Music has always been a part of his life and in 2005, Gabi Crecan a.k.a. Sonder found electronic music and the party culture. Ever since then he has been collecting and digging for records, while perfecting his DJ-ing and music production skills.
His DJ sets are a roller-coaster of lush atmospheres, solid grooves and cutting edge sounds, while his productions are constantly evolving and exploring new sonic realms.
Sonder on Facebook
Tzinah Records: To start with, please, recommend us something to listen to while we go through this interview. It can be anything.
Sonder: Sure. This is a chill mix by The Gaslamp Killer that I really like: https://www.mixcloud.com/TheGaslampKiller/the-gaslamp-killer-lavender-am-part-2/
Tzinah Records: Could you remember when and where have you felt it for the first time that you were to become a music artist?
Sonder: Probably my first time mixing in front of a crowd, over 15 years ago in my home town of Oradea. Me and a friend did a back to back techno set to a small but full club.
Tzinah Records: Why did you choose to create and play this particular type of music? Are there any artists that touched you deeply while developing your own style?
Sonder: Going back to the roots, I was always drawn to music, even as a child. I would listen to rock cassettes my dad brought home. As a teenager I started discovering the electronic music scene and was immediately in love. So I went through whatever techno, trance, drum’n’bass music that I could find. Slowly I got to more underground and rare records, which brought me to record labels like Perlon, Minus, Mosaic Records, to name a few.
Tzinah Records: Please, briefly, describe for us, the current state of the underground music scene in the place you come from. Is it any good?
Sonder: In Cluj the scene has developed to the point that we have a few large clubs that mostly cater to the mainstream audience, and occasionally bring more underground artists. Besides that there are a few crews that throw parties in abandoned buildings or smaller locations, but I think we still have progress to be made in having something strong like in Bucharest.
Tzinah Records: Without giving out too much about your secret weapons, please tell us how does the magic work in your production routine. Software? Analog? What does your DJ set-up imply?
Sonder: In terms of production, I’ve been moving more towards external analog gear for most of the sounds in the track. Ultimately, my purpose is to have a jam session type setup that allows me to start playing and recording easily. My DJ set-up at home at the moment is just an Xone 22 mixer and a pair of Reloop turntables. I generally play on both CDJs and turntables, so that I have access to all of my music library.
Tzinah Records: What are the aspects of your daily life that are influencing the shape and sound of the music that you currently make?
Sonder: I think the most important aspect is the time I spend searching for and listening to records. I am highly inspired by productions that use well made sounds and have complex arrangements, regardless of genre.
Tzinah Records: Which underground house DJ or producer would you love to take out for a summer picnic? With which artist (from any music genre) would you spend 24 hours stuck in an elevator?
Sonder: I would choose to be stuck in an elevator with Ion Ludwig, I think we would have tons of things to talk about, especially about gear and sound design. Maybe I’d sped the picnic with Maayan Nidam :)
Tzinah Records: Have you already played in your most-dreamed about venue? Which one is that?
Sonder: My most dreamed venue is the Deep stage at Waha Festival and I have not played there.
Tzinah Records: What motivates you to be an active part of the underground movement?
Sonder: The thrill of finding new music, artists, labels, promoters, generally like minded people that I can inspire and that can inspire me to take the scene further and build on this thing we inexplicably love so much.
Tzinah Records: What’s your favorite type of breakfast?
Sonder: Eggs. Or cereal :)
Tzinah Records: What do you do when the music is not playing?
Sonder: Spend time outside as much as I can, experience nature, hang with friends, walk the dog.. Human stuff :)
Tzinah Records: What’s the story behind your Tzinah Family Podcast? How did you record it and are there released or unreleased tracks?
Sonder: The podcast is a collection of a few favourite records from the last 6 months of digging and I recorded it at home using an Xone 22 mixer and a pair of CDJ 2000 Nexus players. Most tracks are released, a couple unreleased, some Romanian records, and I used both new and older releases.
Tzinah Records: Are there any of your plans/upcoming projects that you would like to share with us? Where can we see you play next?
Sonder: Currently I’m working on a few Techno / House EPs. Besides that I have a collaboration with a friend that is more classically trained where we’re building a live act composed of analog modular gear and a few acoustic instruments that he playes, including piano, djembe and kalimba.
Tzinah Records: Supposing you come back reading this interview in 10 years from now; could you try saying something to your future-self?
Sonder: Keep on finding new music and keep on making music in new ways !