Pred to perform in Saskatoon Friday, April 18, at Birth Rhythms
All it takes is the right situation to change your life forever. After attending a Mudhoney concert in Victoria in the mid-nineties, a teenaged Noah Pred and his friends were handed a flyer for a rave party. Despite being from a rock background – Pred played bass in a band at the time, they took a chance and decided to see what the party scene was all about.
“When I heard house music for the first time in the proper context that night I instantly knew I wanted to start making electronic music,” says Pred.
Starting out by playing harder techno on the west coast, Pred eventually decided to relocate to Montreal, a city with a taste for wild late nights. That’s when things changed for him.
I’ve never felt totally subscribed to one genre or another. They change as often as my mood
“Once I arrived there, I started playing deeper stuff since it seemed like they already had the whole techno thing under control,” recalls Pred. “I’ve always felt that just sticking to one style forever wouldn’t be very exciting. When I first heard proper techno, it was like hearing electronic music in its pure context-specific form.
“I’ve never felt totally subscribed to one genre or another. They change as often as my mood.”
This shift in sound would become the base on which he would build an impressive catalogue of music. Over the years he has released tracks and remixed for over twenty record labels worldwide, working with some of the most distinguished artists in techno and house music. He also launched his own Thoughtless Music imprint, which is now coming up on its 100th release.
Like Richie Hawtin, Tommy Four Seven, Kyle Geiger and countless other techno refugees from around the world, Pred’s musical journey eventually led to Berlin. Home to some of the world’s most notorious and innovative venues, it makes for the perfect breeding ground for a wide variety of electronic artists and labels.
“It’s definitely more competitive being surrounded by more artists, but there’s also that much more support among your peers,” he says. “If you stay in a remote area, it can be hard to feel like anyone even cares what you’re doing at all. While there’s always a contentious edge of competition in big markets like Toronto or Berlin, that goes hand in hand with a sense of solidarity between all the people struggling and chasing their dreams side by side. And I think the competition really forces people to step up their game. Personally I find it inspiring.”
It’s likely true, because Pred recently released the Juno-nominated Third Culture, his third full-length album. It’s a lush collection of deep house, ambient and sparse broken beats. Chord stabs and plucked synth sounds give it a contemporary tech edge while a number of vocal performances keep it feeling organic and alive. The tracks feel just as well at home as they do in intimate live spaces and, unlike many electronic albums of late, it feels well rounded and complete.
￼Berlin is also the headquarters of Ableton, a company who’s “Live” software is the centrepiece of Pred’s setup. Living in close proximity has allowed him to be involved with product development and he is now also working as a certified trainer on the side. You can find his tutorials on MacProVideo.com.