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Schwa interview

Author: Clare Dickins
Tuesday, 15 November 2005
The Czech Republic may be known as a hotbed for brain-spangling techno parties, but the country's burgeoning psy scene shouldn't be neglected. Known for mixing up the likes of Antix and X-Dream, with the cranking electro of Alter Ego and Vitalic, Schwa relishes turning the psy sound on its head more the most. We caught up with the co-founder of Tribal Vision Records.

Tell us about Tribal Vision Records. What's coming up next for the imprint-
Tribal Vision Records is a Czech-based record label founded by two friends, DJ partners and promoters - DJ Slater and myself. Our debut compilation called 'Urban Legend' was released at the end of 2004. The huge success of this CD motivated us to keep going with the Tribal Vision idea of connecting the psy trance, progressive and house scenes. There are a lot of upcoming releases, and our plans are wide-ranging. For example there's a compilation called 'Street Art' with a 12" sample, an album by the German artist that includes some interesting remixes, an album called 'Prisoners of the Sun', a 12" Sonic Cube, and many more. Next year we're also planning a video clip for one of our compilations. There are lots of reasons to stay tuned.

You're known for mixing up and eclectic cocktail of electro, Progressive and psy - who are your favourite producers at the moment-
Well, it's hard to name one favourite, I like a lot of different musical styles and influences - my range isn't limited to any specific style. I don't like top 10 or charts - I play what I want and what is suitable for a particular party. So what you will hear on Intellectronica will be as much of a surprise for me as it will for you.

How's the Czech scene going these days-
Hmmm, the Czech scene. It's hard to describe... It's completely different from the Australian scene. On the one hand there is a huge house/techno/free techno scene with giant festivals, and on the other there is the psy trance/progressive scene which is very small and underground. Although we have some big festivals with international guests, it's very hard to attract more than 400 people. However we had more than 1,000 people at a very successful festival called Tocnik at the end of the European summer. That success was a result of an extensive, long-running advertising campaign. There were psy/progressive, drum 'n' bass, electro, plus a theater with movies, exhibitions and visuals, but apart from all that, it was simply a most beautiful place. Its not often that you have a party in a castle.

Tell us about the influence your father has had on your musical life.
It was a great background for my musical development. As a child I spent many hours in his studio watching music being created. But when I was about 15, I started to take more interest in DJing rather than music production. Soon I started to learn mixing and started playing at my first parties. Recently I've been trying to return to producing, but it's a long journey. My father was skeptical about my musical career. He often said to me "do whatever you want, but NO music! It's so hard to be successful", but now he is happy about my musical interests and management skills (I hope).

Life in the dance industry is never dull. What have been some of your career highlights and lowlights-
Hard to say, but out of all the beautiful parties, the biggest highlight was probably the Tocnik Festival which we held in the castle. I consider it a personal achievement, more in terms of management than DJing. You can check out some beautiful images here: http://psytrance.cs/reports.php3

And
the lowlights- Hmmm... they're probably each time a promoter wasn't able to provide 100% functional technical support: there's nothing worse than a scratching needle on a turntable, or a clipping sound system.

You arrived in Australia a few weeks ago. How has the tour been so far-
Yes, I like Australia. Especially the experienced promoters (Sparc Occurance), the fr
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