Between releasing on world-renowned techno labels such as 1605, Kraftek, and Respekt (to name a few) and teaching the next generation of artists on his prolific YouTube channel, Julien Earle has the mindset of putting in the work, while showing that he is ready to stand out and take the world by storm. As someone who has the ability to push and redefine the world of techno, it’s no surprise that he has hit #1 on the international techno chart with his tracks “My Eyes”, “Dark Nights,” “T4T9”, “Point of No Return,” and amassing over 85,000 subscribers on his Youtube channel.
In 2021, Julien kicked off the year by jumpstarting his own imprint REFLECTION, a label that took part in several successful releases that climbed Beatport’s techno charts as well. As a unique and exciting label, REFLECTION has done well in establishing itself within the scene. As of late, the label released the EP Daydream from label owner Julien himself, as well as featuring a hard remix on the second track from UNFORG1VEN.
Sharing with 6AM, Julien tells us how he moves through the DJ-grind, the intent and goals behind his label REFLECTION, featuring UNFORG1VEN on the EP Daydream, growing his YouTube platform organically, balancing all aspects of his career, and his plans for 2023. The two-track EP Daydream is now available for full purchase.
Hi Julian and welcome to 6AM. We’re glad that you’re joining us to share what’s been going on with your projects and what we can expect from you in the future. Tell us what’s been keeping you busy inside and outside the studio.
Thanks for having me, it’s really good to be here! Lately, my life has been studio, studio, studio, and when I get done with that, more studio. Making tons of new stuff every single day and really putting in those hours because I want to make some really special music, and I know that takes hours and a lot of trial and error to get there. I’m working on a ton of new music for my label r3flection and am extremely focused on pushing a new, fresh sound that no one else would sign.
Also, I’m working super hard on my band Ghost Angel at the moment. We have something great going on there and now we just need to develop that more and more, and promote it to the world. Very focused on using this endless energy that I have so I can leave my mark. Also, working on some cool stuff in the hip-hop world, but more on that to come.
“I want to make some really special music, and I know that takes hours and a lot of trial and error to get there. I’m also very focused on using this endless energy that I have so I can leave my mark.”
Julien appreciates that his journey is full of learning and patience.
It was just only a year ago that you debuted your label REFLECTION. You’ve expressed that the label is “the new home for different, powerful electronic music no one else is doing.” — what inspired you to create a label with this strong intent? What’s your goal for REFLECTION in the future?
I was inspired by the same pain a lot of us face in dance music — these popular labels are extremely rigid, often to a conservative ideal of what techno used to be, or to their own image of what it should be. I’m not throwing any shade, there’s a reason all that has to exist, and obviously, a lot of people love it. I simply needed something else.
I just think so much of what’s coming out has already been done before. I’ve been studying the game my whole life, and it was time to do something with that knowledge. The goal for REFLECTION is to show the world what this music can be, and how much new and exciting stuff is possible in this space. I want to shake things up.
“I was inspired by the same pain a lot of us face in dance music, I want to shake things up and show the world what this music [REFLECTION] can be, and how much new and exciting stuff is possible in this space.”
Julien’s label explores the unconventional and unique aspects of techno.
On the label, your EP Daydream was released on November 11, 2022, alongside the artist UNFORG1VEN who’s on remix duties for the second track “Daydream”. From listening to the EP’s previews, both tracks have such cinematic and visual instrumentation — it definitely fits the album’s title. Where/when did you find the inspiration for the EP? How did UNFORG1VEN’s remix fit the project?
Daydream was inspired by my love for ambient music, Future Garage, and Shoegaze — just all these beautiful genres that combine melodic grace with beautiful textures. I think we’re all sick of hearing trance melodies in techno, and I KNOW the world doesn’t need any more acid 303 tracks, so I’ve been hard at work making something different and new.
When UNFORG1VEN turned in that crazy Schranz mix, I knew that we were really ready to kick the door down with something new. Melodic Schranz is the future. He took my concept of beautiful, textured melodic meets techno a step further, and brought this contrasting element of hard Schranz beats into an epic arrangement. I really love art that explores contrast — and that remix is all about that.
“I’ve been hard at work making something different and new, and when UNFORG1VEN turned in that crazy Schranz mix, I knew that we were really ready to kick the door down with something new. I really love art that explores contrast — and that remix is all about that.”
Julien resonated with UNFORG1VEN’s remix on a personal and artistic level.
