Interview by Joe Delon, June 25th 2019
We couldn’t be happier with the follow-up to our first mix, coming from Macedonian artist Stojche. We asked him some questions so we could get to know him better and you can read his answers below.
Q: You finish your mix with what sounds like some classic Detroit electro (Aux 88?) – do you ever find yourself playing a whole set of this? And if so, what is the reaction like?
S: I always tend to drop few Electro tunes at a given moment during my sets. Personally I’m really happy that many people have rediscovered the funk in the Old – School Electro. Last year at I was invited to play on the Lack Records party at OHM, Berlin. It happened to be my birthday on the same night, so many familiar faces showed up and I felt really comfortable to play electro for my entire set. Received really solid reaction for it, and definitely want to do it again. For me, Detroit Electro never went away, but I think now is the time where we notice that people are hungry for more Electro, and the resurgence of this style has brought a real fresh air against the 4/4 linearism.
Q: Detroit techno has experienced something of a renaissance in the Berlin scene in the past few years – how do you feel about this and where do you see it leading in the coming years?
S: Detroit Techno for me is the definition of what Techno music actually is. Berlin techno scene was launched with the sounds of Detroit, so it’s really natural some people to feel hungry or nostalgic about the golden 90’s era. The core values of the music being linked with a particular trend or hype are totally wrong. The music market always goes in cycles. In a given moment, some type of music is more preferable than other. But, I’m happy that there is a significant amount of musicheads that ignore the trends, the media hype and the side effects of the industry like this ‘’business techno’’ circus. In Berlin I can notice a presence of many young djs and producers who are influenced by the Motor City sounds. The evidence is the records they release. If they remain focused, true and loyal to the culture they represent, I see even better things happening here in the near future.
Q: We know you live in Berlin but that you stay involved with the scene in Macedonia – how easy is it to stay in touch with what’s happening back home, and how important is it to cultivate that local scene away from the Berlin epicentre?
S: It’s really easy if you are doing it with passion. For me it’s really important Macedonia to retain a vibrant and vital underground scene. I love my city and i simply can’t turn my back on where I’m coming from. Skopje is a city of one million people, and if we consider the amount of clubs that operate in the underground scene, Skopje definitely a hotspot destination for clubbers. It’s not only the clubbing scene, but also there is so much talented upcoming artists deriving from Macedonia. I try to contribute to the scene any way I can, I have residence nights in two clubs, so every 2 or 3 months (depends on a schedule) I fly back home. Sometimes I curate nights with international names. Skopje keeps pace with all the major European cities when it comes to this culture. Still the electronic music dictates the urban pulse of the city life, which i consider to be the Skopje’s main charm.
Q: As people who had travelled the world and seen so many things, what do you think your Detroit heroes made of Macedonia when playing there the first time?
S: Well, I just saw Derrick May in Skopje last week. Also I remember when I saw him 20 years ago in Ohrid. This music introduced a life path to many of my friends, not just me. In times of post-war Yugoslavia, economic embargos, social unrest and political instability, the clubbing culture brought a sentiment of togetherness among the people. Macedonian crowd recognized the Realness, the soul, the emotional chaos displayed in the chords, in the strings, the anger in the bassdrums. The dancefloors in Macedonia were shinning with love and hope for a better tomorrow. The country is still facing some major challenges, but I’m proud that my City has such a strong underground dance scene, and kept the same level of enthusiasm over the last decades.
Q: We know you have a love for the Hi-Tech Soul sound, we wondered if you have ever made it to Detroit and if so what the experience was like?
S: Sadly I never made it across the pond. But I know it’s going to happen soon. It feels like cheating that I’ve mentioned the name of the city countless times in my life and still not paying a visit. I feel I have a moral duty to visit it as soon as possible and taste that creative food that the city provides.
Q: Outside of dance music, what’s your favourite activity? And who are your favourite people to do it with?
S: I can barely find time outside the studio but let’s say, Cycling, Watching sports challenges Football, Handball, Basketball, Boxing, sweet arguments with my friends that during the Macedonian derby matches may become my ‘’enemies’’. Travelling and discovering some hidden places that are not on the mainstream map is also my passion. I have an endless list of friends that I consider to be ‘’my family’’, through exchange of positive energy, humor, respect and loyalty, I cannot say anything else but ‘’I feel rich’’.