Artist, Dub Techno Connoisseur, Mastering Engineer and Ableton Live streamer.
Perhaps it was the decision to switch musical tastes in his youth that gives Ian Mono’s own brand of electronic music a unique edge. Perhaps the original source of the energy behind his music was from a different place from his peers. Perhaps it’s that his “give anything a go” approach towards producing, and his deep passion and enthusiasm for house and techno that drives his ambition. With contagious zeel, Ian Mono takes another step towards becoming a name that a lot more of you are going to be familiar with.
Ian (Pim Polderman) grew up in the small Dutch town of Burgh-Haamstede. He attended high school in the nearby town of Zierikzee and it was here in the late 90’s and early 00’s is where he cemented his first love for music. He played bass in a Death/Black Metal band. The music was hard, fast, and raw, and although seemingly an unusual starting point for a career in techno, it did pave the road for his desire to start recording and producing his own tracks.
He became good friends with Martijn de Keijzer (Minimalloot, Radio Sputnik.NL) around 2004, who introduced him to an intriguing and heady cosmos of pirate radio stations, electronic music and, of course, parties. Martijn’s influence was to be huge for Ian. Hanging out at Martijn’s place for the first time was, as Ian puts it, “magical”. It was at this point where he started to explore other genres of music, putting electronic music at the forefront of his musical tastes. He listened to lots of deep, and progressive house, and to electro initially, but after being invited to join friends on a trip to Awakenings Festival, his taste was refined once more. For at this time, minimal was emerging as yet another newly discovered galaxy in Ian’s universe which would captivate his attention for some time to come. Djs like the Wighonmy Brothers, Lauhaus, Boris Werner, Gaiser, Magda, Troy Pierce and more, also helped to fuel his passion further. Then, a Gashouder Detroit Weekender turned Ian on to harder styles of Techno. Jeff Mills, Surgeon, Derrick May, Sterac, and Estroe all became major influences also. He was also introduced to the “dubbier” side of Techno around the same time. Tuning in to the legendary Danzolectro radio show was a regular part of Ian’s life and on one particularly memorable occasion he listened to a set by Estroe which was as deep as it was dubby, and once more, another style and indeed more fuel for his newly found passion was discovered. In a short couple of years, Ian had not only discovered a whole new musical universe, he practically mapped the whole place also!
After moving to Den Haag in 2007 to finish his studies in IT, and with a new job, came more money. It meant of course more parties. Ian could afford to travel more and explore dance culture further. Besides exploring the scene in different cities within the Netherlands, he often held his own illegal raves back in Zierikzee with Nrico, Lager, and his good friend and mentor Martijn. Collectively they were known as CLiKK.
Never one to stop exploring, Ian was tuning into many independent online radio stations at this time. In Particular, Deepmix Radio Moscow captured his imagination. His appreciation and love for these online stations grew and in 2010 he became involved with radiosputnik.nl along with Martijn.
During that period Ian was beginning to experiment with Ableton and although at this time, still a hobby, he started to produce his own demos. He studied and learned the craft of music production intensively. With his desire to produce his own tracks sacrifices had to be made. And with work commitments also it meant that Ian had to curtail his partying in order to completely focus on the objective. It was a period of contrasts and 2012 to 2015 for Ian, was spent largely under the radar. However he did still DJ and in fact his club debuts at Rotterdam’s Perron and Amsterdam’s Chicago Social Club took place during this time. Looking back he has said that his time spent studying Ableton and honing his production techniques was “super motivational” for him for it paved the path to his next stage of his journey.
He came out of 2015 with “fresh ears and clear goals” as he puts it. He contacted Michel (Love over Entropy) who provided guidance and helped to keep the direction. Michel encouraged and advised, and at times gave some pretty brutal feedback. Honesty is not always an easy thing to hear, but Ian took it the only way someone with his drive could – as motivation to create better music and to try new approaches. Perseverance and dedication to all aspects of his ambition, knowledge gained, lessons learned, talent, technical ability, creativity, all of these elements were beginning to fall together under the gravitational pull of desire. Then, in a blinding flash of self realization (a kind of echo of that previous magical moment back in 2004) the intensely luminous decision to launch both his label, and his professional mastering service was made. He had everything he needed to create his own worlds. Everything came together under the name Ian Mono.
June 2018 sees Ian Mono’s first release – In Oceans. The Second released followed soon with a well received split EP with Jack Fresia called Clockwork.