Pin Up Club, the duo that has been connecting the dots between the burgeoning synth notes, thunderous drums and encouraging arpeggios to crisp precision. With its music being compiled by high-ranking tastemakers around the world and the releases in Bordello A Parigi, Phantasm Records and Roam Recordings, to name a few, their catalog on the back throws a puff of fresh air surprisingly welcome on the scale of underground electronic music, and we love every part.
When and how did you get your interest in electronic music?
Josef: I guess you could say i have a hip hop background growing up in the 90’s and that it was kind of a gateway-genre into Ninja Tune like music with Boards of Canada and Autechre front and centre. I have this thing for grit. Basically all music I listen to must have that gritty, noisey, not necessarily lo-fi but it’s own characteristic texture no matter what genre. Coming from Hip Hop at some point became Electric-boogie with me DJ-ing for a breakdance crew. I guess that’s what sparked the electronic flame.
Jelle: The first electronic music I liked was during the time trip-hop became popular, in the mid 90’s. Bands like Portishead and Massive Attack were drawing my attention at that time. Later it was Radiohead starting to experiment with it. By then i was already making music. When I met Josef in the late 90’s we started to experiment with a mix between indie and electronic music.
How did you decide to dedicate into production?
Josef: For as long as i can remember i was fooling around with cassetterecorders and basically anything i could find that i could record or produce sound with but i started Dj-ing at 16 and not long after felt the need to start making my own beats. It all started out very experimental with just a sampler, a cheap Yamaha synth and a fieldrecorder. Computers came a lot later in life.
Jelle: The honky-tonk piano in Elvis Presley’s early recordings made me want to play the piano at an early age. Later I started to play guitar and not long after I started to write my own songs. When I met Josef in the late 90’s we started to make music together and recorded our first demo’s in my parents house. That’s when I first started to make arrangements for the songs I wrote. The years after I kept on writing, recording and arranging tracks in different genres and bands.
What is the criterion when you are producing?
Josef: That can be literally anything. Inspiration could come from a sentence in a poorly written Sci-Fi novel from the 50’s or a tree creaking under it’s own weight while swaying slightly in a desolate forest. The way we write music together though, is mostly through jamming stuff out together and when the chemistry hits us, we know we are heading in the right direction.
Jelle: New music, travelling, meeting people, emotions, sleepless nights or just silence. Songs and melodies derive from that!
How do you assess the trajectory you have had and what were the reasons that led you to start it?
Jelle: Since I was little I was obsessivly listening to music and heavily interested in the lives of my musical heroes. I think I was 4 or 5 when I started to playback at parties and at school. So music and doing something with it has always been a part of my life. Having a career in music never was a goal persé, it kind of evolved that way and now I’m there I want it to keep on growing as a musician and as an act.
Josef: It has always been DJ-ing for me, it’s one of those things i just can’t get enough of and hope to do a lot more in the near future. The whole live element gave our musical career (as Pin Up Club) the boost it needed though, we became a band. There is a new found respect for live acts in the dance scene nowadays.
What was your criterion when producing your last EP?
Jelle: We always want to improve ourselves. So when we started to make The Forever Machine we wanted to create more musical depth. We choose beforehand which instruments we would use and what the textures of the EP should sound like. That’s our basis and from there on we start jamming out and writing tracks.
Josef: Yeah texture is everything when we start out. We are looking for how things should sound and experiment with that before we record a single note. I spend a lot of time just looking for weird reverbs and delays or ways to record stuff through an old guitar amp to give it the character we think would fit the entire EP.
Could you recommend a set that you are especially proud of it, and that we can see on your Soundcloud or on YouTube?
A guestmix for Deephouse Amsterdam from not to long a go:
What can you tell us about the scene of your city? What would you improve?
Jelle: Amsterdam has a enormous history when it comes to dance music. The summer festivals are where it’s at most of the time, giving clubs a run for their money untill the off-season. With some very cool young-gun-clubs like Garage Noord who book very daringly niche, underground artist that we love here and with heavy hitting clubs like De School, Marktkantine and Claire that keep our city on the international map when it comes to electronic music in almost every genre. I personally love how openminded the younger generation here is towards niche genres like ambient, new beat, italo, balearic or even gabber. People just wanna dance and have a good time, zero tolerance for hate towards people that are different from the norm.
Josef: What I’d personally would like to see differently here though is that, because niche seems to be the norm here right now, which is cool, booking the same niche artists twenty times a year kinda destroys the whole charm of it being underground or something extraodinary.
Finally, what can you tell us about your present and future projects?
Jelle: We are currently working on a 12’’ EP coming out probably somewhere near the end of the year on a Dutch label, we will announce it soon. That label, although being new to us, has treated us like family so far and for us, that’s more important then basically anything else when it comes to music.. It needs to feel like it’s in the best possible hands and reaches an audience of likeminded people. After this EP is finished we have the ambition to record an album. So at the moment we are brainstorming about that and what the album should sound like, experimenting and recording ideas. Also there’s a remix coming out by us for percussive mastermind Roe Deers on Throne of Blood and we are sculpting the live show with new elements for the upcoming festival season.
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