When we talk about electronic music Milan is not a city that typically gets a mention. And when we talk about DJs it’s not often that we’re talking about a duo, however, throughout the 90’s, 00’s and now 10’s Milan’s scene has gotten bigger and bigger, and there’s a duo in town definitely worth talking about – MODULOVE. Formed of Camilla Gligorov and Matteo Costa, these two young talents demonstrate a deep connection to one another with music that’s somewhat rare. The two, together with DarioLem, founded SUBCULTURE in 2012. And a year ago they joined forces with Frames to create SORGENTE SONORA. It’s only been a year and they’ve already had plenty of top-notch artists walk through the doors, and after a summer in the open air they have just started the upcoming season at Dude Club, Milan.
MODULOVE kicked it off last Sunday the 18th of September at Dude alongside Zip, Binh, Fumiya Tanaka and Thomas Melchior (live).
Hello Camilla. Hello Matteo… I know that you’ve both been interested in electronic music for a very long time. Do you remember how you first got ‘hooked’?
Camilla: Since I was a child I’ve always loved music and I’ve always liked going to concerts. The first band I went to see were the Red Hot Chili Peppers when I was 6 years old. After that moment I fell in love with every kind of music. But I’ve never been obsessed with one genre, I just trust the energy and emotions that music can give. It was a series of insights that led me to discover this world of electronic music, the passion and connection between the people, and the resulting deep emotions that no other genre has made me feel.
Matteo: My passion for music was also born as a child. The first time I went to a club, I quickly realized that this was my place – I’ve always bought records, until I finally had the chance to buy the equipment to make the music. And as for the passion for DJ-ing, that was born just as my love for music – absolutely spontaneously and naturally. In the end, music is the reason why I’m here, as well as my will to make an impression with what I do.
Some of our readers may not know that you are actually together, your love story is 7 years and counting – that’s amazing! How did you meet?
Matteo: We met each other on the bus to Monegros Desert Festival in 2009. It was love at first sight. We spent the whole time together and once back home in Milan we haven’t been apart!
So you play together as MODULOVE. How did the duo come about and actually, how did you come up with the name “MODULOVE”?
Camilla: It was after meeting Matteo that I decided to learn how to play records and once we came back from Sunwaves in 2011 we decided to start playing together. It wasn’t something that we’d planned, maybe it all came about from the deep love that we both share for music – that’s why we called our duo “MODULOVE” – it represents our love for modular, and for each other.
Working in a duo or a group requires great harmony. When you play together the strong connection between you is evident, but I guess it’s taken a lot of hard work to get to this level – would you agree?
Camilla: We haven’t yet reached our top but we’re very determined. We’re used to going against the flow, to try to always do something a bit different, something original. Working together is not easy, especially when you’re both strong personalities but our aim is to make this journey together. At times it’s been difficult, at times everything has seemed just perfect…
During your set you seem to be perfectly in synch. But despite this, you have two distinguishable sounds. What makes you distinguish from one another?
Camilla: What makes us different is our will to be different – we don’t focus on finding the same records and inspirations. We always try to find a rhythm that combines our two personalities. It’s sometimes unintentional but in the end the result is that ‘our minds were connected all along’.
Let’s talk about Subculture, how did it start? Who did you invite to play?
Matteo: In 2011 we were invited to play at a party in the woods in Milan and DarioLem (a friend and co-founder of Subculture) asked if we would be interested in starting something together. From the very beginning there’s been a strong bond between the three of us… Subculture had its first party in February 2012 – it was a party followed by very few people but who were very interested in our concept. During the years you could say that we’ve reached a perfect harmony, and now Milan has begun to pay us more attention. The first artists we invited were Tobias Freund, A Guy Called Gerald, Binh, NSI (Tobias Freund & Max Loderbauer), Anthony Shake Shakir, then Zip, Onur Ozer, Vera and others…
So after organising Subculture, you decided to join the crew of Frames and create SORGENTE SONORA. What was the reason behind that?
Camilla: Our goal was to create something new in Milan – both groups had the same musical vision so it made sense to join forces…
September 18 saw the opening of Sorgente Sonora at Dude Club, what a line-up! What are your plans, your goals for the upcoming season?
Matteo: Exactly, our new home will be the Dude Club. We have a lot of strong expectations because it’s an established and reputable club in Milan and thanks to some of its latest changes the parties have good feedback. Us and them coming together will be advantageous for both the party and the club. Furthermore, what’s lacking in this city is the concept of a family believing in one another. What we want to do is connect different cultures and different circles in the name of one shared passion – music.
I want people to know something more about you. What are you currently working on, and what are your plans for the future?
Camilla: So we’ve created two independent studios, one for me, one for Matteo. At the moment I’m working on optimising my mixing and then there’s also projects linked to my course at the SAE Institute. Matteo is working on his own productions. Our shared dream is to create a label that has its own impact on the music industry.
What course are you studying Camilla?
It’s a Bachelor of Arts in ‘Audio Engineering’ at the SAE Institute in Milan. I’ve always been interested in the technical side of music production so it seemed natural for me to explore this topic. It’s turned out to be very helpful, and it has completely changed my approach to music generally. Now I’d most like to work on mastering – although it seems very technical, I’m intrigued, there are a lot of aspects that I’m drawn to…
And even though my passion lies with electronic music, my objective would be to work with all kinds of music as I also love classical, experimental and rock. In my opinion, the most important thing is the knowledge; I mean we need to be open-minded, we shouldn’t just focus on one thing. This course at the SAE has taught me to draw inspiration from all sources, whether or not they form part of our everyday interests.
I know you’ve lived in Berlin, many people perceive it as the heart of electronic music. There’s definitely no shortage of emerging artists, but still you remain very attached to Milan. In your opinion, how would you say that Milan is evolving as regards its musical culture?
Matteo: We love Berlin and we’re both very impressed by the connection that music has created between the people there. Whilst our experience of Berlin has expanded our own vision of electronic music we have the desire to make something in our city. The revolution of the last years, from the musical point of view, has been huge and in my opinion what represents best this change is the union of different independent groups that are trying to collaborate and create a harmonised scene. The process of developing a scene will always be more radical.
So finally, who would you say that you draw the most inspiration from?
Camilla: One of my biggest inspirations is Thomas Franzmann for the magic that he creates during his sets. It is something that’s not so easily found with other artists. I also look to Christian Vogel, Markus Nicolai and Aphex Twin – they all make music that’s out-of-the-box, you never know what to expect. Each time I listen to them, they send me new emotions and inspire me to make a similar kind of music. For this reason, during a set I range from techno to detroit, minimal to break-beat.
Matteo: I would say Underground Resistance, Aphex Twin, Djax-Up-Beats, Egyptian Lover and Peacefrog Records. I don’t 100% follow these artists but I try to draw from them what I like about each genre and create something that’s mine, moving from minimal to detroit to rave.
And if you had to choose a record that best represents you?
Matteo: A record which would represent us as MODULOVE – “Keep It Hot – Egyptian Lover”
That’s hot Matteo and Camilla!
After years since their last podcast online, which features mostly experimental tracks, the duo have created a different and brand new one for Say What?: A voyage through dance music and an appreciation of their unique sound. Listen below…
Edited by Kaajal Shah