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3rd Abstract: Dancing towards a Bright Future

img  Tobias Fischer

Surround sound clubbing is still very much in its infancy. Where and how did you find out about it?
It was an idea we have toyed with in various ways from the very roots of 3rd Abstract. I feel this is one way of creating an event which clubbers will leave from taking something with them, and hopefully coming back for more. It has been attempted on occasion, but with our 360° visuals, this can develop into something huge. It is technically demanding in terms of the live panning, but with good communication between ourselves, the DJs and the visuals guys it can make a great impact. We use Broadcastr Visual, who like us are young, and very keen to let the world of clubbing evolve around them.

How would you describe the surround sound experience?
I was always told in University that surround sound audio is “too gimmicky” and that people who had attempted it in the past had often lost the track due to the extra speakers becoming a novelty. However, I feel that with more and more homes installing surround sound systems for HDTV and home cinema set ups, that there is an avenue opening up for more surround sound in music. I am now getting more comfortable with surround sound mixing and have found that the key to avoid the gimmicky surround sound panning is to be bold. Rather than play it safe and use the front 2 speakers to hold the glue that is the core of a song, utilise the rear speakers and don’t be afraid to do something which has never been done before. I feel it is a waste if we are to stop at 2 speakers especially when the technology age is still fairly young. The flexibility of having additional speakers gives mixers and producers an extra dimension to explore, and I would love to be part of a potentially huge market.

What's the underground club scene in Glasgow like, generally speaking?
At the moment the underground scene is thriving. There seems to be a new wave of unusual nights, from scaffolds set up as stages in the middle of a forest to secret location parties on potato farms out in the countryside. It’s this which initially turned my head to the clubbing scene, and something I would love to grasp in order to promote our guys.

Glasgow is also home to a renowned art school. How would you characterise the relationship between the art scene and music scene?
We decided to use the Art School as a venue because of its history and heritage. The art students are a massive part of the underground clubs which I just mentioned, with a lot contributing unique ideas, and adding to that memorable atmosphere which we got. I think it could potentially become something more if the art scene and music scene worked together in the future, possibly creating a gateway to new art forms using exhibitions in such famous buildings as the Charles Rennie Mackintosh designed Glasgow School of Art. There we go, I have thought of a new idea through this interview (laughs).

How did your first label night go?
We have not yet put into practice the surround sound nights, our first club acted as a launch for the label as well as standing as a test run to show me how well we could run a club, as none of us had done it before. The night was a huge success and the feedback we got was all very positive. I felt there was a really interesting atmosphere at the night, a real sense of good fun, which you do not get so much from the bigger, more mainstream clubs.

How, would you say, do the 3rd abstract club nights match up with the label?
We use the club to showcase our artists. As we are all aware, live music is overtaking the buying of music, so to bridge the ever-stretching gap is possibly the only way to keep people buying music. People have tried in many different ways to put a stop to people downloading illegally, but I think if we are to use the changes in the industry to our advantage rather than becoming depressed about them, we could be smart and evolve alongside the industry, keeping it more alive than ever.

How would you describe the stylistic outreach of 3rd abstract?
We have recently signed Feliz Plastico, whose atmospheric Electro adds something new to the label. Feliz is obsessed with all things German actually, so we hope to take him and one or two others over to team up with another of our artists MetanoiaX (who are from Munich) to do a club over there. We are looking to get to Naples to visit our own Alex Modigliani too in 2011. The surround sound club nights will be spreading all over Europe and the World in the future, but until then fans can enjoy the very best original and futuristic music from our artists on Beatport, iTunes, Juno plus many many more!

Your slogan is „electronic music to get involved with“. Does that mean that, from your perspective, the interactive aspect of the label business is still widely neglected?

At the launch of the club, we handed out free CDs of our artists in exchange for an email address. The thinking behind this was to leave a lasting impression, ie. rather than people going home and that being an end to their experience, they can stick the CD on in the taxi. Two weeks later they will receive an email about the next club night or EP that is coming out. It’s small things like this which I hope will pull people in and keep them interested. We also like our fans to contribute in some way if they wish to. Suggest artists to sign using our Open A&R department, or creating little competitions which allows people to get to know the artists in some way. We have a couple of students who are putting on an unsigned night for us in December too, which shows that people are keen to get involved. The night will take place on the 22nd of December in Nice ‘N’ Sleazy in Glasgow.

How are people responding to the Open A&R idea?

Although we have not signed anyone through the Open A&R department as of yet, we are still receiving new tracks every week, some very cool ones too! So keep them coming because we want to give the contributor some free copies of those releases, and some free merchandise too! You can find the Open A&R department as a group on Soundcloud.

You've called 3rd abstract „a gateway to the future of music“. How do you envision that future?
I think the future is bright, and with ever developing technologies in live music and producing there is no boundaries. If labels and artists are bold we can make the music industry even bigger and more exciting than it is today. Thanks to anyone who has bought a 3rd Abstract release, visited our club or contributed in any way, it’s this that allows us to keep bringing you quality music week in week out.

Homepage: 3rd Abstract

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