How did you end up in the psychedelic trance scene?
I happened upon the scene thanks to my Brother who took me to my first Psy festival. It was actually thrown by the Audiognomes in August of 2005 and was called Dreamfields. I was struck by how open people were compared to the “traditional” Raves that I had attended in my younger years. And the Music! I had of course listened to Psytrance for some time at that point, however I never got the chance to see it in person (rather than listening to my brother mix in the basement, which was cool when playing video games), which is a dramatic difference. Having come from a highly diverse musical background, I felt very quickly that I had found Home. I had found a group of people from completely different backgrounds, brought together by this music. By early June of 2006, after The Chilluminati threw the first Sacred Earth Open Air, there was no going back for me.
Tell me about Audiognomes, where are you all from?
The Audiognomes was originally a primarily Madison, WI based organization. Through out the years we have had some members move on due to careers, family, graduating college, etc. So as time went on we began asking people from around the midwest to join us, and we currently have quite a diverse group. Being an Audiognome means becoming part of a Family and we are quite selective in who we ask to join. We base it on our impression of a person, not just their skills behind the decks or with producing, but their drive, ambition, and personality. We’re driven not by ego, but by our passion. Each of us is driven by our passion for this music, and our wish is to be a conduit for the music that we bring.
Updated mix, downtempo, soundscapes.
How would you describe the music scene is in Wisconsin?
The music scene in Wisconsin has changed over the years. Back in the early 90’s through the early 2000’s there were gradually larger parties to the point where every other weekend there would be a Rave in Madison, heck, Daft Punk played in Madison in 1996 (I was too young at that time, pity). Then it kind of fizzled out for a while. Counties around the state had passed strict sound codes and there was fewer properties where a private event could be held. I went to three Raves between 2001 and August 2005, one was the last big outdoor party in Wisconsin called Rejuvination, and the other two were eight hours away in Illinois… I was under 21 at the time and that made it hard to be at a club/bar where most people played after the big Raves ended, and also where the Psy scene in Madison really started in 2003.
I gradually I fell out of the loop due to my age. And then Ben started telling me about these club parties that I couldn’t go to with this awesome music… However a majority of people preferred breakcore, dnb, house and techno oriented genres and had a general distaste for anything including the word “trance”, as a result many events or clubs would not even consider Psytrance. After our primary venue in Madison closed. We were quite limited as to where we could play in Madison. We have had bars let us do monthly events for a time over the years, but the audience wasn’t building to what the owners wanted. We’re working on spreading our name around town to fix that. But in the mean time I have these wonderful festivals to play at, which are usually a few hours away, however well worth the trip.
What was it that drew you to becoming a DJ?
I was bored with just updating the website. I kid. I was drawn to become a DJ not only because of what you can do with an audience, but also in a large part due to my Brothers influence. It looked fun and I wanted part of it. But I was always too nervous to start, wasn’t sure which “style” I would play. For quite a few years people would ask continuously “When are you going to start playing like your brother?” I always said I was taking my time, and I was. I was watching how it was done and I had some very good teachers. Also I was really bored with just updating the website.
How long did it take before you started playing out?
Quite a while considering all the bugging at every damn festival or party I would go to about when I would become a DJ like my brother.
Again, I kid.
In all honesty it took me two to three years before I was ready to take the plunge. I feel like waiting that time has helped me take into perspective the feel of the audience. It has given me a different point of view that I take into consideration. Yes, I could play 200+ BPM for an entire set, but I then think “What would I do if I was in the audience?” Playing that fast is intense, not only for me but for the audience, you have some control of your audiences emotions and it is important in my view to take that into consideration.
On a side note I have not posted a mix in a few years… I’ll do my best to change that. However over 120 mixes are located at www.audiognomes.com