The 277th episode of our 12 Questions segment features producer Peter Sturm.
1. How old are you, where are you living and how long have you been producing and Djing?
– Hello, my name is Peter, I am 35, and my hobbies are reading, cycling and movies…no, that was actually a lie. I don’t cycle. I live in South Germany, near the alps, in a beautiful landscape, where not much scene is happening. But I have been doing music since 1998 now, under a different name and in a different genre. As Peter Sturm I am producing since 2013, so quite fresh.
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 first contact with electronic music was in the early 90s. Thunderdome, Mayday, the whole rave thing really got me hooked, and I knew I wanna be a part of this movement. Guys like DJ Hell, Hardfloor and the whole Eye Q artists really inspired me. But even before that I always listened to my sister’s EBM records, which really fascinated me. So I guees my early root were Alien Sex Fiend, Front 242 and Nitzer Ebb.
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?
– In the very beginning it was pretty much try and error. But I started doing music together with a couple of friends, and we met once a week, showing each other new tricks we found discovered. Back then I was doing music with a simple sequencer to trigger my hardware, later with Logic on PC, which sadfully got discontinued.
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?
– Tough question. That really depends on the track I am working on and my mood. Sometimes I just cant hit the right chords, other days I do a track in two hours and it’s just perfect. So I guess there is no real answer. If I encounter a creative block it really helps to stop with music, do something completely different, and open the project another day. Fresh thoughts, new impressions, and most of the time I then find the right parts to continue a track.
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?
– Normal days a actually really “boring”. I get up at 07:00 and go to work (as a stock adviser), come home, do housework or whatever. And about 21:00 I hit the studio and do music. That’s a regular day for me.
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?
– Apart from electronic music I am quite versatile. I really love metal. Bands like Pantera, Slipknot or System of a Down. But I also like german hiphop like Blumentopf or Dendemann. And a have a strong fable for melancholic music. Sisters of Mercy, IAMX and Florence and the Machine, to name just a few. I think it’s good to listen to other stuff to keep your mind open and simply not repeat yourself production wise. In ever music there are things you can adopt in electronic music, may it be ways of using melodies or percussion patterns. You just need to use them in a creative way.
7. What was the first and last physical (CD, Vinyl, Cassette etc) piece of music you bought?
– Very first one: “Prince – Love Symbol”. The last one…hm… “Pantera – Cowboys from Hell (remastered)”.
8. Tell us something about yourself that might surprise people?
– I am not as tall as I seem to be on pictures 🙂
9. Which producers in your opinion get consistently overlooked?
– One of my favs at the moment is “Budakid”, but he is not really overlooked. He’s more up and coming. And “No Sonic Limits” – really great guy.
10. Which producers consistently inspire you? And where else does your inspiration come from?
– As I said inspiration comes from every style of music, you just have to use it in the right way. But in the electronic scene my first choice would be Einmusik. Great guy, great sound. Always really smooth, but at the same time very pushing on the Dancefloor. Also Dominik Eulberg. I love how he just ignores musical boundaries and mixes up everything he likes, no matter what kind of genre.
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?
– Don’t do what others expect you to do, don’t try to sound like somebody else. Do what you feel and what sounds right for yourself. Adopt but don’t copy. I think there simply is no other way to create your own unique sound and style.
12. If the final DJ/live set of your career was next week what would your last track be?
– “Virtual Symmetry – The V.S.” – timeless classic. Or “Humate – Love Simulation”… damn… can’t decide. Can I play an encore? 🙂
‘Vega’ is out now on BQ Recordings, you can purchase the release: here