We caught up with Dutch DJ and producer GECK-O who will be dropping a new single “Tripper” mid July, the first to be released under his own label, The Funky Cat. We asked him a few questions ahead of his show at Defqon.1 Festival on the 25th June.
Hi there, how are you and what are you up to today?
I’ve been in the studio the whole day, cooking up a new track to glue some parts of my upcoming album together. Need a break now so time for a little Q&A 🙂
To those not familiar with you, how would you describe your sound?
I would describe my sound as bold, intense, playful and alternative. I blend elements from house, techno, hardstyle, drum & bass and many other genres into my own sound. Party-minded, but daring to go a little deeper than the usual stuff.
What are the 5 albums that have influenced you the most?
Phew, let me just pick some of my favorites that come to mind:
– Kate Bush – Aerial
Or any of her albums, really. Her voice and artistry grab me time and time again. Very influential on my own vision of being an artist.
– Gary Beck – Bring A Friend
This man is one of a kind within the techno scene. His approach to production definitely inspired some of my tracks.
– Massive Attack – Mezzanine
They know how to capture that deep and trippy feeling. Picked up a few tricks from their tracks.
– Jon Hopkins – Immunity
One of my favorite producers. The depth and warmth in his music always gets to me, and is very inspirational.
– Moody Good – Moody Good
This is some serious next level stuff. Amazing sound design with great sonic tricks. A good incentive to push the sonic boundaries myself.
Which other artists are you into at the moment and why?
Really digging the sounds of Rockwell at the moment. His drum & bass sound is very rounded and has a characteristic pace.
I’ve also been listening a lot to Tame Impala lately. It’s just so good, and I find myself randomly singing the songs during the day.
Wavolizer’s switch from hardstyle to hardcore has been the best decision, he’s making so much gold at the moment.
And keep an eye out for Bold Action. He’s gone deeper with his sound lately, resulting in some absolute masterpieces. Happy that he will be releasing along with me on The Funky Cat’s label.
Are there any key pieces of equipment that you are using to define your sound?
Most of my sounds come from Spire, Harmor and Omnisphere 2. Definitely my core instruments, with each their own specific qualities.
What would you say some of the challenges artists face today in the music industry?
I think the biggest challenge is reaching out to people. The whole social media game, I notice a lot of artists really get lost in it. Of course, it can be part of what you have to offer as an artist, but I mainly want to get to people with my music. So yeah, I see it as my challenge to get people out of their hasty 2016 moods, get them to sit down and listen to my new track.
Where do you gather songwriting inspiration?
Inspiration can come from anything, of course – standard answer. Mostly from other art, tho. A touching piece of music, or even some failed architecture. Also, the dj sets I play always ask for some tracks that don’t exist yet. Best reason to make a new track really, gives it a place and purpose.
Take us through your songwriting process. Are there any particular steps you take when put music together?
Usually I let tracks “build themselves”, how I like to say it. I start with a kick and bass, or some chords, and keep gathering elements. In this process, I’m not really thinking, just flowing and seeing where it takes me. I always have some little elements like vocals or melodies laying around that I can add when it fits.
What’s the best gig you have ever done and why?
One of my best gigs must have been last year’s Defqon.1 Festival in The Netherlands. An intimately sized area with a big fat sound system, a lovely crowd with a lot of international people who hadn’t been able to see me play in a while – and a lot of new Geck-o music. Everything just came together. The synergy between the crowd, the music and me exploded like I had not experienced before.
And the worst?
Thinking about it for a few minutes now but nothing comes to mind that has been so bad that it deserves to be written down here. When I get to play music, I always enjoy myself.
If you weren’t a musician what would you be?
I guess I would be an artist of some other kind 😉 or maybe I would chase my early childhood dream of becoming a garbage man…
Do you have any particular gigs or festivals that you dream about playing?
I always said I wanted my own parties, with a giant cat head behind me. And yeah… I made that reality this year with The Funky Cat! Better think of some new dreams 😉
Do you have any information regarding upcoming releases, projects or gigs in the pipeline that you would like to tell us about?
The big thing right now is my new single “Tripper”, set for release on the 15th of July, and we’re already launching the music video this month. We crowdfunded the whole project, and the result is amazing. Can’t wait to show you! After this one, I will drop a few more singles before I release my album in October. Keep an ear out.
25th June: Defqon.1 Festival (NL)
2nd July: Summerfestival (BE)
2nd July: Zomerkriebels Festival (NL)
30th July: CRAFT Festival (NL)
6th August Airforce Festival (NL)
10th September Q-BASE Festival (DE)
7th October THE FUNKY CAT #3 (NL) Album release party