalo Bill (Cole’s O.G. Mix) – House Arrest Buy at Juno Download (Mp3/WAV)
Audiofly feat. Fiora – 6 Degrees – Get Physical Buy at Juno Download (Mp3/WAV)
Daniel Dexter – Cherry Blossom – Semester Musik Buy at Juno Download (Mp3/WAV)
Kollektiv Turmstrasse – Was Bleibt (Jimpster Vocal Remix) – Connaisseur Buy at Juno Download (Mp3/WAV)
Danny Howells – Everythings Here (Deetron Remix) – Dig Deeper
Noir and Haze – Around (Solomun Vox Remix) – Noir Music
Tuccillo – Without U – 2020Vision