Mathias Schober elegantly travels true the diverse landscape of club electronica with a coherent painting of infectious synth melodies, uplifting sequences, eclectic grooves and floating guitar layers, as he returns to Lossless with his “Continuing” EP, featuring vocalist Alice Rose.

Our Lossless friends have somewhat been a continuing beacon of quality dance floor diversity over the past few years. Following onwards from Internacional Electrical Rhythm’s stellar “Momental” EP, the record label – run by Mathias Schober and Thomas Herb – shares their first offering in 2018 courtesy of co-founder Mathias. Titled the “Continuing” EP, the package reflects Mathias’ constant approach to push the boundaries and merge his influences to draw a coherent painting.

On “Continuing”, the producer embarks on a prosperous journey between infectious synth melodies, uplifting sequences, and floating guitar layers, next to featuring Alice Rose‘s amazing vocals. The diversity on the package is prominently appeared as it travels true the diverse landscape of club music, whilst still sounding extremely attached to each other. For the occasion, we fired some questions across the Lossless head honcho, next to hosting the stream of “And Life Turns”. 

Welcome Mathias, good having you back here! First off the usual icebreaker – how have you been and where do we find you today?

Hey Joe, I’m good. Thanks. I’m hoping that you’re very well too. I’m sitting in a cafe working on the questions you send before heading to the studio to finish some mix downs.

It’s been 6 months since we last connected for the Lossless label feature on our platform, what have you been up to in the meantime?

Time is flying. Well, I’d say the usual stuff. I’ve been working away in the studio. One task was putting the finishing touches to my EP on Lossless that will be released this week. Apart from that there are quite a few collaborations and studio work, as I’m also doing mix downs and engineering for others.

I’ve been doing some jobs for Dixon or mixdown work for Marcus Worgull and his latest EP on Innervisions. My most recent collaborations include – of course – some SBTH stuff with Thomas, a lot of Internacional Electrical Rhythms together with Trikk – which is coming together nicely – and an EP with Love Over Entropy – that is full on studio nerd business, as the two of us love our studio work and the technical aspects of mixing tracks. haha.

Lossless’ first offering in 2018 is about to hit the selves in the form of your “Continuing” EP. Can you explain to us about how the EP came together? What was its first aspect and how did it evolve until its final form?

Ohhh, that’s a tough one. Sometimes you have a vision for an EP, like the one I did on Optimo last year, but with the one on Lossless it was more to show a bit of diversity. So, there’ s not one sound I’m trying to express, but more a bit of a range and I hope it still sounds coherent. I found that very interesting and I do think it’s probably not what you would have expected from that EP. I definitely feature more organic sounds and implemented a lot of guitars and electric bass sounds giving the EP an overall more organic appeal but it’s still bedded in the realms of club music. It all starts with an idea and then I just need to see which tracks would go together nicely. It’s a natural process.

The diversity on the package is prominently appeared, whilst still sounding extremely attached to each other. On “The Interesting Things Happens”, your trademark sequences seem to be combined with a little Middle Eastern influenced musical escapade. Tell us a little about that composition of influences and their origins.

Great to hear that you mention the diversity of the EP and still things sound attached, that’s – as mentioned before, what I had in mind. There weren’t any Middle Eastern influences to be honest. Let me think of how I started the track. I remember that I was messing with my electric bass and came up with this a bit stoic, picked bass line that’s constantly in the track. I then added the drums that feature the kinda robotic feel of the track. Then I came up with the main sequence, a simple staccato melody which I played on my Korg Polysix. Next were the guitars, first some 8th note, picked sounds, then more reverby, washed out sound with the help of Jaś – half of the project Atelier, which you will hear a lot more about later this year. So, I really cannot tell you more about the influences, I usually hear things that need to come in next and just work away until I have the sound.

Your track “And Life Turns” takes a bit more of a peak-time approach with those trademark sequences being exposed to an extremely tight, uplifting synth arrangement and nasty electric bass sounds. In what kind of environment would you hope listeners to find themselves while hearing it for the first time, and why?

I think “And Life Turns” was the first track I had ready for the EP and I played out quite a bit. This track is definitely the dance floor track of the EP and I must say it served well, whenever I played it. That said, I think I’d like to find people in a club with a good sound system, I love the moment right at the beginning when the kick comes in for the the first time and the chunky groove gets going. I did say, that the whole EP has a rather organic feel for me and on this track the combination of organic sounds like the electric bass and synthetic sequence might be most obvious example for this.

