Berlin-based live show and studio duo of music producers Sammy Goossens and Pascal Hetzel
Interview: Elena Savlokhova
Photo: Philipp Boegle
Get the new 'Obsession' EP - here.
What excites you the most in what you do?
We really enjoy the process of making music, experimenting with music instruments, trying new techniques, playing shows, traveling, meeting new people (who sometimes become close friends), trying new food… There are a lot of really exciting things involved in what we do.
When did you first experience the power music carries within itself?
We were both into music at a very early age, collecting records, checking music instrument shops, and trying out synthesizers we could not afford at the time. Then came the rave days and all the fun and experiments that came with i
What were your mindsets when working on the ‘Obsession’ EP and how did it feel when looking at the finished piece of work?
We didn´t really have a particular mindset (at least as we remember), we wanted to make some powerful danceable electro tracks and we messed around in the studio. Sven Von Thülen told us that the track Recalibration could use some kind of vocals, the same day when passing through the Kottbusser Tor U-Bhan Station, we heard Sunru performing and we asked him to come to the studio and record something. We are really happy with the end result, it was a long process but worth every second.
Do you let an idea freely take whatever form it wants or do you tend to follow certain guidelines when creating?
A bit of both, sometimes we try to make a track that serves a certain purpose, but most of the time, the track comes on its own. Usually, when we have a specific idea in mind, we don´t come close and get frustrated.
What did you learn from one another both personally and professionally?
We learn a lot from each other as we don’t have the same experiences, the same personalities,… Pascal thinks more and Sam is more impulsive, so we learn to balance that. Pascal was more of a deejay and Sam more of a live act, so we got each other to both deejay and play live. As a couple, we spend a lot of our time together so we are permanently learning from each other.
How far do you want to witness technology evolve and is there a particular technology that you most anticipate?
We are always excited about new technologies, even if they can get scary sometimes (AI, robots…) We are very curious about what the future will bring, if somebody told us 20 years ago we would use a phone for everything and do video calls, we wouldn’t have believed it. We are really into new music equipment, new sounds, even if we think technology doesn’t make the music. We would love teleportation, automatic healing devices… a machine that can make NY cheesecake would also be awesome.
Looking back at your music journeys, is there something that you were naive about?
The importance of the business around, we were naive to think that the only thing that matters is music quality. And the fact this is not one big party and sometimes you have to be professional and keep it together. We sometimes learn it the hard way.
What are you currently obsessed with?
Ru Paul’s Drag Race.
What are your favourite conspiracy theories?
Lizard People is one of the best, Q Anon is also pretty funny. There’s always a new hilarious one.
Are you confident in your vision as artists or is self-doubt something that you have to routinely deal with?
Self-doubt is there all the time… We love to hate ourselves, but sometimes we think we are not that bad after all, but only sometimes.
We think self-doubt is what makes us work harder, we always think we can do better and we try to push new grounds all the time.
We think this is how our music is always evolving and we don’t repeat ourselves too much.
Do you feel ‘at home’ in the music community?
It is not a small scene anymore, we think there is a home in every niche. We feel at home in the Berlin community. I am (Sam) also pretty close to a lot of artists in Belgium, and we have a lot of artist friends in the world. So yes, we feel at home and music really connected us with awesome people we genuinely love.
Do you think it’s ok to be an asshole sometimes?
You should never be an asshole, but it’s good and healthy to have boundaries. Don’t treat people the way you don´t want to be treated is one of our mottos. On this note,
we hate people who don’t answer emails, we think it is so rude, a polite «no» is better than being ghosted.
Or are we too old school?
What do you feel when you look back at your life?
We are not too unhappy about our choices, we obviously made bad decisions but we managed to still be pretty ok. We are very happy we met each other, it is a healthy personal/professional relationship that made us grow in every aspect.
What are your plans for the rest of the year?
To make a lot of music for all the cool labels who asked for releases, maybe make an album, prepare a new live set (if we can ever play again). Hopefully travel a little bit, see our families, see our friends, learn to cook new recipes, which we are obsessed with.
What question would you like to be asked in an interview and what would your answer be?
We are no journalists, so this question is tricky. We have no idea about a specific question that we would like to be asked. Maybe “What is your favourite TV show at the moment?” We look forward to the next season of Handmaid’s Tale, one of the best shows after Breaking Bad. We watch A LOT of shows, we could also recommend Servant from M. Night Shyamalan, it is soooo good. We know it is not the best answer but we truly had no idea what to say.