Photo: Press (Yotam Avni)
Whether your heart beats for techno, house, or more adventurous dance music – it’s been nearly impossible to get around Yotam Avni in the past five years or so. With releases on such different labels like Be As One, Ovum, Stroboscopic Artefacts and Innervisions, the Tel Aviv-based producer and DJ has showcased a rare stylistic openness that successively won him fans all over the world. His contribution to our Groove podcast highlights Yotam Avni’s for rhythmic techno.
One of your main passions is free jazz music from the sixties and seventies. How did you get into DJing and eventually producing from there?
My father was a drummer, he’s into jazz and has a great record collection that includes some really weird psychedelic stuff like Sun Ra or Art Ensemble of Chicago. So you might say that my first introduction to the world of sound experimentation is coming from acoustic instruments. Later on, when I discovered Detroit Techno, it all came together for me in the mixture of jazz and electronic music. Needless to say that I consider DJing to be closer to drumming than conducting or composing.
You are one of the people behind Tel Aviv’s AVADON event series, which has recently celebrated five years of existence. What was the initial concept of Avadon, where are you now and what will the future bring?
AVADON – “doom” in Hebrew – is dedicated to showcasing what we saw as the new exciting wave of european techno in the last five years. It’s the platform that really helped me and my partners break into the international scene. It’s through these events that I first had met artists like Steve Rachmad, Lucy, Psyk or Dustin Zahn just to name a few. Five years of parties brings in a lot of guests that really all became good friends. I really can’t tell you enough about how much it helped me to develop as an artist and a person. I’m glad that people all over the world know about our city.
You are known as a versatile producer who can shift comfortably between different facets of house and techno. What however does it take as a resident DJ to keep things interesting for your crowd?
It’s really important to me to showcase musical versatility as a producer. Every agent or a fan will tell you that is not smart to do it all under the same artist name. Most producers use different aliases even within the same genre they are known to produce in. But i grew up on Derrick May, Laurent Garnier and DJ Deep as my main influences. They are all very known to be DJs who mix music by its mood and not by a record shop’s shelf category. I think that now, when everything is called “techno” anyway, it’s easier to appreciate what I do, and hopefully more producers will feel comfortable to do as i do.
Your contribution to our Groove podcast is a pretty straightforward deal but showcases a lot of rhythmic diversity and works a lot with vocals. What was your idea behind it?
I’m a very happy to contribute a mix to Groove. I’m definitely a fan of the magazine, even though I do not speak German. I really wanted to showcase some of my own upcoming releases, because I know a lot of people are excited to hear unreleased material on podcast mixes. So there’s a remix I did for President Bongo’s upcoming album, a track from an upcoming EP on ODD EVEN and my latest one for Materia records as well as some promos from friends. It’s a mix recorded after a crazy month where I managed to be in the Red Sea desert near the Egypt border, a ski resort in chamonix, Poznan in poland and Israel’s Burning Man to finish it all. I really wanted this mix to have a track from every gig I had this month as well. I put a lot love and care to this mix, I hope you’ll like it.
Last but not least: Where can we see you behind the decks in the near future, and what are your plans as a producer?
Follow my Soundcloud and Facebook new pages to stay updated with everything! Upcoming dates including Turkey, Belgium, Austria and of course my home town of Tel-Aviv. I got tons of new music coming, too much to mention. Trust me when I say that you’ll be surprised and excited.
Stream: Yotam Avni – Groove Podcast 164
01. Manni Dee – In Communal Solitude
02. TM404 & Echologist – Adjustments
03. Yotam Avni – Unreleased
04. Eitan Reiter & Ella Gotman – Full Circle
05. Roberto – Dream Of A Solo
06. Catz ‘n Dogz Feat. Robert owens – Fine Feelings
07. Joton – Antioquia
08. David Alvarado – Unspoken (Vocal Mix)
09. Ralphi Rosario – I Hear The Music
10. Jon Hester – Ritual
11. Haze – Summer in Time
12. Kanye West – Hold my Liquor (Klement Bonelli Remix)
13. Yotam Avni – No Harm
14. Dense & Pika – Casino (Billy Turner Fear and Loathing Mix)
15. Charles B & Adonis – Lack of Love
16. Abstract Division – Shifted Reality (Dasha Rush Remix)
17. Robert Henke – Layer 003
18. President Bongo – Quadrante – Painted by Yotam Avni