Introduction: characterizing trance music’s energy in both approach and output, Italy’s Giuseppe Ottaviani has long been recognized as one of the genre’s most respected and prolific merchants.
From his earliest studio work (as the engine behind esteemed group NU NRG), through to his latter-day output under his own name, he has established himself as a benchmark for preeminent trance. Over the last decade his trailblazing Giuseppe Ottaviani Live! and Giuseppe Ottaviani Live 2.0 evolutions have redefined what a DJ does. In doing so, he’s put countless hands in the air and feet on the floor at some of the world’s best-known electronic music festivals, Tomorrowland, Dreamstate, EDC UK, Transmission, ASOT and the FSOE shows being just some of them. Exclusively feeding these performances is a litany of club hits and remixes, of which ‘Ready’, ‘Angel’, ‘Linking People’, ‘Through Your Eyes’ and ‘No More Alone’ represent but a few. Giuseppe’s remains both contemporary and omnipresent in the scene with of-late solo productions like ‘Lost For Words’, the Beatport #1‘Crossing Lights’ ‘Lean On Me’ & ‘No One Like You’ and most recently ‘Slow Emotion’, ‘Brightheart’ & ‘Aurora’ continuing to win trance hearts and minds. In early autumn of 2016, Ottaviani released his third album, the critically applauded, ‘ALMA’, of which MIXMAG said was “everything you could ever want from a trance album”.
Productions: Giuseppe has long favoured the production-based approach to his electronic music career. Drawing on seemingly limitless reserves of inspiration & passion its been catalysed by his drive to create and experiment. It has seen him amass a substantial discography, now comprised of close to 60 productions and 55 or more remixes. He is now probably most readily associated with his output on Black Hole Recordings, through which he’s released his last two albums (see below). Over the years he has also been a keen collaborator and has shared production credits with a long list of musically akin producers.
Of late these have come to include Paul van Dyk and Ferry Corsten (on In Your Arms and Magenta), which have produced some highly acclaimed work. The Albums: ALMA (2016): released on September 30th, ‘ALMA’ (the Spanish world for ‘soul’ ushered in a third album chapter in Giuseppe’s career. Featuring studio team-ups with Paul van Dyk, Christian Burns, Sue McLaren, Eric Lumiere and others, it met with considerable acclaim. DJ Mag noted it as being a “more multifarious album” than ‘Magenta’, while Dancing Astronaut recognised it for “featuring personal pieces” from Giuseppe. On it’s release, Giuseppe stated: “ALMA is the most introspective album I’ve ever recorded.
It comes from somewhere deep inside and draws on memories from my childhood; times when I was not listening to one, but many types of music”. FAZE Mag awarded the album a 10/10 score, whilst MIXMAG bestowed ‘ALMA’ their Album of the Month accolade, scoring it 9/10. To date the release has spawned 3 singles, ‘Slow Emotion’ (Parts 1 & 2), ‘Brightheart’ and ‘Aurora’. Rating it “8/10”, the UK’s DJ Magazine portrayed ‘Slow Emotion’ as “a thumpingly drummed, upliftingly riffed, blood-pumping trancer, albeit one played out at 110bpm” and as an “intriguing sign-in” for ‘ALMA’. DJ Mag Spain meanwhile heaped 9/10 & Single of the Month praise on ‘Brightheart’, which featured English singer Christian Burns on its vocals. Magenta (2013): for the follow-up to his 2009 debut ‘GO’, album Giuseppe drew inspiration the concept of colour theory, channelling the attributes of magenta into his music. With its first single – the Eric Lumiere-vocalled ‘Love Will Bring It All Around’, the album bore immediate fruit. Taking Armin van Buuren’s Tune of the Week on A State of Trance, the single’s also brought commendations from the dance press. ‘Magenta’ also notably carried first-time G.O. co-productions with Ferry Corsten and Aly & Fila as well as vocal team-ups with Audrey Gallagher, Linnea Schössow and others. GO! (2009): Giuseppe planted his first significant album marker with the release of the long-player, ‘GO!’.
It was the dais for 14 tracks (including the significant club hits like ‘’No More Alone’, Angel and ‘Our Dimension’). The album became the foundation block for long-lasting production associations with musicians like John O’Callaghan and others. Remixes: Giuseppe boasts a remixography second to few. He has lent his ebullient, signature sound to releases from Paul van Dyk, Armin, Ferry Corsten, Markus Schulz, Gareth Emery, Aly & Fila, John O’Callaghan and a dozen other first-tier names. Giuseppe Ottaviani Live! : Drawing on his vast track repertoire and love of live performance, Giuseppe found himself in the position of being able to branch away from the traditional mixer/turntables DJ set-up. In 2006, he unveiled Giuseppe Ottaviani Live!, the concept provided for a more ‘club-concert’ audience experience. An instant draw for electronic music lovers the planet over, it also proved an inspiration to other DJ/producers. The Giuseppe Ottaviani Live!’s tour-sheet came to read like a Who’s Who of tentpole events. Included among them were Loveparade, Tomorrowland, Nature One, Global Gathering, Creamfields, Streetparade, Sunrise, Transmission, WMC, Colourfest, Cream Ibiza, Gallery @ MoS, Zouk, Roseland Ballroom NYC, SW4 and others.
