Stockholm-based Tom Lagerman and Niklas Janzon are the musical masterminds behind Mount Liberation Unlimited. Their project was born while they were attending school for classical music training and realized the urge for creative and experimental exploration of crossover sound and live set ups. Their artist name”Liberation Unlimited” reflects and reminds them of their core belief and excitement for new ideas and sounds. Their intuition seems to guide them onto the right path: after releases on Tim Sweeney’s Beats in Space label and house institution Studio Banhus, the duo just joined the Permanent Vacation family with their latest release “Body Language”.
Tom and Niklas confessed that despite their shared musical vision the real friendship started only after going to the movies together and bonding over the Pixar movie “Up”. The selection of essentials is proof that MLU is more than an outlet for their deep productions – it’s a commitment to have each other’s back on this musical journey.
1. HEADPHONES (BOSE, CHECK HERE): Noise cancelling technology – First it changed the headphone industry, now it’s changed us.
2. TOBACCO (NORDIC SNUS, CHECK HERE): Janzon: “I don’t want to spend one day without Snus.” Tom: “I don’t want to spend one day with Janzon without Snus.”
3. ROLLING PAPER (NO BRAND): Because you never know when you need to roll.
4. WATER BOTTLE (NO BRAND): The thought of buying water makes us sad. S/O to all airports with filtered tap water!
5. EARPLUGS (NO BRAND): Mouldable earplugs, it’s like having a reality volume knob.
6. SLEEPING MASK (NO BRAND): Together with the noise cancelling headphones and earplugs, the sleeping mask combines what we call the MLU Sensory Deprivation Kit™.
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Sieren aka Matthias Frick can be added to the list of the creatives we have met with multiple talents. Despite being based in the Techno capital Berlin, Matthias never stopped pursing his love for UK influenced bass music, field recording and experimental soundscapes. The richly textured and intricately programmed warm sound of his latest record Ascension EP on Apollo Recordings, the ambient division of renown R&S Records, shows his continuous evolution of the “Sieren” sound and identity. Most of the artists seem to achieve this level of professionalism only working as a full-time musician, but Matthias told us that he is actually a full-time product / software developer at one of the leading music software and hardware companies named Ableton by day. While being blessed with such musical talent, Matthias confessed that he currently enjoys having the luxury of doing both.
Matthias moved to a new studio / apartment in Berlin only few months ago but we were impressed by his clean and minimalistic set up. The subtle scent of an air purifier added to the cozy atmosphere and we couldn’t stop but notice his key to success: structure and self-awareness. The furniture, the polished selection of studio gear and the essentials he chose to share with us are all honest collections of simply things he truly likes and appreciates just like the two career paths he has chosen for himself.
1. HEADPHONES (SONY, BUY HERE): I’m not gonna talk about the Lightning Adapter, because that being another essential is a whole different story. But the Sony headphones have been a loyal companion of mine for a couple of reasons: I listen to all my music when I’m travelling on those and thus I’ve gotten so used to them, that I also use them for making music on the go. They are quite cheap, yet very great sounding and easily replaceable in case you lose them, since almost every major store carries them.
2. EARPLUGS (OHROPAX, BUY HERE): As a result from living with too many flatmates whose sole purpose was to audition for Jurassic Park (preferable at night) I’ve grown so used to them, that I can basically not live without them. Personally I found them to be the most effective acoustically (almost too good to actually wear them in a club) and also most pleasant to wear.
3. JU-06 (ROLAND, BUY HERE): Roland quite nailed it with the Boutique series. I always wanted a Juno 106 but somehow passed the window where they were still affordable. This one gets as close as it gets to the original in my opinion and ever since I got it half a year ago it has already heavily informed my productions.
4. NECKLACE (ICON, CHECK HERE): I wish I could say there’s some sentimental value attached to this one, but I do like the design and combination of geometrical shapes with elements of nature.
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1. CRYSTAL (CHRYSOCOLLA): This crystal travels with me every where. It’s the 1st stone that strongly resonated with me. It has helped me keep my calm during some difficult moments and tap into the world of healing with intention. It was a thoughtful gift from an old friend.
2. EYE DROPS (ROHTO, CHECK HERE): Killer Japanese eye drops, the silver Rohtos are a true exercise in masochism. Most people want to tear their eyes out after a drop or 2, but as you build a tolerance, you realize that they actually revive your tired eyes in a way nothing else can. They can also provide a great source of entertainment, watching a first timer stumble around blindly cursing the dirty trick that was just pulled on them….timeless
3. CUSTOM EAR PLUGS (EMTECH, CHECK HERE): These custom ear plugs are a must when spending any amount of time in front of a loud system. They take some getting used to, but your ears learn to compensate for the frequencies. It’s also nice not having to suffer from constant ringing in your ears after a long night of gigging.
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1. CUSTOM-FITTED EARPLUGS (GEERS, CHECK HERE): Your hearing is to be cherished. Don’t fuck around.
2. RACQUET BALLS (CUT IN HALF, NO BRAND): DJing with vinyl is an uphill struggle in 2015. My beloved squash balls have been borne the weight of countless locally sourced concrete blocks, saving the day from rumble and feedback.
3. SOCKS (VARIOUS BRANDS): Socks are important when you’re a DJ. I used to buy quite fun socks but then I mentioned to my friend Joe that nobody had ever bought me socks for Christmas. Now he and my girlfriend buy me fun socks every Christmas and I just buy ordinary socks at like Uniqlo or wherever.
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