Interview with Super8 & Tab at Transmission festival – “Cool place to test new tracks”
Written by Katrina Merca on December 14, 2017
Three weeks ago another DJ duo had their debut on Transmission Festival in Prague, at sold-out O2 Arena. No wonder they have been chosen to start the night, as their last years were really successful. We were lucky to catch them for a nice talk and here it is – interview with legendary Super8 & Tab!
Well, basically, the first question – how was it?
Janne (Tab): “Amazing! It was really good. It was packed – all the way, and playing some new tracks and seeing how they went… it was amazing.”
Miika (Super8): “I think there should be another word, because this was better than amazing.”
And do you understand that there were still so many people which were just coming inside? It could have been even better, if not the lines.
(Laugh) “Well, when you are a DJ and you look at the crowd, you see the people and they go wild, mad, crazy… you monitor them during the set. And even if you don’t meet all 15 thousand, the energy is absolutely fantastic.”
Have you seen something from the show before, how it looks like?
“Yes, we went, actually, upstairs. It was the warm-up set we saw. We didn’t see all the lasers, as they haven’t put all of them yet, but we are definitely going to check them later.”
Was it one of the biggest stages you performed at or not?
“Not really. We played at A State Of Trance 800 Mainstage this year – that was a big one. Then we played at EDC in Las Vegas – that’s probably the biggest we ever played.”
But the difference is: at these events there are many stages, but at Transmission only one, so everyone is listening to you, it should be a good feeling.
“Yes, that’s true.”
Last year Transmission had Orkidea, who was playing here from Finland, and now you are from Finland… do you think there is someone else from Finland who could keep this tradition going?
Miika: “Yeah, Orkidea next year (laugh).”
Janne: “No-no-no, us! And it’s gonna be Tab & Super8”
Miika: “We don’t know. Maybe not next year yet, but those K-System and Joonas Hahmo aka Lumisade… Armin played their track this week and last week, they are on Ruben de Ronde’s label, “Statement“. They are actually really good together, so maybe in few years I could easily see them opening festivals. And there’s also a lot of newcomers.”
And regarding this festival: was everything, I mean, not just crowd and stage, but also the organisational part better than you expected, as good as expected or maybe something could be better?
Janne: “I’ve heard it’s really good, you know, back in the days when people have been performing here, and it was as good as I expected, everything works, so I have nothing to complain about.”
Miika: “It’s really good. I had more fun than I did expect.”
That’s always the best part. I hope you are staying to see some more lasers?
“Yes, we are, staying here to party too. Our flight leaves Sunday evening, so we have time.”
So, what comes after? You future plans, shows?
“Well, EDMANIA in Slovakia and Grotesque in Rotterdam, then we have the big New Year’s Eve Party, which is kind of tradition in Finland with Orkidea, us, Alex Kunnari and all the best finnish DJs basically. That’s in the club where DJs like Above & Beyond, Ferry Corsten, Cosmic Gate and all those guys play when they come to Finland (Helsinki)… so for New Year’s Eve we have that club and it’s always packed.”
And what about your music? After “Cosmo”, “Into”, “Pressure” and other releases, what’s next?
“We’ve been really productive in the studio this year, and there’s a lot of music in our plans.”
Will it continue next year? At the same speed?
“Yes. Basically there will be a release almost every month, until… we don’t know, actually. We played today a couple of new tracks, which are not even on the release schedule yet, so they are ‘that’ new. We are actually working on one track since yesterday, and there are even a few tracks which even Armin hasn’t heard yet (laugh). We played them.”
So Transmission is very unique for this?
Janne: “Yes, we wanted to test them out, and it was quite a cool place to do.”
Miika: (silently screaming) “It went out very well!”
But if you have so many releases, what about album?
(Dialogue between Miika and Janne): “Yes. – Yes? – Yes, please? – Maybe yes.”
It’s like… You had ‘Unified’ 3 years ago, in 2014.
“Well, never say never.”
So it’s not officially planned, but may be?
“Maybe yes. Like unofficial plan. Everybody knows better than us that we have album coming (laugh).”
