Into the Phuture With Michael Cullen [Phuture Collective Interview]

Every once in a while we hear a song that stops us in our tracks. In a music scene where repeated samples and textures can hinder the urge to search for new music, it is refreshing when we hear something new. That is exactly what Phuture Collective brings to the table, and the world of bass music will never be the same.

Michael Cullen, the founder of Phuture Collective, radiates kindness. It’s ironic—such a beautiful soul creates an outlet for artists to release some of their grimiest music. The freedom Phuture Collective gives it’s artists is what makes this label so special.

“A lot of these labels are putting out music with no heart,” Cullen said. “We are more honest.”

Releases range from lo-fi hip hop to experimental trap, and familiar producers are next to newcomers. Releasing compilations that feature such a wide range of artists gives the underground scene a platform to share their music with broader audiences. Big name producers are taking notice—the collective released songs from artists Noer the Boy and Woolymammoth within the past month.

The inclusive structure of Phuture Collective can be traced back to it’s creation. Cullen started the collective during a time of darkness in his life.

“I had lost my friends, my job, my family, my girlfriend. Music was all I had,” Cullen said. “It kept me going, it showed me I could have peace.”

Tired of seeing deserving producers receive few plays on Soundcloud, Cullen decided to gather the artists inspiring him in one place. And thus with Issue One, Phuture Collective was born.

Community involvement is a key aspect of Phuture Collective and they are always accepting artist submissions.The track list for the 9th compilation ANXIETY, TRANQUILITY & EUPHORIA is currently in construction. Submissions for Issue 9 close May 20.

“The operation wouldn’t be the same without the ideas from everyone collaborating to the bigger picture,” Cullen said. 

Each of Phuture Collective’s issues are released in 3 parts. The parts revolve around a theme, giving each of the producers a chance to express a specific emotion through their tracks. This collaboration is essential to the collective’s functioning, according to Cullen. Each artist that releases through Phuture Collective gets an interview that is shared on their website or soundcloud, giving producers a chance to share their creative process with the world.

In order to reach the largest possible audience, everything released off Phuture Collective is downloadable free of charge, including sample kits from their new Cypher series. Each set in this series features a theme, such as Wind, Ice, and Water. Fans can expect the next element themed sample pack to release mid-May.

Music played a special part in Michael Cullen’s life and without it he would be a much different man. The platform he created continues to grow, capturing new audiences with its authenticity. We could not be more excited to watch the growth of this innovative collective. Want to become involved in the Phuture Collective community?  Click here to submit your track for consideration.

What’s your favorite track off Phuture Collective? How has music impacted your life? Share your opinions and experiences in the comments below.

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