Nestled under the Brooklyn Bridge is the Atomic Babies. Here, their studio and the offices of BML (Brooklyn Music Limited) are located. These East Coast lads are starting to build a name for themselves throughout the world, performing all over the US and with recent bookings in Amsterdam. Along with all the duties of BML these two have their hands full.
The Atomic Babies consist of two guys, Joe Natoli and Patrick Mezzenneti. The music they make varies from funky breaks to straight techno, although techno seems to be their passion. “I’ve been into many styles of music in my past,” Natoli explains. “At one point, I got real tired of limits, rules, structure, and scales. Techno allows me to just manipulate sounds to a point where it just sounds good to me. No rules, no scales, no structure. Just sounds and rhythms.” Mezzenneti adds, “I think techno is kind of a way of life for us. It’s not just when the music is on, it’s all the time, our business, our parties, at home, it’s everywhere.” Before the Atomic Babies got together Joe and Pat did music on their own. Joe released his first piece of vinyl on Wildboy Records- as he recalls the record he begins to blush and tries to avoid discussion about it. Pat’s first release consisted of hip-hop tracks. At the time he was doing work with International Vibe Squad (of Chubb Rock fame) on Rocktown Records.
Having their studio located in their office allows the Atomic Babies to create music anytime they want. Their studio consists of analog and digital gear, but they seem to be using more and more of the digital gear than they have in the past. Natoli’s reasoning behind this seems simple enough. “We had a bit more income in 1997 and were able to buy some newer units. We still prefer the older analog stuff for sounds, but as far as production, Pro-Tools all the way!” As for their favorite pieces of gear, Natoli sticks to his MC202, ASRX, and the Roland R-8. Mezzenneti’s favorite piece of gear isn’t really a traditional favorite: The ICON. “It’s not fancy, just a filter box with a dirty sound you can tweak. You can put audio signals through it and make them really dirty and then add more or less. It’s dope.”
As for their favorite labels and artists, Pat’s are Acid Orange, Axodya, and XoX Trax. Joe’s favorites include Reload, Axodya, Clashbackk, and Sonic Groove. Both Frankie Bones and Freddy Fresh have their respect. Joe also names Abe Duque, Felix Da Housecat, Paul Birken, Mark Verbos, Master Control Program, Erick Van Den Broek (Shiver), Stephan Reisen, Doormouse, and Sarin Assault. Pat adds Basebin Twin, Vitamin D & Ben Pound, and Khromozomes to the favorites list.
When new music isn’t being produced they are working hard on Brooklyn Music Limited. BML is a the mother company that houses and supports one CD label (X-Sight) and 5 vinyl labels: Hyperspace (techno); DigitalHut (noisecore); Thrust (techno); Sugar Spliff (breaks/trip hop); and Beatsmart (drum & bass). BML puts out a lot of releases from a slew of different artists. “We are shifting our focus from compilations and putting greater emphasis on artist development,” they state. “We will be doing more artist full length albums, and just a few CD compilations.”
In a nutshell, that’s the future for BML. As for Atomic Babies, they recently released a music video on MTV, aired as part of the techno-oriented program AMP. Joe and Pat really felt their work paid off when they viewed the video with their closest friends. As far as upcoming plans for the Atomic Babies, “crazy live shows all over!” Their plans don’t end there though- “We are also working very diligently on buying our own Wal-Mart in Kentucky.” Definitely something to look forward to.