Max Cooper (music producer)

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Max Cooper
Max Cooper in 2017
Max Cooper in 2017
Background information
Born (1980-05-19) May 19, 1980 (age 42)
Belfast, Northern Ireland

Max Cooper (born 1980) is a London-based[1] electronica and techno producer who has been releasing music since 2007. He has received positive reviews from magazines such as Clash[2] and critical acclaim for his debut album Human.[3]

Cooper has released more than seventy original tracks and remixes, and more than twenty accompanying video works,[4][5] primarily on London label FIELDS and German label Traum Schallplatten.[6] His remixes range from avant-garde composers Michael Nyman and Nils Frahm, to bands like Hot Chip and Au Revoir Simone, to techno acts such as Agoria, Sasha (Welsh DJ) and Guy Andrews.[7]

Early life and education[edit]

Cooper was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland to parents of Australian descent.[8] He attended the Holywood Steiner School and was inspired to become a geneticist after reading various science books as a child.[8] Although he did not receive formal music training, Cooper started playing violin at age 12, but eventually stopped: "I never enjoyed it [violin] and didn't pursue it to any great degree—the music wasn't right to be honest."[9]

Cooper received his Ph.D. in computational biology from the University of Nottingham in 2008.[8] During his doctoral training, his research interests focused on modelling the evolution of gene regulatory networks—he specifically examined the evolution of feed-forward loops,[10] and studied the evolutionary influences of binding site organisation during transcriptional processes.[11] After completing his doctoral work, Cooper held a brief post-doctoral position as a geneticist at University College London.[1][12]



Max Cooper in 2011

In 2010, Cooper decided to focus entirely on music production and his music is influenced by his science background.[1][13] In terms of musical references, Cooper has cited Jon Hopkins, Sigur Rós and Ólafur Arnalds, adding that his influences are "mainly electronica more than techno". By 2012, he was voted in the top 20 live acts of the year for two years running on Resident Advisor [14][15] and named a Beatport artist of the year.[16]

Cooper released a two-part EP, Conditions One, on 10 December 2012, which also featured Braids, Ghosting Season and D/R/U/G/S (a.k.a. Callum Wright).[17] That same month, he achieved the number 5 spot on BeatPort's "Top Artists of 2012"[18] and was voted a "top 20" live act by the readers of canonical electronic music website Resident Advisor.[19]

Cooper encourages fans to produce their own videos for his music, with the results displayed on his website.[20][21] He released a music video for the song "Pleasures" that was animated by artist Cédric de Smedt.[22]

Cooper revealed that some of the artwork on his album covers[23] was inspired by his flatmate, who is a graphic designer.[24]

In December 2013, Cooper announced the release date of his debut album Human as 10 March 2014. The album was preceded by the single "Adrift", which was released on 16 December 2013. In regard to "Adrift", Cooper explained that it is "more of a personal piece of music for me than a club track, which is the approach I’ve taken for the whole album".[25] Human received critical acclaim and was described by Clash as "sumptuous, enticingly beautiful".[26] The release was followed by two remix EPs, Inhuman One and Inhuman Two, with remixes from Rodriguez Jr., Lusine, Harvey McKay, Jack Dixon and Olaf Stuut.[27]

Cooper on musical forum The Selector Pro in Kyiv (2017)

In September 2014, Cooper launched his debut audiovisual show Emergence at the Decibel Festival in Seattle. Performed entirely live and solo, it is a one-man show that ties together his scientific, experimental, musical and visual interests in a single conceptual festival artwork and is on tour in Europe.[28][29][30][31]

In early December 2014, Cooper released his follow-up to Human, the "Kindred EP" featuring singer Kathrin deBoer from trip-hop band Belleruche and remixes from David August and Throwing Snow.[27] The EP features Cooper's experiments with the sansula instrument and the polyphonic analogue Prophet 08 synth [32] and was described by Fact (UK magazine) as a "gorgeous slice of electronica".[33] During the summer before the Kindred release, Cooper released "Tileyard Improvisations Vol. 1", a collaboration fusing jazz and electronica.[34]

Max Cooper released his second collaboration with classically trained pianist Tom Hodge, "Artefact" as well as a remix EP of the same name. The music combines piano music with electronica and glitch and was inspired in part by an excursion Cooper made to the Teotihuacan pyramids in Mexico.[27][35]

Glassforms, a collaboration between Cooper and Bruce Brubaker, featuring the work of Philip Glass, was released June 5, 2020.[36] According to Cooper, "It was a refreshing process coming from my usual approach of mousing around music projects, building things in tiny iterations at a time, and it fed into my solo project techniques a lot as well."[37]

Live performance[edit]

Cooper has gained an international reputation as a leading electronic composer for both his unique sound and immersive audio- visual live shows.

