Check out this interview with Mirco de Govia, the talent behind the famed 'Epic Monolith, 'Chronoscale' and the beautiful 'Voller Sterne'...
MIRCO DE GOVIA BACK WITH NEW ALBUM ICONIC PATH
German Trance Wizard Mirco De Govia has fascinated the trance world for many years with innovative melodic tracks always adding his special own spice to each track. His breakthrough occurred in 2001 as he released ‘Epic Monolith’ on Euphonic, which was played by all the top DJs and landed on Paul Van Dyk’s famous compilation ‘The Politics Of Dancing’. In the next two years, he released further trance gems like ‘Things That Matter’ or ‘Final Emotion’. In 2003 came the release of his debut album ‘Chronoscale’, which was an instant hit by Trance fans around the globe. In 2004, he released the beautiful dreamy and melodic ‘Voller Sterne’, which received a classic remix from Anjunabeats’ hero Super 8. In 2005, he released the pretty ‘Asarja’ with Euphonic colleague Ronski Speed. This track was played a lot by Paul Van Dky in his radio show Fritz. ‘Asarja’ has a melody which will remain in the heads of the trance faithful for many years to come. In 2006, he released his last single ‘Vital Spark’, which was another emotion filled floor stomper. He also has remixed and given his special touch to many classic trance tracks like ‘Air For Life’ from Above & Beyond / Andy Moor, ‘I’m alone’ from Sun Decade, ‘Velvet Morning’ from Kyau & Albert, ‘Second Sun’ from Sonorous, ‘Massive’ from Ralphie B, and ‘Cre8’ from Super 8. He is about set to release his second studio album ‘Iconic Path’ for May. i:Vibes had the chance to interview the talented German trance producer…
i:Vibes: Hi Mirco, How are you? Thanks for taking some time to talk to i:Vibes.nu. You already starting producing music in the 90s, but your breakthrough happened in 2001 with ‘Epic Monolith’. Why do you think it took so long?
Mirco de Govia: Hello i:Vibes! I think the start of the Euphonic label and the good friendship with Ralph Kyau was the real beginning of my career. I never expected so much success for ‘Epic Monolith’, but then I knew to move on.
i:Vibes: Why did the music of Kraftwerk inspire you so much?
Mirco de Govia: Since my first contact I have been always fascinated by electronic pioneers like Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream. It was a new kind of sound that seemed a miracle in how to create it. Their work has inspired and influenced so many producers like me.
i:Vibes: How difficult was it getting your hands on music in the 80s in East Germany? Paul van Dyk also was able to find his love for electronic music even though it wasn’t easy finding the music to listen to. What was your first record?
Mirco de Govia: It was really hard to get these records. My brother bought the Tangerine Dream ‘Pergamon’. This was a live concert recorded in Berlin East released by the East German state record company AMIGA – a classic for this time. Also a friend of mine bought the Kraftwerk ‘Electric Café’ on audio tape in Hungary. It was like x-mas to hold this music in my hands.
i:Vibes: You are from the former East Germany. How did you experience the early German techno boom in the years 89-94? Berlin and Frankfurt were especially important for putting Germany on the World techno map. What German Artists really inspired you in that time and why?
Mirco de Govia: We had a radio station for the youth called DT-64 where all started. The broadcasts of Marusha and Marcos Lopez had featured the current underground techno and trance records. I felt in love with the Frankfurt productions like Jam & Spoon and Sven Väth and all the MFS-releases of Cosmic Baby and Paul van Dyk. Later I joined a techno underground club near my home-town where my first contact with DJs was a chance to discover more music.
i:Vibes: What was the defining moment, where you knew 100% that you wanted to make music and fascinate people with your fans?
Mirco de Govia: I just began making tracks with my Amiga-Computer. My friends advised me to continue making music, they just liked the stuff. So I decided to buy professional equipment like synthesizers and drum-computer. Later my first record was released.
i:Vibes: When and how did you meet Ralph Kyau and Steven Albert? What was the first thing you noticed about these two guys in terms of them as people and as musicians?
Mirco de Govia: Ralph and Steven are great people. Since my first meeting with Ralph in 1993 we have been on the same wavelength in our thoughts and feelings. By the way, we have the same goal to make music. So we shared our experiences and pushed us ahead.
i:Vibes: You have been part of the Euphonic family since the beginning. Euphonic is a very tight knit family with few members. Kyau & Albert, Ronski Speed, Rough Mullar aka Sonorous and Mirco de Govia have made Euphonic one of the finest German trance labels. What makes this label so unique and special?
Mirco de Govia: I think this stands for the friendship. That’s why it is called a family. The members have also the chance to make the music they love.
i:Vibes: The release of ‘Epic Monolith’ was now seven years ago. 2001 was a great time for the melodic trance in Europe. However in Germany Trance was hurt by the very cheesy releases and since then has had problems getting as popular as in the UK or Holland. What have been the biggest changes in the trance scene in this time and do you miss the height of melodic trance 2001-2003?
Mirco de Govia: In history each genre was a dynamic thing where people changed their interests. Today we have many talented musicians who are able to produce with a little amount of professional equipment and the market is small. I enjoyed the time of the trance-hype, but I am not sad. This is just the way life goes.
i:Vibes: I am listening to your 2003 release ‘Chronoscale’ as I am preparing this interview. The album sounds timeless. When looking back, how difficult was it producing this album? I can imagine you bled a lot when making this album.
