Lifelike Music

Laurent Ash AKA producer Lifelike releases 'Love Emulator/Silicon Love' on his new record label and celebrates by talking to Dazed Digital

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As temperatures begin to rise for the summer, things are also starting to heat up for Lifelike. As a long-time representative for the synth side of the ‘French Touch’ spectrum, Lifelike - or Laurent Ash to his friends - has maintained his consistently good productions for nearly a decade. Each have garnered the support of his peers including Alan Braxe, Fred Falke and Kris Menace and the attention of Moby, Vitalic and The Presets; all requesting his expert retouches. This time is different though. Ash’s new EP ‘Love Emulator/Silicon Love’ will be released on his own Label ‘Computer Science’ with which he’s taking a Radiohead-esque tact in this brave new world of online music sales. In the spirit, Lifelike has taken the time to put together a mix exclusive to Dazed Digital in between his busy touring schedule. We talk more to this secretive producer about his masterplan...

Dazed Digital: What made you decide to start your own label? Are there any releases you're working on that you'd care to talk about or is it all top secret at the moment?
Lifelike: I really had to do it. For several years people have been telling me "why don’t you do your own label?? Why?" So finally I took the decision to do it, and "Computer Science" was born. I like the idea of being independent and to switch between a record with Alan (Braxe) on Vulture is a good opportunity to experiment even more, also people complain that I release too few records a year, so I had to make it up.

DD: Your musical palette is very distinctive and in addition to others, you've done remixes for the likes of La Roux and Chromeo - has there been any point where you've thought about doing something perhaps a bit more 'commercially viable'?
Lifelike: No, never. I never think in terms of commercial goals when I compose music or work for other artists as a remixer/producer. Of course I like to know that I can share my music with the largest audience possible, but I don’t think I’ve done anything that might suddenly make me become commercially viable. Lets say in the case of La Roux, her single went N°1 in the top 40 because she's a brilliant artist, and Chromeo are brilliant artists too. I don’t think they make any commercial effort to adapt their music to a certain standard, i.e. one that would be requested in order to sell records. I think its key to becoming a respected artist; if you try to do it to be commercially successful, then forget about it, I don’t think you're on the right path.

DD: From your repertoire, both remixes and original productions, what would you say you're most proud of?
Lifelike: It’s quite hard to choose. My favourite remix I think is the one I did for "Empire Of The Sun", and from my own records I think it could be the one that I’m about to release "Love Emulator".  I really tried to do something new by using a hip-hop vocal and keeping the 80's soundtrack, I really love the results of this melange.

DD: Have you always seen music as your career path?
Lifelike: Not really, I was working in the insurance and computer business 10 years ago. I stopped working in a ‘normal’ job in 2001 when I signed to 20000 ST recordings.

DD: Your house is burning, what piece of equipment would you save?
Lifelike: That’s a horrible choice, well, my laptop is probably the only one I could save, the other equipment is too heavy or fixed to the studio rack...unfortunately!

DD: What’s next for Lifelike?
Lifelike: I’m releasing the "Love Emulator" EP on Computer Science. It sounds a bit like Indeep’s "Last Night a DJ Saved My Life" - some interactions between male and female vocalists, sort of a retro futurist disco track. You'll hear it when it’s out on 14th of June. For the first few weeks I will release the track only through my label's website: www.computerscience.fr , that’s also part of the experiment I want to try, regarding the music business crisis, I have this idea that if we concentrate the distribution to only one store, mine, and we do a good promotion to inform everybody where this release will be available I think we might do a good job here. Look at what happened to Radiohead, they sold hundred thousand of mp3’s only through their website, and they are not the only ones. I think the internet can be a fantastic new way for musicians to sell their own music, without having to share any costs with a major label that would eat 80% of all incomes. There is something to be done here.

DD: What song would best encapsulate your mood right now?
Lifelike: Police "Wrapped Around Your Finger", It’s a brilliant track for the night to come.


Tracklisting: Exclusive Dazed Mix by Lifelike

Justice "Phantom Part 2" - (Ed Banger Rec/BecauseMusic)
MSTRKRFT "Shake it" - (Different/PIAS)
Outrunners "Future Vision" - (CDR Promo)
Death From Above "1979" - Alan Braxe Remix (Virgin)
Kavinsky "Testarossa Autodrive"(Record Makers)
The Neon Judgement "Maximum Joy"(PIAS)
DoesItOffendYou, Yeah! "Epic Last Song" - Lifelike Remix (Virgin)
The Presets "This Boys In Love" - Lifelike Remix (Modular/Universal)
Shapeshifters "Pusher" - Lifelike Remix (Positiva)
Lifelike "Discomachine" (Wall Of Sound/PIAS)
Cazals "Somebody Loves Me" - Lifelike Remix (Kitsuné)
Lifelike & Kris Menace "Discopolis" - (Vulture/Defected)
Fred Falke "Last Wave" - (WorkItBaby)
Club 1984 "Sophie" - (CDR Promo)

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