JM#111 – Tonchius

Tonchius brings deep, luscious melodies and a contemplative mood to this week’s Jæger mix. The Norwegian DJ combines the old with the new in her mix, traversing through the early Sunday evening with a measured gait while setting a redolent tone. Her mix floats on air, playing between velvet pads and jacking beats, caressing the ear with cottonwool textures and feathery atmospheres. Setting a distinctive tone through through her selections, Tonchius’ mix  lives beyond its purpose, a listening mix that will live on long after

Tonchius is no stranger to Jæger. A regular guest at various residencies, she is one of a dedicated group of DJs currently making their mark on the Oslo scene with a focus on the physical vinyl format and placing emphasis on the the DJ aspects of the traditional Producer/DJ role. Tonchius joined us at the Jæger mix, prefacing her set at Det Gode Selskab on the very same night and still managed to find some time to answer some questions for us.

Hey Tonchius and welcome to the Jæger mix.

Hello and thank you, a pleasure to be here.

What music were you exposed to growing up?

Jazz, classic and funk music as I used to play the trombone.  

What drew to electronic music and DJing and what were the first records to make it into your record bag as a DJ?

I believe it came to me naturally after years of studying music, always searching for and exploring different genres. The electronic music spoke to me and really touches me. I always wanted to be an artist. As I found the sound of the trombone a bit limiting for me, I figured I do better communicate the arts through DJing. And it has got me hooked! The first record that made it into my record bag is a record from Terrace, which I bought while I was living in Buenos Aires.

Unlike many of your peers you’ve avoided the DJ/producer role that’s become the norm. What is it about DJing that keeps challenging you and why have you feigned the role of producer?

It would have been fun if I managed to avoid the norm, but unfortunately that is not the case. I started producing and DJing at the same time, but have yet to release more of my tracks. However, that will come when the time is right. As for this moment there are so many great producers and a lot of music already out there. To find those tracks that blow my mind is what keeps challenging me.   

The last time we featured you on the blog you talked to DELLA about the physical aspects of the vinyl format that appeals to you. How do you think this sets you apart from the DJ that might prefer the digital format?

I guess I get strong arms from carrying the heavy record bag around.

You do a lot of digging over discogs and secondhand stores for records. What do you look for in  a record and how do you think it relates to your personality?

Good question. It must catch my attention somehow and be interesting enough so that I will find it relevant also in the future. Trying to dig for quality records and music not everyone has heard before, I think it relates to me being quite adventurous.  

What are some of the highlights amongst your most recent finds and have any of them found their way into your Jæger mix today?

A highlight amongst my recent finds must be Bicycle Thieves – Slap, which I found at Filter Musikk in Oslo. This found its way to the Jæger mix today.

Unlike a DJ with 128G USB stick, you’re only able to carry a finite amount of records to a gig. How do you prepare for a mix, especially one like this that is being recorded?

I try to have a good variation of build up tracks, peak time and cool fillers in-between. I go carefully through my bag and try to pick records that responds to different moods. Thinking of some combinations beforehand I know work well together, so that I can vary with both techno, house and break and at the same time keep the flow.   

Was there a particular theme that you had in mind when picking the records for this session?

Yes, I think I wanted to go for a modern sound as I play a lot of new records in this session, mixed with old second hand finds. Listeners might get another feeling from it, but I think the theme is a bit dark and melancholic at times, which suits the time of the year as summer is gone.

You’re also playing DGS on the very same night. How will that set differ from the Jæger mix?

Playing with DGS gives me more time to play and the flexibility to building the set more up and down. The fact that there are more people joining the dance floor eventually and other DJs from DGS, means I have to listen to what they play and respond to the dance floor. It also gives me the chance to play even more varied.  

Ok you’ve got a long night ahead so we’ll let you get on with it. Is there anything you’d like to add?

Guess I would have to do some shameless self-promoting and announce my next upcoming gig in Oslo with some of the members of the 33|45 crew at Verkstedet bar 12 October.

And lastly, thank you for having me!