T.H.E Interview – Seeb

seeb interview

Norway’s dance stars Seeb are highly regarded by a raft of the world’s leading artists, leading to collaborators and/or remixes with Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, Clean Bandit, Shawn Mendes and Coldplay, with them accumulating over 5 billion streams.

Further flamed by some big originals with One Republic and Bastille and the runaway success of their remix of Mike Posner’s ‘I Took A Pill in Ibiza’, Seeb’s huge following now includes over 10 million monthly listeners at Spotify.

Recently, Seeb shared their brand new single ‘Always Will’, which features another notable Nordic talent in the shape of Julie Bergan. The song represents their third collaboration together after Julie’s ‘Kiss Somebody’ and Seeb’s ‘Don’t You Wanna Play?’.

We caught up Seeb to learn more about how “Always Will” came about, their remix of the global hit “I Took A Pill In Ibiza”, and more.

Aditya – Hey Seeb, Glad to have you for the interview. How was the first half of this year for you?

Seeb – It has been a good start to the year as we are more or less returning to normal life here in Oslo after Corona. We have been working on a bunch of new songs in the studio and it’s been great to be able to hang out again with friends and colleagues as before.

Aditya – ‘Always Will’, your latest collaboration with Julie Bergen sounds absolutely stellar! What’s your creative process behind the track?

Seeb – Its usually hard to define the process behind each song but sometimes it starts off with us working on some vocals we have had sent over from different people or us writing with other people in a session. This time we had some vocals sent over to us from Mimi Webb and Eg White that we started speeding up and messing about with. We found this very nice soundscape and harmony structure that worked well with her vocal idea and started working out the production from that. Then we took in Julie and had her interpret Mimi’s vocal idea into something that worked for her and it turned out really well we think.

Aditya – Could you share some insights on this track?

Seeb – It’s not a typical Seeb track maybe in the sense it doesn’t have that typical trademark vocal drop that we have been doing for ages. We went all-in for a traditional chorus and a slightly different arrangement structure that we thought fit the vibe of this record better. It’s sometimes difficult to renew and refresh yourself when people expect the same thing you did a while ago, tropical house, slowed down the tempo and vocal chops but we felt this slightly retro 90ties vibe fit this song so well we just had to do it.

Aditya – You guys have 10 million monthly listeners on Spotify, how do you feel about that?

Seeb – We are very thankful that people listen to our music and try not to think too much about numbers but it’s amazing to see that so many people enjoy listening to the songs we put out. In fact a few years ago when we had both the Ibiza, Hymn for the weekend and Breathe record going at the same time we were almost top 10 on Spotify’s most played artist in the world and that was so surreal to us that we decided not to focus too much about stats. They don’t last forever and trying to keep up with them would be an impossible task, it can really make you lose focus.

Aditya – Being in a duo, I’m sure you come across conflict of interest, how do you guys cope with that?

Seeb – We argue a lot of course, but having worked together for almost 20 years now we are good at finding a middle ground where both of us feel home. It can be tricky but we both have pros and cons when it comes to writing and production and we tend to work well together based more on our differences that our common skills. We feel that really works for us.

Aditya – This is not your first collaboration with Julia, are there more in the pipeline?

Seeb – For collaborations yes but as of right now not one planned with Julie yet although we might do one again in the future. She is just a great artist and very much fun to work with so why not.

Aditya – What’s your studio setup like?

Seeb – These days its really simple, based around Mac laptops. We have one each with the same software in them so we can work seamlessly on new songs each of us. Then there are a selection of old synths and keyboards that we really love and have kept. We used to have a huge setup based around a SSL 4000 with massive racks of outboard gear but we have sold everything. So much easier to work with minimalist setups. We are using Ableton Live and we also have a very nice studio complex in downtown Oslo where we have one studio and are renting out 3 other ones. Studio with natural daylight and good acoustics, that makes up for a lot of gear.

Aditya – Your remix of ‘I took a pill in Ibiza’ is a global hit! Was it foreseen?

Seeb – Absolutely not, we knew we were onto something when we started doing these remixes as we had the Kiesza ‘Cut me loose’ and ’Stitches’ from Mendes finished around the same time as the Posner one. We knew some people at Island records liked them but also thought they were so strange sounding that when they decided to go with Ibiza as Mike’s official single release we were shocked. We liked it of course but had no idea it would work so well.

Aditya – Do you think Vinyl will do a comeback?

Seeb – Its already doing it, in the sense even now IKEA is going to be selling a vinyl player.. Not sure its going mainstream again but those old formats sure is making a bit of a comic. Our fellow Norwegian’s in Röyksopp is constantly releasing music on cassettes. Its nice nostalgic value for the fans and is cool to have these days when music is just a digital file and the art of cover designs and all the physical delivery is a bit forgotten. And you cant beat the sound of a fresh 12inch maxi single on vinyl, at least not when it comes to dance music.

Aditya – Lastly, amongst you both, who’s the one to get drunk first?

Seeb – Depends on the situation, we bit grew in Norways ‘Moonshine’ county, Trøndelag, but fortunately see little of that stuff these days.


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