The Berlin producer shares a ‘one hour fun ride’ through the music that makes her dance
Exploring methods of meditation and spoken word, Berlin native DJ Gigola debuted her album Fluid Meditations during a live set at Berghain’s 18th birthday party back in December. Decontextualising elements of rave music as a catalyst for her own exploration of escapism, the album is a guided meditation set to an ambient backdrop of low-pass frequencies, field recordings, goa trance and ASMR.
“For me, dancing is a form of meditation and, by and large, escapism. The rhythm in dancing is the music and in meditation it is the breathing,” she says. “If you talk about yoga, the asanas and breathing inform the synchronised movement of those involved, similar to synchronised dancing in the club. Both activities involve a group experience in which the self can expand, forget, and find itself anew.”
For her exclusive Dazed mix, the producer shares a ‘one hour fun ride’ through the music that makes her dance. “I wanted to celebrate being back on both feet after my ankle fracture,” she says. “It’s things that excite me as a dancer: wild percs, high energy grooves, a little bit for the hip and the obligatory Gigi pop moment.”
You’re releasing your debut Fluid Meditations; how do you feel about it?
DJ Gigola: I am very excited because this is by far the most artistic and personal release I’ve done so far. It is my own reaction towards the cultural change I have perceived and am perceiving. I felt the necessity for me to capture that in a record and form my own statement in the means of sound without trying to cater to club energy or think of dancefloor compatibility. Now I am just curious if people vibe with it and if it opens dialogues or provokes emotions.
What are some of the main inspirations behind it?
DJ Gigola: I work in a field that is about escapism, being offline and getting loose. These longings have become amplified by the increasing presence of online life and globalisation. Outside of the club experience, I’m seeing a turn towards craft, meditation, and nature – reactions to internet sharing and environmental destruction. For my album, I wanted to expand this idea of nighttime escapism with meditation and other relaxation practices like ASMR. This is partly because these fascinate me, but also because I wanted to see what their effects are in the club.
When DJing, I often see that these rituals tend to be disturbed by constant mobile phone scrolling, filming, photography, and online sharing. Proving ‘I was there’ has become more important than actually being there. This has an impact on the club night’s potential, on the group dynamics within and on the letting-go moments. I believe that these moments are essential and must be preserved at all costs, in order to allow people to relax and have real, interpersonal contact, because these moments create identity. It is all a very personal approach and now I’m just curious to see how other people feel about it.
What are some of your earliest memories of music? Have they influenced your sound at all?
DJ Gigola: I come from a family where we share dancing a lot and grooving to music, it is this joyous expression of rhythm and sound together that is maybe one of my earliest memories and maybe one of the reasons why I love dancing surrounded by people so much.
How would you describe the scene in Berlin? Has it influenced your sound at all?
DJ Gigola: I think growing up here has definitely influenced me in terms of having access to excellent electronic music and finding a ground to experiment with who I am in the safer spaces that Berlin clubs are. Looking at the scene it’s hard for me to describe it because it is in constant change and I find beauty in this because this offers space for renewals and development.
I think back in the days it was less poser, more into the music and the escapism, more serious about genre identity and peer groups. Now the internet has changed a lot what people seek in the nightlife experience, the scene has grown bigger and more diverse, Berlin’s nightlife has become so popular it’s meme-able, and the spaces to host parties have drastically decreased. Of course, there is still a core of electronic music lovers that come from here or have moved here that contribute amazing work to Berlin’s club culture and keep the beauty of it alive.
What are you listening to at the moment?
DJ Gigola: I still haven’t left the field of goa and psytrance music because it contains so many interesting elements that inspire me for my own musical productions. Also, I rediscovered Pete Namlook’s “The Ambient Gardener” for myself: a beautiful collection of curious ambient music.
Do you have any fun projects or shows lined up?
DJ Gigola: I am working on a remix project with artists I admire for my album that excites me a lot because giving your music into another person’s hand is always something special and I am very curious about the different takes. Apart from that I will do a mini US and Canada tour in May with my Label Live From Earth.
Tell us about your Dazed mix.
DJ Gigola: The mix is a one-hour fun ride through music that makes me dance, because I wanted to celebrate being back on both feet after my ankle fracture. It’s things that excite me as a dancer: wild percs, high-energy grooves, a little bit for the hip and the obligatory Gigi pop moment. It came very naturally because 12 weeks of tour stop due to my injury have left me with a deep craving for a night out and getting back to what I love: DJing.
1. G-Coast (DJ Gigola x X-Coast) – Du Bist So Schön (unreleased)
2. Dylan Fogarty – Problem Solved
3. Bella Boo – Looney
4. Nick León – Multiplex
5. Nora Zion x Burna- Baby Boy
6. Circuit 900 – Midori
7. William Arist – Quick Response (Bonus)
8. Dylan Fogarty – Ragga Dub
9. Less Distress – Crush the Candy
10. Stef de Haan – Quaeso
11. William Arist – Tero
12. Undivulged – Control + S
13. Beau Didier – Colour 1
14. Cache – Don’t Hurt Me (Mella Dee Full Pump Extended Mix)
15. DJ Heartstring – Sao Paolo Fever
16. Guru Josh Project – Infinity (unknown remix)