Read the feeder insider extended interview with Lola Palmer and discover her new EP titled “Somewhere new“, released by BERG AUDIO which contains two remixes from Janeret and Priku ft. Dinu. You can also listen to an amazing dj set recently recorded for Recorder13 and get an insight into her artistic universe.
feeder.ro: Hello, Lola! We’re delighted to have you back as our guest on the feeder insider interviews series. In March 2016, we published an extended interview about your early projects and unique set. On this occasion, we have the chance to learn more about your latest EP released by Berg Audio. How did the collaboration with Janeret and Priku go for this material?
Lola Palmer: Hey, thank you for having me again; I hope you are all doing OK during these strange times… This EP will be my first one on BERG AUDIO (and my first vinyl release), it was confirmed back in February 2020, and at that time, Nikita (The label manager) directly proposed me to ask Janeret & Priku for remixes – he knew how much I love their music. They both chose to remix “Stay”, and I am very happy about the result and how this release turned out!
Get your copy of “SOMEWHERE NEW” on decks.de
f: When producing music, are you using specific methods or personal rituals to get into the atmosphere, or how do you manage to transfer your ideas and emotions into sound?
LP: When I produce music, I always try to make something close to what I would play in a club – so the result is usually not very experimental. It’s often a blend of house, deep techno with sometimes acid elements inspired by all the music I’ve been collecting for the past two decades.
I don’t have a specific ritual, mostly trying to start new loops whenever I am not too tired from my work. During the week I am helping families with their kids and let me tell you, sometimes they just make a lot of noise. (haha)
f: What is the connection between the EP’s title “Somewhere new”, the sounds you put together and the fantastic cover drawn by Juli Jah?
LP: This EP was confirmed at a time (February 2020) when my schedule was filled with new, interesting places that I have not visited before. I am almost sure that it would have been my best few months of touring since I started playing abroad again, but then we all know what happened… After a couple of years when I couldn’t travel a lot for personal reasons, I was really inspired and looking forward to discovering all these new places, so this is basically where the EP’s name came from. I still hope that I will be able to visit all these countries, but we all know that nothing is going to be like before, let’s see what the future will bring! Concerning the artwork, BERG AUDIO’s artworks are mostly monuments from the soviet era – Nikita has visited most of the monuments/buildings on the covers and is passionate about this specific style of architecture. He sent me a few that he thought would fit the release. He also proposed adding a touch of green, which is a colour I particularly enjoy – very happy with the result and Juli Jah’s incredible reinterpretation.
Most people still believe the label’s covers are pure imagination, but you can visit these monuments – some of them are really impressive in real life!
f: It’s been almost two decades since your musical journey begins, and we were curious to find out what motivates you and keep your attention focused on music, sound, producing and DJ?
LP: My main motivation was and will always be discovering new music and places.
Music was never my full-time “job”; I always tried to do something else on the side; DJing on the weekends was like an escape for me – never considered it as work. Music production came years after I started collecting music; at first, I was always collaborating with someone as I didn’t have the knowledge necessary to fully express myself yet. And I still get some help from a few friends in the industry for the final mix of some of my tracks as my room isn’t optimal. Moving to Amsterdam a few years ago was also a big inspirational boost for me, but a few personal problems didn’t allow me to seize all the opportunities when it came to travelling and playing abroad, so I had to take a break. We all know how fast it is to be forgotten in this constantly moving industry, so I am very grateful to all the people who are still supporting me after all these years by listening to my selections and inviting me to play!
f: The cultural sector, including the music industry, is active mainly online for more than a year. We want to ask you how did you handle all the changes and challenges during these uncertain times?
