Tribal Village introduce: Liftshift
We’re only days away from another legendary psychedelic adventure down at Tribal Village with a bill of fresh musical talent, a visual cornucopia of art and deco, and a festival-like atmosphere full of creativity, antics and laughter. But we’ve still not introduced you to one of our most exciting guests!
Liftshift is a name that is well known to fans of the psychedelic progressive sound, but he has only been seen in London a handful of times, despite having navigated the globe to some legendary festivals like Boom, Sonica and Universo Paralello. His progressive style radiates fire and energy and makes for scintillating dancefloor material, we are eagerly anticipating seeing the dancefloor ignite as Liftshift unleashes his live set to the crowd at Tribal Village.
So as Eric rushes across the globe from gig to gig, we managed to extract some of his time to ask him a few questions about how it’s all going. Read on…
You originally got into making music by playing in bands, what inspired you to come to the dark side and start playing and producing psy trance?
It was in puberty that I went into a Metal rage where I found myself playing guitar and taking the vocal stage in various bands through out this period. After moving to the US in ’93 and coming back a year later I found all my former band members hooked into a techno and house epidemic that was raging through Europe at that time. I had to have a taste of this of course.
So I started wandering around Amsterdam’s night life and it was soon after this I attended a warehouse party.The moment I entered the venue I immediately got immersed into the vibe.It was pure bliss! This was one of the first Goa trance parties in Holland in ’94.
I was hooked on electronic music. In ’95 I traded my guitar for digital bliss and started Dj-ing at parties and in 2003 I started producing as Liftshift.
Why the name Liftshift and how would you describe the Liftshift sound?
The name Liftshift is inspired by the shift button on every computer keyboard. It says shift with an arrow facing upwards (Lift). When I saw this I was inspired by my more esoteric point of view of lifting spirits on a dance-floor with my music and shifting in overdrive through the next dimension!
Who or what have been your greatest influences and sources of inspiration over the years?
Dj Lucas (blue room), Dj Zen (Ordeals in sound), X dream (blue room, TIP records), Hallucinogen (Twisted, Dragonfly), Slinky Wizard (Flying Rhino), Technosommy (Flying Rhino) and many more!
You’ve recently been very busy in the study, what new productions have you been cooking up?
Wow, I have been cooking lots lately, hard at work and loving every minute of it. I just moved to a new flat in Amsterdam and have a killer work space now. This inspires me a lot! In the last few years I have been flying from studio to studio, never in my own spot. I have done collaborations with Cimi (prog project of M-theory), Divination (new prog project of Sinerider) Etic (DN Records). And a bunch of solo tracks and remixes. There’s a 2 track Liftshift solo EP to come out in late June on Free-Spirit Records.
What software and hardware are you currently using? Do you have a favourite piece of kit?
I love the sylenth1, the Fabfilter bundle, All U-He stuff. I have an almost vintage VirusB which is still purring throughout studio sessions. Favourite piece of kit – my passion for psy-trance!
What do you think is the secret to a great track?
First of all lots of fun! Arrangement, The perfect kick-bass combo, stunning melodies, piercing and overwhelming hooks and an immaculately engineered percussion section and as last beautiful sweeping and deep pads.
What have been the highlights of your musical career to date?
Universo Paralello 6, 7, 8 and 12
Boom festival 2010
Sonica 3, 4 and 5
Trimurti Festival in Russia was great! Such wonderful people and great moonshine absinth!
And what goals do you still have for the future?
My quest for finishing the perfect Liftshift album to unleash upon the psy-trance scene amongst a long ending gig list from exotic to nearby places. Flying spacecrafts through the uni-multiverse, and scoring music for movies!
You’re based in Amsterdam, what’s the psy trance scene like there at the moment? If we came over to party, which events or festivals should we go to?
The psy trance scene in Amsterdam is quite small nevertheless all over the country there’s a lot of little underground tribes frequently putting up in and out door parties. A nice underground scene!
We have two psy trance festivals in Holland. One is in June on the summer Solstice in Ruigoord (a squatted village nearby Amsterdam fuelled by wicked artists and free thinkers since the seventies already) every year a blast, highly recommended!
And second there is the international PsyFi festival in the north of Holland close to Germany with a lot of national and international artists playing. 2013 was the first time for this festival and was a great succes.
I have not been invited to play or visited the festival yet, so I can not tell you how that is, from here it’s looking good though!!
If you were stuck on a desert island and could only have five albums with you, what would they be?
Ease division 3 (flow records)
Prokofjew – Peter and the Wolf
X dream – Radio
Metallica – And justice for all
Beethoven – Piano Sonatas
Summer and the festival season is just around the corner, being a festival connoisseur, what are your picks of the best psy events to go to in 2014?
Boom, Fusion (has a psy stage), Sonica, Ozora and Transylvania Calling.
I would love to attend so many of them!
You’ve played at some of the world’s top festivals, including Boom, Universo Paralello and Sonica. What are your three festival essentials?
Water, a killer Line up and friendly organisers who know the ropes on how to make a perfect festival.
If a film was made of your life, who would you ask to play the leading role?
You all, of course!
You’re playing at Tribal Village in London on Saturday 10th May. Why should readers come and check out your set?
You took the time to read until this question, you should definitely come and enjoy a boogie on my set! It is jam-packed with new tunes inspired by my latest loves, travels and inner journeys.
Finally, what’s the one thing wish you’d been told when you started making music?
No matter what, keep going!
It is a rocky road yet so full of laughs, loves, beauty, contrasts, inspiring people, art and a fulfilling lifestyle.
Thanks Eric! See you on the dancefloor