The 299th episode of our 12 Questions segment features producer Niko Lindhe.
1. How old are you, where are you living and how long have you been producing and Djing?
I’m 20 years old, I currently live in Stockholm, Sweden which is where I grew up. I have been DJing and producing music since the summer of 2012 so for about 3,5 years now.
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.”
Well, my dad has always been into music and loads of genres, so for him playing cds either in the car or at home, I think kind of brought me a bit closer to it. The first electronic song I remember, that I actually listened to was “right here, right now” by Fatboy slim. I used to watch that video all the time when it came on MTV. On some level I think I’ve always thought it would be cool to make music for a living since I’ve done it in one way or another since I was around 5. But when it really hit me and I saw a new level in it was when I discovered Deadmau5, Avicii and Eric Prydz and downloaded FL studio.
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?
Until now I’ve only been self taught. I’ve looked stuff up on YouTube if I had no clue how to do a special task, but I’ve been producing in FL Studio mostly along with some Logic on the side. I do feel like learning more about music production though, especially more of the stuff outside the computers like analog synths etc., since there is so much to learn.
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?
It depends on the track, but I sometimes feel like the bass line could be more interesting or that a chorus should have a bit more punch. That being said, I feel like I shouldn’t stress too much over it. When the right idea comes along it will help me “fix” the track naturally.
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?
Right now I am working at A Radio station where I do research for music that has been played so copyright owners get paid. I’m there from 9am to 4pm most days, so when I get home I might take a little nap and have dinner and after that it’s straight to producing music until I go to bed pretty much.
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?
It really depends on my mood since that is always how I decide what I should listen to in the moment. I actually used to listen to nothing but rock for a few years but now I quite enjoy, ambient, film scores and post rock genres. Mogwai is a band that I’ve been a big fan of for a long time I actually got so nostalgic one night that I made a post rock/film score track for my dad’s birthday, which was really interesting to see how different the result was compared to everything else I’ve done. Sometimes I make pieces in completely different genres because I feel like it, but I also learn something from it that I can use in a future electronic track, which makes it all more interesting.
7. What was the first and last physical (CD, Vinyl, Cassette etc) piece of music you bought?
The first one that I can remember (which was a birthday gift) I got was Michael Jacksons album “bad”. I used to listen to that album day and night and I think has really been one of many inspirations in my productions. I can’t remember the last one.
8. Tell us something about yourself that might surprise people?
I usually drink at least a litre of juice per day.
9. Which producers in your opinion get consistently overlooked?
That’s a very good question. There are loads but I think it’s hard to define that on just one level. On one hand it can mean how innovative they are with their sound while on the other it can mean how well they technically put tracks together. It’s sad to see that the music business works like this and many very talented people won’t get the recognition they deserve because their promo side is not enough.
10. Which producers consistently inspire you? And where else does your inspiration come from?
Eric Prydz has always been and will probably keep being my biggest inspiration since I feel like he doesen’t care about how big a track is going to be, but to stay true to himself and that really inspires me to do the something similar. I feel like I want to tell a story of events that has occurred in my life in each track, and with that is like leaving that bit of myself in the piece, in a way similar to therapy.
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?
Like I mentioned in the last question, stay true to yourself. Figure out who you are and find the way to express it even thought it takes many hours and loads of hard work because that will most likely pay off and be your signature sound.
12. If the final DJ/live set of your career was next week what would your last track be?
I’d love it if I had finished a track I have in the works already, but I think Eric Prydz- Opus with some sort of visual recap of my life on the screens.
‘Exit EP’ is out now on LuPS Records, you can purchase the release: here