ATB Interview – Electric Zoo Dance Festival
Benjamin-Émile Le Hay: I’m a huge fan and this is my first time seeing you. You don’t come to New York that often. Why did you decide to come to Electric Zoo?
ATB: Well I think this will become one of the biggest US festivals in the future and so I know these guys [Made Events], they’re good friends, and they were asking me if maybe I was interested in playing and I said, “oh of course!” I’m sure I will have a great time here and I love New York, so why should I say no?
Amy: So what do you think of the crowd in NY compared to your hometown?
ATB: Well we will see what’s going on tonight… but I’m always playing here twice every year at Pacha New York, and I know these people are crazy and always in a really good mood. I don’t like to compare, I just know I love New York and I love the people here. There are amazing and really into their music, and this is what I love.
BL: Anything you’re going to sample tonight? You’ve got a lot of new projects lately, what about that?
ATB: Let me take a look– it’s always hard to talk about a set before because I never know what I’ll do. I try to give the best, to give everything and what I always try to put emotion and melodies into the set, so we’ll see!
BL: Fair enough, now you tour a lot, what’s the biggest difficulty for you when travelling so much?
ATB: The difficult thing is always waiting in the hotel… I really hate that! The thrilling thing is though that it’s not that bad. I’m really happy to have the opportunity to see so much of the planet. The time you land at the airport and get to the hotel to wait—I always hate this part of travelling. The rest is ok!
Amy: Do you go clubbing a lot yourself?
ATB: No. I’m touring so much that when I am at home, I really love to just be at home. Just going out with some friends, do the normal things. I am sometimes happier when I don’t see a club from the inside…
BL: I’ll agree with you on that one. Now when you’re trying to come up with new material and expand, do you find yourself struggling to find ways to recreate yourself or do you find that you’re in a quite comfortably creative moment right now in life?
ATB: Um, the first thing I always think about is not to think too much about where is everything coming from– You know? It’s just natural. I always just go into the studio and start to do something. If there is something happening that’s great, then it’s going on and if I notice, ok nothing is coming and I’m not feeling creative then I just stop it.
So I’m not a workaholic. It’s not that I always go into the studio and now I have to make a new hit or something like that. I don’t try to produce hits. I just want to get my own feelings into the music and create a track out of that… if I’m happy about that I don’t think is that a hit, is it right now good for the club, or is it good for the record company? I don’t care about these things. I just do what I want. I’m really happy that I have a record company that gives support for this type of working.
Amy: What do you listen to in your car?
ATB: Privately, I listen to a lot of ambience stuff – that is my favourite type. When you’re on the road and in the clubs you always have dance music. But on the other side I need to come-down and to relax and this is the reason why I really love this relaxing stuff.
BL: Where are you off to now?
ATB: I have another two weeks off next month and then I’m on an America tour: South America and then two weeks in the U.S.
Amy: And finally, if you had a dinner party and you could invite anyone dead or alive, who would you invite?
ATB: This is a really good question [long pause]… my friends.
Amy: Ahh if you could have ANYONE??
ATB: Really just a nice meal with my friends that I don’t get to see enough.
Amy: Well I’m sure we can arrange that. Thanks for your time!