R.O (Olivier Rugi) is an extremely gifted music producer from Belgium who is making more and more noise in spite of his young age, member of the Adapted Family, banging out top quality originals and remixes, his style is ranging from glitch hop to neurohop with roaring bass lines and much creativity.
Thank you so much for taking the time answering our questions R.O, we really appreciate it!
What is your mission with your art? What is your number one motivation?
- I guess my very first mission is to be able to live comfortably by doing my art, I think I’m quite close to it right now, I have more and more shows and people buying my stuff as well (especially in Australia!). And I must admit I really enjoy the tour life, so my dream is to do that more and more! In terms of my music, my main motivation is all the people’s gratitude when I meet them or when I read all the comments and messages on soundcloud. All the fans I’ve met are really awesome, not to mention my people here in Belgium, who support me since the early days! It’s actually when I see people enjoying my music, smiling and dancing, that I know why I do that.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
- Pretty much from everywhere! From all the artists I’m listening to everyday, in any genre (Haywyre, Thriftworks, 20syl, Submerse, Phazz, Diversa are my main inspirations for now but I also find inspiration in places. I live in Brussels now, and there is an awesome cathedral just next to my place. Yesterday I stayed 30 minutes in this place, contemplating, it gave me a lot of inspiration for new tunes!
I wrote tons of music in Australia during my tour as well, all the places I’ve been had a different atmosphere, and again it helped my creativity!
What made you start producing glitch hop music too?
- Actually I don’t really know… I was producing dubstep for a year or something and I just missed that hip hop beat I used to love as a kid. So I started making those hip hop drums and tried to add funky moving reeses. MakO and KOAN Sound were the biggest inspiration when I started producing neurohop / glitch hop, because of the movement they add in their basslines. I started reverse engineering those guys and try to understand what’s behind all of that. And no need to say I’m still learning! Everytime I skype with Frequent, I learn new techniques, it’s awesome.
Now i’m just trying to make my music, I don’t know if it is glitch hop, neurohop, abstract hip hop, a mix of all of that ! I’ll be the most happy man when people will just say : Well it’s R.O music.
We loved your latest EP ‘Icarus’ that was some bass heavy banging material. What other new projects do you have in the making? Any future releases, remixes, or collaborations with other artists?
- I’m currently working on so many projects. It’s been several weeks I’m working on a very very exciting project. It is actually a style i’ve discovered through “Submerse”, who is an awesome producer. So I’m working on two tracks in that very deep jazzy textured hip hop, and I’m really thinking about sending them to Inspected…!
Also, a collaboration with Frequent (Which is… big), collab with Mr. Bill, another one with MC2, another one with None Like Joshua, another one with Excess. Also working on a remix of LigOne, and a remix for Labrat.
+ Neurofunk tune to come
+ “I love resampling” will be a whole tune
What is your “dream collaboration”? What artist or artists would you love to work with (any genres)?
- Definitely 20syl, Flume and Submerse! My dream would be to meet those three guys and make music with them :D
We know you met Pretty Lights in May when you guys were playing at the same event. How was meeting and talking to him?
- It was totally awesome! I had a picture on my phone of myself and Pretty Lights after a show he did in Belgium, 5 years ago! I was barely making music at that time, and now I was playing after him in Paris, he was happy about that and me too! We had a great time, chilling and smoking in the backstage :) A dream came true.
Do you remember the very first track you ever made? Do you still have it? What was it like?
- Yes I remember it, and a friend got it on his computer I reckon ahah. It’s quite terrible I think! It is very hard to make something good when you’re starting electronic music. Unlike any other instruments, you must understand and manage everything at the same time, it’s years of work.
Tell us about your music making process please! How does it go? What do you need so you can compose? Any quirks or routines? Tell us some workshop secrets! How does R.O bang out tunes?
- What I actually need is my computer with ableton and some samples. What I like to have is my guitar, my bass, my microphone and my new Microbrute, but I can’t bring them everywhere!
In terms of processing I usually start with my drums. I don’t know why, but I find if the drums sound good then everything will follow!
From that point it’s hours of contemplation, change, try and error, what’s working, what’s not working. I love working by putting subtle details more and more, to alternate between sounds more often than before.
