For the latest edition of Pump, our special guest is non other than lauded Swedish music producer, songwriter and DJ, Johan Blende! Signed to the Belgian disco label Eskimo and famed for such cuts as Rikki and Fake Love, Blende has remixed for the likes of Lana Del Rey and Azari & III. With worldwide bookings from Space in Ibiza to Ministry of Sound here in London, we’re super excited to welcome Blende to the basement of Superstore! Fresh of the release of his banging new summer anthem single Back to Summertime, we caught up with him to chat new releases, Michael Jackson and plans for Pump!
Hi Blende! We are so excited to have you join us for Pump! How has your 2017 been so far?
Hi there! Excellent, so am I! It’s been good so far, released a single just before summer and am currently making plans for the next one.
How do you think growing up in Sweden influenced your sound?
Hmm, don’t know if it did much really. I mean most Swedish producers I know and know of have quite a different sound to mine I feel, but there are exceptions so maybe there is something in the water after all.
If you could change anything about the pop music industry, what would it be?
Ugh, let’s not go there, I’ll be playing suicidal music on Saturday if so.
What is your earliest musical memory?
Listening to MJ’s Thriller on my walkman, in the back of my dad’s car. Not sure if I made the walkman, dad and car bit up but I definitely had the album on cassette.
You took a couple of years’ hiatus from DJing during 2015-16, what has it been like coming back to it after such a significant break?
It’s nice being back, though I’m still not quite up to speed just yet. We’ll see what else 2017 brings, definitely hoping more people will have me come play at their nights!
Can you talk us through your songwriting process?
Lately I’ve been mainly putting down ideas while working on something else; if things pop into my head I strip down whatever I’m currently working on to just drums or something basic and put it down on top and then revisit it at some point once I’ve finished what I was already doing. But I have something like 10-15 track ideas going on rotation at any time so it’s a natural process I think.
Who have been some of your favourite collaborators over the years?
There are some people I’ve worked with these past couple of years that I’d love to do some more stuff with, but they’ve all been part of tracks that don’t have a home yet so I probably shouldn’t say too much at this point. It’s nice working together with friends on location though, so I’m trying to find time to do that again as it’s been a little while.
Favourite release of the year?
Pretty much every Deewee release this year has been great.
If you had a time machine and could go dancing anywhere/when, where would you go?
It would be Manhattan, in the 70s, CBGBs & Studio 54. I don’t think they’d let me in though, one saying I look too pissed and the other not pissed enough.
In five words or less, what are you planning to unleash at Pump?
Luscious & pumping electronic music.
Catch Blende at Pump this Saturday 19 August from 9pm-3am at Dalston Superstore!