With a discography that would make most dance music producers green with envy, Henry Hurtig, AKA CID INC needs little introduction. Born in Finland, raised in Sweden and now based back in Finland, Henri started messing about with musical gadgetry from the early 90’s & thus beginning his astounding journey within the electronic music scene.
Over the past decade he has taken on a few differing roles of DJ, producer and professional sound engineer with phenomenal success. Blending progressive and tech house with elements from other styles, the CID INC sound is his own unique and fresh interpretation of the house blueprint.
In 2004, Henri teamed up with Mathias Bradler to create Mashtronic and through this union flourished productions that saw him being recognised on a global scale with tours playing all over Europe as well as trips to South America, Australia and New Zealand.
Having Mashtronic tracks signed to some of the world’s hottest labels including Bedrock and Global Underground, it wasn’t long before Henri decided to march to the beat of his own drum (machine.... sorry! ;) and start his solo career, under the name CID INC in 2008.
Producing tracks for labels such as Lost & Found, Replug, Sudbeat, Microcastle, Flow Records and Perspectives Digital as well as being featured on numerous artist compilations for John Digweed, Pole Folder and our GDMC friends, D-Nox & Beckers genuinely solidifies just how exceptionally talented Henri is when immersed in a studio.
So with the future looking brighter than a full moon on a warm summer’s night I will now turn the mic over to Henri himself to tell us more about his fascinating story and what groovy journeys are coming up.
Over to you Henri! ;)
Full Name: Henri Hurtig
Nationality: Finnish & Swedish
Labels: Replug, Lost & Found, Sudbeat
Current Releases: Cid Inc & Orsen - Unreleased
Musical mentors: Jean Michael Jarre, Vangelis, Daft Punk, Way Out West, KLF, Aphex Twin, Dance 2 Trance, The Prodigy, Westbam, Rob Acid, Humanoid, Jori Hulkkonen, Emmanuel Top, Hardfloor, Dj Misjah, Underworld, Jam & Spoon, Legend B + many many others.
G’day Herni! Thank you so much for taking time out to have a chat with us all today. Where are you and how are you feeling?
Hey hey, thanks for having me. I'm very well. It’s Saturday morning here and I’m having a coffee at the moment, looking out the window upon the heaps of snow we've gotten this year and hoping for Spring to come. Saturdays are usually the I day I have off from mastering work and the studio in general.
So let’s start at the beginning…. Tell us a little about your story and how you first came about the dance scene?
I was born in Finland, my parents and I moved over to Sweden when I was one year old, where I grew up and lived until 2004 before moving back to Finland. I started producing music at quite an early age and DJ'ing followed a few years after. At some point after I turned 20 I started getting opportunities in the music business and decided to try to pursue a career as a full time producer and DJ.
What music did you listen to growing up and how do you think these sounds influence your productions?
I was very much into 80's heavy/glam rock with the likes of Mötley Crüe, W.A.S.P, Twisted Sisters .
When I was around 10 years old I heard Jean Michael Jarre, Vangelis and all those synth dudes for the first time, the electronic sounds just fascinated me to a great extent. Even a lot of the pop music that was playing on the radio (MTV etc) during 80s started including different kinds of machines and synths that made interesting sounds. I've always been into melancholic melodies and atmospheric sounds, everything with those elements influenced me a lot.
What was the first album or piece of music you bought for yourself and how old were you?
I think it was Mötley Crüe's "Theatre Of Pain" in 1985 that I bought it on cassette at 9 years age.
Do you remember your first ever set? Where was it and what was the party called? Were you nervous?
I don’t exactly remember when the first one was, but there was this youth center in the town where I grew up and where me and my friends used to hang out. One of the dudes who worked there was a local DJ. He organised disco evenings once a month at the center and me and my friends got asked if we would like to try DJ'ing. I bet it was quite a nerve-wracking experience, playing with two cassette tapes :)
So how did the name CID INC become your artist alias and what does it mean?
I've been always a fan of 303s and in the mid 90s I was a big fan of Acid Techno ( Acid Warrior, Emmanuel Top etc. ) so I decided to use Cid Inc., a shortening of Acid Incorporation, which is a name that's stuck for my solo stuff.
How would you describe your sound in your own words? What is the inspiration for your music?
Progressive house with deep, hypnotic, melodic and once in a while some techno(ish) elements. My inspiration comes from every day life, however, mainly from travelling, experiencing new places and playing for crowds.
Progressive house seems to be in a good place right now. I mean, there are no clubs or festivals to play at the moment but the amount of incredible music being produced is really spectacular! Where do you see the sound going in the next few years?
It’s quite hard to predict really. Organic house is big now so maybe it will pick up elements from that genre? It's always evolving and take new shape. It is even being named under new genre at the moment.
