Nate Mars recently unveiled his latest project, the In Time (Remixes) collection, featuring reimagined versions of his original In Time EP, released just last November. This eagerly anticipated release showcases remixes by esteemed artists Liondub, Tim Reaper, and Starkey, each injecting their unique flair into Mars’ tracks. Alongside these remixes, Mars introduces “Parallelogram,” a fresh original track that perfectly encapsulates his signature style.

Kicking off the In Time (Remixes) is Liondub’s reinterpretation of the title track, “In Time.” Liondub, a seasoned figure in the global drum and bass scene, delivers a smooth and polished rendition, infusing the track with a seamless drum and bass rhythm that propels the listener forward. With Liondub’s extensive experience and collaborations with reggae and dancehall artists worldwide, his take on “In Time” sets the tone for the remix collection.

Meanwhile, Tim Reaper, founder of the esteemed Future Retro London record label, offers a sophisticated remix of “Starting Over.” Known for his mastery of jungle and breakbeat hardcore, Reaper showcases his technical prowess with clever breaks and minimalistic vocal elements that highlight the essence of quality dance music. His remix exemplifies the spirit of original jungle music, staying true to the genre’s roots while adding a contemporary touch.

Philadelphia-based producer Starkey rounds out the remix collection with his unique take on “To Kill A DJ,” infusing the track with dub/reggae influences and hard-hitting UK garage elements. Starkey’s dystopian soundscape captivates listeners, seamlessly blending Mars’ original with his distinct style, demonstrating his versatility and boundary-pushing approach to music production.

Finally, Nate Mars introduces “Parallelogram,” a brand-new original track that showcases his expertise in drum and bass and UK garage. With its metallic percussion, fast-paced breaks, and thick basslines, “Parallelogram” exemplifies Mars’ ability to surprise and delight listeners with his innovative soundscapes.

We had the opportunity to speak with Nate about the remixes and what’s ahead for this year. Check it out below!

It looks like ‘Out Of The City’ and ‘In Time’ projects were major recent highlights. What do you hope people will take away from both of these works?

I’m very proud of those two releases and they are both deeply personal to me. I have always been into the sound of the TB-303. It is a magical instrument that can sound hypnotic at times or produce a driving, aggressive bassline but it is so rarely used beyond Acid House. For the “Out Of The City” record I really wanted to push 303 norms and I think ultimately DIA LUNA and I made songs where it serves as the glue but overall, we took things in a more dark pop direction. That record came about through longtime collaboration and a series of live shows together, experimenting with looped vocals, drum machines and other hardware. While I do DJ a bit these days, I still really love playing live sets with the TB-303 and other gear.

For the “In Time” release, I went back to my roots in drum and bass/jungle a bit. I have always been inspired by that sound along with 90s rave music, breakcore and early dubstep. My very first release was actually a drum and bass release on a compilation called “Liberation Systems” which also featured artists like DJ Spooky, DJ Wally and others from the Liquid Sky era. That release came out several years ago and I hadn’t released any new drum and bass since this most recent “In Time” EP which features 4 new songs. I have been making a lot of drum and bass though and am currently sitting on a lot of unreleased songs. I may release more this year. In the meantime, there is also a remix EP that was recently released which features remixes from Liondub, Tim Reaper and Starkey; all artists whom I deeply respect. Huge thanks to everyone who is listening and supporting as well.

How did you and Tim Reaper, Starkey and the other artists for the remix EP meet? It’s awesome that they have become part of the ‘In Time (Remixes)’ release.

I have not actually met Tim Reaper before. I had reached out to him about a remix for this project because I love his production style. He is a very prolific producer, DJ and founder of the label FutureRetro London which has some amazing releases. I am honored that he was up for a remix. Liondub and I have known each other for many years now through the small New York scene. I remixed a track for his label a while back and immediately thought of him for this remix EP. Starkey and I have also known each other for a while now and have played a few shows together before. His remix of “To Kill A DJ” took that song to a whole other level! The drums on that one sound bonkers.

Your work and passion extend beyond the studio. What upcoming visual project are you working on, and what inspired you to focus on it?

In addition to releasing songs, I love working on projects where I can bring music or sound design to immersive experiences like visual installations and games. I recently started collaborating with a longtime friend and visual artist Far Eye under the name Pressure + Time, the outlet for our audio/visual work together. We just had a show on view at a gallery in upstate NY for a month utilizing old school tube TVs with looped videos that would generate different visual and sonic combinations as they play. I also just finished working on sound design for a very cool independent game called ‘Sound Gardner’ created by James Capuder. In the game, you create a sonic garden by planting various plants that also generate sounds. Over time, certain plants will pass away (each species having a different lifespan) and this generates new and interesting sonic combinations while also making room in the garden to grow new trees, mushrooms and flowers. Both of these projects were a lot of fun to work on.

