Techno Fusionist Tomas Jirku

Where is the place in the photograph on your  homepage?
At the moment that photo is of Pitt Lake and the mountains surrounding it. The photo changes as I update my site, but the tendency for me is to have photos of mountains and the natural surroundings around Vancouver. I think it makes for a great leveler, contrasting against the imagery normally associated with electronic music.

You’ve achieved a lengthy discography in the last five years. What do you owe your already prolific music career to?
It has a lot to do with timing. i feel i lucked out that i got into it when I did, just before it really exploded in eastern Canada and when the techno scenein Europe was the strongest. it seems to be suffering on some levels as of late, with sales being a lot less predictable and the market changing due mostly to
over-saturation and the effect of file-sharing. Only a few years ago the techno scene was growing in a positive direction and record labels were a lot more open
to new ideas because they could afford to be. I myself was only beginning to make music at that time and I’m grateful to have had a chance to share my music
even as everything i made was very much an experiment. so my discography reflects my willingness to share every musical idea that I record because it’s a constant learning experience for me.

Your music ranges from hip hop to techno; do you ultimately have a love of one particular style and why?
Techno in all it’s variety is what is at the core of everything I record, so even if I’m producing a hip-hop track with The Killaz or a piece based around my friend Trevor Juras on guitar, I’ll be approaching it with techno on my mind and elements of that will come through in the music. but this is because my definition of techno is a lot broader than what most people are willing to deem as techno. I prefer to keep in mind the entire lineage of music that techno is derived from and that techno has become and this allows me to reference rave culture, music-concrete, electro, new-age and countless other deviations in one production.

Who or what have been some been some of your inspirations – creatively or even just motivationally?
I couldn’t possibly pinpoint any number of specific sources of inspiration. everything I hear or see that i agree with or learn from aesthetically is a source of inspiration for me. Have you always been interested in electronica?definitely. My father is an electrician, so i grew up messing around with electrical components, working with him wiring machines, and i think there is a definite connection with electronic music. Just having faith in electronics and what is possible when humans interact with electronics. the imagery and connotations of the man-machine interaction are all there in the music, but it should also be understood how much of the human becomes exposed through the intimate use and understanding of the machines. With electronic music i think it’s all the more interesting when the human elementbecomes apparent and the control that producer has over a piece can express as much if not more than music made with traditional physical instruments.

Have ou taken a particular approach to marketing your music or has your approach to your audience and potential audience grown in an organic fashion?
I’ve never really kept a consistent audience in mind when making or marketing my music. I’m too fickle in my music production and the audience is fickle in it’s tastes in a completely incongruous way so the best way for me to get my music out there is to find a label that agrees with my aesthetic at the time, a label that has a strong following that trusts its output and can relate my music to it’s audience. this has lead me to work with much more labels than most producers and has afforded me much more flexibility in my productions.

You relocated from Toronto to Vancouver; how has that move been? Have you seen the change of your creative environment reflected in the music you are producing?
I find myself much more inspired by the producers in this city. I haven’t before encountered such a variety of talented producers, all very open-minded and original in their respective approaches and all very much willing to share their ideas. The fact that Vancouver is a comparatively smaller city than most others that have a strong electronic music community prevents it from getting cliquey and avoids much of the drama that can occur within a larger competitive music environment. for me the move has been very positive for many reasons beyond just music. The surrounding environment and general mentality of the population is what drew me here first, and it has had an impact on my life in a way that might be reflected in my music, though I wouldn’t know how to qualify it.

Is there a Canadian techno sound? Is there east coast and west coast techno?
I hope not. I find it exceedingly uninspiring when a regional sound develops. I can understand how it can help with the recognition and acceptance of a group of musicians to a more mainstream audience, but I feel it contradicts the desire for progress and innovation within electronic music and music technology.

Who are some of your local collaborators in music production?
I’ve collaborated with numerous local producers on various levels on on-going projects which are probably best left to be mentioned when the results will be available to ears other than our own. one project which will see the light of day shortly is a new album and series of EPs with

Robin Judge under the alias "Jirku – Judge" on Onitor Recordsfrom Cologne.

What, if there are any, are aspects of electronica that you still find challenging either in its production and/or in its appreciation?
Every aspect is a challenge for me, the moment it stops would likely be the moment I lose interest in it.

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