Interview series ‘From LA to Berlin’: Bodi Bill

bodibillbanner
Photo by Rosa Merk

From LA to Berlin will feature a series of artists and their gigging habits all the way from LA to Berlin and throughout Europe and America. Here is our very last stop in this series, in Berlin, with the electro band Bodi Bill. The three charismatic and high in colour Berliners have a wide spectrum of techno, house, indie, electronica, or even pop music fans; in between album releases and tours, they also DJ pretty solid techno with the label Krakatau. Meet these local heroes gone international.

Some facts: in their 30s, from Berlin and still living there, have been making music in this band for seven years, have played about 200 gigs and released 40 tracks, two EPs and three albums. Working now on side projects The/Das and UNMAP.

Influences: We listen to all kinds of music from all over the world and from any chapter of the music history… It just depends on the depth, how much it influences us.

How do you compose your set list for a live show?

We order our live sets by focussing on the energy so the songs develop in a special order. We start our set high-energetic tracks, give ballads and intimate songs some space in the middle of the set; and end with the most powerful and danceable pieces. The show should sound and look like an up-and-down waveform.

Is there much space for wishes from the audience?

Mostly the audience comes up with wishes we cannot integrate, but sometimes we can… If so, we add or change songs and tracks; but anyway we are deeply into the material and generally follow our own set list.

Is there a special tune you always start or finish your gig with?

As DJ Bodi Bill, not at all: new tracks come up every week and we are very free to change and combine tracks, most of the time we don’t know what’s coming next. As for the band, we always started the last tour with the song “What”. As a band we have to think about the show and the set list long enough in advance, so we nearly play the tracks in the same order every night on tour.

How do you get yourself ready before a gig?

First we try to get a bit calm, then we cross our fingers and shake our bodies, and go on stage.

What is special when playing in other countries, when you prepare for the journey, the flights, etc.?

It’s always nice to meet new people and see new cities, as the feeling is always different. Since we have those customized tables including all electronic equipment, we have to unscrew the whole thing before we can get onto the flight, otherwise the cases would be too heavy for the airlines.

A shortened list of gigs: A lot of international festivals, Hamburg, Moscow, Paris, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Brussels, Basel, Berlin…

Video: Bodi Bill live @ Lido (Berlin)

Stream: Bodi Bill – What (Apparat & Thomalla Remixes)