Cooper has performed at numerous festivals, including Glastonbury Festival,[38] Fuji Rock Festival,[39] Bestival,[40] Latitude Festival,[41] Awakenings Festival,[42] MUTEK,[43] Amsterdam Dance Event[44] and Decibel Festival.[45] He has also performed live with artists such as Echaskech[46] and Baltimoroder.[47]

Other projects[edit]

As of 2011, Cooper is working with software company Liine on music-production software that is influenced by science.[48] In December 2012, he wrote a blog for British music magazine NME.[49]


Cooper uses Ableton equipment and Akai APC40 controllers.[50] He is also an early adopter of unusual club sound systems, performing in August 2013 on a 3D sound system called "4DSOUND".[51]

Selected discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

  • Human (2014)[52]
  • Emergence (25 November 2016)[53]
  • Balance (a Mix Project) (4 May 2018)[54]
  • One Hundred Billion Sparks (20 September 2018)[55]
  • Yearning for the Infinite (7 November 2019)
  • Glassforms (5 June 2020)
  • Unspoken Words (25 March 2022)

Singles and EPs[edit]

Title Label Year
Maps Mesh 2021
Hope Mesh 2018
World Passing By Mesh 2017
Chromos Mesh 2017
Artefact (with Tom Hodge) Fields 2015
Artefact Remixes (with Tom Hodge) Fields 2015
Tileyard Improvisations, Vol. 1 (with Kathrin deBoer and Quentin Collins) Gearbox Records 2014
Kindred EP Fields 2014
Inhuman Two Fields 2014
Inhuman One Fields 2014
Adrift Fields 2013
Fragments of Self Part Two (with Tom Hodge) Fields 2013
Fragments of Self Part One (with Tom Hodge) Fields 2013
Conditions Two (with Kathrin De Boer) Fields 2013
Conditions One (with Braids) Fields 2012
Mechanical Concussion EP Herzblut Recordings 2012
Egomodal EP Traum Schallplatten 2012
Empirisch EP Traum Schallplatten 2011
Metaphysical EP Traum Schallplatten 2011
Amalgamations EP Last Night On Earth 2011
Miocene EP Herzblut Recordings 2011
Metaphysical EP Traum 2011
Expressions EP - 2010
Series EP Traum 2010
Ediolic Spectra Bedrock 2010
Chaotisch Serie EP Traum 2010
InhaleExhale EP Veryverywrongindeed 2009
Stochastisch Serie EP Traum 2009
Symphonica Traum 2009
Harmonisch Serie EP Traum 2009
Crushbox EP Autist 2008
FRANK Firefly Recordings 2008
One Is None EP Evolved Records 2007


Title Label Year
Rob Clouth - Shedding Layers - Max Cooper remix Mesh 2018
Christian Löffler - Vind - Max Cooper remix Ki Records 2017
Sasha - Channel Deq - Max Cooper remix LateNiteTales 2017
Guy Andrews - In Autumn Arms - Max Cooper remix Houndstooth 2016
joeFarr - Spectate - Max Cooper remix Leisuresystem 2016
Michael Nyman and David McAlmont - Secrets, Accusations and Charges - Reconstruction and Deconstruction Last Night On Earth 2012
Sasha - Xpander - Max Cooper remix Deconstruction 2011
Hot Chip - I Feel Better - Max Cooper remix Flash 2010
Andrew K - The Doppler Effect - Max Cooper remix Vise Versa Music 2010
Au Revoir Simone - Take Me As I Am / Remix Moshi Moshi 2010
Abe Duque & Blake Baxter - What Happened - Max Cooper remix Process 2009



