Dag Wallin aka Human Blue’s music represents what’s best about the psy-trance scene: glorious morning sunrises and emotional rushes on the dancefloor. Sometimes progressive, sometimes grooving, but always classic, timeless trance. Neerav caught up with him, whilst working on his new album Electrolüx to bring you this exclusive update

Can you give us some background information, how long making music, labels released on etc?

Well, I’ve been “around” the scene for approximately 10 years but I’ve been working with electronic music much longer than that, composing music has been a part of my life for more then 20 years.
My first release was a 12” on spiral trax in ’97 and after that I’ve been working with a lot of labels, Transient Rec, Medium Rec (Midijum nowadays..), Iboga Rec, Flow Rec to name a few. I’ve also made 3 albums for Spiral tracks. ‘Ice’ in ’99, a second album “Electric roundabout”, in 2002 and now the third.

Your sound has matured a great deal since your first album. How did you start making music, how did you evolve and what do you use now to make your tracks?
I basically started with the piano at five and kept on playing that for many years. I still enjoy playing it. When I became a teenager , I got my first synthesizer and I slowly started to make my own tracks. My inspiration came mostly from pop but I was very interested in synthesizer music and this has affected me a lot I think. (Still do if you listen closely to some of my tracks).
When the acid house and techno first came out in the late 80s I fell for it totally and starting making covers of it in my home studio.
When I then was introduced to trance music, in ’93 I think, everything was perfectly clear to me. This kind of music had everything from the “synth pop” to the techno with something very deep in it that reminded me about “native” people’s way of working/expressing music.
Something else that has affected my way of producing is probably all the gigs I’ve had over the years. Every gig I do I’m trying to learn what people like, how they want their perfect dance track, what it takes to build energy with only sound shapes and music. It’s not easy but I think I’m closer to the truth today than five years ago.

How would you describe the Human Blue sound?
It’s really hard for me to do that but I can give it a try. I guess most of my tracks are quite different from each other. When they’re finished I don’t hear them as tracks anymore, they are more like paintings to me I think. One thing’s for shore though, I’ve always liked funky stuff in music. If this doesn’t show from the bassline’s of my tracks, you might find it in the percussion or why not in the melody (If there is one..). Maybe there are some funky chords doing this and that…

What exactly is a ‘Human Blue’ where is the name from?
It’s a mix of things that makes life important to me. Some examples, blue is my favourite colour, the colour of water is mostly painted and thought of as blue, the sky is blue, my eye’s are almost blue. “Feeling blue” is something we all do from time to time. Human is a little bit harder to explain. I guess my thought with “human” in Human blue was that I wished for my music to never become too stiff. I’ve always liked funky stuff in music and to me, this is what makes music human.

You’ve been with Spiral Trax for sometime now. How do you get on with the other main artists of the label, S-Range, Atmos etc and Anti and Bakke who run the show?
Well, we all know each other more or less personally. I think Thomas (Atmos) is the closest, since we used to live in the same small city. I’ve done gigs together with all of them over the years and we get along really good I think. I don’t think I have to tell you who’s the most stressed one of them… Just joking. Anti is really honest and “trustable” and for me this is very important. He’s also quite “handy” with his business, always finds new ways of doing things, getting more releases and stuff like that. I feel that I can really trust him with my music. (A little slow with money sometimes but who isn’t??)

Do you ever share the studio with the other artists or do you prefer to work solo?
I think it’s healthy for the creative part of me to share the studio with someone else every now and then, to see how they think to see how they solve a problem.

How is the scene in Sweden?
To be honest I don’t “hang out” in the trance scene nowadays. One really great thing with Sweden is probably all the nature we have here, where you can have those really great parties without getting disturbed or without disturbing anyone.

Do you DJ yourself? If not, how do you ‘test’ your tracks?
This is always a little problem for me as I normally don’t DJ. I sometimes get DJ friends to test them but mostly I try them out on parties where I play. Because of this, there’s always one, two or sometimes even three new tracks in every liveset.

Your ambient compositions get a lot of play in my house! Any plans for an ambient album?
I’ve actually been working a lot with ambient/downbeat music this Autumn and it feels really nice to work with something else for a change. I just sent away a little CD demo with some new fresh productions. A full album would surely be a challenge and maybe some day, why not?

We heard your studio got broken into. How did you recover from this situation?
I’m not sure I’ve recovered yet to be honest. All the stuff I had collected over the years. Today I do almost everything with software, but I still mix my tracks as analogue as possible. From my pulsar system I use D/A converters out to my 24-channel mixing desk. This works really great for me now but sometimes I really, really miss my old equipment like hell!!!