As audio engineer and music producer, what hardware / software is prominently present in your set up, and where there any additional implements used for this EP?

There are quite a few things that I use all the time. First there’s is my Roland Space Echo that can be heard on any of my tracks – sometimes more, sometimes less obvious – and software-wise, you can definitely tell, that I’m working with Ableton Live, just because Live has a few unique, build in features that I’m in love with and I use all the time. I do have analog synths and I love using them. On “The Interesting Things Happen” I played the main sequence/melody on my Korg Polysix plugged into the Space Echo for a short slap delay and a bit of spring reverb. A rather uncommon instrument on this EP is the Viola that Alice played on our track. Oh, and the drone like, bass atmo is my Moog Voyager through the Strymon Big Sky, two pieces of gear that I’m always using. I do have so many favourites, but at the same time I’m trying to reduce myself with the use of hard- and especially software, I think it’s most important to really know the things you’re using rather than having a three pages list of plug ins you have to scroll through and don’t even know anything about 70% of the plug ins.

On Into Something Unique” the dreamy soundscapes are accompanied by Alice Rose’s beautiful vocal arrangements. Tell us a little about how you guys connected, and how you ended up in the studio together.

I first got to know about Alice when I remixed the track “I Know Change” by Jaap Ligthart, it felt quite naturally to me to work with her vocals. After that we got in contact and always tried to work on something. When Alice moved to Berlin we finally had some productive studio sessions, they were mainly jams. It was just flowing and “Into Something Unique” is one of those sessions. I love this track, it just sucks you into these soundscapes and let’s you forget things around you. All the sounds are one take performances that we just layered, it all just came together and I think you can tell when you hear the track. I didn’t wanna ruin that vibe and I hope I managed to do so.

It’s the first time you’ve collaborated with a vocal artist on one of your original studio productions. What was it about Alice’s vocals that made you change that cycle?

I’ve been working with vocalists before, there are a few tracks that I did years ago with Robert Owens. Also, I had some other projects in the past where I was working a lot with vocals I just never felt the need to implement vocals on my recent tracks or I couldn’t get the voice I wanted to work with. I love working with vocals and I rarely say no to a remix request if there’s a nice vocal on the original track. hehe. This was also how I got in touch with Alice. We do have more tracks that I will be able to finish anytime soon.

Alice’s vocal range touches base on both melancholic and ethereal atmospheres on “Into Something Unique”. Can you shine some light on what the lyrics, and the meaning behind them, entail?

I’m not going to tell you more about the vocals and their meaning, I think this is a matter of personal perception and I’m leaving this to the listener. There’s definitely a bit of an esoteric touch to the vocal as Alice is deeply routed in Yoga.

Aside from the release, you’ve a Lossless showcase coming up in Berlin, featuring the label’s permanent tribe members like Anthony Georges Patrice, Neil Flynn, co-founder Thomas Herb and yourself as Internacional Electrical Rhythms alongside Trikk. What will the pre-party dinner look like and what kind of jokes will be told?

No jokes, we all hate jokes. We will just talk about our social media skills. Kidding. I don’t really know about the jokes that will be told yet, but I’m happy that each and everyone gets along so well. I’m sure we will talk a bit about production, gigs and personal life. It’s a good bunch of guys.

What does an Internacional Electrical Rhythms set look like from behind the DJ booth?

That’s a very good question as this is a first for Trikk and me. We played together before at the same parties but never as IER. I guess we just have to go with the flow. Bruno and I are close friends and we have a similar taste in music or range of music. I’m confident that it’ll turn out nicely and I’ll surely let you know about it.

What’s on the horizon for Mathias Schober and Lossless?

On the horizon for Mathias Schober is the usual studio work, I’m constantly working on music – solo and with collaborators. Next things will definitely be the releases with before mentioned collaborators Love Over Entropy and Trikk. I do have some solo tracks too, but that would be too early to talk about. And then there’s the audio engineer work, I love to work on music and it’s great to improve your personal skills with every problem you’re facing.

For Lossless we do have some interesting things ahead of us, apart from shaping our sound and profile, musically we have IER, Love over Entropy, Neil Flynn and a new, kinda different project for us named Atelier lined up this year. As always we’re super excited and hope we can take the next steps that are ahead of us. I hope that’s enough insight for you. Thanks for the chat, Joe.

Continuing is scheduled for release March 16th. Pre-order at Muting The Noise and Beatport.