Elvi Soulsystems also known simply as Elvi or in some incarnations as Elvi the Tech-Sapien and DJ Elvou is a native Latvian born in the eighties and a disc jockey and music producer/beat conductor/player born in the age of information technologies; Elvi started making beats and bits at the beginning of the 21st century (2000 something)in his hometown Riga in the area called Kaiserwald (the historic German name for a spot in the city by the lake with Read more on Last.fm
Elvi Soulsystems also known simply as Elvi or in some incarnations as Elvi the Tech-Sapien and DJ Elvou is a native Latvian born in the eighties and a disc jockey and music producer/beat conductor/player born in the age of information technologies; Elvi started making beats and bits at the beginning of the 21st century (2000 something)in his hometown Riga in the area called Kaiserwald (the historic German name for a spot in the city by the lake with lots of greenery and art nouveau homes) together with his brother soon to become an excellent hip hop producer and an MC and his crew called the Ritmiņš Unltd. Collective collaborating with underground rappers and various instrument players as well as video jockeys and producers to start off a sort of a Renaissance of live and raw hip movement in the country… also the duo Kripoo un Elvi with DJ Krii was founded to produce a more experimental take on electronic music influenced by techno, German gabber and creating the thing that’s now called nu rave… the crew parted when it’s members became of more age due to individual growth and themselves started to get involved perfecting their art on their own; about that time Elvi started out of his love for hip hop to listen to the roots of the whole culture by exploring the music from the sixties and seventies Afro American heritage - soul, funk, R’n'B, rare groove, fusion and all that jazz… due to his country being torn from the World’s cultural development in the period of the Soviet Union and hype that’s going on in London or New York coming so much later to Riga Elvi didn’t realize at the time that getting back to the golden age of soul music was actually a tendency throughout the world - hip hop and breakbeat disc jockeys playing real live breaks from the time they were actually done instead of modern remixes, etc. Elvi started disc jocking as Elvi Soulsystems promoting authentic soul and funk in private parties and small gatherings in Riga plus getting involved in happenings in the whole of Latvia until he took the chance becoming a resident in one of the most appropriate venues for that sort of a groove at the time - the club and restaurant called Casablanca in Old Riga… playing every Friday night for more than a year had him digging for new things and looking for different ways of getting the people to dance and groove to this “different take on dance music” with great virtue; the girls, the women, the boys and the men were dancing to music from the seventies and singing along to tunes they didn’t know they didn’t know simply because these spoke to one’s heart directly touching the soul so it is natural for one to feel that this is something he/she has known for ages! because of the venue being so tourist friendly the DJ got to know people and went to lay down his style also to some places in Europe like Lausanne and Paris… Elvi also is the founder of a fresh movement of party promoting in the province town of Kandava called Stupid Dance Music or SDM - a protest against the smug intellectualization of the dance floor (Intellingent Dance Music?) and a quest to find the root of drug-free raving which has made a wonderful breakthrough for already three Summers now… here’s an SDM video playlist on YouTube! from there on things got a whole lot wider - Elvi and also the brand Stupid Dance Music became a platform for various experiments with and on the dance floor… DJ Elvou played with all kinds of musical styles - from house to techno to breakbeat - blending them with the ever present funky vibe… the incarnation Elvi the Tech-Sapien was born which drew to full force playing a two hour completely loop-free and totally live techno music show using but the sounds provided by the retro drum machines like 808, 909 and 303 at the closure ceremony of contemporary art and video festival Waterpieces in Riga. in the mean time two live music efforts were presented: the live band Seventh Floor (or Septītais Stāvs) was founded with quite a simple experimental concept of Elvi first creating an electronic album of music using guitar samples and voice and then the band rehearsing it as close to the original as possible which resulted in a critically acclaimed performance at the country’s equal to Barcelona’s Sonar festival - the experimental music and contemporary art fusion Sound Forest; on an even more experimental level - the project Elvi Rich Pitch played various events as a duo of a guitar player (Rich) and computer effects manager (Elvi) leading guest musicians - a bass player and a drummer in a world of blending folk-inspired slow core and psychodelic found-sounds though keeping a soulful vocal vibe at the same time… also at the time his fellow beat conductor and disc jockey Marcey alias MM alias True Type founded his studio in the country called Kūts - this led to various dual production efforts plus involvement in the Kūts Kollektif.
Elvi started his own podcast called SoulCast a few years ago and now supports Kūts Podkast - one of very few proper podcast services in the country and definitely one with a large episode archive. together with disc jockey Marcey Elvi Soulsystems does a regular authentic soul night in the old town of Riga and various parties fusing today and the “golden age” under such monikers as Paradis 69 and JANK/FUZZ Disco (where the men have a musical argument concerning jazz dance and funk breaks)…
with a base of all this plus constantly developing Elvi Soulsystems has now gone in the direction of… POP MUSIC! with the country slowly moving in to the world time-line - people getting in touch with what’s hot in London, New York, Amsterdam, Detroit - Elvi has gotten involved in opening a new sort of a cafe in Riga called META-KAFE - the perspective beyond and after the regular cafe; the small and cozy place threw down a massive opening party on new year’s eve and has become a cult place ever since featuring such parties as Robot Rock which featured a slightly different take on the hype called nu rave, AFRO BEAT - the first full force Afro Beat discoteque in Riga and probably in the Baltics of such depth and newly founded night called The Good Stuff featuring a fusion of the good old and the drastically different new sound of modern R’n'B such as 1, 2 step and neosoul and hip hop such as the so called Dirty South or crunk or British grime with Elvi Soulsystems and guest disc jockeys - DJ Ievy in particular - pushing the boundaries of what’s considered mainstream and what’s stylish underground… Elvi Soulsystems and META-KAFE are set to push the limits - have a mainstream crowd shaking it to an authentic sixties groove and contemporary future music and the underground crowd supposedly in-the-know opening up to rhythms they flee from on the mainstream radio and the MTV!
all this + live mixes and more music can be read and heard here!
Elvi's long forgotten blog soulsystems.org + Elvi on Myspace
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