My best advice would be to read and to learn about all you can think of! Recently I started reading manuals of synths I usually work with (massive, Absynth, etc..) and watching tutorials (but not just watching, taking notes about “what this button affects exactly”). Working working working!
What was your original plan career-wise? Have you wanted to be a musician since you were a kid? Or did you have other plans before this whole producing thing came up?
- There were many things I wanted to be! Journalist, lawyer, even a cop. But as you grow up you realise that something is wrong with this world, and the way the society and industry work, now I just can’t think of doing anything else than music, music has recently been a very important help for me.
All your tunes sound like a beast, top quality clean sounding! What’s your secret? Did you study music, producing, mixing, mastering?
- That’s one of the best compliment, thanks a lot! I’m doing everything myself, including the mastering so i’m very glad you appreciate the quality, i’m always worried about it !:) I studied guitar for some years but no music theory though. I just learned everything bit by bit!
If we know well, you go to school too and study journalism. What part of journalism are you interested in? Is it like a plan B or do you take it just as seriously as music producing?
Yes I study journalism! Well, I’m interested in many geo political events that are happening for weeks now but I don’t think you can be an honest journalist today on these subjects, unfortunately. So I’m more interested in documentaries, or independent journalism.
I should take it more seriously! I’m in the second year right now, but music takes a lot of time and investment so it’s hard to do both of them! What I know, is that music is bringing me the happiest moments!
Do you have a side job besides school and producing music?
- No. I hope it can stay that way!
You have been on tour in Australia with the Adapted camp twice already. It must’ve been some awesome experience… We’re sure you had a blast both times… How did it happen for the first time? Are you going there every summer from now on? What was it like over there? Doing shows, travelling, hanging out with other artists, meeting people, getting love…
- I had the best time of life, without any doubt! Adapted family is properly awesome, all the good vibes and energy around music, it’s unreal :) Travelling that much was awesome, I can’t think of all the planes I took !! It’s crazy for me.
I think I might go there every summer… I feel good out there, and Corey (“the boss” as I like to say) is someone I really love, we have a good relationship, he is like a third brother.
What country would you like to go to play gigs, a country you’ve never been to before? Why there?
- Japan, without any doubt! I’m fascinated by their culture and the way they live! I NEED to go there for music!
What is the glitch hop / electronic music scene like over there in Belgium? Are there more and more up and coming producers, events, parties maybe? Is it improving and getting more popular there?
- A very funny fact is that people in Belgium love glitch hop, most of them just don’t really know about it! There are so much dubstep, drum’n’bass, techno and trap during the gigs and such a little amount of glitch hop producers. You can really count them with one hand actually ahah! But that’s very great at the same time, because I can play at a drum’n’bass and dubstep event and surprise the crowd with that kind of hip hop music, they aren’t used to it. When I play in gigs in Belgium I’m always pretty much the only one doing glitch hop and funky music, so people recognize it, I like that!
Now at the end, we got this new thing in our interviews, we ask the fans what question they’d like to ask you and we pick the 3 questions of them. So here we go:
What is your favorite song that you made?
- Lotus! This tune has a very particular vibe, i still enjoy listening to it, even after that time.
Some tips & tricks to get that tight e-bass sound ? Did you use guitar rig for it or a real amp/sample for example?
- It is a real bass that I recorded! I’m playing bass,guitar and drum. I like recording my instruments and use them in a creative way! I reckon it makes my music more alive.
Does he have a certain Idea of how the track should sound before he creates it, or is it just that the ideas flow in during the production process itself? Because when Im listening to his tracks I often find myself surprised over how different something can sound. The remix of happy of him is a perfect example for that, R.O brings in his vibe, but I’m not willing to believe that he certainely knew how it should sound before he startet remixing it, haha :))
- It’s always random, I never know how the tune gonna sound like! Actually when I’m producing i’m trying to think about all the tunes I love and why I love them at the moment, and then I start creating a melody, and some drums. Before really starting a tune, I usually spend 1 hour creating and fixing the drums, because the whole tune will be based on it!
Thank you so much for taking the time answering our questions we hope you keep those amazing sounds coming and keep us all entertained! Thank you!