Since their collaboration in 2005 Super8 & Tab have released two Beatport trance number one artist albums, played at major music festivals all over the world, including EDC, Ultra, Tomorrowland and A State of Trance, been nominated ‘Best Breakthrough DJ’ at the Miami WMC IDMA Awards and they consistently score highly in DJ Magazine’s Top 100 poll. And having now signed to colossal record company Armada Music, they show no signs of slowing down.
Things really started happening for the Finnish duo in 2004, when Above & Beyond adopted each of them individually as the first members of the ever-growing Anjunabeats family. But like most DJs, Super8 & Tab were interested in music from an early age. “I saw a photograph of myself when I was two-years-old holding a guitar, so it must have begun then,” jokes Janne Mansnerus, AKA DJ Tab. “And I wrote my first track when I was four – although it wasn’t my best work,” adds Miika Eloranta, better known as Super8.
They both discovered electronic music at the age of 15 – Tab at a club night for teenagers in Helsinki and Super8 on a family holiday to Spain: “My Dad took me to Pacha,” he says. “It was the first time I’d ever seen DJs beat mixing and I was sold. I got my first real synthesisers and it started from there.”
And from there, he met Tab at a recording studio in 2005. Once they realised they were both releasing tracks on Anjunabeats, they took the logical step to start working together. But although the duo have grown with Anjuna and have had multiple number one releases on the label, they’ve always put out records on other imprints too; the latest of which is Armada Music.
As well as being signed to two of the biggest labels in trance music, some of Super8 & Tab’s other achievements include two artist albums, four mix compilations, remixes for the likes of Armin van Buuren, Paul van Dyk, Ferry Corsten and BT and countless hit singles such as ‘Elektra’, ‘Irufushi’ and ‘L.A.’; but ‘Helsinki Scorchin’’ was the track that changed things. Released in 2006, it was the first record they worked on together and it still blows away dancefloors when they play it out today.
Four years after the release of their first single, the pair released their debut artist album ‘Empire’ followed by ‘Empire: Remixed’ in 2011. Combining deep, brooding vocal anthems, classy down tempo instrumentals and futuristic trance fusions, it prompted Mixmag to write, “It’s rare to be blown away by an album on first listen. And that’s exactly what Super8 & Tab’s debut artist album does.”
But rather than sticking to a tried and tested formula, in 2014 the duo took a different approach with their second artist album ‘Unified’. Instead of writing the instrumentals then adding the vocals, they wrote the songs first, then worked on the production. Featuring a string of Beaport Top 3 singles (‘Code Red’ with Jaytech, ‘Rubicon’ with 7Skies, and ‘No Frontiers’ and ‘Let Go’, both featuring Julie Thompson) the new approach paid off, and while the second album has similarities to the first, the ‘Super8 & Tab sound’ has evolved.
To coincide with the release of ‘Unified’, the duo embarked on a five-month album tour, taking in more than 40 cities across North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia.
Whether it’s a party for 300 people or playing to a crowd of 40,000, Super8 & Tab were born to DJ. “We want to keep doing this until we retire,” says Tab. “Although I don’t know if you can retire from this job,” says Super8. “Maybe we’ll give it up when we lose our hearing. We’ve found what we want to do and we never want to let go.”
In the meantime Super8 & Tab have plenty of new tracks and remixes in the pipeline, and while they believe in challenging themselves and finding new ways to do ‘Super8 & Tab’, they know their fans have come to expect a certain standard from them – and that’s something they’ll always honour.