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The Innovation Studio
Maike Depas
State Of Techno
Release Date
12" Techno - Hard WW EXCL
Milanese Techno Visionary MAIKE DEPAS Announces His
Edgy Debut EP ‘State of Techno’

Having lulled us into a false sense of security with his dream house track ‘Voyager’,
Milanese techno emissary MAIKE DEPAS (Michelangelo De Pasquale) is back with
a vengeance on ‘State of Techno’, out on TBC via The Innovation Studio, hellbent
on moving and shaking the dance floors in 2023. Drawing on the hallucinatory
Blue Room Released psytrance and the weapons-grade post-Wall techno of Tresor
Club as much as an in-your-face attitude of Anthony Rother and Charlotte De
Witte, Depas is effectively time travelling through the past 30 years of underground
club sound. “I’m trying to propose something new but at the same time the audience
is reminded of something that already happened in the past,” he explains.
“I’m trying to propose something new but at the same time the
audience is reminded of something that already happened in the
Basically, Depas’ vision of techno melds together the sounds from the 1980s and
1990s with more contemporary symphonic and cinematic elements to thicken the
mix and heighten the atmosphere. “I would say this type of production with retro
sounds and influences with the new techniques of synthesis are what is happening
right now,” he states. The rumble bass opener ‘Culture’ comes down hard, giving a
taste of what will follow; ‘Dark Room’, with its lacerating stab sequences and
hypnotic commands delivered through an electro-style vocoder, and ‘Industrial’, a
relentless percussive barrage of timpani and hand drums led by Depas’ very own
guitar synth he has christened ‘the Edge’. And topping it all off, Mattia Trani peels
the paint off the walls with his remix of ‘Industrial.’
Dark Room
Industrial (Mattia Trani Remix)
* Exclusive digital bonus track. QR code hidden in ‘Dark Room’ video.
The music video ‘Dark Room’ accompanying the release – another thrilling
audiovisual journey into the metaverse following ‘Voyager’– sees Depas return to the
apocalyptic world inspired by the godfather of cyberpunk William Gibson’s 1984 cult
novel ‘Neuromancer’. Woken up by a mysterious voice and compelled to investigate
its origin, the technologically enhanced protagonist makes a dramatic escape out of
a clandestine laboratory that brings to mind Major Mira Killian’s iconic rooftop jump in
the anime classic ‘Ghost in the Shell’. As the voice beckons him to approach the
door at the end of a dodgy alleyway filled with sinister characters, upon entering the
premises he is presented with an ultimate choice: to become liberated or remain a
slave to the system.
“For me this is my first important step in the techno scene.
I wanted to create a huge impact, really consolidate it.”
Working in tight collaboration with young Parisian CG artist Matthieu Martin also
known as Impossible Realities ‘who loves to create dystopian and futuristic dark
artworks from his dreams or perhaps from his nightmares’, it took Depas and Martin
seven weeks of backbreaking work to bring the project to completion. “We worked
strongly together every single moment of the day,” Depas describes. Creating an
enormous environment and utilising the camera as the omniscient narrator in the
Voyager video had already been ambitious enough. “It was really hard to create
storytelling without someone who writes for you the choreography, the ambience and
what happens in each section.”
The challenge faced by the protagonist in ‘Dark Room’, “a test to see if the character
is ready to join a different society in which he can achieve something that was not
reachable before,” has a familiar ring to it. “For me this is my first important step in
the techno scene,” Depas says. “I wanted to create a huge impact, really consolidate
Young Milanese DJ-producer MAIKE DEPAS (born Michelangelo De Pasquale) has
seen the future of music and it’s called metaverse: “In the future it will blow up,” he
predicts. “And it’s going to revolutionise the way we experience music.” Bowled over
by Skrillex and Martin Garrix at the age of 8, and DJing at small Milan clubs by the
time he was 11, Depas went on to study composition and piano at the prestigious
Milan Conservatory before learning ‘life-changing” lessons from the best in the
business at Catalyst’s 4-week Advanced Sound Design course in Berlin’s Funkhaus
last year. Inspired by the Italian groups MEDUZA and Anyma at the epic end of the
techno spectrum, his cyberpunk-inspired video ‘Voyager’ is his first step towards
incorporating virtual reality into his productions and offering his audiences an
unforgettable, immersive experience.
