Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Bottin-The Italian Connection.

Very few modern disco inspired artists have the sophistication of Bottin. We dj'd together in Chicago recently and spoke a few days later, right after he returned to Venice from his extensive "Horror Disco" US tour. Like most in the states, I didn't hear of Bottin until shortly after the release of "No Static"
What drew me to his work was a refreshingly warm production & inherent funkiness I find missing in much of what's become known as "cosmic disco" "neu disco" err whatnot.
Bottin's sound achieves an effortless blend of sci-fi cinema, dance floor activation & forward thumping swagger all at the same time, It's why I recruited him to remix Codebreaker's Follow Me
Most of Bottin's music doesn't have vocals, yet somehow his genuine & brilliantly creative personality really shines through in all his works.

So you just returned a few days ago from your US tour, what specifically, did you enjoy and not particularly enjoy about your experience? and be honest...

Ha! A trick question already. To be honest some of the US events were not as professionally organized as they typically are in Europe, but really I couldn't complain since I had fun at each and every party I played at and I feel I connected with the crowd often better than in some European countries. I think people are more passionate about music in North America than they are, for instance, in Italy.
Some people here tend go to to clubs just to be seen or out of fear of missing out, they don't really care about the music. Wheres in the US it happened very many times that people came talk to me, asking what about records I was playing and even requesting some tunes of my own. Generally I found them more conscious about the music they liked and that they came to dance to and listen to.
That aspect, both as a producer and as a dj, is very rewarding and way more important than trouble skipping turntables, bad mixers and unfavorable euro/dollar exchange rate.

What are the differences from your experiences, of what people respond to musically in your sets between European & US/Canadian audiences?

Really response in the US and Canada has been great and it often came from people who know about music. Not to mention Brazil, where it has been mindblowing even though people might know less there about disco and nu disco than Americans, the Brazilian however are very open minded and I you can tell they really feel the music, no matter what the style is.

What is your current favorite song off of your latest full length, "Horror Disco" and why?

Of course I like them all, but I'll give my preference to the title track since it was the one that ignited the whole album concept.

Does film play a significant role in how your music is influenced? If so, what are a few of your favorites?

All the music I like could be work great in film. And I do think of visual scenery when listening to music. The tracks I feel the most I can also "see" somehow.
I do not have a favorite movie, my taste tend to change from with time, I'm very temperamental.
I do like Italian giallos and horror movies for the weird mix of courage and naiveness they are characterized by.
I also love more "rational" movies, like Hitchcock's and Welles', where each shot&frame has been carefully crafted to mean something.

When you first heard the original version of "Follow Me" by Codebreaker, what were your thoughts?

When you guys approached me for the remix and sent me your version, I immediately know I was gonna keep those great guitars.

So far, what has been your favorite city to play?

I can't tell! It's all been extremely good! I have a couple of least favorite ones (in Europe!), but I'm not gonna tell you which ones!
But in the US even some of the smaller venues have been great to play at.
for instance I really enjoyed playing at Casanova in San Francisco, I guess because I wasn't expecting much from it - it was a last minute thing in a place near to where I was staying
and it turned out to be great. Also I had a couple days off before it, so I suppose having had the chance to rest and visit the city allowed me to enjoy my time more.

Do you dress up for Halloween?

We don't really have Halloween or go trick-or-treating in Italy.
But in Venice there's a festivity San Martino where children go round making a lots of noise by using pot and pans as drums (!) and adults give them candy.
Some time I do dress up for Carnival.

How would you describe Venice?

It's possibly the only city in Italy where I'm able to live. Maybe because it's not really like the rest of Italy or anywhere else for that matter.
It's international because of all the tourism and festival (Biennale, film festival, etc) but it's still very village-like because of the few actual residents (60,000 resident vs 25 million visitors every year)

I noticed on your page, you've just put in a blog entry, basically drawing a line in the sand about letting mp3's get out in regards to a disco edit 12" vinyl series you did for Clone records recently. You also go on to express some opinion & frustration about the state of the vinyl industry. Can you elaborate a bit?

Well my blog entry says it all. I just wrote it a couple of days ago and I have nothing to add right now.
But I'm not at all frustrated about the state of vinyl industry. I think it's pretty good, I'm actually getting to release most of my stuff on vinyl so I couldn't complain really.
but sometimes I'm frustrated by the diminishing number of vinyl djs. It makes my life harder when you go to a club and the turntables are not working or not there at all!
I'm not a vinyl freak but I do want to have the possibility to play some great records without having to burn them to cd or having to wait for laptop djs to unplug their stuff.

You've composed two soundtracks for two separate films by director Todd Verow, "Once And Future Queen" & "The Boy With The Sun In His Eyes" how did that come about?

Once and Future Queen was a long time ago (2000 or 2001?), they found my music on the long-dead mp3.com community and licensed it for the movie.
The Boy With The Sun In His eyes was different, I wrote a few tracks specifically for the movie - which I still have to see though.

Could you ever write a soundtrack for a zany action, undercover cop comedy?

I think I could write music for everything. There is not one or a few specific genres I want to confine myself into.

Where is the Bottin sound going in the future?

Possibly I'm going to be more Italo - electro. I'd like to continue exploring what I did with No Static and then sort of left there
since I had to complete the album, which is a concept album and not a collection of different tracks.
But I don't know really, this year I've basically only been doing remixes of other people's work. Which I actually loved doing, since it is a different sort of creative freedom then when working
on my own tracks. Producing my own stuff is more stressing I suppose. I do have 3-4 demos I'm struggling to complet. Also I've been asked to do a couple of collaboratios with both
Italian and international artists/producers and I'm really looking forward to those.