Staying on the topic of music, you’ve received success and recognition from releasing on world-renowned techno labels such as 1605, Kraftek, and Respekt, hitting #1 on the international techno charts with hits like: “My Eyes”, “Dark Nights,” “T4T9”, and “Point of No Return”, as well as climbing Beatport’s techno charts. Congratulations on these great accomplishments, as we know it hasn’t always been smooth sailing. What’s your method of staying focused, driven, and not losing hope during the DJ-life grind?
I think really, really loving that grind of just making tracks and engineering them helps a lot. It’s not easy. When playing that game of trying to get on the biggest techno labels, all of them are extremely selective and have very set ideas of what their label is, and what it has to sound like — this means you usually have to send hundreds of tracks and get 99% of them rejected. It sucks. It can hurt really bad if you take it too personally. I don’t. I just understand the game I’m playing and keep my head down and do what I love. I get it — not just anyone can get on REFLECTION either. Why would you trust someone’s taste if they say yes to everything?
“I think really, really loving that grind of just making tracks and engineering them helps a lot. It’s not easy, and it sucks sending hundreds of tracks and getting 99% of them rejected. I don’t take it too personally and keep my head down and do what I love.”
A career in DJing may be mentally taxing, but always make time to create music just for fun.
Ok, speaking of the DJ-life grind you’ve definitely been working hard at growing an organic following on YouTube from your prolific teachings of production. As of now, you have a successful following of 86.5K subscribers on YouTube. What made you decide that you wanted to create a YouTube channel that can aid others in DJ production?
I understand that if you want people to support you, you have to provide them with value. And honestly, on a real human level, making great tracks isn’t really giving them that much value — it is in a way, but I see through how that’s also still a bit of an ego boost and kind of vapid after a certain point if we’re talking dance music due to how functional it is. Like, maybe writing some lyrics that help people release their emotions is giving value, but simply making a really good club track is really serving something else.
“I understand that if you want people to support you, you have to provide them with value — simply making a really good club track isn’t really giving them that much value.”
Julien’s YouTube content isn’t self-serving, but helpful and knowledgable for others.
“I always wished so many of these videos on my YouTube channel were available when I started, so it’s a bit vindicating to know that I’ve been able to provide that for others, and demystify what they love and want to be able to do.”
Julien finds joy in providing his viewers with helpful content.
How do you find a balance between having a YouTube channel, creating music releases, and performing at gigs/events?
I have a pretty planned schedule these days. It’s been insane before, there have been days where I just woke up, didn’t eat, started producing, and didn’t stop until it was time to go to sleep — still forced at least one meal in on those days. Nowadays, I get the YouTube videos done every few days and use the rest of the time to develop my own music. I’m so dead serious about making a mark, beyond tutorials. I work all day long just improving my engineering, finding interesting ideas, executing them, and expanding what I know is possible for this music.
To be honest, I do very little outside of music and I love it. I’m just trying to harness all this energy and life and spirit I have in my youth, and really make some great music and show it to the world. And I am. Gigging does take a lot out of me — I love it though because that’s when you really see what’s connecting with people. I always end up making one or two records on the plane ride back and in the hotel room after I get inspired by the gig. Music is my life, so the balance is easy.
Julien puts his all into everything he does.
No doubt that you’re on your way to even more astronomical growth in the foreseeable future. Are there any upcoming projects on the horizon?
Currently, I have two more records planned for early 2023 on REFLECTION. If you thought Daydream was pushing the envelope, just wait until you hear these tunes. I stay focused on where the mission is right now. I know I’ll do huge stuff and I know I have something to say about what the world wants and needs — but, that means I have to buckle down and make each step feel like it’s another step up and not just a step toward stagnation — that takes focus and not getting ahead of yourself. If you focus too much on the long game, you start making each step count less and that’s when you get stagnant and frustrated when you don’t get what you want.
I have thousands of other tracks ready too, but these two are the next focused steps upward. I’m working on my band Ghost Angel too — that’s gonna be big. I’m not quitting until I make it no matter how long that takes.
“I stay focused, buckle down, and make each step feel like it’s another step up and not just a step toward stagnation. I’m not quitting until I make it no matter how long that takes, and that’s the mission right now.”
Set your intentions, envision them, and progress towards your goal in full force.
Thanks to 6AM Group for having me, and I also want to give special thanks to anyone who supported Daydream or has ever supported me.