Jens Moelle and Ismail Tüfekçi are Digitalism, an electronic music group known for composing dance club hits that possess a cool, kinetic energy perfect for science fiction films like Blade Runner, The Matrix or Tron: Legacy.
“We are just making music for an imaginary film,” Moelle says. “We love soundtracks. We’re very much into Blade Runner. ‘Cinematic electronic music’ is a very good description for us.”
In 2007, the two released Idealism. The album proved to be extremely popular in Germany, where electronic dance music is practically a religion. “There are a lot of clubs in Berlin and Hamburg that are open 24 hours,” Moelle says.
With a high demand for huge hits, only the best dance hits get played, but it’s not just electronic music. “There’s also a lot of disco, deep house and techno.”
Their second album, I Love You Dude, has already received tremendous attention because of addictive tracks like “Circle.” Most bands feel tremendous pressure to create a second album that’s as respectable as their first. Did Digitalism feel a similar pressure composing their latest full-length?
“That’s a huge question for any artist,” Moelle says. “The second album is a very difficult one to make. When you drop the first album, you define your sound. It’s a ‘Hello!’ However, the second one has to meet people’s expectations. We just started at square one, from the beginning, and after we had a track . . . we’d play [it] live and drop the new songs into our sets.”
In a survival-of-the-fittest mentality that would have impressed Mozart and Darwin, only the most popular tracks made it to the final album.
“We basically just stuck to the songs that people liked the most,” Moelle says.
Both musicians didn’t follow any sort of recipe to create I Love You Dude. Instead, the creation was organic.
“We throw a lot of ideas into each song, and there’s no arguing because there’s just the two of us,” Moelle says. “We just put it all together.”
With a large fanbase around the world, the two are in high demand.
“We’re fresh out of a European tour where we played 22 gigs in four weeks,” he adds.
Digitalism spent December touring the U.S. (“We’re playing our own gig instead of opening for another group or playing with a lot of bands,” Moelle says. “We also have a lot more material.”), which included shows at The Music Box in L.A. and Mezzanine in San Francisco.
“We have a new album out so we have a different set list than three years ago,” Moelle says.
With I Love You Dude playing loudly in dance clubs across several continents, life is good for Digitalism.
“We ended up with something we really loved,” Moelle says. “I feel like we got around the ‘second album curse’ and just made an album that represents the spectrum of all the different types of music we enjoy.”