The Jupiter Room Q&A

Mike Stanton is a true champion of underground electronic music. For two years now he’s been tirelessly searching out and giving a platform to emerging electronic musicians from around the world, with his much-loved internet radio show, The Jupiter Room. A lot of producers, including myself, owe Mike a huge debt of gratitude for his encouragement and support — so it’s a real pleasure to invite Mike to man the decks (or laptop) at Emotion Wave 11, and see what makes the man tick…

Tell us about your formative music years.

I first discovered electronic music from listening to my dad’s copy of Rick Wakeman’s The Myths and Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. He had it on record and reel-to-reel tape. I was obsessed with the synth parts especially tracks Sir Lancelot And The Black Knight, Merlin The Magician and Guinevere. I didn’t care much for the prog-guitar stuff the synth leads blew my tiny mind. I then discovered Kraftwerk, Tangerine Dream and Gary Numan aged around 10 and nothing was the same again. I became officially obsessed with synths.

I have always dabbled with instruments since I was a kid. I learnt the piano and violin while at secondary school, playing first violin for the school orchestra. I also played keyboards in a school band called Fisical Arcade. We were so painfully new wave/synthpop it was embarrassing. I used to play a Juno 6 but was more interested in making helicopter noises and huge sweeping synth leads in the same mould as Gary Numan.

I also spent hours playing with my dad’s Philips reel-to-reel, producing my own radio shows, cutting and pasting sounds and creating my own sampled tracks.

How did the Jupiter Room come about?

The creative director and editor of Fourculture Magazine suggested it during the summer of 2015 and I thought yeah, why not? It’s what I used to do as a kid, mucking about in my bedroom with tape and stuff and I have always wanted my own music show. It took me ages to come up with a name, I agonised over so many alternatives; that was probably the hardest part of the process.

Two years down the line and it’s still going so I must be doing something right.

Is there an ethos or mission statement that guides the show?

Only to support new, unsigned and underground music. I also play a fair whack of signed and old music but it’s the non-commercial stuff that is the heart of the show. I’ve built something of a following on Twitter, Facebook and Mixcloud and there is a community-feel to all the artists; everyone supports each other. I love that aspect.

So as for ethos: play ace music, discover ace music, have an ace time while doing it.

You must listen to an inordinate amount of music. How do you find time to go through it all?

I do listen to a lot of music. I have 3 days off a week which I tend to spend listening to and writing about, music. A show typically takes 2–3 weeks to put together and I sift through tons of tunes looking for the right track. I get sent a lot tunes and I also seek out music myself. I source it from all over; Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Spotify, Youtube and anywhere else music resides. I am also sent music by PR companies which I blast through.

I have become quite adept at sourcing music for the show now.

Photo by Andrew Bates

Any particular things that stand out that you’re proud of?

Playing Emotion Wave as The Jupiter Room is one! Plaid follow me on Twitter, I still buzz off that. Getting the reactions from artists, band or producers I feature is hugely rewarding. Most are grateful and supportive; this is a result of building relationships with the artists I feature/follow. I’m proud and humbled by the kind and generous comments and the wonderful support I receive.

What are you currently listening to — any music you’d like to recommend?

I’ve been listening to Winkie, a shoegaze, drone, post-punk Brooklyn-based duo who create noise and distortion; it’s glorious. Also been exploring Sferro (synthwave, vaporwave), Jacob 2–2 (vaporwave), Bloody Knives (industrial shoegaze with lashings of psychedelic drone), The Haxan Cloak (dark, ambient, drone), Mrs Jynx (she’s ace) and Yimino (‘cos I love them and have a mild obsession with their music).

Also The KVB, Xeno & Oaklander, Soft Metals, Boards of Canada, God Colony and Beautify Junkyards.

What sort of sounds can we expect at emotion wave?

I’m going for some older sounds. Industrial stuff from the 80’s and 90’s, lots of IDM mixed with some more organic stuff to vary the textures. There will a sprinkling of newer tunes including hauntology, glitch and warping ambience.

Catch Mike’s set at Emotion Wave 11 on 28 October at 81 Renshaw Street, where he’ll be playing alongside Loka, Bemp and Foxen Cyn.

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