May 31, 2018  

Student Success May 2018 – Imogen, David Luchow & Revilo

Welcome back to another edition of Point Blank Student Success. In May we chat to three students/graduates about their successes and hopes for the future. We lead with Imogen, for a more in-depth chat than usual, but with what’s going on with her right now it’s well worth the read. We compile these every month showcasing students that have studied with us for any length of time and at any of our locations:  LondonLos AngelesIbizaMumbai and Online.

Imogen (Elliptiq, Unchained) – Music Production & Sound Engineering Master Diploma

Still in her teens, Imogen Richmond’s sights have never wavered from the upper echelons of the world of techno. Starting her own parties, Elliptiq and Unchained, put her on the same bill with the likes of Laksa, and bookings would follow sharing bills with Perc and Stranger. Once her foot was in the door, her blend of tough-as-nails techno and curveballs from leftfield would demand respect, and with festival dates upcoming and slots at London’s best new club in Five Miles, and the granddaddy of techno: the Berghain, the sky’s the limit.

Could you start by telling me how you discovered Point Blank?

As soon as I left secondary school I knew I didn’t want to go down the usual route of A levels. I kept telling my parents how much I wanted to pursue music but they thought it was ridiculous to get some sort of qualification in DJing haha. So I went on the hunt and found Point Blank, went to look round and I was sold. It was quite a big decision for me to move from Southampton to London at 16, but I definitely have no regrets in doing so.

What was your experience with music like before that?

I started clubbing when I was young, going to my favourite club in Southampton Junk and listening to house music, which in turn led me further underground. I definitely think this was influenced by my mum too, I remember her belting breaks and old Detroit house as far back as I can remember. I used to think she was crazy dancing about but before I knew it I was asking her for track IDs haha. I’m very lucky to have the supportive parents I do.

I only played the violin through school, I remember I took GCSE music thinking it would have been a good idea but it wasn’t exactly the route I was going down and I cannot sing to save my life so dropped out after a week.

What would you say was the biggest thing you took from your studies?

It was the actually an amazing social experience for me. Going there so young it was amazing to meet so many different people from around the world and it made me become so open to everyone around me. I had to grow up fast being with people a lot older but I made some great lifetime friendships as well as connections in the industry. It’s great to see people I studied with going off and doing well now.

The technicality of DJing is another one – and learning production from such wicked teachers made me subconsciously pick up on vocabulary and methods that producers wouldn’t necessarily know just from learning at home.

How would you describe what you do/play? Techno is a broad church – what is your take on it?

I always find this a hard question to answer. I’d like to think my sound is very broad. When people say that techno is boring because it ‘sounds the same’ they’ve probably been listening to the wrong techno. There’s a new wave of artists around my age and a new sound coming out of breaksy techno mixed with electro and other elements. Personally, I love this. Instead of taking people on a ‘journey’ with music I like to surprise the crowd with something off guard and quirky: EBM and trancey electro go down so well. Artists like Umwelt and smaller labels in places like Serbia have some amazing stuff coming out.

So you’ve been smashing it recently – co-signs from Mumdance and Anastasia Kristensen, radio guests including Ellen Alien etc. It all seems to be blowing up pretty fast – how are you finding the increasing attention and gigging schedule?

Thankyou 🙂 Me and Mumdance are good pals it’s nice to have someone who backs my music and is always there for advice! Feedback and criticism are very important to me, that’s how you grow!

Radio was an amazing platform and experience. I could play whatever I liked and there was no one to hold me back like when you’re playing warm-up slots. To have guests that were so inspirational to me come onto my show like Ellen was such a feeling! I am a lot busier now but I’m doing what I love and if people like what I do there’s nothing more I could I ask for.

Gigging more is great too. Each time I play out I understand more of how to capture a crowd. Of course, I get to visit these cities and countries that I never have before too! I’m not very well travelled so visiting a new place is something I’d never turn down, plus I’m young I can keep up with the partying haha.

What would you say has been the biggest moment for you so far – anytime where you’ve thought ‘OK this is for real’?

I’ve had quite a few blown away moments but it was being booked to play at Berghain. I’ve never even been to Berlin so for my first time to be playing in that building is pretty crazy, I can’t wait for that party and to go experience it out there.

You recently played Jaded, one of my favourite parties in London. How was that? It looks like you managed to get room two jumping which isn’t always easy at midday.

Yes jaded is so wicked! An amazing community such a great party, it has to be my favourite gig so far. I think playing in room 2 is much more of a challenge at Jaded. Room 1 is always packed. I started at 10am and managed to get things going really well! It’s a slightly tough crowd there everyone knows what they like and if you play something they don’t they won’t stay. Closing b2b with my friend James Newmarch was amazing, we had the room packed right until the last song.

