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Ash Roy Interview


Who came up with the name Soupherb and why did you see the need to set up a record label?
Actually, it was Ashvin [Mani Sharma]. He got the idea from a friend who used to message him and write superb as “SoupHerb”. I wanted to set up a label way before but I was concentrating more on Jalebee Cartel. Now, since Jalebee is off so I thought it would be best to start immediately. So I had a chat with Ashvin and we went ahead the idea. We set up the label to be able to scout around for artists who are doing interesting stuff and give them a platform to release their music. We also want to collaborate with various artists and get our music out there.

What is the best and most frustrating thing about running a label?

The initial paper work and setting up is frustrating. The best thing about it is when you look around and find an artist who is making excellent music and you get to release it on your label before anyone else. And you get to play it out in your sets before anybody else does. Plus, in this whole process you make friends with artists from all over the world.

Do you and Ashvin Mani Sharma have the same musical tastes? What is the one thing you’ll don’t see eye-to-eye on?

We do have similar tastes otherwise we wouldn’t be a part of Jalebee Cartel. When we DJ, we do play different sets but we complement each other with our styles. I like what he plays and he likes what I play. What is the one thing we don’t see eye-to-eye on? Well, when we wear shades, I guess. Seriously, we do have creative differences but we try and accommodate them and understand each other’s views. We look at the bigger picture instead of squabbling over petty issues.

What did you learn most from your time with Jalebee Cartel?

Jalebee Cartel was a source of inspiration for me. I learned a lot of things from everyone who was a part of it. The most important thing was that we had fun and we enjoyed every bit of our journey. We always made the effort to take it to the next level.

It seems that after you’ll disbanded everyone took a while to figure their own sound and what direction they wanted to take it in. What was it like for you?

Once we disbanded, I was still in Jalebee Cartel mode. I kept producing tracks with live vocals and percussions, keeping the whole LIVE angle in mind. But then, after a year or two I realised that I needed to get out and get back to producing more dancefloor tracks so that I could play them in my Dj sets. That’s what I eventually ended up doing.

How much of an influence is Berlin and your time there on your music / production?

Berlin helped me a lot. I got to play and visit so many different festivals and venues. I listened to so many different artists that it changed my approach towards production. The sound that I was producing before with Jalebee Cartel was very different to what I am doing now. Earlier, I was very influenced by Underworld, The Chemical Brothers and Depeche Mode. My productions were very inspired by these bands. When I got to Europe and heard so many techno artists like Ambivalent, Gaiser, Richie Hawtin, Sven Vaeth, Brandt Brauer Frick and Josh Wink that it changed my whole thought process.

What’s your favourite venue outside of the country you’ve seen on your travels?

I’d say Fusion Festival in Germany and Paradiso in Amsterdam. I have been lucky enough to have performed in both places.

Any artists we should be keeping an eye out for in the next few months from the label point of view?
Maharana, AFM (Arnold From Mumbai) & Audio Units.