Manic Focus! An Interview

Denver producer and electronic music mastermind Manic Focus is a man with many facets. The music he creates is vibrant, and genre-defying, he pulls off impossible sonic performances. Manic’s music amalgamates electronic, funk, soul, and hip-hop. He recently released his 7th album “Never Not Blue”.

Paying homage to his early electronic style, incorporating a wide range of bass influences. There’s no doubt that Manic Focus’ album shows his work ethic and perseverance when faced with persistent mental health struggles — and, in essence, that it is an inspiring example of how he underlies all of those struggles despite the hardships he faces. Keep an eye out for Manic Focus live on tour, where he will play Never Not Blue tracks at places like Red Rocks and Summer Camp Music Festival.

Now, we at KALTBLUT had the incredible opportunity to interview Manic Focus about his work and life experiences, please enjoy our lively exchange.

It’s so great to have the opportunity to chat with you today, how are you doing?

I’m doing alright!

I see you’re currently working in Denver, how’s the electronic music scene over there?

It’s the bass music capital! The incredible music scene here with lots of artists and venues.

How did you get into the genre? Any particular influences from other artists you’d like to mention?

A couple of big influences of mine early on were Pretty Lights and Big Gigantic. I was making hip-hop beats for a long time, but their music opened my mind to produce in this genre.

You’re definitely no stranger to mixing other genres like blues and hip hop with electronic music, have you tried something heavier like industrial or a bit of rock?

I haven’t done industrial, but I’ve worked with rock quite a bit. It can be tough working with rock samples depending on the mix.

You’ve performed in many festivals like Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, Hulaween, North Coast Music Festival, High Sierra Music Festival, Camp Bisco, Wakaan Festival, and Summer Camp Music Festival. I bet a bunch of interesting stuff happened to you! Is there an anecdote or lesson you’d like to share with us today? Tell us a bit about your upcoming new LP “Never Not Blue LP”. What was the creative process behind it? What vibes did you set out to achieve?

I wanted to revisit my original sound a bit while trying some new sound design techniques and incorporating a story of a manic episode that ends on a positive note. Funky, rowdy, heavy, chaotic, then ultimately calming and empowering vibes.

You recently unveiled “Brassive Attack” where you joined forces with Colombian vocalist Chika Di and Balkan Bump, how was your experience working with them?

I’ve known Balkan Bump for a few years now, and he was really fun to work with on this tune. He enlisted Chika Di for the tune, and she absolutely crushed it. The whole thing was produced via email.

Any news for your fans? What can they expect for your next work?

I’m touring the whole month of April, and I have a few festivals I’m really excited about!

Any final thoughts you’ll like to share with us and your audience?

Check out my new album “Never Not Blue” and be on the lookout for an upcoming vinyl drop!