Interviews / 18 March, 2020

OIBAF&WALLEN: “We always maintain the essence of the club”


“We have to be responsible, and the better we all do, the better the result will be,” says Fabio Fernández on the other end of the phone. At this time it is impossible to avoid the coronavirus issue that seriously affected the electronic music scene in general and OIBAF&WALLEN in particular. The Madrid duo, formed by Fabio Fernández together with Samuel Wallen, had a showcase scheduled in London for the beginning of April and later dates in Barcelona and Hungary that must now be rescheduled.

However, OIBAF&WALLEN have a lot of work ahead since they are about to release their debut album. It consist in nine tracks mastered at Eternal Midnight Studio, which contains the best of their essence marked by techno in its most melodic or deep sense but also embracing the dance floor.

It is the type of sound that has allowed them to receive the support of great artists such as Guy Gerber, Øostil and Rafael Cerato, among others. “We include things that called our attention in all these years, such as breakbeat or deeper sounds, but always maintaining the essence of the club. It is a challenge for us since we have been preparing it for several years”, tell Fernández and Wallen.

The album will be a synthesis of all the work that the duo has been doing since 2017. They started working together after having crossed paths at a techno party in Madrid where Oscar Mulero was playing. “That night we began to talk about machines and producing. After that our friendship and musical work didn’t stop,” recalls Fernández.

Music is the main source that nurtures the friendship between the two artists, which goes beyond the OIBAF&WALLEN duo. They also run the ONISM label, through which they produce emerging artists and which take up as much time as their own duo. In fact, this year they are planning to release remixes of melodic and even indie/dance Belgian and Italian artists. “It reminds us a little of the electro or disco music of the eighties and nineties that is becoming so fashionable now,” they explain. After the summer, they will launch other references with renowned artists such as Ubbah or Mia Mendi.


Where did the idea of ​​creating a label come from?

– Of the concern to publish music that we like and that other labels sometimes do not like. It is important to us that it comes out under our name, both in collaboration and on our behalf. Samuel launched the label together with a partner and had the idea of ​explore on industrial drier techno. After they divided their forces, I came over and brought a more melodic and progressive part. We saw that the union as producers in our duo project fit perfectly. Since then we have seen that our career is taking a considerable pace, which helps us continue to have the flow of releases of our projects and other artists.

What is your opinion on the Madrid scene today? Is there any room for projects like yours?

– The Madrid scene is very complicated because there are two or three promoters and big clubs that dictate all bookings. It is difficult to find new proposals outside of techno and house mainstream and when they are quite intermittent. There are proposals such as Fluido, Mondo or Replay that Madrid maintains, or some brands that bet at least mainstream. That is why OIBAF&WALLEN has more movement outside of Madrid. We understand that companies want profit, but it would be appreciated if there were more festivals such as Paraíso, which are big and also bet on new artists.

Which scene according to you is the most interesting?

– Berlin has a lot of essence and they are very eclectic. They continually seek the avant-garde. There is a lot of fusion and collaboration between clubs and artists. In both there and London you have other facets beyond presenting yourself in a club as a DJ. We move around a lot in cities like Cologne, Düsseldorf or Bochum. Germany takes the lead in this whole scene, but in the melodic aspect that we are working on, Latin America, Italy and Eastern Europe have a progressive scene on the rise.

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