Tor.ma in Dub – New album interview & Exclusive mix
We hooked up with Tor.ma in Dub, who just released his “Solve et Coagula” album on Dubmission Records. Since 2000 Tor.ma has developed his unique sound from the classic Psydub genre to a deeper and darker one. There’s also a fresh exclusive mix for you to jump to!
Listen to Tor.ma in Dub’s new mix while you read:
What inspired you to make this album?
I worked on the concept since long ago, my wife has tattooed “Solve et Coagula” the alchemist maxima, and I got inspired to work on the idea of the elements, and as is dissolve and Coagulate, as above so below, to work on pairs, one version of the tune more relax and the counterpart straight to the dance floor, using the same elements to work on both versions to emulate the whole meaning of the sentence. It’s one of my most ambitious projects since all the work and preparation I had to dedicate, working with special care on the details to accomplish the right vibe and meaning as individual tunes both also as pairs, both ALSO as a whole album.
Compared to your last album “The Lost Chapters”, how have you evolved as an artist?
Definitely I have been evolving more and more into a Sound System style. You could say the percussion part is more hypnotic and “dry” but the effects game got an even greater importance. Also I’m loving producing with less elements but on the right spots, cutting out the “extras” like less breaks on the tune to let it flow better and progressively or shorten the tracks instead of a long 9 minute marathon. I really love this way of storytelling, I feel I found my best personal style so far.
Is there a meaning or story behind the name Tor.Ma?
When I started, I used to produce a mixture of Goa Trance, but using several prehispanic instruments (Mayan and Aztec). So as you can imagine I was very influenced by and interested in Mexican culture. My project’s name was “Factor Mazorca” (Cob Factor). In the Popol Vuh (sacred Mayan book) it says that the gods made us humans from corn, so the factor between the machines and the music itself was the human factor… the Cob Factor, therefore – Factor Mazorca- .
But then when I changed my direction, I liked the root and meaning, but had to change it for this new project so I took the facTOR.MAzorca… Tor.Ma… and the in Dub, well, from the genre itself.
Fun fact: I found out later that in one country (I think Mauritius) Tor.Ma means “Your mom” hahahaha.
In 2000 you started your career as a DJ, and began producing your own music in 2002, originally focussed on the Goa Trance sound. What made you switch to Chillout, and Dub in particular?
Well the Psytrance scene was growing very fast here in México, but felt there was lacking the chill and balance on parties and festivals, so I took the initiative since I was a lover of Reggae/Dub music and psychill also, it came to my mind the “unique” idea to fuse those two genres. We are talking almost 20 years ago. I didn’t even know that there was a genre already (Psydub) hehehe. As you may know my style has been changing through the years, at the beginning it was very chill and relaxing, I have been gradually going to where I am now, more hard stomping music, and I love it.
Interestingly, the cover art to your new album has a vintage metal vibe. What’s the story behind that?
For a long time I have wanted some graphics as if it was a black metal album (I’m a big metalhead and also a drummer since my youth to date), but the previous albums and EPs didn’t have the vibe for, but with Solve et Coagula, it felt just about right time to go for it with the mystical concept.
When making Solve et Coagula, did your creative muse take you in any unexpected direction?
Yes, I’m moving away from the hippie, fluffy, bubbly, colorful stuff of the classic Psydub genre, to a deeper and darker side for meditative introspection and bass driven dancing.
What music are you listening to now? Are you incorporating any inspiration from other artists into your music?
As said before, Metal (especially Death and Black) is always in my playlist (on my previous album there is a Dub-metal fusion at the end of “The Elder Gods” track), but I’m very eclectic with music.. it has to be good and that’s all. I listen to Electronica, Rap, Reggae, Punk, Pop, Funk, Salsa, Psytrance… music is always floating in my home and to listen to just one genre would be very tiring and boring, so we listen to a wide spectrum of it.
Specifically Dub music, there are tons! I’m listening now more to UK roots and steppers like King Alpha, Kai Dub, Keety Roots… I’m addicted to finding on Youtube sessions from Channel One Sound System, Jah Shaka, Aba Shanti-I, Iration Steppas…. and the listo goes on and on.
Name one dub track that makes you shiver in delight.
To choose one! mmmm the first comes to my mind is: Fikir Amlak & King Alpha – Bongo Watto Dub 1. Minimalistic but very heavy… what a tune!!!
What will surprise people to know about you?
I don’t smoke weed hahaha since like 20 years ago. Everybody is surprised about this, even more so a couple years ago when I used to have long dreadlocks, they pass me the joint and when I say: “No thank you, I don’t smoke”, their eyes widen and they don’t believe it. It’s understandable you know.. the music style and the dreads: of course he is a pothead!! But I would accept with enthusiasm a cold beer or a fresh coffee any time 😀
Read our interview with Amplify: https://trancentral.tv/2022/12/amplify-new-album-interview-exclusive-mix/