Written by Sophie Wyatt
The Offline came to life when composer and photographer Felix Müller travelled the Atlantic coastline in the south of France with his analogue camera, capturing beach life on film. After coming back to Hamburg, he started writing songs as the sonic counterpart to the analogue visuals and explained that he “needed a name for the project that reflected the feeling of the music and the photos, that was when The Offline was born.”. With well over a million streams on his debut EP ‘En Clair-Obscur’, The Offline has really set the bar high for his second project – his debut album.
Following ‘En clair-obscur’ and a series of singles earlier this year cementing his place as a rising voice in the world of cinematic soul & funk, ‘The Offline’ shares the second single from forthcoming debut album ‘La couleur de la mer’. ‘Cap Camarat’ intertwines breathtaking horns and soul lifting flutes, using the sounds to pick up the story where lead single ‘La mission commence’ left off. The Offline reminds us of the infinite amount of sonic possibilities with this project. Using the unique blend of sounds to invite you into a mysterious picture of fog-swept, silhouetted manors, and sailing boats off the coast of Cap Camarat, his music gives boundless possibilities. The track continues down the records’ cinematic path, blending MF Doom-style spectacle with intricate musical styling.
We caught up with The Offline to discuss how they became a musical figure, the influence of MF Doom, and his latest track ‘Cap Camarat‘.
When did you first find your love of music?
“It’s hard to remember a special moment, but it must be at an early age that I found my love of music. Music was always around me when I grew up, especially classical music. My mother was a music teacher who played several instruments and my brother and I always heard her playing while we built landscapes with lego. Eventually we learned to play the flute from her which led to piano lessons at a music school, followed by several bands in different genres trying out every instrument which was available.”
If you had to describe your music and what it means to you, how would you sum it up?
“I guess my music is an expression of different things that influenced me. On the music side especially 60s/70s film scores and hip hop, respectively the old funk and soul records the artists used to sample. Besides music, photography and skateboarding are a huge influence. Music means everything to me, its the base and the constant which accompanies me throughout my whole life.”
What do you want listeners to feel when they hear it?
“Oh that’s not an easy question! As the music has a cinematic approach the most beautiful thing would be if I can take the listener on a journey through the music with all its facets and inspire them in their imagination. And of course I hope they feel good and enjoy it.”
Tell us about your latest single ‘Cap Camarat’.
“‘Cap Camarat’ was one of the last tracks I wrote for my debut album ‘La couleur de la mer’, which will be out due to 3rd November this year.
The writing process was quite typical for me, starting with a drum groove from an old funk record as a foundation, then adding guitar and bass and all other instruments while playing along to the beat. After the demo was set every instrument was recorded again in different studios.”
What drew you to MF Doom’s music?
“My first encounter with MF Doom was quite late in his discography. It started with the collabo record with Danger Mouse, Danger Doom – The Mouse and the Mask. I became instantly a fan of his unique style and voice and inhaled everything from him ever since.”
And why did you feel the pull to create something inspired by him?
“Actually it was not intended to create something inspired by him, it was more like ’Oh, this feels like this could be the sample for a MF DOOM Track’ after Cap Camarat was finished. However, maybe the inspiration by him was already there before, but more on a subconscious level that led eventually to the musical decisions made.
Interestingly my friend Timor Litzenberger, who co-produced the album, had the same thought independently, so there must be some connection with Doom.”
Tell us about the story behind the video?
“My first plan was to shoot a video in the south of France near Cap Camarat, unfortunately the action cam I had with me died one minute after it was underwater, so I had to think of a backup plan. I remembered a trip to the Canary Islands with my friend Kai Beisner, who is also the Mastering Engineer behind all Offline tracks, where we were traveling across El Hierro and Tenerife and filmed whatever seemed interesting to us.When I reviewed the super 8 footage of that trip I found out that there were nearly no people around us and it felt at times like an abandoned island. Somehow these pictures went well with the music, so tried to focus on that feeling while editing the video for Cap Camarat.
By the way the memory card of the action cam survived the salt water of the cote d´azur and the underwater footage is now in the video.”
What can we look forward to seeing in the future? The debut album, festivals, shows etc.
“There will be two more singles before the album drops on November 3rd via Root Records / DeepMatter, ‘Un bout de chemin‘ on August 31st and ‘Le motard’ on October 5th. We just shot the video for ‘Un bout de chemin‘ with Peter Haueis, the director who is responsible for a few Offline videos, so this will be something to happen in the near future. I finally moved to a new studio space and I am currently working on new music, and we’re also planning a live setup to bring The Offline on stage.”
Head over to The Offline’s Spotify page to hear more of his music.