101 with Taran & Lomov

Taran & Lomov, a duo from Latvia, has been active on the Electronic music scene for more than a decade. They run Amber Muse Records, radio production, they are organizing events, and devotedly bringing electronic music to people via their online mag testpress.news and international radio show (broadcasted in Latvia, Estonia, and Moscow on FM and online worldwide). 

They've worked with some established names such as Jimpster, Roberto Rodriguez, Shur-i-kan, Dairmount, Walker & Royce and their music received recognition and support from industry’s big names such as Laurent Garnier, Jane Fitz, Nicole Moudaber, Tiga, Robert Owens, M.A.N.D.Y., Claude VonStroke, just to name a few. 

Taran & Lomov recently made their debut on Josh Wink’s Ovum Recordings with three startling moments of brooding, broken techno. You can check the EP HERE.

What was the funniest / most bizarre request you’ve ever had while playing?

Like in most other small cities, in Riga people in clubs often have their own opinion on what DJ should put next, and it’s cool when they are up to electronic music – that’s the best audience that you can imagine. But sometimes they ask to put something of Russian or Latvian pop or rock music. And then they are amused that you can’t connect their smartphone to play their YouTube favorite.  

Can you describe your studio setup for us?

We try to keep everything simple to get the best result out of the minimal setup. So the main environment for production is the Ableton with different plugins, plus Native Instruments KOMPLETE + KORE 2 controller, Akai Max25 synth, and Korg NanoKontrol 2, Yamaha MSP7 monitors. Before lockdown we used to go for mixdown sessions to our friend’s Alexander Solovyov studio which has a lot of analog hardware, so now we also think of adding some analog gear to our home studio.

Could you tell us the story about your first gig?

Max: My first gig for electronic music was at around the early 2000s when I decided to organize my own party with a couple of mates at a small bar in Riga and play there. The funniest part was that I told all my friends that they must come to the party otherwise we won’t be friends anymore. I was joking of course, but the party turned out to be very hot.

Bogdan: It’s hard to recall my first gig as I started to play music from cassette tapes at trashy gay discotheques in Riga in the first part of the 90’s, but these were not about electronic music… Then I heavily got into the soulful house at around 1996 when I began collecting records to launch a radio show two years later.

Name three artists that currently inspire you.

Felix Leifur, Sebastian Mullaert, Zenker Brothers.

Recall the worst experience of ‘killing the vibe’ in the club.

Once we went to play in one of the small Latvian cities by the see. When we came into the room, the warm-up DJ was playing EDM at 135 bpm! We were like, errr… what shall we play after him? We found something most appropriate what we had with us, and after some 20-30 minutes of our set promoter suggested we should play a little bit later. We then joked: maybe we'd better go home? And to our surprise, she said: yes, go home. The vibe was killed! 

What do you do before and after your set?

Back in the 2000s, we used to get together with our friends at home for a pre-party, to have few drinks and get in the mood, but in recent years there are two scenarios. If we just play a gig as guests, we are using to go through our collection in Rekordbox to make the final touch to the playlist before the set, afterward we join some after-party with friends.

If we throw our own party, what we used to do regularly before the pandemic for the past 15 years, we completely immersed into organizing: we met our guest DJs in the airport, finishing decorations or setting up video projections (Max does a lot of work with mapping), having dinner with a guest, that kind of stuff… If it’s a festival, like UNDER Fest which we promoted with Ksenia Kamikaza in Riga, then it’s a few sleepless nights before the action. And once the party is over, we have to finish everything and the only thing we think of at that moment is to get home.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had?

Both of us had different jobs in our lives, from building and factory work to cleaning the clubs, but the most uncomfortable was perhaps the face control at our own parties: solid stress when half of the city was offended at you that they can’t get in.

What are your favourite labels at the moment?

It’s Ovum Recordings, of course, where our latest “Pravo” EP dropped in August. We play eclectic enough, and in the past couple of years, we're really into complex, broken rhythm patterns. Our favorite labels lately are Ornate, R&S Records, Hypercolour, Holding Hands, Livity Sound, and Ilian Tape.

Imagine a cold winter, a fireplace, and two glasses of wine—what song would you play?

The first tune that comes to mind is Thundercat’s “For Love, I Come”. A tender and beautiful music creation.

Last but not least. What's the best advice you've ever received?

Dairmount from Room With A View and Beatport said something simple but effective when we talked about music and producing: keep constantly working hard and this will produce results.

- Check more about the Latvian duo HERE.

By Saša, edited on 16 September 2020