Somatic Records is an up and coming London label that has mastered the art of fusing progressive & melodic feelings together with subtle techno elements
Hi Steve, for those who are not aware can you give us some background about you and what you did before you launched Somatic Records?
Before I launched Somatic I was studying Sound Engineering for 3 years in London. I used that course to help me learn & gain knowledge with the necessary skills needed for Sound design and mix-downs. I was also flirting with my own productions, designing my own sound.
How did you start Somatic? Is there a story behind it?
Yes there is! A few years back I created 2 tracks and sent them as singles to two separate, quite well known labels amongst the Techno community and they wanted to sign them – but from that initial contact there was awful communication after regarding the release plans, contracts and it just didn’t feel right giving my tracks away like this.
So I decided to create Somatic Records with the initial intention of finding unknown talent – but adding a more human, personal touch. I’ve approached the label purely as a music fan – not a DJ. Not as an artist & certainly not as a businessman.
For years I have always tried to find my place in music, I have tried DJ’ing but that wasn’t for me. I tried my hand at producing but haven’t got the patience to finish a track, then it just all clicked about starting a label – and I’ve never been happier
Would you say Somatic has a distinct sound? Who would you count as your core label artists? And have they helped you define the label’s style?
I feel like we do now – our label’s ethos is melodic – progressive – techno. I love music sent to me with emotion, with real hard work put into the design and story of a track. For 2018 we wanted a more Progressive direction with the labels sound with subtle Techno elements. I want people to listen to our releases and think ‘wow – that’s beautiful, it has that Somatic sound.’ I’m blessed to be working with some incredible talent: artists like Matchy, Riamiwo & Starkato really do show our more progressive vibe – and then there’s artists like Beatamines, YHUMAN, Tom Hutt showing our techno side.
Promoters Till Last Track are showcasing your label party this weekend in London. Which of your key artists will be performing at the show? Is this the way you see things going for you?
I’m really excited that ‘Till Last Track’ asked us to bring our sounds to a club in our home city. To me this is a huge milestone in us moving beyond becoming a digital label. We have more label showcases planned for the future, not just in the UK.
We invited a number of artists to play who helped us develop the label from Day 1. We have VERV (Chris Hodgson) who was the first artist to release an EP with us. We have local Techno talent kLines, who we discovered and has since gone on to release under some really cool labels. A & R for Somatic – Tom Hutt flies over from Italy along with YHUMAN, who gave us our first ever #1 in Beatport charts. Headlining is the incredible talent ‘Matchy’ who has releases under big labels such as Stil Vor Talent and Lauter Unfug. We have 2 EP’s with his name on it in the future so im really looking forward to meeting the family and together we are going to bring a beautiful party on Saturday in London.
What are the best things about running a label and do you think it’s for everyone?
The best thing for me is I get to work with such talented people. I’m so lucky to have a great team behind me offering support and advice. Peter Tiefensee creates our release covers and promo videos and I don’t know we’d be without him. He makes the coolest art that really define our ‘Somatic’ which I feel is just as important as the music.
I also get to release music that I love, so seeing it gain support and plays from popular DJs is also very satisfying.
Running label is tough – but HUGELY rewarding. I started it as just a fan of music – I didnt have any famous DJ friends or huge promo lists. Everything has been earned through long hours and hard work. I’ve invested so much effort & money plus sacrificed a lot of my life this past year create this dream, whilst also juggling a day job to pay bills etc. You’ll make a lot of mistakes in the beginning and slowly you’ll learn how things are done, along with the best ways to market a release and the best way to handle promo/schedules. If you are passionate – have a clear vision of what you want, then anything is possible
What support do you give your artists and what advice would you give anyone looking to get signed on your label? How people send you demos?
Right from day 1 myself & Tom are heavily involved – interacting with the artist on how we can create a beautiful release that they will be proud of. I try and involve the artists with every aspect of the design and plans so its more personal.
Anyone looking to have a release on Somatic would firstly need to check out our sound – See if it fits!
Then send an email to either firstname.lastname@example.org or to our A&R TomHutt@somaticrecords.co.uk
Please make sure you send private Souncloud links that are exclusive just for us with a short Bio about yourself. Goodluck!
What’s been Somatic’s biggest achievement or what’s the thing you’re most proud of?
Theres a few things – from the very start we had videos of Richie Hawtin dropping a remix from Chris Hodgson at Timewarp in 2017. Gaining the trust from established DJs to remix for us and now fully release EPs on Somatic.
We’be also had some incredible ‘real’ feedback from big DJ’s playing our music. I’m proud of every release and get a buzz when people message me with positive comments or when I see videos or sets with our music included.
Now that your label is starting to become more recognized and trusted, are your goals for the label starting to change? And what does the future hold for releases?
My philosophy will always stay the same – to release great music that i connect with. Lately I do receive music from ‘bigger’ artists than I did in the beginning which is great – but we will only sign music that we feel represents our sound. It doesn’t matter if you have 30k likes on Facebook or even 30. You’ll see we have released music from a lot of up and coming producers, so all im intereested in is raw talent with that melodic sound!
We have some fantastic releases coming in 2018… Starkato has a beautiful EP in March, Our A&R guy Tom Hutt debuts on Somatic later that month along with another debut EP from Matchy called Exodus. Following that we can announce that Beatamines & Matchy have teamed up for EP coming late April. We have also EP’s from exciting young artists such as Las Von & Messaw and a 2nd EP from Riamiwo dropping later this year!
Also keep your eyes peeled for a very special VA dropping in 2018