Friday, September 6, 2019

Aphreaq talks Unfold, gigs, and a new EP

Live techno artist Aphreaq has been a busy man. He’s just released a new 2-track EP, been gigging down in DC with his ambient side project, and also launched an all night party series here in Baltimore called ‘Unfold’ (whom he runs with fellow residents Bastet and Elliott Sloan.) Later this month the crew is bringing down headlining guest Aaron J of Boston, which is sparking some serious regional interest in the deep techno community. 

We sat down with Aphreaq to find out more about his background, his experiences nurturing the emerging late night community in Baltimore, and the inspiration behind his current projects.

Thanks for chatting with us today. Where are you from originally? What was it like growing up there?

Aphreaq: I grew up in rural Virginia, the Appalachians. Very small one stoplight kind of town. It was isolating, I spent a lot of time in the woods by myself just making up fantasy worlds, read a lot. Got into metal and punk, and during the 90s radio stations out of Charlotte had like a dance music late night radio thing, also learned about ambient music via NPR. I joined the Army to get out of there and from there got into nightlife, industrial. I'm like a weird mountain goth.

Well we’re glad you decided to make the trek north! You started a new underground party series in Baltimore called Unfold last month, can you tell us about that?

Aphreaq: We need it, we are missing a consistent and curated late night dance music event. This city has a beautiful house music community that I've spent a lot of time in and enjoyed myself immensely. We are missing this for Techno. The goal is to have well curated evenings focusing on deep, hypnotic techno. Something I also feel is missing from our metro area. We have a great home for the event, a beloved room that I think is perfect for this kind of experience. It's not a rave ;)

Sounds promising then. What’s it like organizing / throwing techno parties in a city as small as Baltimore?

Aphreaq (Unfold, Baltimore) aka cc80

Aphreaq: It's difficult. I have some experience from previously doing Vague Output. Even though we don't quite have the scene for it here, people do travel into town. I'd say a large percentage of attendance for our last event was out of Washington DC. We provide a different experience here [in Baltimore] I think, whereas DC seems to attract large disparate crowds, here we are smaller but everyone is in the zone. It makes financing an event hard for sure, but the events overall are more rewarding. Keeping curation in focus here is also difficult, as there is only a small pool of [local] artists who typify the sound we are aiming for, some of the work over the next while will be nurturing those interested and helping provide a platform for them to mature.

That's cool that you are up for helping develop other talent. What artists are you personally feeling right now?

Aphreaq: I've discovered some tracks from Simone Bauer I'm really into, some standard things like Wata Igarashi, that whole sound. Furtive who is out of DC came out with the 3rd in the 'Sympathies' series and I really enjoyed this one. ASC is another artist who seems to be able to do no wrong on the production side at the moment.

We’ll have to check out some of those recommendations. Can you tell us about a particular favorite gig you’ve performed?

Aphreaq: hmm favorite... probably having the opportunity to open for Voices from the Lake at the Loft, it was a legendary night.

Ah yeah, that was a great venue down in DC. So you've got a new release out that just dropped today on Better on Foot records. Tell us a bit about the tracks.

Aphreaq: Yes, I felt like they resided in the continuum of tracks I've released on Better on Foot in the past. They live somewhere between the sound design-y techno I am fond of and the house sounds I experience on the dance floors here in Baltimore. Maintaining that forlorn core of my sound. When I was asked by the label for new material, I thought they needed a home ;) 

Right on. Where else are you performing these days?

Aphreaq: This week I'll be performing my ambient project cc80 as part of Sequence's anniversary celebrations. Couldn't be more honored to be there.      

Looks like a great lineup. Anything else you would like to share? 

Aphreaq: Come out and say Hi sometime ;)

Thanks for chatting with us today! All the best and we'll be sure to see you on a dancefloor soon.

For more information on the Unfold parties, visit the crew at:

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