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“Either you evolve or remain stagnant in your space.” This underlying hymn is the foremost vigor that sets Midnight Traffic apart, making him create a niche soundscape distinctly identifiable with his name. The evolutional journey from an ardent listener jostling through genres eventually ported him behind the console as a DJ. Thanks to his innate inquisitiveness about gears and the science behind the production, it was just a matter of time before he evolved from an artist ‘playing’ music to ‘crafting the making of music.’
Midnight Traffic found his footing in the vast ocean of electronic music, where he blends driving deep elements with a cerebral appeal, creating a unique sonic space for himself. As he forayed into production, his EP and single releases in well-established labels like Qilla, Endangered, Click, Movement Recordings, and Juicebox Music carry the imprint of a “Thinking Producer.” His sound explores the intersection between artistry and technicality, where he combines his innate inquisitiveness about gears and production science to craft his music.
Never a prisoner of his own craft, Midnight Traffic has consistently pushed boundaries, transcending into an unexplored sphere that aptly articulates his art into the soundscape. His music is constantly played across some of the most popular radio shows and featured in niche gigs worldwide.
He continues to evolve his sound and craft, his music promises to offer listeners an unforgettable journey into the world of electronic music production.
I had the opportunity to chat with him and asked him a few questions to get to know him better.
Tell us about a particular moment or experience that inspired you to pursue a music career.
As much as it’s an extension of who I am today, it actually wasn’t a journey that I had planned. I had finished college, a casual visit to a friend’s place, and there I saw him playing some music, but there were no conventional instruments as such; it was all some hi-tech gadgets and CD players. It amazed me how he could blend 2 different tracks, which was the eureka moment for me. It got me amused so much that I decided I wanted to become a DJ.
Your sound has been described as an evolving and distinct soundscape that reflects your artistic expression. How do you approach the creative process when making music?
My creative process may be perceived as complex for many, but in reality, I, as a person, look at things for simplicity. I start with an absolutely empty canvas. This enables me to gather my ideas without any boundaries or pre-established limits. About precisely what expressions I want to articulate through my sounds – some are simply how I am feeling at that very moment, very instinctive or probably my state of mind that day and at times accumulated over time attributed to memories.
Tell us more about the name Midnight Traffic 😉
Saw this coming from miles away. Hahaha… There’s nothing very well thought out strategy behind it. It’s actually an incident that happened many years ago when I was playing at a club pretty late in the night. My friend Aditya Batra was away on a phone call arguing with someone (don’t ask who was on the other side). He gets back, cribs about the traffic and boom!!
He goes, “That’s your monicker Midnight Traffic’
Can you share your thoughts on the electronic music scene in India and how it’s evolving? Additionally, your music has been described as having a cerebral and psychedelic approach – can you tell us more about this and how it relates to the music scene in India?
The advent of Electronic Music is not new in India. We had musicians who brought in influences of electronic elements way back and were certainly ahead of the time. Someone like Charanjit Singh was truly a pioneer, and so was someone like Bappi Lahiri, who composed mainly for movies. The scene in the early late 90s and early 2000s was different. India saw nightclubs, and DJ culture was nascent – we used to get probably 2-3 international artists a year and only to select 1-2 cities. Now we have artists coming every week and Indian artists traveling a lot outside India. Music Festivals brought in more awareness, and surely the advent of Spotify and other apps brought access to a wider audience. I feel the audience is as responsible for growth as artists.
My music connects with people at a very thinking level, and probably the word cerebral. I have evolved as a DJ/Producer, which has happened because of India’s evolving audience.
You have most of your releases on Qilla records, with the best selection of quality Techno producers. How did you start releasing your music on the label, and what has it been like working with them?
I met the label owner Kohra at a gig where we played. He heard my set, liked my style and asked if I was also producing. He asked me to send some of my work and liked a couple of tracks. That was the foray into Qilla. Knowing him only got me to the doorstep; making an entry was purely because my sounds synchronized with the label’s vision. What needs to be noted is that both the label and my sounds are on a path of a vision, and as long as it converges, there is a release. The A&R of Qilla has a certain perspective that not only helped me evolve but also made the label become broader. Working with Qilla has been very enriching – you not only learn from the peers but also build on your abilities and evolve.
You’ve mentioned your love for different genres of music, but we’re curious – do you have a favorite type of food you love to indulge in? If so, what is it, and what are some of your favorite ones? 🙂
India is a very diverse country. Within a city, you will find different shades of culture reflected in the food. I absolutely love South Indian food and its diversity and signature flavor (that made me hungry, shall be right back!)
Love Indian food too! Haha
Watched your set for Boiler Room Hyderabad last year. Amazing one! How do you prepare for your performance, and what do you hope to convey to your audience through your music?
My preparation happens way before the gig, the way I organize my music is very personal to me, and I am quite strict with it; maybe that’s why it’s structured. I don’t plan my set. I do my best to read the audience and establish a connection – does the word ‘Cerebral ring a bell??
Finally, super stoked to see what’s next for you. Share with us some sneak peek into your plans for the future. Are there any upcoming releases, collaborations, or performances you’re particularly looking forward to?
Over the last couple of years, I have supported Bandcamp avidly. That’s the ecosystem I think all the producers deserve. I can actually explore and analyze my audience by looking at their buying pattern. It helps me see who bought my tracks and build a close connection with my audience.
I’ve planned two independent releases on Bandcamp this year, one of which will be a Vol. Series called – Option Paralysis.
I have a release coming in mid of this year on a label that has been on my wishlist for a long time. You will get to know soon (can’t talk about it – walls have ears!!)
In terms of performances, this has moved from the ideation to the planning stage now and soon shall be executed. I plan to launch my IP; that would be pretty much.
Thank you for your time, and hope to see you soon in Kuala Lumpur. Check out his mix for Voidrealm Podcast #73