Tender Games are the Berlin based production duo of BBC Radio 1 Future Star Marlon Hoffstadt & HRRSN (Ulrich, boss of Well Done!). The duo are making soft, sweet house music combined with delicate vocals and are signed to Suol music having released two EP’s and a debut album on the imprint. Their unique sound which brings together elements of house, garage, blues and folk is turning heads and unsurpiringly they’ve grabbed the attention of the BBC’s Annie Mac and Nemone who have both championed their gorgeous sound. We were lucky enough to catch up with the boys and ask them a few questions…
Hello Tender Games. We’re very much enjoying your debut LP, what made you think ‘yeah let’s hook up and make some music together’?
We met each other on a ski trip in the alps, crashed into each other and had a beer afterwards. We noticed that we both are musicians and that we live in the same city, so we met each other and started producing music together.
Has the creative process been a smooth one?
Ulrich: Fortunately yes. As we had plenty of sketches, the hardest part in the end was to narrow down and work on the songs we were feeling the most towards the end. Then when we ́re in the studio together we are really focused and if not, we just go for a round of table tennis!
So what else can we expect from you? Is there going to be a ‘Tender Games sound’ or will you keep us guessing?
Marlon: Well, maybe if we have a bigger discography, there will be something. But with ‘only’ 14 songs out we will have to wait and see. Because we really want to do whatever we like. However, it ́ll always be somewhat ‘soulful’ and melodic.
Have you got any London dates coming up?
Marlon: As of now unfortunately not. But as Ulrich has family there and quite a few ppl ask us already (which is quite awesome considering how small we are) we sure hope so! Aside from Berlin, London has influenced our sound the most.
Do either of you have any annoying habits that wind the other up in the studio/on tour?
Ulrich: I have my ‘5 Minutes’ on a regular basis and that gets out of hand quite quick because I let my inner child scream and do whatever.. But I cherish that habit! 😀
Marlon: I’m a little bit impatient, and Ulrich needs to slow me down from time to time.
Which artists are currently inspiring you?
Ulrich: Dev Hynes is a huge inspiration at the moment. I always listen to Danny Brown, although you may think that as a rapper he does not influence my sound that much. But as far as honesty in song writing goes you can learn a lot from him. And lately I have been listening do Bipolar Sunshine a LOT.
Marlon: I’m pretty much influenced by many cool house acts, but im also taking my creativity and ideas from soul music like Charles bradley, Etta James & Al Green.
Any tips off for big track of the summer?
Ulrich: hm…tbh not really, there a too many songs that seem to be produced with only the ‘hit factor’ in mind and there is always the danger of a catchy ‘pop/rock’ track being made into an edit that ́ll go through the roof so I really don ́t know.
And finally, what would you do as techno kittens for the day?
Marlon: I know (I am sure) you ́re not really cats, but if I could do what a kitten can, I’d lick my own balls for the day.
Tender Games debut album is out now on Suol Records | info here