Half of Lakker, Arad is Dara Smith's new solo project. On the occasion of his coming to our next party at Nouveau Casino (Paris), we asked him a few questions to illustrate this new podcast episod.
- Why did you need to have your solo project besides Lakker project?
It wasn't so much a need but I had a collection of tracks that didn't fit the Lakker sound.
However in saying that, it has always been on my mind and when I moved to Berlin I finally had time to realise it. And now I've started it I'm really excited by it but the bonus is that I also find Arad and Lakker compliment each other and therefore are mutually beneficial.
Now I just need more hours in the day!
- How is your approach different from when you produce with Ian?
I don't think the approach is different from when I work with Ian.
I don't specifically say I'm going to write a Lakker track or an Arad track.
The sounds just evolve and then I know where my musical sketches or loops belong. But the technical process itself is basically the same. Which is really great as I can just write naturally as I always have done.
- How do you think you will be able to keep you own identity?
I see it as a very natural thing and I don't think about it too much. I just write the music... if it works for Lakker then that's fine or if it veers towards Arad that's okay too. The more I think about it and categorise it or force it one way or another the less successful it is. Put simply, without the back and forth collaboratory process of Lakker the tracks are purely my ideas and I guess that naturally gives Arad its own identity. I also want Arad to be a loose exploratory project and I expect the sound will change a few times, I guess this will always keep it separate from Lakker.
- Besides making music, you are also a graphic designer. What common characteristics do you like in both activities? The processes are quite similar.
I suppose what I enjoy is that you are creating imaginary spaces in both. But also the two are so intrinsically linked for me that I don't see similarities between the two but instead I see no differences. One always accompanies the other; visual and image.
- Your release came with a video clip that you did yourself. If you didn't know how to do it by yourself, would you consider the visuals as important? Would you ask someone else to work on it?
I guess I think I wouldn't ask someone else. It's sort of that punk attitude of doing it all yourself, that DIY thing... and because I'm a naturally curious person I want to learn all the different parts of the creative process I possibly can. In some ways I feel like the music should stand on it's own but because I naturally see a video when I hear or create my music I'm lucky that I can then just go and make it.
- What are your upcoming projects?
I'm working on a new EP for Electric Deluxe and I'm working on an Arad live/DJ set that only uses CDJs. In which I'll be trying to get the most potential out of CDJs for live performance. I just think that some of the advances in DJing technology have been a bit controversial because people are saying that DJing can be made "too easy" by automating everything. So I'm in interested in the creative potential of using these technologies to push them as far as they can go and in some ways using them more like a production tool rather than a DJ tool. But at the end of the day for me these arguments are not as important as the end result which is always the music that comes out of the speakers and how you present it to the audience.
Also we're just finishing off the Lakker album which will be out at the beginning of May on R&S records and I'm very excited about it as we're working on our release show tour, so you'll be seeing a lot more of me I guess!