The 234th episode of our 12 Questions segment features producer Matteo Monero.
1. How old are you, where are you living and how long have you been producing and Djing?
I’m 31 years old and currently living in the north of Italy at Rovereto near Lake Garda. I’ve been Djing since I was 12 and producing since I was 14.
2. Where do your musical roots lie, what are your first memories of electronic music and when did you know you wanted to pursue it seriously? Are there any particular productions or artists from the past that really made you think to yourself ‘this is what I want to do.”
My musical roots lie when I was child, because my favourite game was to play with vinyls of my father’s collection. In the collection I found many style from the hard rock to the classics of electronic music like Deep Purple, Kraftwerk, Black Sabbath, Pat Metheny, Pink Floyd and many many more (my father was a dj of a local radio station). The artists that have approached me to the world of dj/producer are Laurent Garnier, Aphex Twin, Sasha, Underworld, Autechre, 808 State, really too many to mention.From the beginning I have always tried to live it seriously, making sacrifices to buy the instruments and spending hours reading some good books.
3. How difficult was learning to produce for you in the beginning? Did you take any Audio Engineering programs or production courses to help you out or are you pretty much self taught? And did anyone give any advice early on that really helped?
I spent many hours with software like Cubase or Reason, when I was boyish. Over the years I bought some synthesizers, so I fell in love in the synthesis and midi programming. At the age of 20 I attended a course in sound engineer and programmer midi at Saint Louise Music College in Rome. In those years I think I learned the best rules of this art.
4. What parts of the production process do you find the most difficult and what comes easiest for you? When you do hit a creative block what helps you through it?
I don’t think there is a more difficult or easier, because there are days that I’m a groove machine or a melody machine and other days I love to spend hours on synthesizers or working on the mix / mastering. This cocktail gives life to my productions. The best medicine for a creative block…..listen music.
5. What’s a normal day like for you? Do you have a job outside of electronic music? And what do you like to do when you’re not working on music?
Yes I have a job outside of music I’m working with a company that produces pdlc films. In my spare time I relax with my family (girlfriend, dog and cat) or I go to some concert or I go to listen some good dj in a club.
6. Apart from electronic music what other genres do you listen to and who are your favourite artists outside of electronic? and do these genres or artists have a direct effect on your own productions?
I love listening to post-rock bands such as Mogwai, Efterklang, Explosions In The Sky. These bands have a big influence on the melodies and the atmospheric parts of my music. Anyway I listen a lot of music genres.
7. What was the first and last physical (CD, Vinyl, Cassette etc) piece of music you bought?
Honestly I can’t remember what was my first record, but I definitely something progressive trance by labels like Bxr, Media Records around 1995 / 96. I think the most important vinyl that I remember is “ Roger Sanchez – The Deep” on Narcotic Records. Last album I bought maybe is Apparat – Song of Los or Efterklang – Piramida.
8. Tell us something about yourself that might surprise people?
I like cooking, but I think that my second passion is the informatics.
9. Which producers in your opinion get consistently overlooked?
There are a lot a good producers it’s very hard to choose between them.Just few names Cj Art, Simos Tagias, Michael A, Rick Pier O’Neil, but the list is very very long.
10. Which producers consistently inspire you? And where else does your inspiration come from?
Guy Mantzur, Olivier Giacomotto, Stephan Bodzin, Guy Gerber in the last time are some of the artist that inspire me.
11.There are countless producers out there trying to find their way and create their own unique sound, what advice do you have for them?
Do not be afraid to dare! The most important thing I think is to find your own style.Don’t change often the tools work, but try to create the perfect setup so as to be in complete harmony with your instruments. For choosing good equipment ask yourself what is best in your workflow. You are the best instrument no what you use !Search inspiration in other artists, but don’t copy everybody are unique.
12. If the final DJ/live set of your career was next week what would your last track be?
Pachanga Boys – Time
Matteo’s remix of Dub Lion by LoQuai is out now on Majestic Family Records, you can purchase the release: here