With a wealth of experience behind the decks and in the studio, Mainro was a welcome addition to the Constant Circles roster. So to coincide with EP on the label and his guest mix on Constant Circles Radio 026, we had a chat with the French producer to dig a little deeper into his background & tastes…
So you have been making music for a while now under some different projects. Tell us a bit about your musical background and how you arrived at Mainro?
I started DJing something like 12 years ago under my moniker Mainro, which is simply my first name reversed (Romain). I quickly played in good clubs in the north of France (where I live) and the south of Belgium. Several years after this, I started to produce music with friends and we created Art is a Consequence, a deep house and nu/disco band, which has released on great labels like Solomun’s Diynamic. Three years ago, I stopped AIC and created Throb Circle with another friend, a new project more techno oriented. We released some tracks on UK’s label Faceless, Join Our Club and the French label Family N.A.M.E. It’s only 6 months ago and after several years of learning production that I decided to continue music alone. I feel better to be free in my choice and to produce by only following my own ideas. Obviously I’m open to collaborate with other people!
Tell us about your studio set up? What is your key piece of equipment that you couldn’t live without?
My studio setup is pretty simple: I work on an Apple based computer with Ableton Live to collect ideas and Logic pro X for the mix down process. I’ve collected hardware step by step and my studio now comprises of an Elektron Analog Rytm and Analog Four, a Roland System-1, a Nord Rack 2 Machine and some other midi controllers. I also have a T-bone mic connected to a TC Helicon voice live touch and some shakers, percussions etc..
My soundcard is a Motu Ultralite MK3 Hybrid and my monitors are the Focal Twin 6 BE.
Today I clearly can’t work without Ableton Live, which is an amazing DAW. Every update adds some new features which are more and more intuitive to quickly create something good (a lot of maxforlive plugins are amazing). The analog rytm is another piece of equipment I can’t work without. It sounds really powerful and accompanied by the flexibility of Machine we have the perfect combo to create great grooves !
The Nord rack is present on almost every productions. And the last are the Focal monitorings, I’ve switched to Focal from Adam F7 last year and my tracks since sound really much better.
You have shared decks with the likes of Art Department, Tale Of Us, Seth Troxler, Maceo Plex & Nina Kravitz to name a few. What has been your favourite gig so far and why?
It’s a bit difficult to choose only one gig. With two residencies in one of the most famous Belgian clubs (H2O, closed today) and actually in the best club in my hometown, Magazine Club I had the chance to play with many great artists. I can’t choose one gig between a 4 hour set b2b with Adriatique and the opening set at the NAME festival on the Life & Death stage before Tennis, Recondite, Tale of us and Mind Against… Oh, I think the best is the B2B with Adriatique (who are clearly two of my favourite producers ever) who didn’t want to leave the club after the set and proposed for us to play together till the end.
Your recent release on Constant Circles was a collaboration with Konvex & The Shadow & vocalist Jinadu. How did that come about and what was the process for producing the track?
We (Throb Circle) met Konvex something like two years ago, and both being French we quickly sympathized. As we liked the same kind of music we’ve proposed to him to try to work together on a track. He had a loop and asked us if we liked it enough to work on. And yes, we liked it enough. After several months we have recorded a woman singer but we were not convinced by the result and, as we both liked Jinadu’s voice, we asked him if he was interested to work with us.. That’s how the track was born 🙂
Do you prefer working with others in the studio, or by yourself?
With my experience I can say I’m more confortable when I work alone, it’s the reason why I’ve stopped Throb Circle to concentrate on my own music. Obviously I like to work with people I like, like Konvex, but occasionally and not for every track. I’ve a side project with my friend Peo Watson, (Magazine Club’s artistic director) for which we produce something between electronica and techno, a music not necessary dancefloor oriented, but my main work today is to produce under Mainro.
What do you have coming up in the future?
In the next two months my two first solo EPs will be released on Dilate records and Family N.A.M.E. records (the label of the festival) with great remixers like Rafael Cerato, APM001 and some others to be confirmed 🙂
Regarding the gig I’ll play this month with Deetron at Magazine club and we organise a party in my hometown with my friend HAP when we’ll invite my mate Melokolektiv!
What is your favourite thing to do outside of making music?
I’m a big sport addict, I think it’s important to be in shape when we work in an office and at the studio every week, and with the DJ gigs at the weekend. I also like good food, good wine and to spend some time with my family and my friends.
Tell us about your guest mix on the latest radio show – how did you put it together and what have you included in there?
In my guest mix I’ve included some tracks I really like at the moment, not necessary unreleased. Maybe some tracks a bit too deep to play in the party but perfect for podcasts or warmup. I’ve also included two of my upcoming tracks, unreleased yet, and not listenable, total exclusivity 🙂