“I want to take you into some Midwest raves”: Juno Plus Podcast 38 is a thunderous affair from the mysterious Gesloten Cirkel.
Little is really known of Gesloten Cirkel, a producer who apparently resides in Moscow and has remained a decidedly enigmatic figure since his arrival on the techno scene back in 2009. Responsible for coaxing I-F’s Murder Capital label back into action after years of inactivity with his self titled debut release, a record that still gets hammered by everyone from Levon Vincent to Boddika, Gesloten Cirkel has intermittently surfaced with more cracked, disjointed, rattling techno that’s caused ripples of excitement amongst the underground.
Last year saw the producer open proceedings on the hirstute Moustache Techno offshoot of David Vunk’s Moustache Records with a record that veered through expansive Detroitisms, gutteral acid, woozy and scratched industrial half step and what sounds like Moodymann remixing Newcleus at the bottom of a well. Even a high profile commision to remix Conforce as part of his most recent Clone Basement Series release hasn’t lifted the cloak of anonymity that surrounds Gesloten Cirkel.
His undoubted musical talent combined with our genuine sense of intrigue was all it took to request his services for our podcast series, and despite his mix being the shortest in the series to date, it certainly packs a meaty punch. Gesloten Cirkel was also kind enough to answer a selection of questions via email.
A cloak of mystery surrounds the identity of Gesloten Cirkel – finding reliable information about you online is an unrewarding task. Is your low profile approach an intentional thing?
I hope it isn’t intentional because that seems like a dick thing to do. For the record, I am just an out of shape balding dude who sits in an office. OR AM I?!!! Also, loose lips sink ships.
Your only previous interview reveals that the name Gesloten Cirkel comes from the excellent documentary When I Sold My Soul To The Machine. How and when were you first exposed to music from The Hague?
I think around 2002 Joost de Lijser told me about CBS. It plays the illest music of all genres so I was hooked. About the same time Legowelt was on tour with Creme Records in Chicago. I saw him at Empty Bottle. I played a Centipede cabinet and enjoyed the weird italo music. Got 3rd highscore too!
Continuing with the Dutch theme, your music so far has been released on Dutch labels – Moustache Techno and Murder Capital as well as the Conforce remix for Clone. Can you tell us a bit about your ties to the Netherlands?
I dig IFM a lot and have a few friends there. I like to participate with what IFM does and contribute as much as I can.
You lived in Chicago for some years during your youth. How did you find your way there and what kind of impact did it have on you as a producer?
I went to Chicago after highschool to study “multimedia” and got to experience the underground music scene first hand before graduating. I was part of a crew there, with DJ Spank, Jalel, Sinuous, AdamK, that made tracks and threw parties. I also played with 420Kidz or something. Basically, I got to ride around Chicago and Midwest a lot and play and soak in the style – which I really liked before I even came to Chicago. I didn’t know the scene, but I quickly found out how badass it is. There are tons of great DJs and producers there of all styles since it is like a right of passage for a true Chicagoan.
You live in Moscow now, is that right? When did you move to Russia, and are you involved with the city’s music scene in any way? There seems to be a healthy number of techno producers in Russia – the names Unbalance and Unbroken Dub spring immediately to mind.
I came back around 2008. I met some really cool people here, Rob Dirton and Deutsche Mark and Spacer Woman, but it is so rare that I have time nowadays that I can’t say I am involved much.
Some of your material is recorded live and in one take. You seem to lean towards analogue production methods – what is it about the tactile approach to music production that appeals to you?
It is a lot faster and a lot more fun. I think it is part of the traditional approach of live PAs and it must stay this way. Also it is a fun challenge to do it in one take correctly.
Your music is getting championed by an increasing number of tastemakers across the UK and Europe – Ben UFO, Boddika, Blawan and Levon Vincent have all spoken about your records in glowing terms. How do you feel about your music getting this kind of reaction and do you feel it’s increasing your profile?
Yeah it helps with getting my name out there and more people getting interested.
Tell us about your Juno Plus mix – it’s a short, thunderous affair. Where did you mix it and what kind of flow were you trying to create?
I mixed it in a locked room with the windows open. I wanted to take you into some Midwest Raves and end up in a more chill Chicago club.
What can we expect from Gesloten Cirkel in the next 6 months, production wise? Releases have been few and far between in your career to date.
I think more rave music and dark stuff. I want to release but I need more time..there is just so much cool stuff to do man!
No tracklist was provided