Giuseppe Ottaviani Live! 2.0: taking advantage of technological advances, under the name Live 2.0, Giuseppe updated his GO Live! concept (see above) in February 2016. It shifted its orientation further in the studio-meets-stage direction, with Giuseppe developing of a one-man portable tech set-up to accomplish it. It allowed him to bring the inspiration that drives his releases direct to venues and audiences, with the Italian entertaining and creating at the same time. Having launched it at EDC Mexico to rave reviews, he’s since taken the concept to Dreamstate, Istoria (PKA Atlantis) and Bliss. A flash of 2.0-enabled inspiration at the start of 2016 was the embryonic moment for his “harder, darker” and “boundary breaking” ‘Slow Emotion’ tracks, which ultimately became the first releases to be taken from his 2016 ‘ALMA’ album. NU NRG: underlining how long trance has been in his blood, Giuseppe’s studio life began back in 1999 through NU NRG. He connected with fellow electronic music enthusiast Andrea Ribeca to form the esteemed two-piece, through which they scored a procession of club hits. These included ‘Butterfly’, ‘Casino’, ‘Connected’, ‘The Spaceflower EP’, and most notably ‘Dreamland’ and the ‘Free Fall’ album. It was at this early point that Giuseppe’s inclination for live performances first took hold. This led to NU NRG being nominated for numerous awards and saw them take home Best Live Act at the 2004 and 2005 Trance Awards, with Ottaviani himself collecting the title in 2007. The PvD Association: Giuseppe has long been a collaborator and musical conciliare to trance legend Paul van Dyk.
Ottaviani has remixed 5 of his releases and the pair have shared co-production credits on no less than 6 tracks. These include ‘Far Away’, ‘La Dolce Vita’, ‘A Wonderful Day’, ‘In Your Arms’ and ‘What We’re Livin For’. The pair most recently worked together on ‘Miracle’ for Giuseppe’s 2016 album, ‘ALMA’. Compilations: Ottaviani has been a regular compilation mixer. Having started with ‘VANDIT – The Sessions 4’ in 2007, he went on to mix one of the long-running Techno Club editions in 2009, and most recently contributed discs to the ‘Pure Trance V2’ and ‘F15teen Years Of Goodgreef’ releases. In 2011 he began his own series. Working in sound partnership with his radio show (see below), ‘GO ON AIR’ was released in 2011, with a second edition following in 2014. The Go On Air Radio Show: Hosted by Giuseppe, the Go On Air Radio Show is his weekly broadcast outreach to fans.
Currently aired every Monday from 1PM EST / 6PM GMT on DI.FM, it’s also available as a podcast on iTunes, Mixcloud and Soundcloud. Each show features the MASHUP selection, with Giuseppe selecting his favourite bootleg of the week, as well as his HIGHLIGHT single of the week track. It’s also come to include the HOTORNOT vote-in, where aspiring producers can showcase unsigned tracks that the Go On Air audience vote weekly on. In the spring of 2017, the show will celebrate its landmark 250th episode.
Go On Air Recordings: Expanding the GO marque further still, with the release of Sied van Riel & Adina Butar’s ‘8 Decades’, the beginning of 2014 saw Giuseppe launch the Go On Air Recordings imprint. Amongst DJs, fans and the press, the label quickly established a name for releasing high impact trance. Among its many to-date standouts has been ‘The Forging of Steel’ by John O Callaghan, Somna’s ‘The Discovery’ and ‘Perception’ from Digital Dreamerz. In 2015 DJ Mag gave Go On Air Recordings’ release ‘New Leaf’ by Matt Holliday their only 10/10 trance review score of the year. By the end of the following year, the label was within sight of its 50th release. PureNRG: PureNRG is an on going studio and live act partnership-project developed by Giuseppe Ottaviani and Solarstone. Brought together through a shared love of performing live and a general artistic like-mindedness, the pair commenced the project in the late summer of 2014. Performing 10 or so handpicked shows a year, to date they’ve come to include appearances at Godskitchen Australia, Tomorrowland, Electronic Family, EDC UK and Dreamstate SoCal. To date, four singles (‘Pump Up The NRG’, ‘Era’, ‘Scarlett and ‘Secret Of The Sahara’) have emerged under the name. The latter was especially notable, for featuring an officially sanctioned sample from the Ennio Morricone track of the same name.