Artist

NINA KRAVIZ

How much do you really know about Nina Kraviz? She's a Russian techno DJ, an accomplished producer, one of dance music's breakthrough names of the last five years. True enough, but there's so much more to her story than that. She's one of electronic music's most interesting characters, someone who has stuck to her musical guns since day one, someone who has wide-ranging roots that run deep in the past, yet she's also the embodiment of the future. Her signature sound is a raw blend of house and techno with a very acidic feel. If that feels very now, Kraviz has a lot to do with it.

Kraviz was born and raised in the Siberian city Irkutsk in Russia. Her dad is a passionate music collector and she grew up listening to jazz and psychedelic rock. In the late '90s she heard acid classic 'Downfall' by Armando on the radio. It inspired her to set up her own radio show on a local station, focussing on techno, house and IDM. However, Irkutsk is about as far away from dance music's centre of gravity as it's possible to get, so even though she wanted to dedicate her whole life to music, studying to be a dentist in Moscow seemed like a more sensible plan. In Moscow, she spent her spare time working as a reporter for Russian music magazine Ptuch. "That opened my mind to an even wider range of music," she says. "I started building up my own record collection that captured many of my music phases, from techno, house and space disco to rare funk and '60s and '70s soundtrack music that I started mixing in small clubs and bars. I also found myself a job at an event agency, throwing parties with Underground Resistance, and it was through this that I met people like Juan Atkins, something I could have only dreamed about when I was in Siberia."

A turning point for Kraviz came in 2006 when she took part in the Red Bull Music Academy in Melbourne. "That was the place where, for the first time in my life, I started to feel confident and believe in myself" she remembers. In 2008 she started doing her own Friday night at the most important dance club in Moscow, Propaganda. It became one of the most important house and techno nights in the city. Kraviz brought in names such as Theo Parrish, Dopplereffekt, Mike Huckaby and many more. "That's where I started to evolve as a DJ," she says. "I built my own crowd and my sound started shaping up for real." The same year Kraviz was signed to American DJ Jus-Ed's Underground Quality label and released her debut single, 'Voices'. The following year the 'Pain In The !@#$%^&*' EP on Rekids helped push Kraviz onto the world stage. Alongside 'I'm Gonna Get You' and 'Pain In The !@#$%^&*, perhaps her biggest track to date is 'Ghetto Kraviz', her homage to Chicago's Dance Mania label, taken from her 2012 self-titled debut album.

There are hypnotic and sensuous qualities to all the music this Siberian makes: it stems from the way she works, using her voice as an instrument and preferring to "record from the first take, because that is how I can capture the moment. The vibe. The feeling." Listen to deep, stripped back but emotionally resonant tracks like those that made up her self titled debut album and you will find it hard to disagree. There is something in Nina's music that stands it out from the crowd - an intimacy and honesty maybe, but always is it unique and creative.

With a long time passion for house and techno that dates back to her days as a journalist, Kraviz is first and foremost a DJ, and one engrained with the roots of her first love - Chicago house and Detroit techno. Her hunger to dig deep into the archives of House & Techno balances all of her sets perfectly between now and then, introducing her fans to where this scene has come from and where it might be heading. This unique sound and uncompromising attitude has led to Kraviz becoming one of the most in demand artists in the world, playing at major festivals like the Amsterdam Dance Event, Coachella, Sonar, Decibel, Awakenings and DEMF, as well as landing a much-coveted residency at Richie Hawtin's ENTER.
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Nina Kraviz Mix (12:41)
2017-06-16
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2017-06-02
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Matthew E 'Radio Slave' Remix (9:26)
2015-12-25
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