Gute Nachrichten!! Cio D'Or returns to the U.S after a two year break! One of the most unique and technically brilliant producers out there, her background as we discovered comes from years in dance, all varieties. With new sounds coming later in the year on Prologue, we caught up with Cio to see what fuels her creative endeavors.
CGNY: Well I was excited to read that you have a dance background. I think that comes across in your music, as ultimately as cerebral as your productions can be at times – they make you move! How do you think dance influences your soundscapes?
Cio: During the 80's, in a Berlin professional dance school, I learnt: contemporary dance (Graham Technique), ballet, jazz, and also, African dance, and the Flamenco. This deepened my understanding of music and movement, and taught me to work in a very disciplined way. This discipline and this putting oneself in motion, helps me to this day in my music projects and dramaturgy. For the choreography of my contemporary dance duo, I also studied modern music, electronic music, classical and also other musical genres.
CGNY: When you go into the studio to work on a piece or a track what compels you? I know you’ve traveled a fair bit. Do local landscapes or musical styles come into play?
Cio: To touch people, and to make them move is the goal of my work.
In order to do that, I see myself more as an "executor". I therefore seem not to take such a big role. Music has something to do with "dedication" and self-forgetfulness.
Yes - everything I perceive sensually, flows filtered into my music. Music can be spatial, narrative or ever moving: For me one of the greatest gifts to mankind.
CGNY: Your association with Prologue has been wonderful – (“Magnetfluss” was CGNY’s Track of the Year 2011) How did you make the connection with the label?
Cio: I was very happy with my ranking for "Magnetfluss" - many thanks!
I met label boss Tom Bonaty about 11 years ago in my favourite record shop in Munich. We spoke about innovation and current trends. Then, sometime at the beginning of 2009, Tom asked me if I would like to make a record for his new label, Prologue. To begin with, I had no time spare; I put him onto my new discovery, Claudio PRC (interview and guest mix coming from Claudio soon on the site). Tom and I often have a very similar taste in music, at least as far as techno is concerned. As my album, "Die Faser", was finished, I had a concept of getting some of my, then, favourite artists as remixers, on one side of the record. I really wanted to create my own label, with my music friends, but since I had no time to set it up, I went to Prologue.
And now, many of my friends and co-producers, are all together with Tom and his label, Prologue. That's great!
CGNY: Do you think your sound or style has changed over the years in terms of how you view music and production? Do you have a different approach to when you started out?
Cio: For sure my sound or style has changed over the years. During my time creating music, I'm in a constant state of development, which brings changes.
Through frequent critical listening of music and sound, I became aware of the consequences of individual tones. At first I worked with many sounds, because I was hearing the music as a whole!
With further hearing and analysis of music, I became fascinated with tracks that sounded transparent, and with the use of less, but sophisticated, sounds, were extremely powerful. So, to begin with, I reduced the amount of sounds, and concentrated for a long time on individual tones. I was always conscious of the old (German?) saying: "The tone makes the music".
Of course, that didn't mean I was going to confine myself to a few essential tones, but if I could express what I wanted to say, using less, then I was happy to reduce the amount of sounds used.
CGNY: You’ve been hiatus for a spell but you’re back in the U.S this month. Excited to play here again?
Cio: Of course! I'm always excited before a show, and that hasn't changed to this day!
CGNY: What’s your pre-dj set ritual if you have one?
Cio: I like to find peace and quiet in nature, and drink a Latte Macchiato, and a Mango-Blood Orange juice with 3 ice cubes (I call it a "Mango-Tango"). Then, I listen to new tracks, to find new playable material, which for me is musically engaging, and follow an idea from an inspiration.
CGNY: Are you working on any new material that you can tell us about?
Cio: After finding some peace and quiet, and some relaxed interaction with my new equipment, I immersed myself in musical theory and piano music, playing small "infinite sounding piano loops". Employing the use of orchestral instruments enabled me to expand my musical repertoire - also for film soundtracks and theatre pieces.
This has resulted in my first cinematic theatre composition, which I have recently completed, and will be premiered this September in Salzburg. And now? I'm currently working on techno tracks and sounds. It's time for techno, too!
CGNY: The world of dance music for want of a better word is changing and certainly in the last few years at a fast pace. Do you think about the future of techno or see any big evolution in the next few years?
Cio: Listening to the latest tracks, apparently little has changed over the past 2 years. There are new fusions, sometimes technically good, but also bad copies of what has gone before.
Through the beats in techno and the dancers on the floor, looking for the tried and trusted themes - it's not so easy to change what is there.
Nevertheless, changes through atypical beats, new sound developments and new fusions are possible; in the hope that the crowd is open to it.
It always needs a certain amount of courage, next to the tried and tested to also try to play new developments.
CGNY: What machines/programs do you use to make music? What is your favorite piece of equipment (doesn’t have to be dj related!)
Cio: My favourite piece of equipment is my electric cigarette ,)
I started making music with an MPC 2000 Sampler and a Minidisc (I hated using computer and mouse).
My actual studio:
Mac Pro Intel QuadCore 2.8GHz (Mac Pro3,1)
2 Computer Monitors
2 Genelec 8030APm Monitors
Pro Tools 10
Native – Komplete 8
Reason 4 (I downgraded N° 5!)
Galaxy Vintage (Bauer Studios 1920 Steinway)
E-mu X-board 025 (for travelling)
Fatar Studiologic SL-990 Pro
Zoom H4n Handy Recorder
Beyer Dynamic DT 808
Beyer Dynamic DT 990 Pro
Lots of Vinyl
2 Technics 1210's
Allen Heath Mixer Xone 42
Sennheiser HD 25-1
Mac Book Pro 2.4 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo
CGNY: If you had to take one track with you to outer space of another artist – what might it be?
Cio: nsi._nsi.Plays Non Standards_4.(Original Mix) _ Sahko Records
CGNY: Finally, complete this sentence if you will… “Techno is…..
Cio: Techno is… or can be a never-ending process and one way for moving, to be touched or to say something in music instead of words.
Cio starts off her US tour in Seattle on April 24 - all details below!
Apr 24 Cio D'or, Q Nightclub, Washington State
Apr 25 Communikey Fes.., Boulder Museum Of Contemporary Art, Colorado
Apr 26 Incognito feat.., TBA - California (South), California (South)
For more information go to http://www.ciodor.de/ and https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cio-DOr/219297941429144