An Interview with The Monkey Brothers

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The Monkey Brothers are Sergio and Ruben, a longstanding pair who’ve been involved for electronic music for over a decade-and-a-half now. Unlike similarly named duos, the boys are actual brothers, and grew up in Santander in Spain. Renowned for their curious live show, they also helm the Parallel label, an imprint that’s fast becoming renowned for its many intricate and deep house pastures. We checked in with them ahead of the release of their latest EP, and here’s what they’d to say for themselves…

We’d like to start by asking about Parallel. What made you want to set it up? And who inspired you to do so?

Well, first and foremost, we are music lovers. We love to be in contact with musicians and to find new talents. Also, we like to control all the music process, from the production until the promotion and the distribution so we decided to create our own label. We didn’t get any particular inspiration from anybody in this matter.

What is it about the label that makes it stick out from other ones?

We have our own image and our own method of working, and of course we believe that all the music that we release on Parallel is different and at the same time, all the sound we publish has a common wire.

How long have you been working as musicians? What’s been your proudest accomplishment to date?

We have been working as musicians for around 14 years or more now. We are proud of managing our careers without having to sell out.

What do you see as the future of Parallel do you think?

We have big future plans for Parallel, it’s growing well and we have big plans for it which you’ll be hearing more about soon.

And what do you think is the future of your own sound?

Sound is not a static thing, it is always moving and transforming. We believe our sound will keep moving also toward refinement, always keeping the essence of it.

The artwork on your records is always very noticeable. Do you think people pay much attention to the art these days? Is it a bit of a pity that they don’t?

When you present a product to the public, all the parts and all the details involve on it are very, very important. Maybe nowadays it’s not so visible but that doesn’t mean that it is less important. The aesthetic is very important for us, yes.

Where did you guys grow up and how would you describe that time?

We grew up in Santander, a beautiful small city in the north coast of Spain. It was fantastic, we were always near the beach, surfing , partying etc.

What’s better now in the scene? And what’s worse?

It’s better that there are more venues, festivals etc, and almost in every country in the world there is a club where your music fit. What’s worse is that everything is saturated and the public is losing the sense of quality.

So do you reckon the Internet is a good or bad thing for electronic music? Or maybe a bit of both?

Lets just say that it is a bit of both.

You play live, right? Can you talk us through your set-up a bit?

Two computers, 4 open channels in the mixer, 2 midi controllers and 2 rhythm machines.

Where are you living right now? What’s it like? What are your favourite and least favourite things about the city?

Sergio lives in a small town in the Spanish north coast, near the beach, in a very beautiful and quite place. Ruben lives in Palma de Mallorca. We love everything about the places we are living, which is why we chose to live in them!

Which DJs and producers have influenced your sound more than any others? And why?

Many DJs and producers, Orbital, Leftfield, Brian Eno, David Byrne, Anthony Rother, Led Zeppelin, Plaid, Garnier, Mills, so many.

Aside from music, what do you get up to in your spare time?

We love the beach, surfing, good movies, good books, a good lunch with friends, of course to spend time with our daughters, football, poker…

Imagine you were playing your final set tonight. What tracks would you choose and why?

Nothing different than other sets really, as we don’t think you should to prepare something special because it’s the final one.

Monkey Brothers’ Facades EP is out now on Parallel