By
Pau Roca

My namesake Pau (Encinas) is Cauto. He lives in Vilert, a small town near Banyoles; Dani Guijarro aka Headbirds also lives there. CautoDr. Res, Ilia MayerUxuka, Mans O and C156 are the pillars of one of Spain most respected record labels, Disboot.

The Catalan label went on a publishing hiatus after releasing Cauto’s latest EP. They came back last year with Dr. Res, Mans O, Sunny Graves, Arenas and more recently Ilia Mayer to focus on the least mainstream electronic music made here.

You say cities are insecure places, do you prefer small towns to the suffocating and toxic air of big cities?

Safety is an overrated term: you can be home and have an accident in the bathtub. What I value the most is the pure air and the absence of noise.

You studied classic music. What was your learning process like? When did you start making electronic music?

I studied violin since I was 5 until I turned 15 because I grew tired of going to class and I lost interest.

Back then I was into the hip hip scene in my hometown, so my first contact with electronic music was thanks to a Roland XP80 and a cassette in which I recorded my first bases. I remember my father yelling at me for using so many graves.

Talking about the past, you and your friends were among the first to organize parties with non-mainstream British electronic music in the late 90s and early 2000s. I’m referring to the Reboot parties, the precedent of the Disboot lable…

I can’t tell much about the Reebot parties because I wasn’t a crew member. I went to the Off Sonar party at La Cove and had a blast. Back then me and some friends were in a collective and organized raves. That’s when I made my first live performance, a techno-dub act in a hartek, breakcore and drum&bass party, so you can imagine what some people there must have thought. It was always me opening or closing parties, but I really enjoyed Djing out in nature under the sun. People were glad there was more space and lower tempos.

When did you meet the Disboot crew, what kind of relationship do you have with them and what does the label mean to you, a label by the way you inaugurated with Despertar Ep.

It was through Myspace. Back then Disboot didn’t exist; it was Reboot. I remember I used to meet at the old Tasmatic record store with Fernando (Uxuka) and Sevi (Middleground).

The Fer and Sevi felt apart as crew and so Fernando, Mikel from Manintheattic and the help of Enric from Discontinu Records we started Disboot.

In fact, if my memory serves me right, the name comes from combining Discontinu and Reboot. We’re friends above all. Musically it’s a label open to experimentation which has always allowed me to do whatever I’ve wanted. It’s a family beyond music.

Uxuka said about the label that the idea was to release 10 references per year. It was 4 in 2014 and 1 so far this year, if I’m right. Better few good ones than mediocre ones?

If we had more time and more money, we’d probably release more good ones. I think it’s more a question of the effort it takes to release stuff rather than not having enough good material, especially now such talented people as Mans O, Niño, Arenas or Sunny Graves.

We’ve been waiting for a new Cauto record for a while. Maybe it was talked about too early?

Maybe, thought I don’t worry much about this. In 2014 I released Iberian with material from late 2012. But yeah, all my friends are asking me when is my album coming out. I just want to make more music and perform live.

About a month ago we listened to your remix of ‘You Need a Friend’ by Strand, to be out on Lowriders Recordings along with remixes by Lost Twin (we interviewed him recently), Cauto, Glue Kids and Niño. Is there another project, remix or collaboration in the pipeline?

There’s nothing much I can say because nothing is finished yet, but there’ll be lots of collaborations in the future. I’m really looking forward to doing stuff with other people. Well, me and Headbirds collaborated together live, but it was all kind of improvised. I helped him use the MPC during his live performance and we realized playing the two of us was much more fun, so that’s what we do now.

It seems like, with a few exceptions (Alizzz, Talabot and that’s about it), it’s hard for Spanish artist to be recognized by their talent. Why do you think is this? Lost Twin said it was a media thing…

According to the media, being successful means being successful abroad. They underestimate the audience here. And then there’s the eternal separation of national and international artists, the little availability of spaces, and although I agree with Lost Twin, I’d also point to the audience. It sounds harsh, but I say it because I’m also part of the audience. I hate when I can’t enjoy a quieter performance because people are talking all the time, or when there always has to be an international name for people not to complain about ticket prices, otherwise we think we’re being ripped off.

 

There seems to be an effort to invent a scene that, in my opinion, doesn’t exist.

 

But don’t get me wrong. There is plenty of talent and we know each other or are friends, but that doesn’t mean there’s a scene. And although it has improved a lot, there’s still a lot to do to make this into a scene. I also stopped going out for a while, so maybe my vision is not entirely faithful to reality.

 

Uxuka said in an interview that Barcelona lacks clubs like Moog for both artists and promoters to make enough money.  What does BCN need to create a solid scene with clubs and artists?

A big club to compete with the rest of the big clubs, less snobbism, licences for small clubs, daring promoters and less snobbism (yes, I said that twice).

We’re getting to the end now. What restaurant in Vilert (or Banyoles) would you take someone to surprise them?

In Vilert there isn’t a bakery, so go figure. I’d probably cook something home or would take them to the mountain where my dad lives.

Ad what record would to listen to while having a drink?

I’m not too much of a digger, so I’d probably ask them to play something for me. I love discovering music through my friends. I’ve been listening to Hiatus Kaiyote’s Choose Your Weapon a lot lately.

Lost Twin has a question for you: Has your current environment influenced your new album?

This album’s had many environments, but above all there’s been many changes in my artistic and personal life. I got my main ideas in Berlin, from the fact that I didn’t have a computer and I could only work with the MPC and a synth. Then, after many years using Logic I changed to Ableton, from using plugins I changed to hardware. After 5 years being single in Berlin I came back to my hometown 11 years after I’d left. From not caring about politics at lot I started having headaches with all this shit we’re all in. So let’s say it was born in Berlin with 3.5 million people and grew up in Vilert, a small town with 35 people.

Great, now tell is who would you like us to interview after you and what would you like us to ask.

Ok, that’ll be Autopsy Protocol and the question: Will you organize Day of The Droids again?

Thanks, Pau!