We caught up recently with Belgian producer DATURA to talk about life, influences, and what music means to him. Check out his story here…
Tell us about yourself in a few words (who you are, where you’re from, what you do etc.).
First of all, thanks for having me!
My name is Mitchell Albert, I’m an 18-year-old producer from Belgium. I make music under the alias DATURA. I’ve been experimenting with music for as long as I can remember, really. It all started with my father. He used to be a big fan of artists such as Vangelis or Jean-Michel Jarre and he also made his own tracks which were heavily influenced by them. I was around 7 or 8 I think when I joined him in the “studio” which was essentially just the attic with a couple synthesizers, a computer and some other equipment, designed to function as a studio. Today, the attic is my bedroom and I have my own setup there now. Almost everything changed there but I still own the Roland SH-201 synthesizer that my dad really loved a lot back in the day.
Can you describe your music for us.
That’s a tough one. I like to describe it as coming home and telling you how my day has been. It can go both ways; If I’m excited for something or if I am in a good mood I tend to make more uplifting tracks. If I’m feeling down however, it’ll turn out sad. Even if I try to make something else. I have no control over that, it’s a subconscious thing.
Any new music coming our way soon?
Yes. I am currently working on a new EP where you will hear future garage from me for the first time. I’ve been wanting to make future garage for a while but never really liked my takes on the genre. This time it’s working out very nicely. I can’t wait to show you all!
Do you try and express something tangible through your music? A particular mood or feeling perhaps?
I get dissociated a lot when dealing with stress and sometimes that causes me to detach from my surroundings. It’s a rather weird and discomforting feeling which can really throw me off at times but I kind of embrace it because it drives my music a lot. A good example of that is my track Dissociate which is dedicated to that feeling.
Do you think your music conveys who you are as a person? Does it capture your essence or your personality in some sense?
Yes. Like I mentioned, music is an outlet for me, I pour my heart out in every track and I tend to feel better afterwards. I feel like it helps me deal with stuff a lot and it also serves as a great form of escapism for me.
Has your music evolved, do you think? Do you have any musical goals?
Definitely, I used to make a lot of styles and genres such as house and even dubstep under different names (it was horrible btw haha). I was still looking for my own style until I found the wave scene. I immediately fell in love with it but I wasn’t very good at is at first because I didn’t really know much about mixing or anything. But I quickly started to pay more attention to that and bought a pair of monitor speakers. My mixes have improved a lot ever since and it’s definitely one of the best purchases I made. As for now, I still feel like my music is still improving and I still have a lot to learn. I hope to achieve better mix and master skills because I feel like that’s still one of my weaker points in music production. Although I feel like I’ve improved a lot on that already, it’s certainly not perfect yet. There’s always room for improvement.
Is there a particular track of yours which you are especially proud of?
I tend to dislike my tracks after releasing them because I’ve heard them over and over again while making them, but if I had to pick one I’d go for my track “Dissociate”. However, I really like my track “Without You” a bit more but it is currently unreleased but it will be featured on my new EP that will hopefully release by the end of this month.
Can you imagine your life without music? If music were taken away, what would you have lost?
No, absolutely not. Music has become a daily routine thing. It’s the first thing I do when I get home; boot up FL and start playing some chords on my keyboard. I’d say I spend a good 3 hours a day producing so it has really become something I can’t miss. It’s hard to imagine losing it. I’m clueless what I would do without it.
What does electronic music mean to you?
I think electronic music is the most creative music. I hate it so much when people mock me for making electronic music thinking that it’s as easy as pressing buttons while really there is so much work that goes into it. There’s endless sounds you can create that wouldn’t be possible on regular instruments and when I say endless, I really mean endless. You can create anything you want and it’s really not as easy as many people think. So to me, electronic music is the most versatile form of music.
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?
Hmm. I don’t think I can name someone specific, it’s just music in general that I like, that influences my own. But if I had to pick someone I would go with Øfdream. There’s not a single track I dislike of him. And he was one of the first artists in the scene that I started listening to.
Is there a particular piece of music or piece of advice you’ve heard which you find comforting?
I find that a lot of ambient tracks help me after a long day. It can make me zone out and just forget about things for a bit. One of those tracks is “Buttxrfly – Things That Never Happen”. Really nice tune to just close your eyes to and let it take you away.
If you could say one thing to the people reading this, what would it be?
Thank you so much for taking your time to read through this interview and for all the support I’ve been getting. I love you guys <3
Thanks so much DATURA!
Thank you too!