Interview by Anano Shalamberidze

Prior to their AMSTERDAM DANCE EVENT (ADE) gig, DJ duo ARTBAT talks to Numéro about defining their sound, early influences and upcoming ventures. 

Like with every conversation, let’s start from the beginning…How did you two meet? What brought you together and what inspired you to get started with your craft? Share with us the backstory of ARTBAT…

Once we met in a club, and our friends connected us. We talked and decided to spend one time in the studio together and try it out. In our first studio session, from the first hour, we realized that we can make good music that we both like, that we can make it fast enough and we like the process together. We can spend all day in the studio and joke, have fun, and talk, which doesn’t happen when you’re working alone. Together, we’re sharing a good time and playing music, finding good ideas.

We made one track, then two tracks, and started to figure out that we wanted to continue that way. We started to play some gigs as a project and we searched for authentic names, for two months actually. Then the idea came from our names; ARTBAT is Artur and Batish.

It’s been really terrific. It all started with a dream to represent our country Ukraine in the dance music world and here we are. Of course, it makes us super proud and we can’t thank everyone enough for the massive support and love we have received since our first-ever release. One thing is for sure. This is only the beginning. To be honest, it was the most interesting and challenging journey we had. It makes us feel alive, inspired, and happy.

How do you manage to represent both of your voices in your music? What is the process of creation like?

Everything is teamwork and that is key to a successful collaboration. Stick together – you always have your best friend with you, you’re not on your own always in good company. We always have fun, discussing ideas, and helping each other to be in good mood in general, also much more ideas can be created and tried out instantly.

Who were your early musical influences?

We both started to listen to electronic music very young. First, it was [’90s] European dance music, like Dr. Alban. So it was like ’93, ’94. For our whole life, we’ve lived in headphones. We’d spend all our money on new music, buying cassettes, then discs, etc. We also listened to DJs like Paul van Dyk and Armin Van Buuren to Carl Cox, Adam Beyer, and also Stephan Bodzin was one of our favorites. Some of them inspired us in some styles and others in different ways. We really liked how Deep Dish and Stephan Bodzin made their own style with Oliver Huntemann, as well as Carl Cox’s techno, for its power.

And of course, we both listened to a lot of electronic bands like Orbital, Chemical Brothers, Prodigy, and Depeche Mode. Also, we like Pink Floyd a lot.

How would you define your sound to those who have possibly never heard your music?

Positive, happy, energetic melodic techno. We want to see happy faces on the dance floor.

Over the years of your notable career in music, you have done collaborations, features, and remixes. What has been your favorite project to work on so far, if you can point out one (or a few) of them and why?

We have had incredible collaborations all the way. It would be terrible to pick out one or two. We can say that every single band, vocalist, or producer we’ve worked with was highly professional and inspirational. The journey has been incredible. Who has thought after a few years we would sit next to Idris Elba and talk about the most normal things in life? New friendships have been created and we are beyond thankful for that.

Numéro’s latest issue is titled “Metamorphosis”. What associations do you have with the word? Have you undergone significant transformations since the beginning of your journey? Has your approach to making music changed in any way?

The approach has not changed. Maybe our way of thinking. Music and styles develop over time. It’s a natural and very normal process. If you stand still, you stand still. We are super open-minded and always try to see the next big thing. It’s essential to not close yourself to opportunities ahead.

Can you tell us more about your upcoming ventures? What can we expect from ARTBAT in 2023?

Plenty of new music, own records – remixes and exciting collaborations. We have big plans with our label UPPERGROUND and we can’t wait to present you with more very soon.

Finally, it has become somewhat of a tradition here at Numéro to end the interview with advice to young artists. What would be your piece of advice to those who are just starting up in the industry?

While listening to music, each of us can find ourselves somewhere very far away in our experiences, feelings, and dreams. It doesn’t matter where you are physically in this moment, when the music takes you away. Don’t use a strategy to copy/paste. Use your imagination and inner feeling. You got it inside of you, you just need to grab it.

On Thursday, October 20th, DGTL collaborates with UPPERGROUND, the groundbreaking music label of ARTBAT. Their vision is to create an outlet for the exceptional, vibrant sounds and music that moves you.

Get your ticket and more information HERE