Infected by the house and techno virus as a teenager growing up in the north-east of England, and driven by his desire for eternal summer, six years ago Garry Todd began a nomadic life of Australian beach life, Balearic party island insanity and British summer.
As a DJ, producer and party organizer, he quickly became a central figure in the newly burgeoning club scene in and around Sydney, with his legendary ‘Bread & Butter’ parties and regular headliner-sets at festivals like Playground Weekender and Stereosonic alongside artists like Jimpster and Ricardo Villalobos. The uniquely styled globetrotter refers to the latter as a great source of inspiration for his own sound, besides Soul Capsule, Basic Channel and the music of his buddies Acid Mondays. Speaking of sound, Todd is far away from committing himself to the zeitgeist and instead is raging nimbly throughout the House genre.
Now, following several well-received releases on his own label Contemporary Scarecrow, Garry Todd follows up with his debut album “Nora Lilian” on BPitch Control. “Nora Lilian” is an album in which a psychedelic soul dwells, that sometimes gets lost in rapturous atmospheres and in particular it is an album that is always aimed at the dance floor in a charming and determined way.
Anticipating the album Gary was kind enough to submit an exclusive mix to us to highlight his diverse skills, as well as catching up for a quick chat about the album, his inspirations, the studio, and anticipating his Berghain debut next month.
“Nora Lilian” is available 27 November on BPitch Control
First off, the LP is named ‘Nora Lilian’ after your grandmother. How did she influence your music and career?
Well she was never the one telling me to get a normal job, she insisted I followed my dreams and in her last year she saved up £500 for each of her grand children, I spent it all on studio equipment.
The LP has a cover image, which is quite funny, but I’m sure also emblematic of your relationship with your grandmother. Did you know that this was the image you wanted to use for the cover from the start, or was it something you discovered along the way?
The photograph was just taken on the fly, me doing my Grandma’s garden before I left to Ibiza for the season, so I trimmed her edges extra short. My grandma was up for anything. I even got her in my run dmc tracksuits!
The photograph was Ellen’s and the label manager Marc’s idea. They saw the pic on Facebook and it was already quiet popular as I had it as my profile photo. They thought it was a good representation of my character!!
How was the relationship and influence of Bpitch Control with you while making this album? How would you describe the creative atmosphere of the label?
The label has such a broad spectrum of music it releases, so I knew I could push the boundaries, I didn’t really realise music for a year and kept in radio contact. I didn’t tell them I was making an album, I just popped all of the tracks into their inbox one day!
As the album took some 16 months to develop, what was the original starting point? How did your original idea for the album evolve into its finished version?
I knew I wanted to make the album strictly club tracks. I started making all different styles I was into until I got 15 tracks I was happy with. Then I cut them down to 10. The other 5 tracks are more industrial techno, which I’ll be releasing under a different name.
What is 1 piece of gear that was vital in making this LP? When you go on the road, what is a vital piece of gear for you to bring along?
The 909 is properly the most important, it’s on nearly every track. Also my studio headphones with my laptop for chopping up and arranging whilst on the move, with omnisphere.
Finally, you will be at Berghain this December, as I have read many artists consider the preparation for a performance there being something of an event in itself, how have you found yourself preparing for the gig?
I’ve been preparing for this my whole life ! Spent all my money on records, I know exactly what I’m gonna play! I started curating the play list as soon as I got confirmation, and thought it was a good excuse to buy all of those expensive records in my discogs crate!