Interview - Max Cooper
Respected electronica producer and DJ set for Kollektiv show
Max Cooper first came to the attention of clubbers and electronic music fans with his ‘Serie’ trilogy on Traum Schallplatten in 2009, each track inspired by a different mathematical or scientific concept. Since then, alongside his own productions, he’s remixed the likes of Hot Chip, Agoria, Dominik Eulberg, Kaiserdisco and Sasha. With new EP Amalgamations out in November, he continues to pay attention to the visual presentation of every release with accompanying videos by artists such as Whiskas Fx and Nick Cobby. His fans have also produced a selection of stunning video works. We caught up with Cooper before his guest set at open minded house and techno night Kollektiv.
How would you describe your own productions?
Describing music in words is always difficult, and my music is very varied and takes elements from many genres which each have a different term to describe them depending on what part of the world you are from. So don’t expect to have a fair idea from this description, but I could say melodic house and techno-influenced electronica as a broad category.
What first drew you to electronica?
Electronica seems to be a wide ranging term to describe electronic music that doesn’t fit into any of the other more well-known genres. After a while listening to any electronic genre I think it’s natural to want to hear something less formulaic. I think music always needs to provide some unexpected turns to be enjoyable, and electronica is a good source of unexpectedness.
How did you make the leap from fan to production?
Lots of hard work, advice from friends, trial and error.
What drew you to the concept of science and mathematics for your 'Serie' series?
I was working in systems biology (mathematical/computational modelling of biological systems) at that time, and still have an active interest in science in general, so the concepts I associated with the releases was just a natural combination of my interests and a way of adding something more interesting to the releases, plus something that I think it is important for scientists to do - that is getting their ideas out to a wider audience via new routes, conveying the excitement and fun of their fields so that more young people choose to get involved. Science is often presented in a bland uninspiring manner, when it’s really not that way at heart.
What do you think of your fan-made videos?
I love them. I get a lot of enjoyment from seeing people’s new interpretations of my music and it’s great to see when they talk back to me in the same language with which I was trying to talk to them.
Looking forward to playing Scotland?
Definitely, it’s a pleasure to be playing in Scotland, one of the best audiences in the world, they know how to have a proper party!
What can people expect on the night?
I’ll wait to see what the atmosphere is like before deciding what to play. I was a DJ first before a producer, so I still try to play to the crowd as much as I can.
Max Cooper headlines Kollektiv, Chambre69, Glasgow, Fri 11 Nov.