Two months back, we first covered Detroit-based minimal producer RN ISMO on the heels of his latest EP release All I Can Be on Admit One Records.
Pumping out entrancing basslines is the name of his game — and this month, the rising artist shared his latest efforts “All Night” and “Who’s Callin U?“. Comprising the All Night EP, these two tracks and their extended cuts are decidedly more bubbly and bumping than the rising artist’s prior releases. Simply put, they’re built for the ensuing energy of the after-hours.
All the while, RN ISMO is increasingly active in his local scene of Detroit and is just days away from supporting OMNOM in Detroit on July 2nd, which marks the debut of his new project Invite Only with tech-house producer TekNoNo.
We were fortunate enough to chat with the man behind RN ISMO for an exclusive conversation about his projects and where he’s headed next. Throw on the tunes below and dive into the exciting world of RN ISMO.
River Beats (RB): Ish! Great to have you on River Beats and appreciate you taking the time to chat with us.
RN ISMO: “Thank you for having me! I am excited to share my story with you.”
RB: You’ve been a hardworking guy this year so far – with two EPs out the gate, including All I Can Be, which we covered back in April. You’ve also been busy playing shows and creating buzz in the Detroit scene – how does it all feel?
RN ISMO: “Not going to lie – I struggle taking things in. Meaning, I always tend to move from one thing to another without celebrating my victories. But since you have posed the question… It is surreal to think back on how I started. In 2017, I had 0 connections and no musical knowledge of producing. Today, I am honored having my music supported by artists such as Lee Foss, Detlef, and Solardo.
Here in Detroit, the scene has been extremely supportive from the start. We have a great sense of community. It is awesome to see a collective of people supporting one another. I have not seen that anywhere else.”
RB: From a songwriting perspective, your percussion and basslines blend together excellently, and the samples you choose are incorporated so tastefully. What kind of energy are you trying to create through your music and how do you see that translate at your shows?
RN ISMO: “My brand motto is, ‘Getting YOU, Lost In The Groove.’ I want the crowd to feel hypnotized on a dance floor, while keeping the essence of music stripped back and focused on a simple groove.
I value a ‘less is more‘ approach while producing/creating, yet, I value crafting catchy hooks for the audience to have that ‘memorable moment’ on the dance floor.”
RB: Detroit is steeped in techno culture, and you’re certainly making your mark on it. For the uninitiated, how would you describe what’s going on in Detroit and its legacy of dance music?
RN ISMO: “I often say to my peers that we are spoiled in Detroit. The fact that I can drive 15 minutes to see the likes of Kevin Saunderson, Kenny Larkin, DJ Minx, Stacey Pullen, or Juan Atkins is astonishing. For those who don’t know, they are pioneers of [this] dance music genre. And like I’ve said before, Detroit is a tight knit community. We support one another by going to each other’s shows and discussing how we can improve the experience for the audience. We take it very seriously because we understand the history.
It is not like we are trying to impress the pioneers, but rather, we are building on a framework that they’ve established. It is respecting and cultivating the dance music culture into the future generations.”
RB: We’ve also seen that you launched a side project earlier this year with your good friend TekNoNo and are bringing both of your prowess together. How are you treating the work as a duo versus your solo project?
RN ISMO: “Noah (TekNoNo) and I are highly driven people, and we vibe naturally as a unit. So it made perfect sense to launch Invite Only. We are still in the early stages of branding, but the goal is to be inclusive and provide special shows for the people. We are focused on craftsmanship of song selections and overall artistic representation of performance.
We are working on releasing a few tracks that resemble driven minimal tech house sub-genre (think Ben Sterling, SOSA, Cloonee and PAWSA). Our official debut will be on July 2nd as we direct support OMNOM at Tangent Gallery in Detroit. Hope to see you there!”
RB: As I understand it, you also work as a nurse – definitely a challenging and venerable job – and it even inspired the first part of your name. Do you find that any of your professional work and music career overlap in any surprising ways?
RN ISMO: “You would be surprised – lots of musicians and artists out there are medical care professionals! It is definitely unique to share our experiences outside of the music industry.
Personally, my goal is to demonstrate that people can be, whatever they want to be and achieve their dream – as long as there is passion and hardwork to accommodate that dream.
I started to produce in 2017 with no knowledge while working as a registered nurse. Today, I am releasing consistently while being supported by biggest acts in the industry… and I am just getting started! You can do it too!“
RB: Looking ahead, what are you most excited about for your work as RN ISMO? Personally? And for music in general?
RN ISMO: “I have a lot of tracks in a pipeline ready to be signed, so I am currently looking for labels that are eager to work together. I am excited to continue to develop and learn more about the music industry as a whole. And, I am looking forward to networking and bonding with people that are ambitious about their goals. As Steve Jobs said best, ‘Great things in business are never done by one person; they are done by teams of people.’“
Be sure to keep up with RN ISMO on the socials below! It’s clear the rising producer is gaining steam and making moves, and we’re pumped to follow along.