Norin & Rad Interview (FNT Exclusive)

Posted by on March 1, 2013


Bruce Karlsson (Norin) & Nick Sember (Rad) better known as Norin & Rad to most of you have become one of the brightest stars in the American trance scene. The two Northern California natives met several years back through mutual friends and since their first single “The Gift”, their career trajectory has only been upward. After releases on Tritonal’s Air Up There label, Enhanced and Coldharbour, they were taken under the guise of Above & Beyond and signed to Anjunabeats. Their single “Bloom” announced their arrival to the trance community that they were a name that needed to be watched.

They have a unique and varied sound that is the archetype of the new blend of trance and house that pervades the trance genre now. The duo have gone from being college students to playing festivals like Tomorrowland, Electric Zoo and EDC in a few short years. Coming off of a strong 2012 with a slew of releases on Anjunabeats, they are set for an even bigger year in 2013 with an album in the works that they say has some “really interesting material” and a single “Aldo” coming this Monday on the Anjunabeats Volume 10. We had the chance to ask them about being a part of the Anjunabeats family, their album and their working relationship. Check out their recent free track “Snap” below and the interview after the jump.

Free Download: Norin & Rad – Aldo

1. What has been the most beneficial thing about being a member of the Anjunabeats roster?

Definitely the most beneficial to our careers has been the amount of gigs they’ve provided for us. We’ve got to reach fans all over the world so there are many benefits being a part of the anjunabeats family!

2. Would you say that “Aldo” is the follow up to “Bloom” in terms of style and release (Anjunabeats vol 9 -> Anjunabeats vol 10)

Yes. We made Aldo for precisely that reason. As we grow our sound changes, obviously. We develop new tastes and sounds to keep having fun in the studio, but we always like to go back to the sounds we started on.

3. You guys don’t live together, so how do you handle working in the studio?

We do a lot of work over Skype. We’ll just get on together and go over melodies and beats for tracks. We can take control of each others screens and chat all day so it makes it very easy. And other times I (Nick) will drive down to Bruce’s house for a couple days to finish arrangements and such.

4. Who takes the lead in the studio and & behind the the decks?

Bruce definitely is the mastermind in the studio. He can come up with any sound we think of. If we think something will sound good in a track, it usually only takes him a few seconds to create and design it. I do most of the mixing right now live. I’ll come up with edits and things to make the set bounce more and do some live mashing while Bruce is helping with effects and EQ. Soon he’ll be doing our visuals as well.

5. How difficult was it for both of you guys to go to school and to try and make this DJ thing work?

Well it’s always a bit difficult to juggle that many things at once, but Bruce and I were (and still are) very passionate about music and motivated to keep making it better. In a sense it was always more fun than work.

6. Nick, what made you switch from live bands to electronic music?

I still like to play guitar and other instruments, but I was always interested in making hip hop and electronic music. Eventually I got some turntables in high school and from there I realized how much I enjoyed DJing.

7. How was the decision made on who got to be Norin & who got to be Rad?

Ha, we never really were gonna take the names, kind of like a band name. We think of it more as an entity, but when people started asking we just decided that Bruce would say Norin and I would say Rad.

8. How is the album coming along…. You have mentioned at everything from tech to moombah? Is there a timetable for release?

We’ve got some really interesting material coming out of our studio at the moment! Two new glitch hop tunes at 100bpm, and yes, even some moombah. No clue when release will be since we still have so much more we want to do.

9. What is something people would not expect about Bruce & Nick?

We actually met at an electronic music event through some friends!

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