Interview: Simina Grigoriu & BB Deng | Soundspace

Interview: Simina Grigoriu & BB Deng

Interview: Simina Grigoriu & BB Deng

Simina Grigoriu is one of our favourites here at Soundspace, and we are excited to have her back on the website talking about her Double Trouble EP, made in collaboration with BB Deng who is one of China’s most popular techno DJ’s.

BB Deng has also added her own input about the new release and we are both honoured and privileged to have her chat with us as part of the conversation.

Booked to play all over the world, Simina Grigoriu has released music on labels ranging from Popof’s Form to Paul Kalkbrenner Musik, and this new collaboration is out now on her own Kuukou imprint.

Having made a big impact on the Chinese music scene, BB Deng owns her own club called The Boat. She has also organised many events and festivals in the country along with making her own music.

Nice to meet you BB, and welcome back to Soundspace Simina! Let’s start off with how you know each other?

BB: Simina and I met in Perpignan, France a few years ago when we were booked to play at the same gig. I knew her as a DJ already back then and was curious about her but I had never met her in person. The night when we met she was super friendly and fun to hangout with so we quickly clicked. Before I flew back to Asia, she invited me to visit her in her Berlin flat and we were chatting for hours, since then we stayed in touch across the ocean.

During that time I also invited her twice to do a China DJ tour with me, and in between I flew to Berlin as well for my own Europe tours so I could also visit her, and now I’m already based in Berlin a year and half and have been very close to one of my best friends.

You recently collaborated together on a release. Could you talk us through the EP, and the inspiration behind its concept?

Simina: This was BB’s baby. She started it and added her signature sound and then we went into the studio together. My style is driving but also tends to lean more towards melodies, while BB’s latest productions are pure, straight forward with an acid touch. We basically just sat down and started trying stuff out. I’d never worked in the studio with BB before so it’s always interesting to see other people’s workflows.

When collaborating do you feel there is any noticeable change in comparison to your individual projects?

BB: For sure, when you work alone you can be very self-centered and free to create whatever you think is the best, but during collaboration it gives you the opportunity to learn more things about your partner better, to see how harmonious you are and what kind of interesting ideas can be combined.

Did you ever have conflicting opinions about what direction to take the track?

Simina: Umm. Yes, but isn’t that expected when you throw two tigers in a cage? This is the essence of process and I wouldn’t change a thing. What’s important is that in the end we put our egos away and found an awesome compromise that sounded better than each of our individual ideas to begin with! I guess that’s what millennials call #goals?

After you finished the track what influenced your decision to have Alberto Ruiz and AlBird rework the tracks?

BB: After the track was finshed, Simina and I had a discussion about which artists would be a good fit for our music. And gratefully both Alberto Ruiz and Albird quickly said yes to do it, the results were very nice which made this EP come with a few different flavours.

Simina: Albird is a solid producer and has also brought his own twist to this EP. I’ve worked with Ballroom Records (run by Albird & Kaiser Souzai) in the past and have found many musical similarities between their label and Kuukou. I often play their music and am very familiar with their sound so it was natural that I found Al to be a good fit for this record.

I noticed BB has previously run some events in China. Do you guys have any plans to run events together in Berlin?

BB: Beside being an artist I was opening clubs, running electronic music events and co-organised music festivals in China. It was really my honour to invite Simina to China to share her music, where so many people quickly fell in love with her personality and music, but now since I’ve moved to Berlin a year and half ago and I’m putting more of a focus to be playing more music with Simina, beside our music production work.

Simina: BB and I are both playing my annual Kuukou Records summer showcase on August 23rd at Polygon in Berlin, and on September 14th, we will play a B2B set at Schloss Dargun Festival with our heroes (and homies) Pig&Dan! The venue itself is incredible. An old abbey, now ruins, once a year turned into a techno festival by Twinkle Events Berlin. The light show is insane and the lineup always delivers. It’s magic.

And what’s next after this release, do you guys have any more collaborative EPs planned?

Simina: I’d love to work on another project with BB. She’s is in her studio nonstop and is full of ideas! It’s always inspiring when your colleagues are happy and motivated!

BB: There’s no doubt for us to work together again soon, meanwhile I am working on some of my own projects, then when they are finished I’m sure we will be excited to sit in the studio together again.

Simina Grigoriu and BB Deng’s Double Trouble EP is out now on Kuukou Records.