Drumcode’s Tiger Stripes Next Up On CU Techno

A vital contributor to Adam Beyer’s Drumcode and Truesoul labels, Tiger Stripes (aka Mikael Nordgren) recently returned to DC with a thrilling two-tracker ‘Back In Black’

He spoke with us about Sweden’s different approach during lockdown, the unexpected inspiration behind his new EP and why he believes we should be cautious in our returns to clubs and parties.

In Sweden where you are from, the country has adopted a very liberal approach to ‘lockdown’. How have the last few months been for you considering this?

“Yes, our approach is that each individual need to take responsibility to help make the virus go away and that’s what me and my wife and our kids have tried to do. Like most Swedes we’ve been really careful, taking as few risks as possible. When this started, we just had a little baby, so it felt natural just staying at home with him. But yes, it has been a few really weird months. But we’ve been alright, trying to make the best of the situation and I actually feel really proud of how Sweden have handled this. No strategy will show to be 100% right, but I believe it was right to keep the country running, trying to do what’s best for our citizens and Sweden’s economy.”

Have you felt creative and made a lot of music? Or focused more on being quiet and family? 

“I feel I’ve managed to do both. It’s actually been pretty cool to put focus on the studio work and playing with my kids for a while.  I don’t feel any panic that people will forget about me. You will not see me stream everyday but my music will be out there. Creativity have been flowing lately and there is a lot of new music coming.”

In certain cities club events have started up, which has sparked a lot of debate and considerations. What’s your take on it? Are you bursting to get back DJing or are you more cautious?

“I would love to travel again, but I feel we need to see this from a bigger picture and try our best not to be selfish, even though these are tough times for DJs and musicians. It’s hard, but we have to do what we can to make sure the hospitals are not overloaded and the people in the risk groups are safe. We need to make this go away before we can go back to normal. I will listen to what the experts say and go along with that. But I’m longing so much to stand in front of a full dance floor again. I really, really miss it!”

Tell us about the vision behind the new EP? 

“I wanted some Rock’n’Roll in my techno this time. Some raw power. My main instrument is the electric guitar and I think you can hear that on this EP. I tried to play my synthesizers like I play my guitar. I also wanted a touch of modern hip hop in the mix. My eldest daughter is a big Travis Scott fan so I hear that kind of synthesized hip hop a lot at home. I love Travis too and wanted the vocals and the synthesizers on this ep to have that same kind of spooky feeling.”

Tell us about the experience of releasing a techno EP when clubs and festivals aren’t happening and an opportunity to ‘test’ out the tracks isn’t possible.

“I have been producing tracks and playing as a DJ for so long now, so I feel I have enough knowledge to finish a track without a road test, but yes, it is weird. But Adam Beyer and myself have been playing the tracks from ‘Back In Black EP’, for some time before it was released, so I guess this time the feedback came from comments on social media while streaming the tracks in our DJ sets, instead of getting the reaction from the dance floor. Today both tracks are inside the Beatport Techno Top 10, so I take this as a sign that the tracks are pretty decent!”

Anything you’d like to share with us in terms of music making plans after the summer or any socially distanced parties you may be involved in?

Me, my wife and our three kids will be staying in our summer house by a lake, deep inside the Swedish woods for the rest of the summer for some holiday time. And when I get back home, I will combine paternity leave for my little boy with studio work. It will be a hectic time for sure, but I am really looking forward to it. And when the clubs open again, I will be ready, with lots of new Tiger bombs to finally try out, on a real live crowd!

Tiger Stripes ‘Back In Black’ EP is out now on Drumcode:


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