In Conversation: Eomac Talks Lakker
It must have been a difficult decision. As hardware junkies it’d feel a little bit like selling our children to us!
[Laughs] Yeah, it was like “The children are just sitting there not doing anything!”
For me, it was always Dara’s gear and I just got access to it, so I wasn’t that precious about it. I think the one thing Dara said he regrets selling is the Yamaha DX7. It did some amazing stuff that software just can’t quite replicate. The software does other stuff as well, so once we started getting into using purely digital, we figured we could do, so far at least, whatever we’ve wanted to. There may come a time where we explore other things but at the moment it works and with digital becoming more and more open ended all the time I can’t see us going back.
Yeah, it’s only going to get more diverse anyway.
I think it’s just finding a system that works for you, having two laptops and Ableton for production and performance works really well. I’ve eot exactly that setup, everything is easy, put stuff back and forward, there’s no issues you know?
We’d imagine it makes life much easier when you’re travelling too.
Yeah. I remember Theo Parrish in an interview getting mad about digital production and DJing, saying something about he doesn’t want to replace his ‘artistry’ with something that’s convenient and that he’d rather bring everything, everywhere. I think that’s unfair, particularly on emerging talent. Travelling with shit loads of kit on an aeroplane? No thanks. Although I’d imagine that some people are big enough to get people to carry it…
Dance music has become somewhat evangelical on that front. Certain ‘purists’ see to have a comment on everything.
Purism is like… I don’t get it. I’ve never been a purist about anything!
We imagine it must be a hindrance.
I think so. You can deny all this interesting stuff, that would benefit you, if you’re like “NO! This is my thing and I’m going to stick with it!”. I’m like “Come on!” although I guess I was a bit like at the start of my career when I was purely using my laptop and thought I needed to have certain pieces of kit. I remember seeing Plaid playing years ago in Dublin when they had a full hardware rig on stage. Then I saw them play again two years later and their set up was just two laptops! At the time I was disgusted but then I got over it.. When you see what they can actually do… I mean I use laptops for DJing now too – there’s so much shit you can do with that as opposed to two or even three turntables. You can do all these other things; it’s not better than turntables, it’s not worse… it’s just a different thing. For what I’m currently doing it makes total sense. Ten four!
Shots fired! When performing as Lakker, do you perform as Eomac vs Arad or does Lakker require a different more collaborative mindset?
I guess it’s more of a different mindset. We are pretty clear in our mind what the Lakker sound is and what we want to do with the Lakker project. Whereas with my solo stuff I kind of just do anything! It just happens; the Lakker sound is more definite. It’s hard to describe, but we both know what it is. So it’s not a case of Eomac vs Arad, although we do bring what we both enjoy production wise into Lakker, so you always get a bit of what you hear in our solo stuff. I assume people can hear different bits of what we do as Lakker.
We’d tend to agree. Touching upon many different genres within one set is hard enough working on your own, how do you guys achieve perfect symbiosis when working together in non-linear patterns?
[Laughs] That’s a good question, it’s one of those things. It just kind of happened naturally over time. We’ve known each other so long now – close to like 17 years. We met each other through music so obviously ever since we’ve known each other we’ve been making music, so I think from the start we were both on the same musical wavelength, we’re both into the same kind of sounds and we’re both really open to new ideas. We both love music, not just electronic, any kind of music and that’s always been a part of our lives. So it’s happened naturally. What we want to do is to blend different styles, different things, different feelings and different BPMs.
We were always inspired by, in terms of DJing people like Mike Paradinas and Aphex as when they DJed it was super eclectic. I remember seeing Mike Paradinas DJ in Dublin years ago him when he was playing with Speedy J. He played for about three hours and after starting off with super minimal electronica and electro, he built it up from about 100 to about 250 BPM. The styles varied whilst maintaining a constant flow. That kind of thing inspired us, it felt natural for us to do that in our sounds. Then putting that all together in a live set, we kind of have our roles and we know what we’re doing. I do the kind of main rhythmical elements, the main elements of the tracks. Dara does the sound design bits and extra layers of elements that kind of change it and shift it. He takes care of the visual stuff as well. When we have those roles we kind of know what we can explore with the live set. Well that’s what we hope anyway! It’s one of those things, you never know yourself how a set sounds. When you’re so involved in doing it, you don’t know what the crowd’s thinking. Obviously you get the feeling if it’s going well, but you never actually know. It’s a funny thing!