Floog: "everyone has a way of express and I feel so comfortable when I improvise with my own compositions"
- Published on Monday, 25 May 2020 12:09
George's path has been something unbelievable: from his Premiesku venture (alongside fellow-Romanians Livio & Roby) to his current Floog project, this man has constantly researched for the sound that could most represent him from time to time, risking and developing a discernable "Floog's stamp" of thousands of facets. In just one year he had releases on labels such as Mulen, Bleu Ciel, Hoarder, SCI+TEC, Atipic, GFD, QNQN, Croosed Grooves and Joule (Yoyaku) and also on his own FLG label. His sound, filled with catchy melodies and groovy hooks, results to be the perfect crossover of Romanian minimal with a more dancefloor-oriented house and techno. Over the years, Floog's tracks have been played by the likes of Apollonia, Petre Inspirescu, Raresh, Livio & Roby, Priku, Sonja Moonear, Sammy Dee, Dubfire, Seth Troxler, Ryan Crosson, Shaun Reeves and Tini. George is also famous for his live performance, using drum machines, analog synths, a small modular rig and a bunch of controllers, his set being energy-oriented, melodic, alternating raw sounds with a more minimalistic approach, having a lot of improvisation moments were artist feels is right for the audience and the type of venue.
We know you both for the splendid productions and for your live exhibition. Tell us more about going live rather than a regular DJ set (as Floog and as Premiesku).
In the begging when I met Livio & Roby I had interest just into making music and didn’t think about the performing side for about 2 years, then in 2005 when I had my first project with them (called Monochrome) we have chosen to perform live cause that was more or less our approach from the studio. Indeed in 2009, I tried to be a DJ/collector for about 6 months but it was clear that was not my thing, I was not attracted about staying all day on Skype with people, on Beatport to dig for music, making folders and CDs etc, I rather wanted to spend that time in the studio and making music and building something from scratch.
My opinion about this is that everyone has a way of express artistically and the art of DJing and a live act are quite different approaches regarding performing music, you just need to feel "in your shoes" when you do it and personally I feel that when I play live my own compositions and improvise.
Your early career started as George G, which also is the moniker you've used with the Premiesku project. How difficult is to change alias (into Floog) after such a successful one? And what does "Floog” mean?
Both George G and Floog represent each a part of my musical journey, let's say Floog came naturally as another chapter, a new challenge and new sound territories. Back in 2012 when I met my actual wife, one day on an afterparty we played with our first names - Florentina and George, and we came with FloG and after we google it to see by curiosity if this makes any sense we had a lovely surprise cause we found this meaning for Floog word on the Urban Dictionary: "Floog" is a connection between two people who share a bond much stronger than "like" or "love". Those who are in floog experience something that the vast majority of people are never lucky enough to have”. So in 2017 when I was looking for a name for my new project this was the first and only option :)
Going even further back in time, what was your first contact with electronic music?
Actually it's a funny begging for me, it was in 1983 and I was six, we were on the communist times when access to music was really hard in Romania and my father was a collector of classical music vinyls. The source of the vinyls mostly was from a guy that brought them illegally from Bulgaria and one day he mixed up the vinyls with someone else and by mistake, we got in the package a vinyl with Kraftwerk - The Man Machine. I was immediately intrigued by the cover of the vinyl and when I played the first track (The Robots) I was totally blown away by the sounds on it! That was something I've never heard before! Then, after the '90s, when access to music was finally free, I realized that I was so lucky to discover and hear the godfathers of electronic music so early!
Are you still working w/ Livio & Roby as Premiesku?
Yes of course, actually we had some studio sessions into Roby's mountain vila before the epidemic crisis and we started choosing tracks for our next Premiesku album.
Talking about collaborative projects, we know you and Mahony have been cooking some stuff together over the last couple of years. Are you working on more collabs?
Yes, I have a few into the pipeline, one of them being a release with Priku that will see the light after summer.
Tell us about the Joker005 you did with Mahony, which has been one of the most requested IDs in 2019. How the idea was born?
Mahony came with this idea and initially, I thought that was almost impossible to come with something cool due to the melodic intensity of the original track :D but in the end, we found a way to make it fit with our sound :)
What about your own FLG label?
I launched my own FLG label back in 2018. Since then, I've only made 3 originals EP and all of them gone really well. I've always been in favour of the "quality over quantity" motto. This year I will start another label with my dear Mahony specifically for our sound and also a sublabel for FLG will see the light, more info about after the summer!
Is there a label that you’d like to release on? And why?
There are a lot of really interesting labels these days but I don’t think I want to chase any when a track is good for a certain label it's attracted like a magnet :)
We've seen some great tools in your studio! What's your favourite one?
I'd say the 0-coast by Make Noise, it's a lovely semi-modular synth and does wonders both in the studio and live. Highly recommended!
Why is the Romanian scene so lively and forward-thinking? Do you think it will continue to be a point of reference even after this COVID emergency?
Many things come to my mind: one important thing is that Romania had a gap of freedom and access to music till 90’ and then when big DJ names came here we had a lot of enthusiasm and joy for electronic music that naturally was translated also to local DJs, producers and passionate. I think you can actually hear that enthusiasm translated into this music :)
Nevertheless, our roots are also important, being a Latin country surrounded by different other types of cultures it had a great influence as well.
Also, another important factor, from my point of view, was the "innocence" of the producers, many of them didn't have as reference old skool music (in particular) and also most of them are not musically trained, they just made/make music by "filtering" the sound they heard in their surroundings and that was mostly in Romania, so that was like a "feedback" coming back to the music scene and making it very evolving but in a certain sound range.
Yes, I dare to say scene will continue like this, musically speaking; like how we call now some particular styles "Berlin sound", "Chicago house", "Detroit techno", "UK garage", also this wave of minimal electronic music will have the "Romanian stamp" on it, even tho I have to admit that there are a lot of great producers coming from many other parts of the world that add amazing value to this music.
What's gonna be the opening track that you will play at your very first show when clubs will finally open again?
It's a track that I've made during this crazy period called "Pale Blue Dot". It's about our home, the planet Earth, that we need to love and take care of more than ever now.
Words by Francesco Quieti