Goa Jonas (Harmonia Records)


Managing and DJing on the Freqs of Nature ‘Groove Floor’ on Monday morning will be Goa Jonas from Germany. Jonas’ style was influenced from a very young age and at 29, he has had 18 years of involvement with the Goa Trance scene. He produced a bit when he was 15 years old with GMS (released on Tip records) but focuses his energy and time on listening to new sounds and getting DJ sets together. Between the ages of 7 and 15, Jonas grew up in Goa, India– where the Goa Trance movement developed and got its name. At the age of 12, he loved watching the DJs playing and asked them to show him how to do it too. He began by playing out using tapes (each containing up to 3 hrs of music) and then started organising his own parties when he was 13/14 for up to 2000 people at Disco Valley and was playing up to 400 parties between ’96 and ’99 in Goa (he never took any drugs).

In the beginning people would stop dancing when they see a 12 year old kid was DJing: “I ran around collecting donations from the foreigners and got enough money together to pay for the system. Talked to the bar guys who paid off the cops and you had your party. It’s unlike here in Germany where there is a lot of organisation and paperwork involved. In a way it is easier in India where you can just pay the cops and get your permit and do the party. Here, they check if it’s a nice place and whether there is a nature reserve which was the problem with hosting in the original location for the Rela(x)perimental stage here. The water, toilets, shops and so on are all regulated and ought to meet certain safety standards. India is a different story, with the Chai Mamas on the beach making ghee on their kerosene cookers, egg omelettes and sandwiches.”

In ’98 he left India for the first time in years to play Boom festival in Portugal and is the youngest DJ to ever play there. He played regularly in Goa until he returned to Germany at the age of 15, switched to CDs and began to beat-match rather than mixing tapes using the ‘feeling’ as the speeds could not be changed.

These days he returns to Goa and plays a few festivals (also playing Antaris in Germany this summer).

Jonas DJs a more classic Goa style up to 150bpm: “The Goa trance sound has developed into different genres which will now be split on different stages; progressive to full-on to hi-tech to forest, I personally try to keep the style of Goa with groovy basslines, a lot of movement and melody rather than aiming to smash up your brains with chaotic sounds (though it is cool how anything can go into your music and can be a great head-trip). My philosophy behind DJing is uplifting, but not too happy- just groovy, funky psychedelic trance. I like to mix and follow the flow of the DJ before and after my set. It has become more sectioned now rather than one continuous journey. In the ‘old times’ it was more like that, nowadays it is really split up. It’s innovated which is nice and the scene is now enormous compared to that time- but it was more familiar on the dance floor, everyone was together on one floor, on one party. I am of the opinion that every style of music will have nice tracks- hi-tech, for me, is too fast to dance to, but I’m sure for many people it brings them to a place they have not been before and that’s why they like it- on the right drugs you may see a broader sense in it and that’s what it is about: music for the drugs that you have the nicest journey with. However, I do believe you can always make something sound new even if you do use melodies. My sets are more musical rather than abstract sounds.”

For the future, he plans to compile a Various Artist release where he selects the tracks and produces with some of the artists and is currently working on a set to take you on a journey spanning the development of the sounds of his 18 years in Goa Trance. He is also going to record his mixes containing some new and unreleased material on his soundcloud and mixcloud.

http://soundcloud.com/goajonas

http://mixcloud.com/goajonas

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The Party Empire is growing!!!

The Party Empire is growing!!!

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Back to Freqs of Nature

“You must give birth to your images. They are the future waiting to be born. Fear not the strangeness you feel. The future must enter you long before it happens. Just wait for the birth, for the hour of the new clarity.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

It’s been nearly a week with no update from me as I have been off-site for 5 days. I returned this afternoon to find the (roughly) 40 members of staff exploded into more than 120 people and counting, all with their imaginations running wild all over the landscape- creativity spewing forth from their fingertips, sprinkling colours and shapes and charming details in every possible corner. New installations have been made from alternative mediums such as logs, plants and stone, and brand new gardens have sprouted across the land.The specially selected handful of independent merchants are setting up their stalls and cafes.

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Freqs of Nature is on the threshold of a new beginning and will enter the next phase tomorrow night when the music and lights will fuse to enrapture the participants; less than 24 hours to finish the projects! The dancefloors, which were mostly building sites when I left last Tuesday, have now been completely transformed by the décor crews. The Chill stage which was demolished due to external circumstance has now relocated and created in a completely new way from before- it is the perfect open space for you to lie back incapacitated and overwhelmed 😉

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The Visionary Art Gallery is mostly set up with high quality, diverse psychedelic art and photographs on display. There are also kinetic metal sculptures by Patrice Hubert placed around the site which will spring to life emanating lambent light and gracefully moving to the music while the teeth on Matthew Crabb‘s chainsaw furiously shape logs into beautiful sculptures!

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Sacred Art graffiti has splashed all across the hangars framing the entrances with geometric shapes and illustrations by Hazard Hope and Ethnogenic Artkore.

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Camping is open and the shuttle buses are already running for travelers to arrive and rest (hmm…maybe?) one night before the Freqs vision rapidly unfolds over the forthcoming days of joy. More info coming soon…!

 

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Less than 2 weeks to go!

The Freqs of Nature site has been transforming and reaching toward a hermetic world of psychedelic wonder. Coming up to its second year of production, there is absolutely no sign of a lack in imagination or experience- even their first year created a legacy and has set expectations of excellence this year.

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The Freqs have had their priorities straight, being very well organised and resourceful. We are visited regularly by the head organisers filling requests for whatever we need to do our best work which has cultivated an encouraging community feel within the production group. In addition to that, we are very lucky to have a talented Italian kitchen master on site keeping us all well-fed (even myself, the royal pain in the ass with the awkward dietary restrictions, is satiated). However, it’s not all watermelon and beer-parties; while life on the site is free and relaxed it’s resolutely project-focused and working is the favoured pastime. Everyone emerges early from their tents/furnaces to lovingly continue their projects, winding down only when the moon rises with the mosquitoes from their watery abyss to dine upon our delicious blood.

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As you can see, the carpenters and construction workers are close to completing the foundations for the stages in order for the deco teams to work their magic this coming week!  Fresh faces are beginning to appear rapidly and I will be speaking to them about their ideas, developments and involvement. However, I will not spoil any surprises, you will just have to come and join us on the 4th of July, won’t you? 😉

Yesterday, 4 weeks into development, the staff banded together to deconstruct the beautiful fairytale Chill site due to external complications. But the spirit remains high and Kogaion Tribe and the “mysterious pond-builder” have displayed zen-like patience despite this random pitfall and have overcome the situation swiftly and smoothly. Some rare photos of this legendary land can be seen below:

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(Any requests, please leave a comment!)

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Jayney Maïya (LooneyMoonExperiment)

Jayney Maïya is a Berlin-based DJ from the UK. She plays a relaxed, poetic and sensual style of chill with elements of playful charm and world fusion blended through in varying quantities. Her style possesses a versatile, soothing yet energizing sound for both chilling or dancing to.

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Jayney has been DJing for 18 months mostly playing around England with residency in Soma Sonic, Liverpool. The door to Europe opened when she was invited to bring her beats to Freqs of Nature last year. Since then she has played at Odysee and November Ritual in Berlin (both connected to Freq’s production). This year she signed to Looney Moon Experiment and is off to play on the Groove Secret Chamber stage at Lost Theory in Croatia this August.

Jayney has been involved in the Freqs festival production last year and arrived with myself and Amy Jyoti (who will be instructing yoga in the healing zone) this year to create installations and perform on the Rela(x)perimental stage. She is also a seamstress for Maïya-Jyotï Creation.

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(Above: Amy Jyoti and Jayney Maiya busy capturing dreams and being eaten by bloodthirsty insects)

I invited Jayney to talk about her progress as a DJ, her involvement with Freqs and what inspires her:

I feel a particular sound has developed over the past few years in the chill-out that has more movement and physical connection than airy or spacey. I felt there was a gap there previously. At Transylvania Calling Festival in 2011 my friend Nolan (Kained and Able) was DJing a chill set. I was hearing a lot of chill out in there but the sound he was mixing was different- it had so much energy whilst still being relaxing. He played the Kalya Cyntilla remix of ‘Feeling Good’ and I remember thinking how nice it was. I connected with that just as much as I would on the main stage (as were many others) and felt this should more frequently happen.

The quality of my tracks are; earthy, grounding, full and generating lot energy into movement through the bass and I tend to connect with mostly organic sounds.  This past year I  was learning how to just feel instead of analyse and articulate everything; allowing feelings to be more of a communication than language and not limiting incredible sensations and emotions into a word. As everyone has their own idea of what a word means, accurately articulating how tracks make me feel is difficult but generally I feel; free, warm, energised and sense a familiarity in the sound. It’s not very ‘out-there,’ it’s more natural and helps you re-learn and reconnect with something you already know like certain feelings that may have been be forgotten (anamnesis). The psy-bass brings grounding which people want/need during psychedelic experiences, or people having a difficult time can use it like a therapy to bring them back to center. A lot Psytrance I enjoy tends to serve for the opposite to me. I feel base-chakra in my style and can explore depths but on the psytrance floor it will be much higher and projected.

Originally I played tracks that inspire me in a feminine way and one of my first biggest sets was at Soma Sonic chill out. I was so happy looking up to see so many women dancing and smiling (some men too) and really knowing how to move to this sound. I’m not saying it’s just for women but I just particularly know that a lot of my female friends are really connecting with this kind of sound.

A lot of tunes I like to play have a very feminine vibe to them. I wonder: is it female vocals or is just an energy or is because I am a woman? If a guy played this would it still be seen as girly? Some guys might play one or two tracks that I play but the overall composition of the set has a very different feel. Maybe men or women generally feel and hear sounds differently. However, there is one guy, called LightChild (Merkaba/Looney Moon Experiment)  who plays similar stuff and I listen to them and think how I would not do anything differently because I resonate with it so well. His sets are all about light and the sound really connects with the heart.

I definitely think the music I play is about bringing out the light and I appreciate music that allows you to explore and accept the dark, I feel just as much of a necessity for music that helps you connect with love and light. A lot of people on the label I am on aren’t playing the same sound and are a lot more glitch which may have more to do with the playful aspect of the down-tempo than the grounding aspect.

 I been getting gigs quite swiftly since I started which I have been amazed and grateful for- it just flowed and fell into place. I didn’t push it at all. My boyfriend at the time had a great influence on me musically and guided me with the technical aspect, we shared similar taste but I went and explored artists I wanted to push through more and evolved into my own place. Some have said that they think this is happening because men want to see a young girl playing beautiful music and of course, there’s nothing wrong with that if they appreciate it but that’s also a strange and disempowering thing to say. I wasn’t thinking about it like that- I simply enjoyed the music I was listening to and wanted to share it at parties because I felt others would enjoy it. I wasn’t set out on this feminist mission, it was just happened this way and it has been perceived in different ways. Some people see it as a great feminist action to be a female DJ and I don’t really like the term DJane to set women apart for this reason. I began seeing this feminist connection as a positive thing because there are not many women on line-ups and also the kind of style of music strongly connected with Shakti.

As for my involvement with Freqs, I met Ankur (organiser) through playing at Soma Sonic. I sent him a recording/demo and the guy who was running the down-tempo area last year, ‘Or,’ (the same guy who asked me to join Looney Moon Experiment) who got my demo possibly through Ankur, then got in touch over Soundcloud to offer me a space to play last year. I was also working on the land art team and I love the vision of the festival, the organisation and organisers. It’s really down to the earth and transparent. I like the free-flowing an unpretentious platform they have created for artists to express themselves by presenting incredible creativity and talent in a really unusual setting and doing a great job. Freqs simply presents incredible art and music, without trying to sell it as anything that is going to immediately change your life or propel you spiritually.  All this really drew me in and I am happy to be part of it again this year which was perfect as I have started living in Berlin.

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Kogaion Tribe – Landscape art

Kogaion Tribe is a Romanian “land art” (or earthworks) and decor crew (Bogdan, Andrei and Vlad are the core-team) who have already been on the Freqs location for the past month collecting and selecting materials from the forests and fields surrounding the festival site.

This is the second year they have participated in the Freqs of Nature. More about their history can be read on the Freqs website.

Nature, they recognise, is the ultimate artist and their muse; she is their art, their source, their teacher and their gallery. Kogaion Tribe harmoniously collaborate with nature creating powerful relationships between the space and the witness. While many artists essentially give life to something (such as a canvas) in order to connect with people, Kogaion Tribe use life itself as their medium to create. They express their spirituality through the mutability of the environment.

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(Above: image from one of their projets at Freqs of Nature last year)

Andrei says: “Nature is always beautiful, it depends how you are looking at it.” Speaking to this crew, you can see a true passion for nature and craft. As I watched them work and discussed ideas with them, I observed their ability to notice special qualities in things that are either hidden to many people or easily dismissed. I feel that this ability comes from seeing beauty in everything; the contour of a hillside, a random patch of pebbles- even decay such as in the pine needles from a fallen tree. The material is collected and arranged into detailed dioramas influenced by the Chinese Gardens, or sacred geometerical structures and other forms derived from nature. Characterising nature itself, it is this process of scoping out the environment which is essential for their art to take form and grow; it is not a planned, linear process but more an organic sprawling with presence.

Bogdan (‘the moss master’) and the others were working on the pending chill-out area and collaborating with other carpenters and land artists like Leo (aka Hawaiikas who will be DJing on the Forest stage) where I caught up with them to explain their project and roots in land art:

“I was working in a festival 2 years ago doing decoration and during the last 2 or 3 days of production it became quite stressful with people talking on top of each other and ideas clashing. I walked away to chill out by a log I saw that was still standing up and wanted to make it into a bench because I felt it was nice place to smoke. The wood was too rotten to build with but I saw some moss and placed it on the log and I didn’t stop doing that for 48 hours. That became the first garden I made and it just progressed from there. After that we discovered a natural Chinese art called Penjing (example image) which we’re incorporating  in our work. For example we found some dead roots from tress and will turn them upside down and cover them with moss so they look like bonsai trees. The bark of trees can be transformed into little caves and tunnels and so on. 

The more we continue with this art the more we learn- every project has a new technique or a new idea and its own natural restrictions (here, one of the biggest challenges is the mosquitoes!). One thing will be completely different  each time we do it due to the different material and surroundings. You must connect with what is going on in the environment, it doesn’t work in the same way as architecture. We try to shape everything geometrically and then nature comes and shapes everything- putting everything into an organised chaos.

On a flat terrain we can build geometric structures. Here in the chill-out area, we take advantage of natural curves and so we can easily build waterfalls or lakes in mossy plateaus. You also save material when you adapt the environment which additionally gives a natural feel rather than one with a sense of human imposition. 

Over this lake we are  building, we are planning a nazca-plain/crop circle installation/japanese garden by alternating golden sand, black sand, green moss, orange dust. We don’t use any paint or colour unless you find it in nature, if you see a purple flower and you can use it then we can have purple, otherwise we just make use of the earth tones.  We want our landscaping to look like it has always been there without human intervention; no nails, no wire.. if we must use them, we hide them with earth and moss. It will look perfect- like it just grew here.

We want to transplant some ferns here but the earth on this site is very sandy so it doesn’t stick as well as earth. If we cover it in moss, it will absorb humidity but nothing really grows in the sand so we will have to walk around the location and find out what flowers can grow in it.

As we walk around the site, we may spot a nice area to sit, and we will build something there; whether it be a bench or a small piece of art.

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In the future they wish to expand and to provide more than gardens, but also festival infrastructure; stages, bridges and music, all made their way. One of the other developments of the tribe between Bogdan and Andrei is their chill-out music which they will be performing at Freqs this year. Bogdan makes more organic music with bongos and Andrej works more with soundscapes; generally sounds that go well with the art with the aim to bring their interests in music and gardening into balance.

 

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The Location – Berlin style!

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For its second year, Freqs of Nature is hosted on a disused Russian military air base in Niedergörsdorf 70km of Berlin, Germany. It was previously used for training purposes and not directly utilised in the war.

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Many Psytrance festivals this summer will be held in remote areas of natural beauty and I have heard criticisms towards the Freq’s choice of location for having a ‘war vibe’ but a positive focus could be achieved. The following quote from Hakim Bey illustrates how one can reclaim and re-purpose a space by escaping previously imposed forms of structure and control:

“If art has died, or the audience has withered away, then we find ourselves free of two dead weights. Potentially, everyone is now some kind of artist–& potentially every audience has regained its innocence, its ability to become the art that it experiences.

‘Provided we can escape from the museums we carry around inside us, provided we can stop selling ourselves tickets to the galleries in our own skulls, we can begin to contemplate an art which re-creates the goal of the sorcerer: changing the structure of reality by the manipulation of living symbols (in this case, the images we’ve been “given” by the organizers of this salon–murder, war, famine, & greed).

‘We could now contemplate aesthetic actions which possess some of the resonance of terrorism (or “cruelty”) but aimed at the destruction of abstractions rather than of people, towards liberation rather than power, pleasure rather than profit, joy rather than fear. “Poetic Terrorism.” Our chosen images have the potency of darkness–but all images are masks, & behind these masks lie energies we can turn toward light & pleasure.”

 

Currently, the location is being prepared by a small team of carpenters, land artists and organisers to create the inspiring, psychedelic environment promised this year.

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The hub of all music and activity will emanate from the hangars which will be transformed both;

Visually– from empty apocalyptic shells to an infusion of colour, joy and creativity;

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Energetically– with new life, new focus and new intention a path emerges from the ruins to release the air-base from the past.

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Nearby, Berlin is a prime example of a space with a war-torn history from which new life spiraled out and releasing the environment from a cycle of further desolation/preservation of negativity. Young, independent, resourceful people pirated the city and exerted a contagious and magnetic influence as it was rebuilt into a unique subcultural, multinational creative city with an adversity towards war and commercialization. This influence extends to Freqs.

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