Mirco de Govia: The production was not a continuous process. First I collected tracks and later I formed them toward the concept for an album. To finish an album is the real hard work, because there are always other tasks like mixing and mastering and of course release deadlines.
i:Vibes: Super 8 did a fine remix for your classic ‘Voller Sterne’, but nothing can replace the original version. That track belongs to my all-time favourite trance tracks. The break and melody is simply incredible and can always give me a special feeling when I listen to it. How difficult was it finding that melody, which has blown away so many fans around the globe?
Mirco de Govia: The melody is from the old productions days in the middle of the 90s, when I did not have a home-label. The original idea was an old-school trance track. For Chronoscale the idea was completely modified to my current style, but also outstanding for ordinary trance. This just worked fine.
i:Vibes: In 2005, you released ‘Asarja’, which is another track that just gives me unending goose bumps. The melody in the break is simply breathtaking. You produced this track with your friend Ronski Speed. How did you guys make this masterpiece? How was it in the studio with Ron making this track?
Mirco de Govia: Ron gave me the demo-track with the original melody and the vocal. I finished a couple of weeks my demo-version for the track. We decided to make two versions, so we could realize our own styles.
i:Vibes: Since ‘Vital Spark’ which was released in 2006, it has been very quiet with you. Have you only been locked away in the studio making the new album or have you also found time for other things?
Mirco de Govia: Yeah, there was a great event in my life – the birth of my son. All things became other priorities. After arranging and practising my father-role I began with the work for the second album, which is heavy influenced by this time.
i:Vibes: The five year wait is finally over. The announcement of your album ‘Iconic Path’ created a lot of excitement on the trance forums world wide. How excited are you about the release of your new album?
Mirco de Govia: This was the hardest thing for me – the time was so rare and the feelings so diffuse - I am so happy that I could finish it.
i:Vibes: What can we expect from the new album ‘Iconic Path’? Will it be a step further from Chronoscale? Will it be a typical Mirco de Govia album or has the sound gone in a new direction?
Mirco de Govia: The new album is a new step for me. I can not say ‘typical’ or ‘not typical’. It is my musical interpretation of trance as a state of mind. Every body should form his own opinion.
i:Vibes: What will be the first single and what can we await sound wise from it and who will get remix duty? I can imagine there will be a Ronski Speed remix…
Mirco de Govia: The first single will be ‘Evolution Part 2’ including a Stoneface & Terminal remix.
i:Vibes: ‘Chronoscale’ was a huge underground hit. Did you feel a lot of pressure when making ‘Iconic Path’, simply knowing through history that often the second album doesn’t live up to the debut album?
Mirco de Govia: I did not care about the history. I just looked ahead and make the music I love. Compared to ‘Chronoscale’ it will be more adult.
i:Vibes: Did you have 100% freedom, or did label bosses Kyau & Albert want you to go in a certain direction sound wise?
Mirco de Govia: No, there are no directions but helpful suggestions from Ralph.
i:Vibes: Did you make ‘Iconic Path’ alone or did you have some guest musicians and producers?
Mirco de Govia: Most tracks are composed and produced by myself. I got superb co-producers for some tracks – kindly thanks to Ronski Speed, Sonorous, Cressida and Marco Torrance. Their contributions were a great help and the results are incredible for the album.
i:Vibes: Will there be some vocal numbers and if yes with what singers?
Mirco de Govia: My music lives by the deep sound and the melody. I do not work with singers - that is not my cup of tea. All you can hear are some vocal-effects.
i:Vibes: When looking back to the studio work, what differences were there with the making of ‘Chronoscale’ to ‘Iconic Path’? Was there more experimentation with ‘Iconic Path’, simply because you were a few years older with more experience as a producer?
Mirco de Govia: That is correct. To take my sound ahead I tried different styles and production steps. I was tired by the pure trance sound scheme. All I wanted was to produce something with a new character. That is my opinion on where music can evolve and move forwards.
i:Vibes: How can we imagine Mirco de Govia in the studio? Do you put on a superman cape and start producing? Do you have a certain plan or just go with an instinct or feeling?
Mirco de Govia: I never turn the night to day – I play themes and record them. After days I listen with a new view to it. When new ideas are born then the theme is elected to be more. This is the most productive part for me. I let the creativity flow. But sometimes the track was a waste of time, when my instinct says to go other directions.
i:Vibes: You have never really done many collaborations. With what artist would you like to make a track? I think a CD with the name Above & Beyond / Mirco De Govia could make for an interesting listen…
Mirco de Govia: That would be nice, but there’s nothing planned.
i:Vibes: What is your biggest goal for this album?
Mirco de Govia: That many people will enjoy, love and of course buy it.
i:Vibes: Besides the album, what else can we expect from Mirco de Govia in 2008? Any new remixes coming from you this year?
Mirco de Govia: No concrete plans till now. We will see.
i:Vibes: What are your five all-time favourite tracks?
Mirco de Govia: Instead of single tracks I prefer these albums as my all-time favourites
Tangerine Dream – Pergamon
Vangelis – Bladerunner Soundtrack
Enigma – MCMXC a.d.
Cosmic Baby – Stellar Supreme
Chicane – Far From The Maddening Crowds
i:Vibes: What do you do in your free time when you’re not in the studio?
Mirco de Govia: I have a little family and it is spring now. We got a little garden far away from the city. This is the best place to get distant, work and relax. There I often work on my laptop and play with sounds and plug-ins.
i:Vibes: Mirco, thanks for the interview. Good luck with Iconic path. The trance world can’t wait until the release!!!
Mirco de Govia: You are welcome and thank you too.
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