Australian-born and now Berlin-based DJ, Producer & label boss Eluize is definitely one to watch at the moment. Eluize runs both the Night Tide and Bermuda Series, most recently releasing the ‘Drama Selected’ EP on Bermuda Series. She has also released on labels including Glasgow’s Craigie Knowes and is resident at AWAY at Berlin’s ://about blank club. Whilst in Australia and working on her second album, DMCWORLD spoke with Eluize…
Hey Eluize, thanks for speaking with DMC! What have you been up to lately?
What a crazy time it is right now. It feels like every day is a week. I came out to Australia for some shows earlier in the year and was meant to go back to Berlin last Monday but ended up staying in Adelaide with my little son while life is on pause for a while. I’ve been spending lovely moments with my family, taking photos, going to the beach, mixing down my sophomore album and lining up some other releases of my own and for the labels.
When did you move from Adelaide to Berlin and why? How does the music scene in each city compare?
I moved from Adelaide, to Sydney in 2010 then to Berlin in 2013. I adore Adelaide, but I love to travel, and I think the best way to get to know places is to live there for a while. Sydney was thrilling for a couple of years, but I craved a slower pace. Berlin has that wonderful combination of a relaxed way of life, a city rich in culture and opportunity in the arts and being in the middle of Europe, so there’s lots of places to explore close by.
Adelaide has some great parties, promoters and spaces, even though the underground dance music community is smaller here the passion is alive and well. I don’t think you can compare anything to Berlin’s scene, it’s so intensely vibrant, varied and valued. The industry has support from the Berlin Clubcommission (https:// www.clubcommission.de/) and more relaxed laws in terms of operational hours amongst other things, mean you can go to a gig basically any night (or day) of the week and see artists from all over the world. So many people travel and move there to be amongst the unbridled club culture, so there’s a constant stream of engaged and open enthusiasts. There’s a complete spectrum of party styles and sizes and every genre and sub-genre of underground electronic music is represented and revered.
You’ve just released Drama Suspended on your Bermuda Series label. Please give us some background to the EP...
‘Drama’ was inspired by a panic attack building. Anxiety and looping thoughts are something I’ve lived with for many years. I’m sure many people can relate. Usually the studio is a way to soothe my mind but this time I wanted to lean into that feeling of getting wrapped in the spiral. When I’m in this state it feels like I can’t catch onto one pattern of thought or idea, like I’ve been swallowed up by a wave in the ocean, plunged under, totally disoriented and tumbling, glimpsing flashes of light and patches of darkness amidst the churning water. I wanted the elements in the composition to envelope you in the same way, slipping in and out of focus, just out of reach.
In ‘Suspended’, I reworked the same elements into something more gentle and thoughtful. To reflect that even wild thoughts can be beautiful in a different internal conversation when the mind is calm. It’s all about the point of view.
You also run the Night Tide label and released R.Kitt’s Ripples From The Edge EP, which included a great remix from yourself of the title track. How would you compare the two labels?
Thanks! Robbie is really talented and makes just the type of eye waveringly beautiful but dance floor ready techno I love. Night Tide is for “beauty in electronic sound” and I find analogue photographers to provide images for the artwork, I like to pair up photographers and musicians from different locations and backgrounds to encourage that internationally collaborative vibe. The image on R.Kitt’s record was from a Japanese photographer called East China Sea Photo Club. The next EP out April 27 is a dub techno, electro and deep house sojourn from Josefine Hellström and Ena Cosovic with a photograph from Ben Innocent from Boise, Idaho.
Bermuda Series is the digital sister label I set up to have more flexibility and tempo for releases, I wanted to put out more music produced by womxn from across the electronic spectrum that’s not necessarily dance floor focused.
You’re also the resident at Away at Berlin’s renowned ://about blank club. With several high-profile club closures in Berlin (Griessmuehle most recently), how concerned are you about the future of the city’s nightlife?
Well considering everything that’s happened in the last couple of weeks I’d say very! With the COVID-19 situation and so many clubs, promoters and workers not knowing if they will survive the duration of the closures who knows what state the Berlin (and global) night life will be in once people are able to go out again. I believe in people’s basic need to go out dancing, listening to music and celebrating together so I’m sure that some will survive and other new concepts, spaces and ways to enjoy together will appear.
We love your Boiler Room set for the Craigie Knowes take-over in London. It looked like a lot of fun! What’s the best party you’ve played at?
Oh, it was so amazing, the CK guys are wonderful! The party at FOLD the night after was so incredible, proper warehouse energy in a somehow still intimate feeling space. I loved it. I have to say the best party ever for me was playing NYD in 2018, 6 months pregnant at aboutblank in Berlin. Some magic blend of the safe and open space the collective has created, the vibe in the room, a mix of people who’d been there overnight and fresh-faced friends, the sound was warm and powerful, full access to the fog machine, the hormones and endorphins coursing through my own system, the music coming together in fantastic ways I’d not imagined, everything was blissful that day.
So many! These are who spring to mind right now, but it’s always changing! BLD, R.Kitt, Kate Miller and her label Oscillate, LNS, No Moon, IDA, Gratts, Mor Elian, Opal Sunn, Shanti Celeste, Ma Spaventi, Sally C, softcoresoft, E00, Qnete, Johanna Knutsson, Ex Terrestrial, Earth Trax, Saoirse, Reptant, Desert Sound Colony, D. Tiffany, Moxie, Rambal Cochet, Peach, when the Craigie Knowes fam set their ears to producing as Craigie Cartel or William the Squid and all the super music they’re releasing, Space Cadets (Adam Pits + Lisene), Josefine Hellström and Ena Cosovic, Krokakai (watch out for his forthcoming record on Silver Dollar Club), Marie Davidson, Fear-E, Gigola, Fede Lg, 1800 Girls, Hammer, Nite Fleit, Shedbug, Long Island Sound, Roza Terenzi, Cromby, Holly Lester and her new label Duality Trax, Peak & Swift, Kelly Lee Owens, on the pop tip I’ve really been enjoying FKA Twiggs and Grimes latest albums…. I’m sure I’m forgetting a lot, but that’s a few to watch out for.
What are your plans for the rest of 2020 and beyond?
As with everyone right now the rest of the year is a bit of a mystery. I’m trying to focus on being ok with uncertainty, which is always a challenge. The new album is finished and planned for release with Craigie Knowes and I’ve got a new live show ready so hopefully I get to share both with everyone soon. There’ll be more releases on my labels and curated updates on my “Electronic Beauties” playlist.
When you’re not busy in the studio or touring, how do you like to spend your time?
I spend most of my spare time with my little son. I love the beach, swimming and being in nature. I go for lots of walks and do some yoga and meditating to try to keep myself on the sane side. I really enjoy long coffee dates with friends and family and hearing people’s stories. I love to laugh and to tell anecdotes. I like sitcoms and cartoons. I like to take photographs, make things, take care of my indoor plants, hang pictures at home, buy things with character at flea markets and stare out the window and think.