We caught up recently with future garage producer Deffyme to talk about music, life, goals and influences. Here’s what he had to say…
Tell us about yourself in a few words (who you are, where you’re from, what you do etc.).
First of all: thanks a lot for this interview!
My name is Lucas (Deffyme), I’m 24 years old, from Germany where I was born and raised. I live in the very northern part of it in a very small town close to the Baltic Sea. I’ve been living here since I was born. However the larger half of my family comes from a more southern state where I spent quite some time in my childhood. I actually feel like I belong there rather than living by the Baltic Sea since I adore the mountainside. In real life I’m an educator and working with kids is my everyday life.
I sometimes conduct sound exploration and sound experiment projects with the children. This is how I like to blend my hobby with the way I make a living. I think it’s really important and necessary for children to experience music and sound in order to develop their personality. It benefits them physically and mentally. Kate Tempest once said that one must remember that creativity is “an extremely valuable and necessary part of our mental health” and that it makes us human. I actually even sampled this quote into one of my tracks because it’s kind of my personal philosophy. I started to make music when I was a kid myself. I must have been about 6 years old when I took two Frisbee discs to the garden rubbing them with my hands pretending I’m a DJ as I saw it on the television. Electronic music always influenced me and caught my attention. However when I was 12 years old my big sister had a boyfriend who listened to heavy metal only, which brought me into a whole new music genre at that time. I am still a huge metalhead nowadays but also fell in love with Drum & Bass, IDM and Breakcore when I was 14 years old. Actually IDM is the music I listened to the most during my youth which influenced my own electronic music, which I started to produce back in 2007, heavily. One day when I was exploring new IDM music on YouTube I found a track called “Burial – Archangel” in my recommendation list. I clicked it and couldn’t believe my ears. Everything sounded so unique to me and I immediately begun to dig through Burial’s entire discography. This is how I discovered Future Garage. I felt like a caveman discovering the spark.
Can you describe your music for us.
As I already stated in the first question my music is heavily influenced by IDM. I like to use unconventional drum and rhythmic patterns, which I hear a lot in Future Garage, and so I thought that Genre suits me pretty good. I am a huge Ambient fan as well and I love to play around with all kinds of foley sounds which I record using my PCM field recorders for the most part. That way you can hear my scissors and my pizza slicer becoming percussions in almost all of my tracks. And for example I sample my drums recording how I slam my fist onto a cardboard box for kick drums and smashing a wooden spoon onto my desk for snare drums. However the most important thing is the post-processing in which I add a lot of my signature sound. I love to cut away natural high frequencies of my sounds and add artificial high-end through heavy saturation or distortion. As one can hear I prefer faster tempos and a mixture of syncopated four-to-the-floor beats or 2-step patterns and driven wobble basses. I work a lot with syncopation because it creates that special swing and oddness. My friend dreams47 jokingly referred to my music as “Edward Scissorhands music” because I sample my scissors and other metallic sounds so often. I think that’s a pretty accurate description of my music.
Any new music coming our way soon?
Yes. I’m working on a new EP at the moment. I am experimenting a lot with different styles and I have a bunch of upcoming collaborations with some of my fellow FGcollective friends. I tried to work with slower drum patterns but I hardly ever feel like finishing these songs.
Any particular artists you’d like to work with?
I’ve always wanted to make a song with Elo Method.
Do you try and express something tangible through your music? A particular mood or feeling perhaps?
When I was younger I always said things like “I express myself through music and I process my emotions and feelings through it bla bla bla…”. Nowadays I find this quite ridiculous, because what else does music do? I want to dissociate myself from statements like these because I feel like it’s a lot of distinguishing which I find quite childish. You either make music and put your heart in there or you don’t. Either way just keep it to yourself – people will either feel something listening to it or not. Simple as that.
Do you think your music conveys who you are as a person? Does it capture your essence or your personality in some sense?
I can be a very hectic , impatient and hasty person. I think this sometimes goes into my music especially my workflow. I like to put hidden messages into my track names that only certain people can understand. I think one’s music always captures his or her essence because all we ever do are choices. We choose to do or not to do certain things. That way I think the music always conveys a bit who or what you are.
Has your music evolved, do you think? Do you have any musical goals?
Yes. Definitely. When I started to make music as a kid I sat in front of the computer and randomly tweaked any knobs without knowing what the hell I was doing there. I saw (or heard) the results and learned a lot through it. I basically spent the first few years messing around. I even notice progress during the production of one single EP. Sometimes the tracks even have different sound quality because I am learning with everything I do. I think “Clear To See” is one of my best tracks, however it technically sounds like rubbish. I’d describe my musical goal as being featured on a major YouTube channel for music like this and getting a small but active and supportive community / fanbase.
Is there a particular track of yours which you are especially proud of?
Hard to tell because I always tend to be unsatisfied with what I did afterwards. But I pretty much like my track “Outcome”.
Can you imagine your life without music? If music were taken away, what would you have lost?
I think I don’t have to answer that question, haha! Music equals life.
What does underground music mean to you?
Being an awesome artist without the mainstream following. Underground artists are hardly known even though they make brilliant music. I think that’s my definition of being an underdog.
Thinking about other people’s music – is there a particular musician whose music resonates with you (maybe someone you’d describe as an ‘influence’)? How does that person’s music make you feel?
I always state to be a huge dreams47 fan. His music inspires me and keeps me interested. Actually in the entire scene he is my favourite artist and I admire his work a lot. There are a lot of artists that influenced me throughout the years, but I feel like it’s more important to focus on the underdogs we were talking about previously. Because the relationships you build to those people always mean more than admiring any “good artist” you technically don’t have any connection to. We’re kind of in the same boat and this is what makes the feedback authentic.
Is there a particular doctrine or philosophy you try to live by? Something that comforts you when you feel down, perhaps?
I will have to quote a “7 Seconds” song that pretty much describes my philosophy here:
“Me and you
We’re gonna fight the narrow minds
Make our own rules
Live your life and I’ll live mine”
Also I’m a supporter of the Straight X Edge Hardcore scene. I’m straight edge myself. This often gives me strength and energy to move on.
However I stray away from having my political opinions in my music as Deffyme.
If you could say one thing to the people reading this, what would it be?
Thanks for all the massive support so far! xx