For the son of an art collector, being born in the cultural capital of Europe was
something of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it opened Depas’ eyes to the
fundamental concepts behind art. “It helped me to better understand the idea behind
a painting or a track,” he explains. ”The artist is not just doing normal work. He is
putting all his feelings, all his ideas into a masterpiece.” But on the other hand, the
conservative Italian culture became an obstacle on his career path. “As you can
imagine, there is this stereotype of being an artist in our society,” he says, smiling,
which implies this stereotype is not a very flattering one.
Not that it was enough to put a damper on Depas’ plans, though. Ever since he had
heard ‘Kyoto’ by Skrillex for the first time when he was only 8-years old, his heart
had always been set in electronic music. “It was really, really strong, and I said:
What?! This is amazing…!” he recalls, laughing. “I’d never heard anything like that
before.” From dubstep the tracks lead to Martin Garrix, the big room EDM, and
eventually to trance and melodic techno of Sven Väth with whom he is “really in love
By the time he was 11, his father helped him out by booking DJ-gigs for him at small
venues around Milan. “I used to play in really small clubs, not the most beautiful in
Milan. And the people were not so great, as you can imagine,” he describes. “My
father used to take me back home at 2am so it was quite demanding to do this kind
of stuff,” he admits. And it was not only the venues and the staff that left a lot to be
desired. “Unfortunately, I was able to have one EDM song in every 2-3 hour set… I’m
not joking,” he says, sighing. And the rest of the set? “That was mainstream pop,
tracks playing on radio or Top-50 on Spotify Italy,” he says, chuckling. “So it was
quite difficult.”
Without a doubt one of the most important turning points of Depas’ career was his
entry into the Milan Conservatory where he became musically literate by studying
composition and piano, his main instrument. “For me, it’s the pure sound,” he sums
up, and goes on to describe his creative process. “The first thing to do is to sit at the
piano and start to improvise something. When the main chords are right, I try to
figure out my direction.” The influence of the Conservatory and the lessons learn on
classes are ingrained in him: the importance of structure, even a habit of jotting down
the notes on a piece of paper.
But even if the time at the Conservatory were well spent, none of it makes the grade
compared to arriving in Berlin for Catalyst’s 4-week Advanced Sound Design course
held at Funkhaus in 2022, “it was a life-changing experience” reflected in the name
of the single ‘Berliner’ released shortly after, a track Feeder.co described as follows:
“featuring charming melodies and backed by a strong groove, ‘Berliner’ flows like a
chilled breeze, being a spicy pick for your melodic DJ sets!” Being taught by
Christopher Jarman of Kamikaze Space Programme and Laurence Osborne aka
Appleblim left a lasting impression on Depas and deepened the understanding of
his craft. The most important maxim was “Everything is a sound.” A case in point, he
cites, is the American avant-garde composer John Cage’s score titled 4′33″ which
explicitly instructs performers not to play their instruments for the entire duration of
the composition. “The main idea about this is that the sounds that come from the
audience and the atmosphere in the chapter is the music,” he explains. “That’s when
I realised that foley sounds and all this kind of art can be implemented in my vision
and in my works.”
Discussing with Depas, the term ‘vision’ comes up often in relation to his work,
especially the new music video of Voyager, an entry into the world where techno and
virtual reality turn into an unforgettable, heightened sensory experience. “I would
love each listener to create their own vision of Voyager,” he muses. “The character
has no face so there is no identity behind the character, everyone can be the
character, and everyone can do their own journey into my world of music.” For any
masterpiece to become complete, the artistic vision needs a counterpart, a mirror
image, and that is the vision of an audience member. “This is what I’m talking about.”
# Artist Title
1Maike DepasCulture
2Maike DepasDarkroom
3Maike DepasIndustrial
4Maike DepasIndustrial (Mattia Trani Remix)