LP: As mentioned before, 2020 was supposed to be one of my best years in terms of touring for a long time (especially after my rather long forced break from playing), in particular thanks to Nikita’s work – he has been helping with anything related to gigs & management for a couple of years. Summer was filled with new festival gigs in places that I’ve never visited before – most of them were in eastern countries. Let’s just say that this pandemic really hit during a moment that was filled with positive emotions and hopes for me. In fact, on March 13th 2020, I was supposed to play in Paris for Mixmag France, in a special location with Traumer and Dust Yard for a BERG AUDIO takeover. We were all already in Paris, including a few artist friends that were supposed to play at the label’s party at Rex Club the next day or somewhere else in the city. And just as we were getting ready to move to the private party/streaming location from Mixmag, the news came out that all events were not allowed anymore. This was when we all started to truly understand the gravity of the situation and that this pandemic will affect all of us for the next months or years… My thoughts go to all the families and people that were deeply affected by this pandemic; let’s just hope that there is an end to today’s situation.
f: Even in 2021, we can say that male artists dominate the music industry. How did you face this situation over the years, and what advice do you have for young female artists still reluctant to put their music out?
LP: As a female, I believe the first years of your musical journey are the hardest. This is often when you will face a lot of criticism from either people that don’t believe in you or question your “credibility” as you are just starting. I don’t think men encounter the same problems when they start, but I am in no way saying it is easier for them. This industry is one of the most competitive there is, and it’s just hard for everyone to build an audience and start playing abroad. I am lucky to have people that support me for a long time, and It’s been ages that I didn’t encounter any negative comments – or I just don’t even pay attention to them. I am pretty happy with how my musical journey has developed so far.
The most important is to find people who understand what you are doing, believe in you and support you no matter what choices you will make.
Being stuck in a small city often doesn’t help, as it will be harder to meet new like-minded people and have opportunities – it’s all about finding where you feel happy and can grow as a person and an artist, in which place and around what people.
f: As we mentioned before, we are almost entirely living in a digital world. Why do you prefer to press vinyl instead of releasing digital, considering the extra costs and work?
Releasing this EP on the vinyl format was mostly BERG AUDIO’s decision, I didn’t even think this would be even possible when I first sent my tracks to the label – I was just happy to be part of this project and got a nice surprise when Nikita announced me that this will be coming out on vinyl! It is of course generating extra costs for the label, but they were confident enough about the music to take the risk – the label has some experience with vinyl and I believe they understand what can work on this format more or less. When it comes to playing, I personally prefer digital format as places with a proper setup for vinyl are pretty rare – and it’s easier to be ready for any situation and take hundreds of files with you. But vinyl still has something special, it’s always linked to a memory – you usually remember the emotions you felt when buying a specific record and why you did it, which isn’t necessarily the case for a file downloaded… it’s all about what you prefer and what makes sense for you or the label you are working with!
f: Before this ongoing crisis, you used to dj a lot, constantly travelling to Russia, Ukraine, Sweden, Netherlands, Barcelona, France, Italy, Greece, Romania or Georgia, and we wish to see you behind the decks as soon as possible. What are you searching for when selecting music for a new dj set?
LP: You can’t imagine how much I am missing travelling and playing, seeing people dance… Before a gig, the first thing I do is usually search for all the places I can visit before going to the club / venue. This process usually starts a few days before I fly to the country and while browsing pictures of the city, the venue, I can already imagine the vibe and start selecting music for it. But of course, there are always surprises you can’t be prepared for !
f: Anticipating the moment we are all waiting for, to see the end of this pandemics, what plans you have scheduled for the summer?
LP: The end of this pandemic still seems pretty far, unfortunately… I am waiting on a few cancelled shows that should be rescheduled this summer, but it’s still very unsure if it will happen at all. Most of the promoters prefer not to do anything rather than operating at half capacity, with restrictions, masks etc.… This is understandable, and the vibe simply won’t be the same. I also have a few new offers coming from the eastern part of Europe; their feasibility will depend on what the different countries will require to make it happen. I am hoping that I will be able to play at least a few shows, but other than that, I will continue my routine in Amsterdam, probably visit Kiev for a couple of weeks and enjoy the summer!
Words by Cristina Popa (nwt / random) & Andrei Racovițan (ubic) / feeder.ro
About feeder insider
feeder insider is a series of interviews that explore the universe surrounding music and visual arts while connecting the local to the international creative scene.