What else have you got in the pipeline?

I’ve got some really cool stuff lined up for this year. Phonox with Perc will be great fun and my first time playing in the Netherlands later in summer. I’ve just finished a load of music so the next step in that regard is putting out some music!

Thanks Imogen!

Check out Imogen on SoundCloud, RA and Facebook.

David Luchow (Freelance Engineer) – Music Industry

David Luchow is a successful freelance sound engineer based in Germany. Having studied a music industry course with us back in 2010, he used that platform to turn his skills and passions into his living.

Hi David. Could you start by telling me how you discovered Point Blank?

After completing my 1st-year Diploma in audio engineering at the SAE London I quit the degree program and wanted to get right into recording, mixing and mastering music. I also knew that if I was to live my dream I needed to learn how the music business/industry worked, and where better to learn it than in the heart of London. At the time Point Blank was offering a music business certificate course conducted by Steve Hillier and I came by checked the school out and wasted no time in joining that course. It was the best thing I did.

What was your experience with music like before that?

I had a basic understanding of recording, mixing & mastering but I did not have a clue on how to earn a living out of my skills or how to turn that into a business. Steve really broke it down in his course and I could see myself living my dream when he used to teach the good the bad & the ugly of the music industry and how to navigate through rough waters. This all happened at Point Blank.

What would you say was the biggest thing you took from your studies?

Learning from someone who was/is in the music industry. That was what got me very interested in the music business certificate course at Point Blank because most of the schools I checked at that particular time had lecturers that I could not find on google or had zero industry experience. I was serious about my goals so I needed guidance from a lecturer who has been there and done that! I made good friends too.

You’ve been working as a freelance engineer in Germany – how did that come about?

Towards the end of my course at PB I decided to get married to my longtime girlfriend who is German and a music teacher. We decided to move to Germany. So now, not only did I had to start from square one but also learn a new language. That paid off within a few months in Germany when I got my first break, through Holger Stenschke the Director of Audio at the time (2011) at the Z.K.M Studio in Karlsruhe (Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe). The rest is history.

Are there any projects you’ve worked on you are particularly proud of?

Almost all projects I have worked on. One challenging session was with the Amrod Brothers and Pee-Wee-Ellis, Fred-Wesley who were the band leaders of James Brown. Initially I was booked to record only 2 songs and after I completed the recordings for the 2 songs they decided to record 2 more. I don’t think I will ever come across a brass section like that again, absolutely crazy.

What have you got lined up for the future?

I am making plans to educate, empower & mentor young audio engineers/Producers/musicians to live their dreams by sharing my experiences with them. Nothing is impossible.

Cheers David.

Check out David Luchow’s website

Revilo (PinkStar Black) – Music Production Certificate

Since he graduated in 2016, Ollie Evans aka Revilo has stayed closely associated with Point Blank, repping PB at Ministry of Sound at Defected in the House and getting support from the likes of DJ Pioneer on Kiss FM. He recently landed a guest mix on BBC Introducing, so we thought what better time to catch up for our student success blog.

Hey Ollie. Could you start by telling me how you discovered Point Blank?

I discovered point blank through watching your tutorial videos on YouTube.

What was your experience with music like before that?

I had been making music on an off for a few years and DJing a long time before but it wasn’t until I started at Point Blank that I began to take my productions seriously.

What would you say was the biggest thing you took from your studies?

I learned a lot at Point Blank with my productions and different approaches to making music but the biggest thing was to trust your ears and believe in what you are doing.

Revilo is coming along nicely with the introducing mix and the ‘Boogie To That’ release. How did the BBC slot come about?

Thanks. I’ve been sending my music to BBC Introducing for just over a year and they’ve been big supporters from day one and regularly play my tracks on their show. They approached me to do a guest mix which I jumped at!

What have you got lined up/ What are your plans for capitalising on this momentum?

I’ve currently working behind the scenes finishing off a new batch of tunes ready for the summer and I’m looking to work with some vocalists. I’ve been lining up some gigs and I’m starting a new DJ residency at XOYO in London in June.

Follow Revilo on SoundCloud and Facebook

Successes such as these are common among our students and alumni. We can teach you how to DJ like the best of them at any of our schools. If you’d like to learn how to produce, then we can build your skills from the ground up with our range of degree programmes, including the latest addition, the BA (Hons) in Music Production and DJ Practice. All of our degrees are quality assured by Middlesex University, including our online alternative. For more information contact us via our contact page.

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