Julia Govor’s artistic career started as a cassette-DJ in a small military town in Abkhazia. After moving to Moscow to study film and TV production in 2000, she started working for MTV, interviewing luminaries like Ricardo Villalobos, Ritchie Hawtin, The Prodigy and Iggy Pop. She also became a regular behind the decks of renowned Moscow venue Arma 17, and started getting international bookings. Since 2014 she has put out several releases, last year’s hypnotic, yet powerful 5000 Moments representing a preliminary highlight. Just in time before she heads across the pond for an Europe tour, we asked the New York-based artist to share with us the musical influences that has shaped her as the artist she is today. The floor is hers:
I have always liked cinematic and complex music. Music which helps me develop my imagination, music which takes me away from reality and almost makes me feel like I cease to exist. I would like to invite you to my music library, where I can share with you my personal collection of music and memory over the past 25+ years.
I don’t play styles, I play music.
When I was six years old I had to listen to a lot of Soviet classical music. I had to because in the Soviet era all kids growing up at military camps, as I did, were obliged to attend music school to study pianoforte or vocal arts, as well as music history. Galina Ustvolskaya was my favorite Russian composer of classical music. Her scores are very complicated, dramatic, dark and melancholic – true subconscious music. I would say that her work is the starting point of my musical taste.
When I heard Delia‘s work for the first time, I was a bit shocked. I liked a lot the idea how voices were blended into sounds and her speech became music. She is my big inspiration.
Dash Rush also did a really good job using her voice in her track Reflection from 2007. Super close to what Delia did in the 1960s. And in 2015, Dasha released another project, Sleepstep, via Raster-Noton – I was uncompromisingly fascinated.
Edward Artemiev is another Soviet Union artist who contributed to my musical development. One of his works for Andrey Tarkovsky’s sci-fi movie Solaris from 1972 is mind-blowing.
When I first heard a record by Manchester’s duo Autechre, I immediately felt the connection with Artemiev’s sound.
I was amazed by this record, and asked my friend: “When are they coming to perform in Moscow?” My friend answered: “Not sure, but Виды рыб (Vidi Rib), Species of Fishes, are playing this weekend, we should go!”
We also had a “Russian Aphex Twin” back in the 1990s – Solar X, extremely talented and rare! Roman moved to London in 2000, I heard he earned a Ph.D. there. And guess what? He also became friends with Richard David James. Imagine them drinking vodka together and probably talking about how good the music scene was in the 90s.
I also feel extremely connected with Jetone‘s work. Endless Melancholy.
Another artist in my library is Kamran Sadeghi. His unique and enthusiastic ideas always take me on a journey. His From Under Here Everything Is Fine is one of my favorite records. The music makes me cry.
Basic Channel aka M7 aka Maurizio aka Moritz von Oswald was and still is a major inspiration of mine since year 2000. Every year my crush on his productions is renewed, and this year I picked this one:
Same with Mills, but Robot Defection/What A Machine Believes is a very special record for me because Jeff Mills gave it to me as a present after I finished my set when we played together in NYC.