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Music by VICE

Halocyan Records Puts the Tech Back In Techno

Don't change the subject—techno is about technology.

by THUMP Staff
Oct 8 2013, 7:01pm

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Name: Halocyan Records

Vibe: 100 percent authentic arche-techno, without the elitist obscurity.

Founded: 2010

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Claim to fame: Most recently, they took over Boiler Room.

Upcoming releases: Tech-house anthem "Atica" by Dosem, DJ Pierre, and Joey Beltram on vinyl; Universal Quantifier double CD compilation. 

By the numbers: 18 releases: 13 EPs, 2 singles, 2 LPs, 1 limited edition sampler CD

Artists-to-watch: Gravious, Xxxy, Arkist, Paul Woolford

Label head Dimitri Fergadis. Photo by Mark Escribano

What's the deal?

You can't move forward without knowing where you've already been. That's the central tenet of this LA-based dance label. They're making the bet that electronic music's forebearers had the right ideas, and that success lies within those concepts. The exploration of technology as a theme and not just a means, paired with a firm grasp of songwriting and production—this is the way ahead, as it's been from the start. Label head Dimitri Fergadis elaborates:


THUMP: Can you explain the label's name?

Dimitri Fergadis: The name derives from my own solo production moniker, Phthalocyanine [a compound used in artifical dyes -ed]. Halocyan is the middle eight letters in Phthalocyanine. Halocyan is, in a way, a permutation of Phthalo Records, which was founded in 1997. 

Describe the music and nightlife scene around you.
Los Angeles is a Babel of music. There are countless splinters, factions, collectives, and crews, and I think many familiar genres are well-represented. Organizations here in LA like So Simple, Futra, Dublab, and Sandwell District represent a small sample of the rich diversity currently thriving in the city.

You've referred to much of your catalog as arche-techno. What does that mean?

Popular music treats technology as a background assumption. Instead, what I am calling "arche-techno" squarely focuses on the issue of technology. At Halocyan, we want to continue focusing on technology as an aesthetic question rather than as a background assumption for music. The Greek word "arche" means beginnings and origins. Arche-techno is a style of music that keeps the original question in play: what is the relation between humankind and technology as such?

Arche-techno is not a niche movement. In fact, Halocyan rejects the pigeonhole feeling of past underground movements, and embraces limitless possibilities with the intention of bringing arche-techno to everyone. In this regard, arche-techno is as populist as pop music, but it engages with the original question of technology's relation to humankind. In arche-techno, technology is never taken for granted.

What are your favorite labels that aren't your own?
We are intrigued and excited by what James Zabiela is doing with Born Electric. We also love and respect Cocoon.

The Rolling Thunder EP by Gravious dropped October 1 on Halocyan Records.