EXCLUSIVE: Steve Angello on touring, new music and the Australian dance scene
“I’ve been doing this for fifteen years, you know.” That’s Steve Angello, a.k.a one third of dance supergroup Swedish House Mafia, producer-DJ-label-don, on his impressive music career. For the most of it, he’s been creating music. Though running his monstrous record label, Size Records, is just as important.
Just this year, Angello has experienced a rare level of success, even for someone of his calibre. The 31-year-old Greek-Swede has five unreleased mixes, a new album in post-production and has played shows almost every night.
“It’s pretty tough you know, but I’ve been doing this since my first show, which was in ’98,” the producer tells us of his workload. “I forgot why I first wanted to do this. So I stopped touring as much as I used to and just tried to contain my time a little bit and focus on the music. One of the main issues you have while touring is that you don’t really put time and effort into your music and I think that cuts innovation and creativity. It handicaps the whole creative process.”
Over the past decade or so, Angello has floated at the pinnacle of dance music. From his own releases, to work with Eric Prydz, David Guetta, will.i.am and Usher, Angello is a wide-ranging production pedigree. At the moment, however, it’s his new album that has his focus.
“I’ve been working on my album for quite some time now, and it’s getting to a point where it’s super creative. I have a couple of Australian people on it. I’ve been going towards indie a little bit, but I’m not saying indie rock. I’m just saying I’ve been influenced by the whole indie rock thing and vocally it’s very simple. Very straightforward, you know. I’m not trying to write any pop hits. I’m just trying to write good music.”
This dedication to authenticity is something the dance veteran sees in our local artists. “The whole scene in Australia has been amazing for years. I’m always digging into local music because you have a very nice sense of music and melodies here. I think it’s always been one of the leading countries when it comes to music creation. I think it’s the sun and the weather and the vibe. It reminds me of California a little bit.”
On the eve of his third show as part of the Big Day Out tour, we asked about 2014. “The label has had a rework and is better than ever. Our artists have so much music coming out and I’m going to be doing some amazing shows. This is going to be a great year; I’m really excited about it.”