Aug 27, 2021
KREAM's Liquid Lab Exclusive Mix & Interview
During the pandemic KREAM have been really standing out, consistently impressing with their releases and incredible Liquid Lab live sets. Boasting multiple #1 charting tracks on 1001Tracklists since last March, including the #3 Top Overall Track of 2021 in “Take Control,” their clubby approach to productions has caught fire! Their breathtaking live sets are complete with spectacular drone shots and equally impressive mashups, and they are continually pushing the envelope visually and musically. With their first show since the onset of Covid this weekend at Creamfields, we’re celebrating with the Norwegian duo with a new episode of Liquid Lab and a detailed interview highlighting their work with Musical Freedom, upcoming release on Defected, and out of this world live sets!
KREAM, thanks so much for joining us to celebrate another exciting chapter in your Liquid Lab series! Over the past year and a half we’ve seen a highly accelerated evolution of live set recordings and live streams, but yours always stand out both for the music and video content! What are the elements that you pride yourselves on bringing into each of your sets?
The Liquid Lab sets take a lot of time to prepare. We usually spend 2-3 weeks making our own mashups for the set. The mashups are a mix of 3-5 tracks using the individual stems of the songs to make them highly customized for the set.This mix consists of 100% unreleased mashups, remixes, upcoming singles and a bunch of secret edits from our sets.
How do you pick the locations for the shoots in Norway? What are some of the challenges and what have been some of your favorite experiences in turning your vision for the mixes into reality?
Living in Norway, there are a lot of beautiful places to pick from, the mountains and fjords really give a different vibe to the set. We try to find unique places to record, which combines beautiful nature with modern architecture. One of the bigger challenges that we have is the weather. It usually rains a lot in Norway, so we need to be ready to go when the weather allows us to shoot. It’s also pretty cold and windy here. Our set at Stegastein was -10 degrees celsius, and our camera guy got frost damage on his foot, which lasted for weeks after. High winds and low temperatures are also not great for drones. Having a lot of spare time in the beginning of Covid, we wanted to experiment with new ways to create our sets. We wanted to create a set that combines big pop vocals from The Weeknd, Frank Ocean, etc. with more clubbier underground songs from house, tech house and progressive genres. Our vision for Liquid Lab is to create something that is entertaining from start to end both visually and musically, and takes you on an epic journey that matches the landscape. We love doing these sets even though it takes a lot of time, but it's always worth it when we see the finished product.
Can you compare and contrast your approach to a Liquid Lab set versus playing a big festival like your upcoming show at Creamfields?
For a Liquid Lab set, we focus more on only showing new stuff, and only playing songs/mashups that haven't been heard before. So the difference is that at a festival show, we would play more of our own songs, but also play some of our biggest highlights from our Liquid Lab series.
Looking closer at the music, your mashups are second to none! What is your process like selecting tracks and vocals and putting them together in these fantastic combinations?
We download all of the tracks we like, put them in a folder in Mixed In Key, and then see which tracks work together key/BPM wise. Sometimes it’s hard to fit two records together even though it’s the same key/BPM, so then we actually add extra parts to the mashup like basslines and drums. So it becomes a hybrid between a mashup and a remix. It takes some extra time, but definitely worth it.
Take us inside the music from this episode. Can you highlight two of your favorite edits included and why they stand out?
The first edit would be the mashup of Shouse - "Love Tonight" (Vintage Culture & Kiko Franco remix) with Faithless - "Innadadance" (Meduza Remix) and PAX - "Cosmic Kiss." It has a vibey breakdown, sing-along vocals from Shouse and a huge drop from PAX. This one we are definitely playing in our sets this year.
The second edit is going to have to be our new remix of deadmau5 - "Strobe." The original is such a classic, and is a song that everyone in the scene has heard before. We just wanted to add our vibe and style to it so that we can play this one in our sets. And the vocals from Frank Ocean - "Thinking About You" gives it a different touch.
Looking closer at your own productions, you guys have been on fire with some massive records on Musical Freedom! The DJ support has been huge, so tell us some more about "Take Control" and "About You."
Thank you! We love working with the guys over at Musical Freedom and Tiësto. They give us a lot of creative freedom. The responses on both records have been amazing! "About You" was definitely the start of a new chapter for us in regards to club songs. It’s just crazy to see how many DJs have been playing those two songs and we are so pumped to show you the next Musical Freedom release!
Building on from the releases, you’ll be playing the Musical Freedom stage at Creamfields. What’s the excitement level for that show like?
We haven’t played a show since March 2020. And Creamfields has always been one of the festivals that we’ve dreamed of playing. Now being able to play the mainstage alongside artists such as Tiësto, Alesso and Afrojack is insane. So the excitement level is really high! Can’t wait to just be at a festival again. So many good artists are playing this year as well, so we are definitely going to hang out after the show.
Next month you also join a new family, Defected! Huge congrats! What does the moment mean to you both and what can you tell us about the D4Dance release?
We’ve always wanted to work with the guys at Defected, such a legendary record label. Being able to release music with them means a lot to us. And feels like a step in the right direction. The release is going to have that signature KREAM vibe to it combined with some catchy vocals and rolling bass. Working with the Punctual guys has been amazing. Really excited for this one. You’ll get a preview of it in the Liquid Lab set.
And as we look ahead, how are you maintaining inspiration and creativity on a daily basis? Any other fall plans that you’d like to highlight?
Always looking for new artists/styles to get inspired from and trying to find new ways of building the KREAM sound. It is also important to get some fresh air and to work out.
Our next Musical Freedom release is finished and should be out next month! We’re also heading back to the US to do some shows again. So make sure to check out where we’re playing.
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