Heartthrob aka Jesse Siminski was brought up in Michigan in a family home filled to the brim with rock, funk and reggae. The city was geographically convenient to the rising Midwest rave scene in the mid 90’s and Jesse was instantly enamoured with electronic beats from his first ever rave; instantly inspiring him to set upon training on the decks and synthesizers. It was when Jesse came to New York and linked up with the original Minus stars Magda and Troy Pierce though that he honed his own brand of techno. Incorporating twisted vocals and heavy grooves into the landscape of minimal, Heartthrob lives up to his name and is a charmer through his medium.
We speak to Jesse ahead of his Room Two set up this Saturday where he’s set to play live - an extra special performance as he reveals in this interview, he only ever brings his most expensive hardware set up to our club than any other. He’s also given us a typically killer Heartthrob track, heavy from the start this pulsating little number is just the tip of the iceberg of what to expect this Saturday. ‘Xtrafantasy’ is one of many new and unreleased tracks that will form his live set.
Hey Jesse thanks for speaking to us, how’s your summer been?
Hey! My summer has been intense, but good. The weather in Europe was pretty unsatifisying as summers go, but that’s just how it goes. I am actually happy that Autumn is approaching. I have a lot of projects to finish and don't mind things slowing down a little.
What’s been the most exotic location you’ve played?
I had the pleasure of checking out Lima Peru for a week this August. It was winter and not so warm. I trolled the markets, picking up loads of Alpaca. I also ate all kinds of delicious things, including grilled beef heart! Normally, that’s not my favorite organ to eat, but I gave it a go and enjoyed it. I have to say Lima is a great city, with some really beautiful areas. I wouldn't mind going back in the summer. The party people were really up for it, even going to an open air in the winter.
We’re lamenting the loss of summer in fear of the impending misery of winter - can you suggest for us some tracks to cheer us up?
Sure! Here are a few tunes and videos that come to mind...
I always watch Jan Terri's videos on Youtube when I need a pick me up. She is very high octane and so inspirational. Journey to Mars is one of my favorites, but check them all out.
Frankie Knuckles "Bad Boy" always makes me feel real. What a classic.
Staying in that vein. Here is Hazel Dean looking amazing and serving it hot!
Ween always make me smile! This one reeks of summer sun.
Do you have anywhere planned to retreat to? Some producers seem to lock themselves away or escape for some winter sun...
My family lives on Maui and I make a trip to see them every year. I plan to stay there for a few weeks and then return the the soul crushing gloom that is Berlin to irradiate myself in front of my computer and music equipment. I am hoping this winter will be mild since the summer was total shit in Berlin.
My research indicates you haven’t had a release this year, when can we next expect something? Is that because you’ve been busy touring?
It's true. I have been more productive in the studio than I have been successful releasing music this year. But I am OK with that. Coming up, I have a twisted track in the incredible Plastkman Archives compilation and a nice remix done with Troy Pierce for Limikola. You can check it out on my Soundcloud here.
In other news,I have started DJing again. After years of only playing live, it's exciting to play other people's music. It's taken a lot of work to be up to speed with that, but it's really helped push me to make music. Studio wise, I have made some breakthroughs in the last months, which is exciting. Besides the album I have been working on for Minus, I have resurrected my Vivianne Projects alias, which will see some releases on a label I am starting soon. It's going to have a sense of humor and be a place where I can release my more left field stuff...There is a second collaboration based label in development too. That will cover a farther spectrum of genres and be a bigger project. More like an art project. I feel like I have a clear picture of what I would like to do, which is rare. The last part of this year will be very exciting!
Pop icon Prince has been a big influence on you, is there anyone from the pop world today you find is carrying the torch for quality in pop in 2011?
I am waiting for Cher to release another record. I love her, especially very early stuff. Until that happens, Alex Boman's tunes will do.
What inspires your lyrics in your tracks - it’s one thing being a producer but putting words together is a whole other skill set...how much is inspired by samples or your own writing?
When I write a vocal it always has some sort of humorous tone to it. I don't have much of a singing voice unfortunately, but I try anyway. My lyrics are more like nasty blurbs-stuff to make me laugh and bring a sexual funk element to the song. Old tracks from Chicago and Detroit inspire me. Here is one of my old favorites. It's not family friendly.
And finally, you’re playing live in our disco this weekend - can you fill us in on what to expect and what’s involved in your live show set up?
I always bring more hardware when I play at fabric. It's the perfect situation to bring a more free style jam approach to the show. I imagine I will have a SH-101, Monomachine, Machine drum, NI Maschine, Eventide Space and a Microphone... I have lots of new music to play. Should be pretty raw.