As he prepares for a double header of parties during Sydney's VIVID light festival, we intercepted the Spanish techno sensation to discuss his past, present and future...
RR: Ramiro, welcome to Sydney. We gather this is your first time playing here… what do you have planned for the visit?
Ramiro: It is actually my first time ever in Australia and I’m really excited! I’ve heard great things about the country and especially Sydney. I want to take advantage of my time here, even though it will be very short... visit some beautiful places, try some local tasty food and of course make the people who come to the parties have an unforgettable time.
RR: You launched your own label, 'Odd Recordings' with Arjun Vagale in 2017, which is described as an "Indo-Spanish cross-pollinated record label bringing you futuristic music with an emphasis on the raw side of techno". Can you tell us about the birth of the imprint? What challenges have you faced since its conception?
Ramiro: Odd Recordings is pretty new. We launched the label at the beginning of 2017 and we are honestly amazed at how it is doing. There are so many quality labels out there and even if you are doing a good job, it is difficult to get the attention of the scene. We are releasing only music we believe in and love to play and it seems many people share our taste, so we are happy about that.
RR: Odd Recordings has started a new series called 'Especial' releasing just one track at a time, including your energetic offering 'Tight'. What is the philosophy behind the series? And what do you look for in a track to feature it?
Ramiro: The idea with the series is to release something strong, “especial” - or special as the Spanish word means, giving all the attention to one single track. We look for those tracks that make the difference whenever you play them.
RR: Rewinding back a bit, you released your first solo EP 'Pretending' on Adam Beyer's legendary Drumcode label in 2015. What impact do you think this had on your career?
Ramiro: Drumcode had been my goal for many years - I love the label and deeply admire Adam. I feel so proud to have been released there. It's one of the best labels in the world and very well known. Signing music on it means you'll reach many new people and it follows on from there. It was a very important step for sure.
RR: Your remix for Moby with Coyu was an amazing piece of music and a great opportunity for you, no doubt. Can you tell us how it come about?
Ramiro: This came mainly because of the track I collaborated with Coyu on - ‘Y.E.A.H.', which was pretty successful and turned out to be one of Moby’s favourites back in the day. He posted about it on his socials and I was in shock when I found out. After this, his manager contacted ours to ask for the remix and of course we accepted.
RR: Your music style is hard to categorise - containing a mix of house, techno, groove and even RnB… where do you draw your influences from, especially when you're in the studio?
Ramiro: I like pretty much every music style if it's quality. I love listening to jazz and bossa nova in the background whenever I’m cooking for example. Inspiration comes from everywhere: a movie, television, a song on the radio while you are at the gym... I have my phone full of voice notes!
RR: Nice. What steps do you take to ensure that you as an artist and your sound are constantly evolving?
Ramiro: I’m always listening to what other artists are doing, not only the ones close to my style. I try hard to go one step further every time I’m starting a track and make something different. It's also important to be open to learning new things.
RR: You've come a long way since your first official gig ever in 1999 in a club called Timba in the Spanish city of Toledo. Besides that one are there any other clubs that have a special place in your heart? And what would you say is the most memorable set you’ve played over the years?
Ramiro: I spent more than 4 years at Family Club, the most famous club in the area where I live. I learnt a lot during that period. Florida 135 is also one that I love... a magical place for techno, can’t wait to go back there! Playing at Space Ibiza just one year before it disappeared was also a dream come true.
Regarding the set, it’s hard to choose just one. Last Saturday at Fabrik for the Carl Cox Party for example was one for the books.
RR: During all these years of making music and sharing it through your performances, what would you say is the most important lesson you've learned?
Ramiro: Always be humble and treat everyone with respect. Be grateful to the people supporting and following you and coming to your shows - you are there because of them.
RR: Finally, what's on your horizon for the rest of 2018?
Ramiro: To keep working on Odd recordings to make it better and better, to work on another Drumcode record, visit lots of exciting places, make people dance all around the world, and basically enjoy what I think is the best job in the world!
RR: Love it. Enjoy your time in Sydney.