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Podcast 826: GiGi FM

Written by on November 14, 2023

Giulia Fournier-Mercadante, better known as GiGi FM, is a French-Italian DJ-producer who was raised in Paris but moved to New York during her teenage years after being given a scholarship by Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre. But she made her name as a fixture of South-London’s close-knit music community, DJing at the city’s squat parties as well as the old Make Me parties. She’s since established a monthly residency on NTS Radio, where she explores “inter-dimensional techno and rhythm transmissions,” while touring globally. Her sound, as her NTS profile suggests, is full of lush textures and high-energy percussion. Now based in Berlin, she’s put out music on Bambounou‘s Bambe imprint and, more recently, she’s launched Sea~rène, her own label that “takes aim at dreamlike and ethereal electronic music to reconnect the subconscious and the cosmos through immersive storytelling.” She will release Kiwi Synthesis Diary Vol.2, her latest EP, on the label in December. And, ahead of its release, she’s delivered anXLR8R podcast. Recorded live in Japan last summer, it features tracks from Mathew Jonson, Man Rei, and more. Press play for swirling hypnotic techno to make your body move.

01. What have you been up to recently?
I’ve been busy with the launch of my label, Sea~rène, touring, working on artistic projects, and creating new music.

02. What have you been listening to?
Lately, my listening spectrum has spanned diverse genres. I’ve been immersed in Indian jazz, and particularly captivated by the works of Tarun Balani. Additionally, I’ve been delving into classic dub techno artists such as G-Man, Monolake, Merv, and within the techno realm the recent EP by Altinbas on Fuse. These tracks are absolute fire!

03. When and where did you record this mix?
This mix was recorded last summer at the Rural Festival in Japan. I went to this festival for the first time in 2022 and it impacted me. The atmosphere, especially the connection with the Japanese crowd and the unique way they experience music, left a lasting impression. The venue in 2022 was an extraordinary ’80s hotel in Atami City, with a main room resembling the ambience of Twin Peaks. The 2023 festival took place in the Japanese mountains of Naeba Greenland, an awe-inspiring setting with massive blue butterflies the size of my hand!

04. What made this set so memorable?
This set stands out as a profound pause in a challenging year personally. Dealing with mental health and a recent trauma, the festival felt like an essential mental reset. I poured my raw emotions into the performance, and the incredible connection and understanding from the audience made it an unforgettable, special moment.

05. Can you talk about the artists and tracks that you’ve included?
In this set I have included new music as well as many classics that I hold close to my heart. I really believe that introductions as well as endings are important. It sets the tone or leaves you where you need to be. The special introduction by Frankfurt-based artist Man Rei is called “I Don’t Want the Money” and I really recommend listening to the whole album. Man Rei’s work is woven with intricate narrative. Throughout the set you can hear amazing producers like Kombé, A Strange Wedding, Leoleoleo, and Orbe. On the more classic tones, there’s Yantra and Woody Mcbridge on Missile Records, and one of my all-time favorites: Mathew Jonson‘s “Marionette.” This song grabs your insides and flips you around leaving you in this sea of melancholy. At the end of the set there’s another all-time favorite: Robert Leiner’s “Aqua Viva,” released in 1993, my ultimate intergalactic mermaid identity track.

06. What’s next on your horizon?
I’m looking forward to releasing more music through Sea~rène and exploring other musical projects in the near future.

XLR8R Subscribers can download the podcast below. If you’re not an XLR8R subscriber, you can read more about it and subscribe here.

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