USTM Featured Artist February: Protoculture
Feature By: Tom Rogers
Edited By: Douglas M
Catch Protoculture March 23rd THE BELASCO THEATER Los Angeles CA
Buy Tickets: http://ustm.wantickets.com/events/ShowEvent.aspx?eventId=121547
A small amount of DJ / Producers can land the #1 spot in the Beatport Top 100 for their style. Protoculture is one of the shinier diamonds in the ruff, with his remix of “Not Over Yet” by Grace occupied the Trance section’s #1 spot for a month straight. Together with Max Graham, the remix incorporates various elements from both artists and their unique styles. From Protoculture, we get the lower rolling basslines from his days as a Psytrance producer. Upon completing his Audio Engineering degree at age 20, Protoculture released the Psytrance album “Refractions” in 2003. Through honing his style over time, he has garned a specific set of sounds that are still present in his music today.
Also known as Nate “Click” Raubenheimer, Protoculture’s 2006 album called “Circadians” is a devoted Psytrance piece that contains many of the elements one would here in his more current records under the Re*Brand (Armada) imprint. The album is full of melodic vocal chops, warbly acids, and the rolling groove that separates him from many other Trance producers today. He was also a Breaks producer, the influence of which can be heard in his 2010 album “Love Technology.”
Being a sound designer by craft, Nate has been known to explore elements outside of the typical Trance style. This allows him to create refreshing vibes for individual tracks, giving them more of a personality. In the style of the Protoculture many Trance fans enjoy now, Nate’s track “Ode to the Ocean” combines the warm, open “aah” vocals of traditional Trance with whale calls. “Liquid Logic” His mixes are noticeably more catered to a stereo speaker system, using his delays wisely and more than most to create a thick, almost misty texture around vocal sounds. This translates well to the club, as he just teamed up with Max Graham to rock a tag-team set for ASOT 600’s Mexico Event. Incorporating multiple airy vocal styles in one track is a common technique, as is alternating leads with droning basses. In “Perpetual Motion,” the big lead riff is taken down a notch whenever the bass gets thicker, until they are finally brought together at the drop for an added boost. His percussion hits also have a flavor of their own — they are often clicky (perhaps how he got his nickname) and outside the typical drum set.
Expect to hear much more from Protoculture, who has been producing collectively between these styles for about 8 years. The result of this is a firm, polished sound and lush, uplifting sonic scenery.
“Everything he [Protoculture] touches turns to musical gold” – Armin van Buuren, A State of Trance
Only a few South African producers enjoy the success that DJ and Producer Nate Raubenheimer, better known to most as Protoculture, has had over the last 8 years. Sucked into the art of music production at a young age, he made the leap to pursue a music career professionally after completing his studies in Audio Engineering at age 20, immediately taking the international Psy- trance scene by storm with his first artist album, “Refractions” and trademark melodic and uplifting sound.
A slew of international performances followed, seeing Nate travel to all four corners of the globe. From London to Tokyo, Sao Paulo to Moscow, Nate has rocked dancefloors everywhere, most notably at festivals such as Glastonbury and Glade in the UK, Universo Parallello on the beaches of Bahia, Brazil, and also in clubs and super clubs alike, such as Ageha in Tokyo and Privilege, Ibiza. Nate has also played alongside a diverse range of international heavyweights such as Paul van Dyk, Sasha, Paul Oakenfold, Armin van Buuren, John 00 Flemming, Orbital, Future Sound of London, Juno Reactor, and Sander van Doorn to name but a few.
The last few years have seen a new direction for Protoculture, with collaborations with Max Graham, releases under Armada Records, and support from Dj’s such as Armin van Buuren, Markus Schulz, Christopher Laurence, Paul Oakenfold, Above and Beyond and John 00 Flemming. His 2010 rework of “Grace – Not Over Yet” with Max Graham landed the number 1 slot on the DMC UK Club Charts as well as the number one position on the “Trance Top 100” at beatport.com where it stayed for an entire month. Other chart topping successes include remixes for Canadian rock icon, Bryan Adams and LoverushUK’s ‘Tonight in Babylon’ and Estonian pop star, Hannah.
He also received a SAMA nomination (South African Music Award) for his remix work on Goldfish’s smash hit, ‘Cruising through’ on Pacha Recordings.
In 2011 and 2012, Protoculture was ranked as the number one DJ in South Africa according to the acclaimed international DJ Mag Top 100 Polls and with a new album on the way with dutch powerhouse label, Armada Records, the only way his career is going is up.
USTM’s Top 5 Protoculture Tracks:
1. Protoculture – Perpetual Motion ( Buy: Perpetual Motion (Original Mix) – Re*Brand – Best Of 2012 )
2. Grace – Not Over Yet (Max Graham vs. Protoculture Remix) ( Buy: Not Over Yet (Max Graham vs Protoculture Remix) – Not Over Yet – Single )
3. Protoculture – Ode to the Ocean ( Buy: Cobalt / Ode To the Ocean – EP – Protoculture )
4. M.I.K.E. – The Art Of Love (Protoculture Remix) ( Buy: The Art of Love (Protoculture Remix) – The Art of Love – Single )
5. Abstract Vision & Elite Electronic – Echoes (Protoculture Remix) ( Buy: Echoes (Protoculture Remix) – Echoes – Single )