Phillip Hermes is sitting in his studio in Speyer, Germany. The 23-year-old (who also goes by Phil Setterline or just Phil) has been working diligently on a new track all day and it is now late at night. He excitedly sends it off to his producing partner Nikolaj Weiss (Nik) who lives in Italy.
Phil and Nik met where many from all walks of life meet, online. They connected on a site called MyOwnMusic. The site is a music portal where creative bands and producers can post their music for others to listen for free. While clicking around on the site, Phil came across Nik. "I was looking at the site and came across Nik's music." Phil states. "I liked it and saw his passion, so I wrote him and asked if he wanted to collaborate." Nik said yes and the two formed Uplink.
Formed in late 2012, the name has a few meanings. "The upload of files / information (like on the website in which the two met) in one's mind and also to connect worldwide with one passion (music)." Phil explains.
Together, the duo started to produce music. Despite the distance, it worked and things began to click. "I think he thinks like me." Nik says with a smile. After hard work and countless Skype sessions (their main form of communication), they began to establish quite the catalog.
Uplink's main sound or genre is Electronic Dance Music or EDM and other variations of this music form. The duo has performed their music either together or separate at various clubs in Europe as well as at the Farbgefühle Festival in Heidelberg, Germany. In 2014, they released their first EP, Mad Machine through Sonic Art Music, an Electro/House label out of Germany.
They have recently collaborated with Max Fail, an increasingly popular DJ from Hamberg, Germany and Adam Lyons, an up-and-coming artist from the UK. After deciding they needed a vocalist for some of their tracks, Uplink searched on YouTube. It was there where they found Adam and the creative team (now in three separate locations) plan on releasing an EP of original songs (written and sung by Lyons and produced by Uplink) independently this summer.
"We are on the same wavelength and value each other's visions, creating pretty awesome collaborations." Lyons says about working with Uplink. "They are so versatile and appreciate every genre of music. I feel blessed to be working with such a great team." he states.
Uplink's story can be seen as both unique and a sign of the times. While it would have been much easier for the producers to be in the same room as one another, they weren't. However, in this connected World we live in, that is becoming more common for people to collaborate and connect with people from all over the World. Personally, I have been fortunate enough to communicate with people from all corners of the globe. It wasn't until recently that it occurred to me how interesting, strange and fascinating this sometimes is. Considering not that long ago, this wasn't even an option; I think it is important for some members of society to remember how lucky we are to have the technology and capability to do this.
It was the late John Denver who said this "Music does bring people together. It allows us to experience the same emotions. People everywhere are the same in heart and spirit. No matter what language we speak, what color we are, the form of our politics or the expression of our love and our faith, music proves: We are the same." In the case of Phil and Nik or otherwise known as Uplink, this quote rings true. They both individually bring something to the table, but when they are a duo, that is when the true artistry forms. While their side of the music world (or any area of the music world for that matter) is competitive, Uplink's career continues to move forward and grow and it will be interesting to see where it goes.
To connect with Uplink as well as listen to their music, visit their Facebook Page. Their EP Mad Machine is available on iTunes.
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