Today marks the launch of Berlin based Ornery’s new imprint Daydreaming. The first single comes from the main man himself as he welcomes Michael Ritter into the studio for a collaborative offering ‘Calling’. We caught up with Ornery to discuss the plans for the label & more!
Can you tell us about the launch of your new label, Daydreaming? What inspired you to start your own label, and what can we expect from it in terms of music and artists?
Hello Music is 4 lovers! First of all, thanks for having me.
The label was “technically” born about a year ago, but I definitely took my time to set everything up properly, as I was already involved in plenty of other projects. “Daydreaming” simply comes from the magic that electronic music has always evoked in me: the ability to be transported, imagine and fantasize, while staying exactly in the moment.
The mantra is very simple: soundscapes and emotions. Electronic music that invokes and interpolates these two elements, letting you dream and escape reality for a few instants.
The artists on the label will be a combination of established, newcomers, and people I’ve regularly worked with. Every release will be highly curated on every aspect, visually and promotionally.
Your first release on Daydreaming is titled “Calling,” which you created alongside Michael Ritter. Could you share the creative process behind this track and how your collaboration with Michael came about?
Very naturally, I must say, as with other collaborations I’ve done with Michael. Me and him have shared a studio for about a year now, so working together has always come relatively easy. We have actually just moved to Riverside Studios, an amazing complex and community of different talents in the hearth of Berlin, something that we’re both extremely excited about.
We made “Calling” in three or four sessions, I believe, and refined it in the weeks after. We wanted to create something that had emotion and feeling. We started with the main chords, setting the atmosphere of the track, and developed everything around that. Michael came up with the lyrics on the spot, recorded them, and that was it. He’s a very talented singer, other than a great DJ/Producer! The same process was almost repeated with “The Arrival”, the “B-side” and EP closer, which we left as an instrumental track.
The EP “Calling” features remixes from other artists. Can you tell us more about the remixers and what unique elements they brought to the original track?
I picked every single remixer and I’m extremely satisfied about how every single one of them turned out! I think that every artist added its own distinctive touch, while maintaining the atmosphere of the original.
JP Lantieri, founder of Flemcy Music who I have been working with since the beginning of my music journey, added his own classy progressive feel perfectly combining arpeggios and bassline with the vocals, lifting the track to a new level.
Intaktogene, an outstanding Berlin-based DJ/Producer who I had the pleasure to remix in the past and whom I’ve been collaborating with for a while, added her trademark dancefloor energy and drive. Lastly we find Joe Fisher, an absolute force of a DJ/Producer/Label Owner from Argentina, who twisted the vocals in a completely different way for an absolutely unique result.
All mixes have been very well-received until now, and that has been great to see!
In your music, we can hear a blend of different influences. Could you share some of the key musical inspirations and artists who have shaped your sound?
I do like to listen to a wide variety of genres and styles, ranging from rap to heavy metal, to new wave and R&B. Staying more on dance music, and specifically in the melodic/progressive space, which is what I mostly do artistically, I would say Eric Prydz, Stephan Bodzin, Recondite are three that I’ve always followed closely. Three different artists, on their own musical galaxies. True masters of their craft, in my eyes. I’m inspired by them, and I’d like to think I can steal a little from all.
Many fans and aspiring producers are curious about your studio setup. Could you describe your current studio setup, including any favorite gear or software that you find indispensable in your music production?
I’m lucky to have a nice production room with a few cool hardware synthesizers now, but if I’d have to name my indispensables, or “essentials” if you will, I must say Ableton Live and Native Instruments Maschine (plus a computer, although standalone hardware versions exist for both now). I use Logic as well, but I find Ableton the best tool to get your ideas down quickly, and I feel pretty much the same about Maschine, with the hardware component added in. Built-in instruments and effects are excellent, and there’s everything in there to create and manipulate sounds. For virtual instruments, although I’ve collected plenty through the years, I find everything from u-he absolutely excellent.
How would you describe the current state of your local music scene? Are there any emerging artists or venues that you’re particularly excited about?
I’m based in Berlin, so musically I’m pretty spoiled! There’s something for everyone, almost every day of the week. The scene certainly always changes and evolves, but electronic music is very much in the fabric of the city, I would say, and I absolutely love that.
Looking ahead, what can we expect from Ornery and Daydreaming in the future? Any upcoming releases, collaborations, or events you’d like to share with your fans?
Plenty of things! The next three releases are already in development, and I’m always listening to a lot of new music to keep building the label’s future catalogue and creating a nice pipeline of music. There are quite a few new artists that I would like to bring on board, plus I want to keep involving the ones who I’ve already worked with through the years. I’m also thinking about the first label’s showcase, which will hopefully be in Berlin soon… Really excited for what’s to come!
As an artist and label owner, what challenges and opportunities do you see in the evolving music industry landscape, especially in the digital age?
There are undoubtedly many of both. It’s an extremely competitive industry, and things are always changing at a fast pace on both artistic and business sides. I really think you have to be prepared, and have some kind of a plan, if this is the path you want to pursue professionally.
Looking more broadly into the future, instead, I want to be optimistic and think that human curation, and its interaction with everything machine-generated, will still be a key factor in how people consume music.
Can you share any advice or insights for aspiring DJs and producers who are looking to establish themselves in the industry and build a career like yours?
Does the classic “it’s a marathon, not a sprint” can still be mentioned? I like sports, and sports metaphors, so I find that one always fitting. It really is a marathon, and I’m still in the middle of it myself. Learn to accept the “down” days, and learn to accept that you are different from everyone else, and that’s your strength. Find your creative voice and develop your style naturally, step by step: “your sound” it’s just the way you do things, in the end. Other than that, build relationships: very simply, they will advance your career, in many different ways.
Lastly, is there a particular message or emotion you hope your music conveys to your audience, and how do you strive to achieve that in your productions?
Hard question! I always ask myself if there’s enough “intent” in the music I create, as I’m not classically trained and very instinctual when it comes to production. I like a bit of darkness, a bit of emotions, and a bit of intensity in my music: each element is not always present in every track, but I think they’re all part of who I am. I always try to set the mood of a track with an atmosphere, letting one or more of these characteristics shine, and then sculpt around that naturally. It’s probably a bit of an unorthodox process, but that’s what I developed through the years!
Pick up a copy of the ‘Calling’ EP here.