  1. ^ "Max Cooper biography". Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  2. ^ "Max Cooper announces debut album Human – hear tearjerking new single 'Adrift' - FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music". FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music. 11 December 2013.
  3. ^ Donaghy, John (2 April 2012). "Watch the new video for Max Cooper's "Micron," released today on Beatport". Archived from the original on 1 November 2013. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  4. ^ Max Cooper. YouTube.
  5. ^ "Max Cooper".
  6. ^ "premiere: guy andrews, in autumn arms (max cooper remix) - i-D". 17 June 2016. Retrieved 18 May 2020.
  7. ^ a b c Skrufff, Jonty (9 November 2010). "Max Cooper: I Don't Believe in Miracles (interview)". Archived from the original on 30 November 2010. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  8. ^ Lavin, Polly (15 November 2010). "Amalgamating the rhythm - Max Cooper presents his vision". Archived from the original on 5 June 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  9. ^ Cooper MB, Loose M, Brookfield JFY. Evolutionary modelling of feed forward loops in gene regulatory networks. Biosystems 2008; 91: 231-244.
  10. ^ Cooper MB, Loose M, Brookfield JFY. The evolutionary influence of binding site organisation on gene regulatory networks. Biosystems 2009; 96: 185-193.
  11. ^ "Interview: Max Cooper". The Burlington Project. Archived from the original on 5 May 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2013.
  12. ^ Taylor, Ken (12 July 2012). "Max Cooper". Archived from the original on 21 October 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  13. ^ "RA Poll". Resident Advisor.
  14. ^ "RA Poll". Resident Advisor.
  15. ^ "Beatport News names its Top Artists of 2012". Beatport Buzz.[permanent dead link]
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  18. ^ "RA Poll: Top 20 live acts of 2012". 6 December 2012. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
  19. ^ Max Cooper fan video page Archived 13 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  20. ^ Murray, Robin (4 November 2011). "Max Cooper Unveils Fan Video". Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  21. ^ Bennett, Neil (17 December 2012). "Cédric de Smedt's striking animated music video for Max Cooper's hypnotic Pleasures". Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  22. ^ Slater, Ben. "Max Cooper - Positive Mutation". Behance. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  23. ^ Forsyth, Laura (28 November 2011). "Max Cooper: Genetically Enhanced". Retrieved 22 February 2013.
  24. ^ Coultate, Aaron (10 December 2013). "The UK techno producer's first full-length is due out in March 2014". Retrieved 30 January 2014.
  25. ^ "Premiere: Max Cooper - Empyrean". Clash Magazine.
  26. ^ a b c "Max Cooper".
  27. ^ "Max Cooper on emergence and his new live show - Ableton".
  28. ^ "Max Cooper - Emergence Tour". Max Cooper. Archived from the original on 30 April 2015. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  29. ^ "World Party Calendar 2015 :: International Clubbing Event Listing:: Club, Music, Dance, Parties, Events, Dates, Venues & Line ups".
  30. ^ "RA News: Max Cooper takes Emergence on the road through Europe". Resident Advisor.
  31. ^ "Max Cooper - Releases - Kindred EP". Max Cooper. Archived from the original on 7 June 2015. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  32. ^ "Max Cooper returns with Kindred EP — listen to the starry-eyed 'Origins' - FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music". FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music. 18 November 2014.
  33. ^ "Max Cooper Feat Kathrin DeBoer, Quentin Collins - Tileyard Improvisations Vol. 1". Retrieved 18 May 2020.
  34. ^ Kokiousis, Chris (11 March 2015). "Max Cooper and Tom Hodge Announce New Collaborative EP". XLR8R.
  35. ^ Cooper, Max. "05.06.20 Work". Max Cooper. Max Cooper.
  36. ^ Cooper, Max (13 November 2020). "Q&A with Max Cooper".
  37. ^ "2014 | Glastonbury Festival". 12 March 2020. Retrieved 18 May 2020.
  38. ^ "FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL '15". FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL'15. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  39. ^ Murray, Robin (31 August 2012). "Bestival 2012 To Be Live Streamed". Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  40. ^ "Latitude Reveals More Acts For the 2015 Festival!". Latitude Festival.
  41. ^ "Max Cooper". Awakenings.
  42. ^ "Elektra and MUTEK Inhabit the Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal to Celebrate their Combined 15th Anniversary". MUTEK. Archived from the original on 22 March 2015. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  43. ^ "Extra 4DSOUND show Max Cooper at ADE Soundacademy - Blog - Amsterdam Dance Event". Amsterdam Dance Event. Archived from the original on 7 June 2015. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  44. ^ Reynaldo, Shawn (25 September 2012). "Max Cooper's Decibel Mix". XLR8R. Archived from the original on 14 December 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  45. ^ Saque Ferreira, Nuno (10 August 2011). "Sat 3rd Sep @ Ginglik". Archived from the original on 1 November 2013. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  46. ^ Di Tullio, Joanna (20 September 2012). "IN THE MIX: MAX COOPER". Archived from the original on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  47. ^ "Max Cooper on his 120 track live set and production techniques". 19 October 2011. Archived from the original on 7 August 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  48. ^ Cooper, Max (5 December 2012). "Why Skrillex And Co.'s EDM Explosion Is Something To Celebrate". Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  49. ^ Robertswaine86 (26 May 2010). "Socialeyes Presents Max Cooper At Corsica Studios". Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  50. ^ White, Dan (24 October 2013). "The 4D Soundsystem: Max Cooper Interview". Retrieved 30 October 2013.
  51. ^ "Max Cooper - Max Cooper - Human [CD]". Max Cooper. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  52. ^ Andrew Ryce (15 September 2016). "Max Cooper announces new album, Emergence". Resident Advisor. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  53. ^ "Max Cooper - Max Cooper - Balance 030 [2 x CD]". Max Cooper. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  54. ^ "Max Cooper - One Hundred Billion Sparks (CD)". Max Cooper. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  55. ^ "MAX COOPER - Releases". Beatport. Beatport, LLC. 2004–2014. Retrieved 10 August 2014.

External links[edit]