Interview: Five Minutes with Douran

Image credit: Gabriel Ferrante

Parisian producer Douran recently caught our eye as he shared the unique single, Inertia which is awash with electronic orchestral soundscapes. The single was quickly picked up for a remix up by the well-known Brazilian artist Gui Boratto which, released last Friday, turned the track into a progressively deep house experience. The two singles are taken from Douran’s upcoming EP Avalanche which will be released in spring 2021 via Allo Floride however, the producer has already shared the title track of the EP, accompanied by a remix from the French producer Joachim Pastor. While there’s still much to be revealed, you can catch a glimpse of what to expect with the collection of recently released tracks below:

While the fact that Douran shared a stage with Solumun and Tale Of Us peaked our interest, and the playlisting by Nick Warren definitely caused us to pause and consider, it was the producer’s unique, cinematic sound that truly caught our attention. Find out what the artistic mind had to reveal in the exclusive below.

Set the tone for us. Why the arts?

I grew up in a family of artists, my father and my sister being directors. And I always had this desire to create things. I chose music because it was what created the most emotion for me, so I decided at the age of 10 to start playing.

Which comes first when you’re producing – the sound or the idea?

In general, the idea comes first. The idea of a melody, a rhythm or a structure of a track, and in relation to this idea I go in search of sound. But sometimes I also do sound research sessions and that gives me ideas for songs. Everything is linked!

Does your material feature any collaborations?

On the upcoming EP, I don’t have any collaborations, but remixes from great artists! However, I have several collaborations coming later this year and next year!

What’s on your current playlist?

Mainly film music: Olafur Arnalds, Johan Johannsson, Rob Simonsen, but also Rone, Moderat, or folk music like Pomme, Jose Gonzalez…

Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage.

My music is very cinematic and introspective so what I try to provoke in my fans live is intense emotional moments, that they close their eyes and let themselves be transported!

What techniques do you experiment with to get your original sound?

To get my original sound I always try to mix acoustic instruments with synthesizers and drum machines. I also try to use typical film music instruments like Taïkos drums! So I try to mix classical composition techniques with electronic structures and sounds.

Take us through a day in the recording studio.

A typical day in the studio is one where you arrive fairly early in the morning. As a sound engineer I’m in charge of the sessions and the mixing console. I prepare the Protools session, the console, the placement of the microphones etc. with an assistant before the musicians arrive. Then, we welcome the musicians, we set them up and then I direct the session so that we manage to get the emotion and the sound we are looking for!

Was there a specific moment in your life where you thought, “this is what I want to do”?

I have two quite specific moments in my head where I said to myself this is what I want to do. The first one was in front of the movie Gladiator, during which Hans Zimmer’s music caused me a lot of emotion. And the second one was during a live performance of Vitalic where I also said to myself that I wanted to provoke this kind of emotions in live to people!

What do you keep close by while you’re playing a set?

Not much except a bottle of water and sometimes a beer haha

Any emerging artists on your radar?

Niklas Paschburg, Polynation, Hania Rani..

What gets your creative juices flowing?

Mainly listening to music by other artists and of any style

Take us through your collection of gear, tech or software that accompanies your creative expression.

I use a lot of hardware and software, among them I could mention my Arturia Matrixbrute, my Behringer model D, Spitfire software. Also hardware for mixing like Neve, SSL, Avalon compressors and EQs, and also a lot of acoustic instruments like flute, violin, taiko drums etc.

Any side projects you’re working on?

Not for the moment. But I recently started to compose for other artists.

How have you refined your craft since you entered the industry?

I managed to progress by confronting other composers and artists, labels etc. And also by composing a lot and by training myself as a sound engineer. I have also been able to gradually acquire beautiful equipment that allows me to go further and work on the small details more easily!

Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you this year?

A lot of things! I already have my EP “Avalanche” coming out in May. After that I have a very special project shooting in cinemas. And after that, I have another EP that will be released on a big English label as well as featuring with some great artists 🙂

Famous last words?

“Your passion is waiting for your courage to catch up.” – Isabelle Lafleche

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By Sarah Britton