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Music _ Roosevelt

Text by Shanna Keetelaar

He’s just launched his debut EP Elliot on Greco Roman, consisting of four tracks of synths and funky bass lines. In case you’re not ready for winter, these tunes will  certainly keep the happy summer vibes going. Cologne-based electronic artist Marius Lauber, aka Roosevelt, writes what he calls “sun-inspired hazy disco-pop.” We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Starting out in different bands, it wasn’t until he moved to Cologne that the electronic music scene inspired him. Still, his goal is to create a sound reminiscent of a garage band rather then club tools. His latest track ‘Elliot’ has been named Best New Track on, so we can be sure that this is only the beginning of a successful musical journey. We had the chance to have a little with chat with him.


NOU: Your debut EP Elliott is coming out this week. How was the process of working on it?

R: As I’ve played so many shows this year it was a bit hard to get to work properly. But I had some time before the summer, and that’s when I recorded the tracks. “Sea” was already finished and released as a single last year, so it was essentially just 3 tracks. It wasn’t a fixed time in which I recorded the EP; it’s really a continuative process for me. I’ve already started other tracks for an album.


NOU: Of which track are you most proud?

R: That’s hard to say. ‘Montreal’, the last track I finished, felt like a smooth process in the making. There are tracks that take months to finish because of production issues or recordings that you’re not completely happy with, but with this track everything came really quickly and naturally. Maybe because I’ve tried some things in the arrangement that I don’t normally do. So I’m just really happy that it’s worked out. The track really helps to give the EP its shape.


NOU: The track “Elliot” was named Best New Track on Did you expected that?

R: Not at all! They’ve supported me in the past a few times, but to be named “Best New Track” is crazy. It’s a big honor for me but it’s odd at the same time. Being compared to other tracks and getting this kind of quality stamp, only because one person likes your track…I try to be not too impressed by things like this.


NOU: If people come to see you live what can they expect?

R: At live shows the studio recordings transform into a band. I play so many instruments in the studio that a laptop solo show wouldn’t work. So we play almost everything live.


NOU: What do you want to bring over to your audience?

R: Primarily, we try to perform the tracks in the best way possible, so in a way it’s quite introverted. But I just want to present the tracks on point.
I’ve never been much of a fan of bands that try too hard to get attention from the audience. For us it also makes the feedback we get more honest.


NOU: Where do you see yourself in a couple of years?

R: Probably not so far from where I am now. I still want to produce records and play shows. It would be great if the cycle of studio time and touring were further separated so I can concentrate better on each particular thing, but that’s just a minor detail.


NOU: Best gig so far?

R: To be honest, the best show was the very first in Cologne! I’d booked for the show and prepared five months for it… I’d even written a lot of new songs before the gig just to have to have enough material. I played with three friends on stage, and we were all extremely nervous. But the reaction was incredible. I guess the best shows are always those at which you expect the least, so that’s why this one was so special.


NOU:  A moment in your career so far you’d rather forget?

R: We just lost a case on a train. There was water damage in our coach, so it got evacuated. And in all the hustle we forgot a case in there, which appeared to be stolen afterwards. One of the not-so-fun days in our touring history.


NOU: What would you do if you weren’t a musician?

R: I would probably produce other bands in my studio. That was actually the plan a few years ago.


NOU: Is there an artist you’d like to work with in the future?

R: There are a lot, but for vocals I’d ove to do something with Sampha. I’m really in love with his voice.


NOU: Do you prefer live shows or DJ gigs?

R: Definitely live shows. DJ Sets are still just something I only do from time to time. It’s big fun but it never gets as exciting as a live show can get.


NOU: Something you are extremely excited about for next year?

R: Releasing my debut album!


NOU: Name one track that really changed your life or was awe-inspiring

R: Change, “The Glow Of Love.”