As one of the leading artists in the genre, Giuseppe Ottaviani has managed to consistently deliver a fresh take on trance music. One only needs to experience a show from the Italian producer to be captivated by his talent, but it's his live sets where his modernized productions come to life.
His past endeavor, Live 2.0, generated plenty of new music both on and offstage. The abundance of tracks prompted Ottaviani to create Evolver, a collection of over thirty cuts all created either on stage, in a hotel room, or at soundcheck.
Aiming to advance the performance aspect of his live sets, Ottaviani announced the third installation of his live ventures, Live 3.0. Having debuted at the annual A State of Trance 950 festival in the Netherlands earlier in the year, Live 3.0 is a more visually appealing show and doesn't compromise on Ottaviani's energetic on-the-spot mixing.
This latest undertaking is just one of the many projects Ottaviani will be showcasing in the upcoming months. Aside from new music releases, the trance tastemaker revealed to us his personal connection to the genre in a quick interview held after his latest appearance in Los Angeles.
EDM.com: Just minutes ago you were behind the decks performing to a packed room. How are you feeling now that it's ended?
Giuseppe Ottaviani: It feels special. This is my biggest show in L.A. and its the busiest night I've ever seen here at Exchange LA.
Were you expecting your fan base to pack the venue? We saw a lot of loyal followers in the crowd.
I always tend to expect absolutely nothing. I don't really expect people going crazy for me. But if they like it, and they like my music, I'm here for that.
You recently debuted your latest project, Live 3.0 at A State of Trance in Utrecht. How did that turn out for you?
That was the best launch for Live 3.0 that I could have asked for. That was a huge event for me and having the closing slot was a huge honor.
How long had you been working on Live 3.0 before its premiere?
I've been working on 3.0 for months, although there were a lot of things going on technically and musically that made it feel rushed. There was a lot of pressure going on which was very, very stressful for me.
A lot of people ask me, "what's the main difference between Live 2.0 and 3.0?" And the answer is that there is much more stress.
What is the most stressful part of putting on a Live 3.0 set?
The technology. You never know how it goes, you know? You can't trust technology. If it goes well, you have so much fun and everything works great. If something crashes, yeah, of course, I have a plan B, C, D. But as a musician, as an artist, you want it to always be one hundred percent. You want everything perfect, which is never easy.
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For example, during the first half of my set, I couldn't hear properly. So I was messing around with the melodies and had some bump notes and stuff like that.
In Live 2.0, you were creating new music that manifested itself into your latest album, Evolver. What, if anything, can we expect to come out of Live 3.0?
If you're asking if there will be a new album coming soon, the answer is no. I don't want to repeat myself.
With 2.0, I was creating new music onstage, or after the show, at soundcheck, and at hotel rooms. I had plenty of new music to make an album. In 3.0, it's all about the performance and showing the music I've previously made in different ways. It's more visually catching and it's being performed live.
Speaking of performing live, it was recently announced that you would be taking your latest concept to EDC Las Vegas. How are you going to plan this edition of Live 3.0?
I need to plan the show ahead of time and I need to have a clear idea of what I want to play and how I'm going to play it. So I can't tell you what I'm going to do because I have no idea, but I can tell you the day before.
EDC is not something that you go onstage and improvise. It's something you prepare upfront. A festival like EDC only gives you one hour to play. In that hour you can't do what I've done in the club tonight.
Your last trip to Southern California was for Dreamstate in November of 2019. What is your take on the all-trance event?
Well, to me, Dreamstate is the brand that actually saved... no, not saved... well, yes. It saved trance in the U.S.
What makes you say that? That's a very bold statement.
Because the U.S. was going all the way mainstream. They were into EDM, dubstep, and trap, and all those genres. There was a small market for trance music in America. It was big in the early 2000s and then it went away. Of course, the club scene was still happening, but it wasn't happening in major festivals.
So when Dreamstate came out, I was like, "Yes! It's happening!" And now it's a major festival of its own. To be honest, right now, it's my definitely favorite place to play.
In your opinion, what is it about trance that creates such an emotional connection with listeners?
The thing that people get connected to is melodies. If you think of something from your childhood, you don't remember a drumbeat; you remember a melody. Whether it's from a guitar, or a piano, or from a voice, but it's still the melody that you remember.
Trance is full of melodies and this is what attracts people to the music. It has the power to manipulate your mood and that is a powerful thing.