Kiran M Sajeev, what’s not to praise about this super talented Indian producer? Hailing from Kerala, this self learned music producer has created waves in the industry and has successfully put India on the global trance map!
With releases on Flashover, Always Alive, Rielism and most recently on Armada Music’s famed sub label – Who’s Afraid of 138? amongst the rest! In fact, he is the first Indian artist to have a track featured on Armin van Buuren’s reputed yearly ” A State of Trance” compilation!
Owner of Vibrate Audio too, which is one of the few trance labels based out of India, this man is one who definitely has a very bright future in the dance music scene! We sit down with him for a short interview and get to know his views on the Indian music scene and his future plans!
Shivani – Hi Kiran! You have been on a roll over the past 2 years. With countless collaborations and releases on some of the best labels in the trance scene, you have put India on the map. How does it feel?
Kiran M Sajeev – It’s the biggest thing that has happened in my life ever! I’m overwhelmed to have had the chance to make India known in the world of trance music. I’m a small bedroom producer, yet I’m proud of what I have contributed towards the trance scene in India.
Shivani – Who would be your inspiration when it comes to producing music?
Kiran M Sajeev – I’m a fan of melodic sounds and so I almost love anybody who makes emotional uplifting. Andy Blueman, Soundlift, Ahmed Romel and Simon O’ Shine are typical artists whom I adore, for their sound. I fell in love with Romel’s tracks over the years. He’s my biggest inspiration while doing uplifting tracks. I never thought of making tracks in a BPM lower than 138, but I started making my own prog-lifting style around 134-135 bpm after I came across Canadian producer Assaf’s Asteria when Armin played it on ASOT 715 back in 2015.
Shivani – You are the first Indian artist to be featured on an ASOT compilation! How did it all happen?
Kiran M Sajeev – I always fancied doing a remix/bootleg for Shogun’s Skyfire, it being my favorite track. But since I couldn’t get hold of the stems and vocals, I thought of coming up with an original instead and worked with my very good friend Anderson Luis (Sunset) from Brazil and made a track that made the listener remember Skyfire during the breakdown. It was titled ‘Just a Dream’.
Initially a lot of labels had rejected it including Armada and we decided to give it as a free download and that was the time when one of my friends informed me about an upcoming WAO138 special episode in October 2017 and I sent it to Ruben and he downloaded it. The next day, he emailed me saying Armin wants to sign it for Who’s Afraid Of 138?! imprint under Armada Music and I was literally on tears since I never dreamed of having a track of mine in the best label group in the Trance genre ever – Armada. It was played in ASOT 835 WAO138 special episode, along with another track ‘Bharat Mata’ in the same episode that marked my debut 2x ASOT support!
In April 2018, I received another email from Armada informing me that the track was handpicked by Armin van Buuren to be one of the tracks for his compilation. I was wonderstruck and I felt everything is Just like a Dream! I never imagined me getting this far and that too, in a compilation by the Dutch legend.
Shivani – What is the most interesting collaboration you have had till date?
Kiran M Sajeev – Over the years, I had the opportunity to work together with my friends and one of the interesting collabs I recall is ‘Vibranium’, together with Mohammed Farid. It was released under Enhanced Music’s sub label Digital Society Recordings, and fetched me extensive DJ support including Aly & Fila, Ferry Corsten and Solarstone to name a few. Working together with Farid was really fun and enlightening at the same time. He always wants his production to be strong and professional and I learned so much from him including the processing he uses in his mixer channels, layering the sounds to make them sound thick and so on. I’m really thankful for all guys who have worked with me so far like Anderson Luis, Stephane Imbach (Madwave), Piotr Ciecwierz (First Sight), Andrey Bushmelev (Nomosk), Farhad Mahdavi, Erik Iker (Ikerya Proejct) Adrian Hadrianicus Paun (Hadrianicus), Serghei Cocimirca (Blusky), and David Surok.
Shivani – The Indian trance scene does not have a lot of artists and we don’t see trance acts performing in this country as frequently. Why do you think India lags in the trance scene?
Kiran M Sajeev – I think ignorance is the main factor. Majority, in my opinion, may not even know such a genre exist. Also, there’s the Bollywood music influence topping it up. Ultimately, it all comes down to his/ her listening preferences. I believe there should be more event organizers and clubs that showcase local talent instead of having big names doing all the work.
Shivani – Who would be your dream artist to open for or play alongside?
Kiran M Sajeev – I haven’t given thought of being a DJ but given the question, my answer would be to get a chance to open with DJ Photographer, who has always supported my productions.
Shivani – What does 2018 hold in store for you?
Kiran M Sajeev – Latest track is a collab with Madwave and is released under Rielism Records/Black Hole Recordings. Other tracks include several work in progress tracks. My main focus this year on is to bring up my own label (Vibrate Audio) to be one of the best new labels in the scene. We intend to expand ourselves by having a variety of genres being released under us and also thinking of having our own podcast to create a trendsetter.
Shivani – How did you get the idea to start own label Vibrate Audio and what do you consider in a track when you sign them to Vibrate?
Kiran M Sajeev – I have seen a change in label preferences as more and more labels look to go for commercial sounds and artists. Melodic trance was what made me be a producer and I cannot think of not having melody in my music. I have seen several other producers who wanted to get recognition with their melodic sounds, but couldn’t. That’s when I thought of having my own label to lay as a platform for the next generation artists. So, with the help of my friends Matty Groves, Katherine Pinkston, Aldo Henrycho, Hueman Lopez, Ellez Ria and Jenny Svensson, we setup Vibrate Audio under the legendary Defcon Recordings.
With respect to the sounds we sign, we mainly focus on keeping the true flavors of trance and thus, melody is a key component in the tracks we sign. Other factors include the originality, the production quality and the overall technical side of things like mixing.
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