Interview: Nora En Pure talks 2018 highlights, Purified and nature ahead of her return to Oz
She's playing Corona Sunsets and The Pleasure Garden this December.
Header photo by Benjamin Diedering.
Nora En Pure is a Zurich-based producer/DJ who doesn't spend a whole lot of time at home. Regularly on the road playing some of the world's biggest festivals (Ultra, Coachella, Tomorrowland) and touring her own Purified events has seen her become one of the world's most in-demand deep house/indie-dance artists.
She'll be back in Australia this summer to play Corona Sunsets Festival in Wollongong on December 1 and the huge Pleasure Garden Festival in St Kilda on December 8, and she was kind enough to answer a few little questions for us to get you feeling festive:
Photo by Ilias Van Bambost.
First up let’s start with what’s been another huge year for the Nora En Pure project – what have been some of the highlights (the Tomorrowland Daybreak Session looked amazing!)?
Hi guys, yes it’s been a pretty non-stop year! Playing the Tomorrowland Daybreak Session was definitely again a highlight for me, but there really have been so many good times, I also loved playing Ultra earlier this year, that was a fantastic stage and crowd. Then I really loved putting on my own Purified events in Miami, Zürich, San Francisco and New York, which was next level.
It seems like your constantly on the road, but also regularly releasing music, how do you balance the touring lifestyle with production?
That definitely isn't easy at times. I often work on drafts and ideas on the road and when I get back home for a few more days I take the time to actually work on them. Also recently one of my studio partners moved to Nashville US so at least now I can go there and work from there in between touring weekends in the States. That helps a lot as previously I always had to return to Switzerland in between weekends in order to get things done.
Having toured and played in places all over the world, are there any that hold a particularly special place in your heart, and if so why?
Mostly places become memorable if the crowd is really into it, but at times it is also just the atmosphere or setting. I played in amazing sceneries in Bali or Fiji. Generally in North America I get fantastic crowds as well as in Johannesburg, Prague and Melbourne to name a few of my favourite cities to play!
Are you across the house scene down here – are there any artists down here you think are doing particularly good things?
Of course I enjoy the works of Flume or Rüfüs Du Sol - while they are a band I still enjoy playing some of their records in my sets. I haven't been following too closely the scene lately, but in the last few years I enjoyed works of Cut Snake and Motez.
House, and deep house, are fairly broad genres, how do you go about carving such a unique niche for yourself – what/who/where inspires you when it comes to producing and remixes?
I tend to always balance exploring news sounds and continuing to bring that signature NEP sound, which is a particularly crisp and clean sound. It has a bit more powerful kicks and baselines than your average deep house and more melodies and organic instruments as well, which is what makes you recognise a NEP track. In general I find inspiration from all over the place, I love nature and being outdoors. Missing South Africa and its immensely beautiful wilderness definitely influences my music as well. Another thing I am very inspired by is movie soundtracks and the way they manage to really take the listener on a journey through their soundscapes. That's what I try and implement into my own music.
You’re a master when it comes to sets of any lengths – do you have a preference for longer or shorter sets, and how does the preparation differ between the two?
Thank you! :) I really enjoy playing longer sets, as you are really able to develop it and as mentioned before, take the listener on a journey. I definitely enjoyed playing the three hour Tomorrowland Daybreak Session for that exact reason and quite like how it turned into a timeless and classy set. Shorter playtimes are tricky, because you really have to plan it out and condense it and I barely ever manage to play all of what I want to play in a short time.
Going back to your hectic touring schedule – mental health and in particular that of DJs and touring musicians has become a big talking point in 2018, how do you look after yourself mentally and physically when you’re constantly travelling, partying, playing shows?
I think if you are a sensitive person that tends to overthink and question a lot, it is vital to have a strong support system as in close family and friends. Touring alone most of the time and being tired because of jetlag and late nights can easily bring you in a negative spiral. In those times it is great to have people that are there for you and understand this and know how to build you up and get you out of it.
You’ll be back in Australia soon – another country who loves to have you, how does playing down here compare to the rest of the world, and what keeps bringing you back?
Well I absolutely love to be there, after the monster journey ;). Coming back is amazing because I find a lot of similarities to South Africa, so I do feel somehow at home. People are very open minded and love to be outdoors, crowds are energetic and genuine – I love that. I always try to explore the nature here as there is a lot to offer. Last time I went out in the early morning, I think I didn't even go to sleep after the set to hike somewhere and we found so many kangaroos in the forest. I know for you guys that is nothing special, but I just love to encounter animals in the wild. I also went diving at the Great Barrier Reef which was so amazing to do, I was so so happy after that. These kind of things fuel my soul immensely!
While you’re down here you’ve got a little bit of time amongst the tour, is there anything you have planned for your down time?
Actually not yet at all, I always live in the now as it is a very hectic tour schedule, so I tend to not look too much ahead ;-). But I will actually check right now where I will be staying during this time and definitely make the most out of it!
And once the tour wraps up, besides a heap of touring obviously, what’s coming up for you at the end of the year, 2019 and beyond?
This year I have really enjoyed curating my own Purified events, and I can't wait doing more of those next year. I have a vocal single that I am planning to release at the beginning of the year, which is a similar style to Tears In Your Eyes, so I'm quite looking forward to that one!
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