After more than a decade of releasing music Italian techno producer Giorgio Gigli finally readies his debut album “The Right Place Where Not To Be” for Speedy J’s imprint Electric Deluxe.
We caught up with Giorgio to discuss the makings of the album. Giorgio also reflects on Zooloft Records, the groundbreaking imprint he operated alongside Italian producer Francesco Baudazzi aka Obtane between 2009 – 2012. We’re also fortunate enough to offer you the premiere of his new track ‘Nocturne‘, taken from the album.
"I wanted to create a soundtrack of this kind of scenario: a world in an unspecified future where human beings are extinct and the reason for that is the human being."
I remember the end of the 00s, when you started Zooloft with Francesco Baudazzi. It was a time, when Italian and Spanish producers kept appearing in the scene, and a new sound of techno established. I think your label was one of the best source for groundbreaking techno music at that period of time. Your discography was expanding fast, you had 4-5 12” releases per year. What are your recollections of that era? What was it like to be a techno artist then?
That was a very prolific time both for me and for Obtane. One of my best memories. We produced a lot. We put a lot of attention both into music and all the other details. Everything happened by chance. As always, the best love stories happen by chance, but as in all the love stories there’s a beginning and an end.
After we’d been working together for many years, we decided to take our separate ways. Both of us wanted to do different things. I guess it was the right thing to do. With the Zooloft project we had said everything we wanted to say. I believe that if we had continued, we were going to be repeating ourselves.
"I believe that creating a lot of productions doesn't necessarily equal quality."
Recently you’ve put out less and less music, usually one or two releases per year. What caused the end of Zooloft, and what kind of effect had it got on your career and creativity?
Closing Zooloft didn’t effect neither my creativity nor Obtane’s. It gave us new incitement and new possibilities to experiment with new things. I believe that creating a lot of productions doesn’t necessarily equal quality.
I don’t think there’s a rule to how many productions you should release every year. In the last years I dedicated myself to my new record. Therefore I had less time to think about other stuff. I do not like being busy with too many things at the same time. First there was Zooloft, now I have the record.
"I wanted to tell a story with a very personal and intimate point of view."
In the last 5 years almost all of your releases were collaborations with Francesco Baudazzi, or this year one with Ness on Planet Rhythm Records. Now you are releasing your first album, and it is a solo effort. Why is collaborating so important to you, and how come that you are completely on your own on your album?
To collaborate with many artists that I appreciate, has always been something that I do because I like the debate. I’ve learnt so many things thanks to Obtane and Ness. Regarding my album: I guess it’s quite obvious to say as it is my first full length “film”; I wanted to tell a story with a very personal and intimate point of view.
"I believe that what I described is what's going to happen if society keeps ignoring planet earth's needs."
The concept of your debut album is a world without human and animal life. What would you like to express with this imaginary scenario? Has it got anything to do with mankind’s destroying of the environment or is it closer to techno’s utopistic / futuristic vision of new worlds?
I wanted to create a soundtrack of this kind of scenario: a world in an unspecified future where human beings are extinct and the reason for that is the human being. I believe that what I described is what’s going to happen if society keeps ignoring planet earth’s needs.
The tracks in general have a very strong and dark ambience, musically they remind me the B-sides of the Zooloft catalogue, which were usually beatless interpretations of heavy technoid concepts. Why did you decide to abandon the 4 / 4 rhythmic structures and experiment more with pulsing ambient tremors and vibrations?
You’re right, there are Zooloft references in this project. Concerning “The Right Place Where Not to Be” I gave up the 4 / 4 because it wasn’t appropriate. I needed to tell what I’ve done. It’s a soundtrack: there’s a story and I’ve described it.
"When you listen to music you automatically start to have thoughts coming to mind, feelings and moods. All these things contribute to the project."
I feel a strong narrative throughout the tracks, the textures and hypnotic layers have a modern classical aesthetic of arrangements, a very cinematic realization. How did the idea come to build this complex sonic world? What were your influences outside of music?
I’ve always been fascinated by modern classical music and by soundtracks. Over the years this passion has evolved. I’ve studied many artists that helped me finding the right direction with their music. I think this project has been affected by what I’ve been listening to… I mean, when you listen to music you automatically start to have thoughts coming to mind, feelings and moods. All these things contribute to the project.
"The Dolomites were born 2.5 million years ago and they are still there watching this inexorable implosion of the planet."
You always had a very unique approach for the visual side of your releases, the Westilltry! Tumblr page collects some of those images. The accompanying pictures for the album were taken in the Dolomites mountains. What did you find so special in that place? Why was it important to move out and explore something distant and inviolated?
The images for the album have been created by “Studio Lord Z”. I’ve already collaborated with him for some releases on Zooloft. Therefore he knew exactly what I wanted to describe with my work.
I guess it was quite easy for him, having been listening to the album, to translate this apocalyptic scenario in a visual world.
The Dolomites were born 2.5 million years ago and they are still there watching this inexorable implosion of the planet.
Do you have any plans for performing The Right Place Where Not To Be? Can you imagine this album in a club environment?
We’re working on a live audio/video show… We shall see what will happens.
Giorgio Gigli – The Right Place Where Not To Be
23 October 2015
Ø1 / Ø – Il futuro è solo un ricordo di uno stupendo passato (Everything Begins Here)
A1 / 1 – Last Frame of Myself
A2 / 2 – Surrounded
B1 / 3 – Eve of Destruction
B2 / 4 – Nocturne
C1 / 5 – The Silence Was Infinite
C2 / 6 – Through Leaden Clouds
D1 / 7 – Shades of Depth