There’s an atmosphere of independence and confidence in your own artistic direction evident through the branding and sound of the Nate Mars concept. Where does this sensibility come from?

Thank you. I try not to think about my “brand” too much and just let things flow naturally. Especially when I’m working on music which I do daily, I make a point not to think about anything related to biz and really focus on getting the songs to a place where I feel good about them. When I have music that feels finished, then I’ll dedicate some time to think about where the songs might live out in the world and maybe resonate with people. Musically, I do spend time thinking about pushing certain sounds I’m inspired by in new directions though. That is what led me to write “songs” with the TB-303 instead of “tracks” where there are lyrics and more of a structure. I think the 303 has so much room to inspire and reach new ears outside of Acid House. This thinking is also what led me to sing and write lyrics for the “In Time” EP. There are some other innovators who are bringing Dnb into more of a song structure but I think there is still so much more room for exploration.

I noticed you have releases dating back nearly 15 years on Spotify. What got you started, and what keeps you going in music?

I have been a musician for a long time, growing up playing bass since I was around 12 years old. Eventually that led to producing music because I would hear or imagine other instruments playing melodic parts while I was practicing bass or imagine what the drummer was playing. I have pretty much always known that music is something I would stick with. Now, I sort of can’t not keep going. If time passes and I don’t work on music for a bit due to various things that inevitably come up in life, I’ll start feeling depressed or guilty. Music is deeply important to me and it has always served as an outlet of emotional expression to celebrate the joys in life or cope with its challenges.

Are there any moments or activities that place you in a more inspired or creative headspace?

I think it is very important to make time to “take in” other art forms. I am kind of an extroverted introvert. While I can be social, I also like to spend a lot of time alone reading, listening to music, walking in nature or playing video games. I currently blaze through a good book every two weeks or so and get out in nature to hike pretty regularly. Some amazing books I have read lately are “The Coming Wave” by Mustafa Suleyeman which talks about the trajectory of AI and the intersection with biotechnology. I also found Rick Rubin’s “The Creative Act” to be tremendously inspiring and applicable to any creative endeavor. Currently, I’m reading “Crime and Punishment” by Fyodor Dostoevsky after just finishing Cormack McCarthy’s latest novels, “The Passenger” and “Stella Maris”. Highly recommend all of these. Also recommend Elden Ring and Call Of Duty for PS5. Haha.

Looking back, were there any key mentors or figures during your upbringing who helped put you on the path to music?

There are several people who have greatly impacted my journey in music over the years. My good friend and incredible music producer Eric Maltz who now lives in Berlin started a record label with me called AlienUpRock in the early 2000s. We pressed a record, took it to stores like Breakbeat Science, Satellite and Eightball in NY when those stores were open and worked on a bunch of music together. We have learned a lot from each other over the years. On the film/TV music side of things, my good friend Greg Tobler is an amazing mix engineer who has worked on some great shows for HBO, Netflix and others. He has given me many opportunities over the years to hone my skills and I’m very grateful. On the business side of things, my good friend Justin Klienfeld who owns rephlektor, a music PR and marketing agency has given me so much incredible advice over the years, helping me navigate the ever-changing landscape of the industry. There are so many other people I want to shout out here but these 3 people come to mind in terms of the direct impact they have had on my music. I also greatly trust their ears and sometimes share projects ahead of release for a vibe check. I don’t like to share music with too many people before I release something but this crew is in my inner circle.

And while not necessarily mentors because I don’t know them personally, musical artists like Massive Attack, The Prodigy, Bjork, Apex Twin, Jamie xx, The Knife, Susumu Yakota, Philip Glass, Goldie and Moby immediately come to mind as having made a huge impact on my work. I’m also deeply inspired by artists who work in other mediums like Agnes Danes, Yayoi Kusama and Tomás Saraceno.

How is 2024 looking for you? Are there upcoming releases you have slated, and what are your goals?

I am currently sitting on a lot of unreleased music. Most of it is acid leaning, drum and bass or jungle inspired and there is also some really weird experimental stuff thrown in. I plan to release more records this coming year starting in Spring of 2024. I am also working on a pretty big audio/visual project that incorporates some old films that are now in the public domain. I’m excited about that project and will have more to share soon!

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