The Right Side of Eluize's Night Tide
Australian born DJ, producer and vocalist Eluize is a name we think you will be hearing a lot more in 2016. Having moved to Berlin 3 years ago, Eluize can be found gracing the decks at such local institutions as Watergate and Tresor, not to mention Le Batofar in Paris, Wasteland in Amsterdam, Lightbox in London, WIP in Barcelona, S.A.S.H in Sydney and Revolver in Melbourne to name but a few.
May 2016 sees the launch of her own record label ‘Night Tide’, where Eluize plans to release more of her trademark melodic, underground dance music. The debut release on Night Tide will be the hauntingly hypnotic ‘Talk In Technicolour’ which features three unique tracks, plus remixes from Hans Berg and SETH NK. All of the label’s upcoming releases will not only be available digitally, but also pressed on vinyl with original analogue photography artwork.
Eluize is a real bundle of eclectic electronic ideas, so we decided to have an in-depth chat with her about the upcoming label launch, her musical education in Australia and her ever increasing production techniques, as we got on The Right Side of Eluize’s Night Tide.
Congratulations on the new label Night Tide. What made you decide to start the imprint?
Thank you. It feels great that it’s all coming to light. I decided to start the label because I kept making and finding music that wasn’t released that I wanted to share and play in my sets. I love the process of making something from start to finish, thinking about the musical direction, working on the artwork, deliberating over fonts, collaborating with other creatives and music has always been my passion. For me, this is the perfect opportunity to bring all these elements together.
Who else is involved in the project?
As far as the running of the label at the moment it’s me, plus a long list of friends who patiently listen, support, encourage, advise and brainstorm with me. From the musical side, this first release is originals of my own, with remixes from talented producers and friends Hans Berg & SETH NK.
Do you have any special featured artists lined up for the label?
I’ve been talking with a lot of great people, but at this stage I’m keeping those cards close to my chest. It’s important to find just the right music; pieces that tell a story, that have sentiment and feeling and that complement each other. I also hope to create a nice group of musicians who like collaborating and working together. I also run parties called Moonlighting, which I will continue to organize in line with the label. The ‘Talk In Technicolour’ release party coming up at Farbfernseher in Berlin features Hans Berg and SETH NK both doing live techno shows. I hope artists who release on Night Tide would also be a part of the parties and the label family, to create a vibe and an energy; a positive force.
You also work with the Dirt Crew label. Has working with this imprint helped you develop as an artist and a label owner?
Working with Dirt Crew has been amazing. I met Peter (Break 3000) in Berlin and spoke with him about my dream of starting my own label. The next month, I started working with him at the Dirt Crew office. Dirt Crew operates extremely professionally; they run the main label, plus their sister label SPIEL, as well as taking time to advise and consult to a host of other independent imprints. As it’s a close knit team, I got to learn everything from the ground up. Watch all the processes and see how things are done; invaluable and a lot of fun.
What equipment did you use for the ‘Talk In Technicolour’ release?
I used a Macbook Pro with Ableton and an Apogee soundcard for my sessions. A Studio Projects C1 condenser microphone to record my voice and numerous claps, clicks and other sounds, plus my beloved Juno 106, a Boss RE Space Echo pedal, a DSI Evolver, a Roland R-8 Human Rhythm Composer, a NI Maschine as well as a mix of samples and plug ins; I love the orchestral sounds from Komplete Ultimate.
You decided to feature analogue photography based artwork. What was the thinking behind that?
In my mind, film cameras are much like analogue music gear or traditional musical instruments. As a medium, analogue photography has a lot of warmth and depth of expression and also the risk that the equipment might not behave how you expect it to. I’m a big fan of ‘happy accidents’. In fact, the colour gradient in the photograph on the cover of the release is actually one!
I want Night Tide to be about older techniques informing new ones; creating something beautiful, not strictly analogue or digital but a combination of what sounds good. My music is a blend of organic and electronic, the photographs are shot analogue then digitized to create the artwork. It makes sense to me that both the music and art share this relationship.
How has your production set up changed over the years?
It’s constantly changing; I’m always borrowing or collecting more synths, drum machines, pedals and other instruments to play with and learning how to use the things I have better. I love learning and there is an endless pool of old and new technology to try out. The difficulty I’m facing now is bringing all these things together, and remembering where all the sounds came from to try and streamline my equipment into a live set.
Where and what clubs did you get your musical education from in Australia?
I studied classical and jazz at school, and listened to a lot of hip hop and soul, which lead to disco. I started DJing disco and deep house at my first residency at a club called Limbo in my hometown, Adelaide. Limbo was run by a group of diverse music and industry enthusiasts. They had a live venue upstairs which hosted anything from Mr Scruff to Eddie Bo to Dâm-Funk to Darshan Jesrani and a basement downstairs that put on house and other electronic music. I got a lot of inspiration for my late night musical education there, which I would then follow up online, searching for artists and records and listening constantly.
In 2010 I moved to Sydney, I continued to do disco parties while getting more and more into house and techno. Parties like Mad Racket, Picnic, Spice and SASH were all presenting some great music and I went down to Melbourne as much as possible where the scene was thriving. It was during this time I started travelling to Berlin each summer, to really explore the diverse range of disco, house, techno and everything in between. I fell in love.
How would you describe the Australian dance music scene as opposed to Berlin where you now reside?
It’s a complicated comparison. In Australia, there are some really great things going on despite the difficulties the nightlife industry faces with lock out laws and drinking culture. The people throwing good underground disco, house and techno parties work hard and are educated and passionate about the music. It’s expensive to tour internationals, so it’s less common for visiting artists to perform than it is in Berlin, especially for middle range or up-and-coming musicians and in the smaller cities. While in Berlin, you’re presented with so much diversity every night of the week, with incredible international artists on your doorstep. In Australian cities, depending on your tastes, you might wait a week or a month for a party showcasing music you’re really passionate about. On a positive note, this can breed a special kind of heightened anticipation and enthusiasm in the crowds.
What is your favourite club to play in the world? Any hidden gems that you think we should know about?
I think it’s not necessarily about the club, for me the best gigs are like a perfect storm; it’s the right people, at the right time, in the right mood, with great sound, in a great space. For example, I played an unexpected basement party in January in Hanoi for a disco crew, which was off the chain. That being said, the DJ booth in Tresor is incredible and it’s always a pleasure to perform there, I also love playing at Watergate for it’s divine dance floor and setting and Sugar (Adelaide) for its cosiness and sound. Other spots I’d definitely recommend checking out are The Observatory in Ho Chi Minh City, Tuupe parties in Ghent and Boney in Melbourne.
You can only take one album to a desert island. What would it be?
This is an impossible question to answer, but if my iTunes play counts are to be believed then it should be one of the following:
• Beastie Boys – License to Ill
• Bon Iver – Bon Iver
• Metro Area – Metro Area
Who is your favourite all time artist, DJ or Producer?
There are so many incredible artists I try to not focus too hard on one for risk of missing something else inspiring. My favourite kind of DJ and producer is one that takes risks, is passionate, enjoys what they do and creates an interesting concept around their music. I also appreciate strong women in the industry, making good art without compromise. Grace Jones will always be up there with my favourites.
What are your plans for 2016?
Launch Night Tide, release at least a couple more EPs on the label, continue work on my album that I hope to release in 2017, finish and start performing my live show, find and share more incredible music and play more great gigs with interesting people in places all over the world.
Is there anything away from music that you’d like to achieve?
See new places, experience new cultures, be inspired, make things, take photos, drink coffee with friends, sit in the sun, swim in the ocean, breathe and appreciate.