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Interview // Hannes Bieger @ IPSE

One month after the event, everybody is still buzzing and talking about IPSE. Therefore, we had a chat with Hannes Bieger who played live just after the release of his EP ‚Tephra’.


Have you played at IPSE before? What is your feeling about the event?

I was genuinely excited! Not only did I never play at IPSE before, in fact, this was my live set debut as Hannes Bieger.I have played live with various bands up until some 12 years ago, but then I completely focused on studio work for over a decade. So this was a major event for me, with months of preparations finally paying off and coming to a climax.


How did your audience respond to your live? Is there a track or more that they responded to best? 

In general, I felt a very warm reception, the energy was incredible. There was a great response to my EPs La Selva, Strato and Tephra. I also played an unreleased collaboration with Sailor & I, and that tune, as the first vocal tune in my live set, got some great reactions as well. My favourite moment was when I played the closing track, Mauna Loa, which came out on Bedrock a few weeks ago. The crowd was following my every filter moves on the synths so closely, and the fairly dramatic rise and fall of tension of that track played out really well. I wish that moment would have gone on forever!


You played beside Steve Bug, Rodriguez Jr. and a lot of other talented producers, how was it? 

I felt honoured to share the stage with Steve Bug and guys like Rodriguez Jr. for my first ever show with the new live set. It was great to watch him follow my live set and taking over. We have shared so many hours working on music together, and his reactions and his feedback mean a lot to me.

Of course, it was great to watch him picking up the energy and doing his thing, he is so good!


What was your setup? 

I guess I have a reputation as the "high end analogue guy", with regard to the international recognition of my studio work. My goal was to transfer the no compromise attitude I have in the studio to the stage as well. Many people suggested to focus on a setup that fits completely into hand luggage, but I simply couldn't pull that off.

I wanted to create an experience that makes full use of the punch and dynamics of a large sound system, so there was no way around analogue synths, a proper mixer and good converters, and I have customised many of the hardware units to fit my requirements. I am using a Moog Sub-37 (with a custom fx tray with OTO reverb and delay pedals), a DSI Prophet-6 and two Strymon pedals, and everything is tied together via an SSL X-Desk. The stuff from Ableton goes through a UA Apollo 8 converter. This is a setup worthy of a small studio, and my impression was that it worked really, really well.


How was the general atmosphere, energy there? 

From my own experience and from what people told me afterward I had the sense the crowd seemed super into it during the whole set, with the energy level constantly rising to the end.

Some people told me afterward that they normally prefer DJ sets over live sets, but that they really enjoyed it. So I guess I must have struck a nerve... But It all went down way too fast for me to fully understand what was going on, so I can't wait to play the next shows, gain more experience, fine-tune the setup and enjoy this new path. It feels like liberation to finally hit the stage again!


Watch an excerpt of his live session here: