Over the past few months we’ve had the pleasure of speaking with a plethora of artists from across the board that are held in high regard, but after spending some time out on everyone’s favourite balearic island of Ibiza this summer our admiration for Italian producer Riva Starr could not be any higher. The Naples-born, British residing beat-maker has been on the electronic music circuit for over a decade, having initially started out as a Breakbeat producer but after achieving success with ‘I was drunk’ off Jesse Rose’s ‘Made To Play’ imprint the doors opened for a new & immersive move into House music that has, up to now, seen his status consolidated as one of the best DJ’s across Europe in recent times.
Having recently headlined the opening party for Ibiza’s month long proactive arts festival Bloop, Riva was kind enough to take some time out of his schedule & catch up with AboutToBlow to discuss his favourite nights on the white Isle, that legendary remix of ‘percolate’ and what music he’s feeling at the moment for what has been one of the Italian’s busiest summers to date.
1. Your latest EP ‘Polaroid Beats 01’ is a welcome return to the type of luscious, slow-burning deep house you’ve been so well loved for in the past, what made you want to strip your sound back to this style?
Thx, this is the kind of stuff I’m currently playing in the club and that is exciting me the most at the moment. The concept behind the Polaroid Beats is to release snapshots of sounds that are reflecting my current taste and creativity…I’m quite eclectic so you never know how the second installment will sound!
2. It would be rude not to mention the enormity of last year’s anthemic ‘Eat, Sleep, Rave, Repeat’, did yourself & Fatboy Slim foresee it being so popular? Can you tell us the story behind its creation?
WOW that has been incredible, I’m still a huge fan of the original to be honest…that is an old school acid house number with a crazy story on top. I don’t mind the Calvin Harris remix (that in all honesty had the more mainstream appeal) but it’s pretty annoying to see your track raped by any other EDM producer making it a cheesy slogan
I think it’s got a life on it’s own now… a bit like your kids turn 18 and you let them go out of the family nest.. I think it’s now the time for ESRR to walk with it’s legs LOL
It all happened in a very natural way…we were happy about our first collaboration “Get Naked” and we decided to hang out in the studio again with Beardyman and try something else.. having fun is the best way to make music!
3. We know you’re a regular booking all over Ibiza and this summer you’ll be playing on behalf of your snatch records label. Is it still as exciting for you to play on the Island as before? How excited are you for the Bloop Arts Festival which looks to be an unmissable prospect?
I think playing on the island is always exciting if you do the right parties of course The Bloop Festival opening really is an unmissable and exciting prospect.. I really think that Ibiza needs these kind of things to spicy things up and bring something new to the table. Art and culture are fundamental and must be pushed.
4. On the island one of our favourite nights would have to be Marco Carola’s Music On at Amnesia, is there a particular club or night you are fond of and why?
There are plenty, I think Music On is one of the best alongside Circoloco, Zoo Project and El Row but there’s plenty of more underground parties and afterparties in villas or on the beach in secret locations that are equally as exciting…I’m doing a few of these parties and they are always a lot of fun.. .taking back the original Ibiza spirit!
5. Your remix of Cajmere’s ‘Percolator’ remains a big favourite of ours. If you could do an official remix of anything, past or present, what track would it be and why?
It was a great honour to make a remix for such a huge classic, there are so many tracks that I’d like to remix it’s pretty hard to pick one!
6. How long does it usually take for you to turn a remix around? Your style has remained so unpredictable over the years, do you approach each remix in a different way depending on the original?
Yes, i just have a good listen to the parts and then decide the direction.. i think every tune deserves a different treatment.. not a huge fan of the “must always sound the same” kinda production.. keeping it different is my motto!
7. What tracks are you feeling right now from any genre?
I’m quite liking raw sounds on house and techno at the moment, loving Jimmy Edgar’s label and people like Danny Daze..they are bringing some fresh stuff to the people. I also like more underground labels like Karlovak and Clone Jack for Daze.
8. You’ve been in the scene a long time now playing with various artists on different labels and such, If you had to recommend three artists to see live, who would they be and why?
Octave One, Kink, Claude Von Stroke.
9. And finally a tricky question we like to ask a lot here at About To Blow, Is there one artist or group that you wished you had discovered sooner or known about as a youngster?
Led Zeppelin LOL
Riva’s next appearance in the UK will be at Creamfields on Friday August 22nd in addition to a slew of dates across Ibiza during the season. Listen to his latest offering the ‘Polaroid Beats’ EP below.