What is it about Progressive house that you love so much? What made you fall in love with that genre specifically?
Before I even knew the term 'progressive house' my way of producing tracks was kind of 'progressive'….. the long build ups, melancholic melodies mostly etc. That way of producing and generally experiencing club music always appealed to me. I really loved Way Out West’s first two albums but I didn’t know was progressive house at the time.
It was around the turn of the millennia that I initially realised I was producing more or less progressive music. Back then there was this website in Sweden where one could upload songs, those uploaded tracks were actually listened to by various people that were already established in the industry. One day after I had uploaded a few tracks on the website, I got a call from the Swedish progressive dudes 'Inkfish'. They asked me if I had more 'Progressive House' available and it was at this point that I understood my music was just that….
Do you have a personal favourite Cid Inc track?
Definitely “Contrite”, it captures the feelings and emotions I went through during the time when I produced the track.
What track do you wish you wrote?
Samuel Barber - Adagio for Strings
When did you start becoming interested in music production – and who were your greatest influences? Were you self-taught or did you have mentors around you to guide you?
After I’ve heard Jean Michael Jarre and Vangelis I got very curious of how those sounds in the tracks were made. I also played a lot of games on the Commodore 64 and loved the music in them, mainly by Rob Hubbard and Martin Galway.
After I had upgraded the computer to an Amiga 500, one of my friends introduced me to a friend of his who was making music on tracker programs. I brought the program back home on a floppy disk, along with a few sample disks and started messing around and learning the principles of producing music on my own with the four channel tracker program that could load 8 bit samples. I was in heaven, it was all very exciting !
I became part of the so called “Demo Scene” and was active in that for a few years before moving on to more purely dance oriented music.
I actually worked with tracker based music programs, Noise Tracker, Scream Tracker, Fast Tracker and finally Buzz Tracker up until 2005 before I moved on to Ableton Live.
You are definitely a household name within the progressive house and festival scene here in Australia. What is it about the Australian dance (dust) floors that you love so much?
Amazing crowd and the production is always top notch. I’ve always felt very welcome when I’ve been to Australia. Australia is one of my favourites places along with Argentina.
CID INC smashing Rainbow Serpent Festival
Away from music, how do you relax? What hobbies etc do you enjoy?
I enjoy the simple things like taking care of our dog (Galgos) whom we rescued from Spain. Enjoying time with my fiancé and eating good food. I’ve been a gamer since I was a kid so still enjoy getting lost with the PlayStation on a daily basis. I only wish I could get my hands on a PS5 though, not easy to find one at the moment ;)
How has 2020 & this whole pandemic changed your views to how the dance scene will recover? Do you think live DJ streams are here to stay?
Every one in the industry is having a tough time at the moment, however, I’m quite sure that the clubbing scene will be stronger than ever after all this madness is over. People are hungry for some proper partying and dancing. How long it will take before things are back to “normal” is very hard to say though. Many in the industry will go or have gone bankrupt in these trying times, especially event organisers and clubs. But as long as people have the urge and demand to have a good time there will always be someone who makes it possible.
When this whole pandemic thing started, my initial thought was that no one will buy music as no one was DJ'ing anymore. I was quite wrong, sales have been strong throughout the whole year, probably thanks to the streaming thing many are doing, and also because people still obviously want to consume music. I’ve seen this with my mastering service that I provide for DJ's, producers and labels, my client base has been growing steadily throughout 2020 and I’ve been lucky enough to make a good enough living from it.
Streaming is most probably here to stay, there was streaming of events before the pandemic hit, this is just another way of doing it and some people seem to enjoy watching them. I personally don’t like doing them. It feels awkward and doesn't feel natural to me at all. I’d rather just be in front of a live crowd and play music.
So, in closing up today Henri, what does the future hold for you? What are you most excited about? Any new releases we should look out for?
I’m definitely looking forward to the time when DJ'ing and playing to a crowd is possible again, experiencing new things and meeting up with friends from around the world.
I’m also slowly recovering from a 'creativity block' however it seems like new music is finally happening naturally which is fantastic!
I just had a release together with my label partner and good friend Orsen called “Unreleased” on Replug Records. Basically a bunch of tracks from the past two years that, funnily enough were never really meant to be released :)
I’ve done a remix for Mango Alley that will be out in a few months and finishing off a remix for your fellow country men GMJ & Matter’s Meanwhile recordings as well as working on two collaboration tracks with Dmitry Molosh that will be released later on this year.
Thanks so much for your time today Henri and I'm sure I'm speaking on behalf of all my readers when I say we can't wait to see you rocking a dance floor soon!
You're welcome! :)
So that concludes our interview with the lovely Henri Hurtig (aka CID INC)
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Our next interview will be published on Friday the 2nd of April at 7:30pm (AEST)