(Janne singing): “Neeever say neeever…”
Will you keep this your new sound of Hybrid Trance or would you like to try something else in the future?
Janne: “Well, I think, that’s the thing about Super8 & Tab – we are always trying new things, getting excited and inspired by new sounds.”
Miika: “But at the end of the day you can always still recognize – that’s Super8 & Tab. Even if we decide to do some hip-hop (laugh).”
Janne: “Well, of course, not that far.” (smile)
Well, your album was on Anjunabeats, now you are signing on Armada Music, and maybe you would like to try some Future Sound of Egypt sound?
“Well, we had a track on FSOE. Basically. With Aly & Fila. It was released like few months ago, but our name is not there (Miika: ‘politics of dancing’). It’s ‘All Heaven’ with Ana Criado. We did that, but it’s a long story…”
If Anjuna is fine, progressive is fine, uplifting… What about psy-trance?
Miika: “I like some of these new tracks like we played, like, W&W x Vini Vici – ‘Chakra’. It’s really well done and so good, so we are just keep playing it. But we also noticed that… ‘We could do this’ and ‘We could do that’, but it kinda starts to get too messy. We need to figure out what is the identity of Super8 & Tab at the moment, and it’s always been quite wide range of music, but we can’t go everywhere because people would get confused. But we do take some parts of other genres and influences, because we love music , it doesn’t have to be 140 [bpm] all the time. When we go to festivals, there’s like techno tent – we go there too, also to get inspired.”
And what about, for instance, soundtrack music? Which is also quite popular resource of inspiration for many producers, especially composers like Hans Zimmer?
Janne: “I’ve been listening to them, especially ‘Interstellar’ – mind-blowing soundtrack. But most of our time goes for listening to promos and getting radioshow together, and also listening our own tracks.”
Miika: “But of course, when you are watching movies and there is some good soundtrack, of course you can get inspired from it, just Shazam and listen to it later, and maybe even use it as inspiration for our new tracks, as you get that emotion from there, like ‘Ok, I wanna get this feeling as from this music’.”
If we go back to your track with Aly & Fila – who suggested to make it?
“We know Fadi, like, for ages, we’ve been friends since like 2006-2007, and this project started way back. But now we also have a lot of new music coming.”
That’s really good, because it can be difficult to make releases constantly, like every month or every two months, but you have it almost on regular schedule, right?
“Yes, and it’s f*cking hard. It’s a lot of work. This year it’s been good year for us.”
Well, some last and random question. Which is better – big festivals like Transmission or small club events?
“We get this question quite a lot, actually. But there’s no right answer. Of course this kind of festivals are mind-blowing, like, production-wise and how many people there are, the energy and everything is like… hard to handle, but also, if there are like 200 people and everybody is so close to you, you get different kind but same energy from them. It can be more intimate in small clubs then during festivals, but which one you prefer… well, depends.
In the clubs it feels like they are coming forward to DJs. Usually you are still close to the people, so you are able to interact with them, but at the big venues like this or Jaarbeurs it’s really hard to interact. Of course it’s how you get the energy from the crowd – it’s different, for example, when you see whole dance floor putting hands in the air from start until the end – of course you get like ‘WOOOW!’, but when it’s small or big, it’s still the energy , which comes from the people. You love to play music and see their reactions. No matter if it’s small or big, it’s like… ‘I know what’s coming next, but you don’t! If you like that, this one is gonna kill you!’.
There’s no answer for it [the question]. It’s a little bit different to play to 2-4 hundreds, one thousand, or ten or thirty thousand people, but at the end music and people come together – it’s the same, and that’s why we love to make that kind of music, it’s like, pressure is on, and then ‘boom’ – release.
And it also would be boring to play at only big or only small gigs, it’s fun to play at different kind of venues because you also end up playing different kind of sets. And usually in the small clubs you play longer, so you have wider range to have that journey, and of course when you are closer to people, it’s easier to communicate, like, ‘I want you to play this’ and we are like ‘All right!’, and then we think how to go to that track, modify the set so it goes naturally.”
Huge thanks to Super8 & Tab for sharing their plans, opinion and emotions, and we wish you Good Luck in your future career and productions!