On The Rise: CAIVA

I see many parallels between classical music and electronic music like techno, especially when it comes to music reception. You need to immerse yourself in it, sink into it, in order to feel and maybe understand it. I still try to remind myself of that.”

Fast-emerging, Munich-based artist CAIVA is recognised as one of the most exciting prospects within the techno scene right now. Blending the likes of contemporary folk, nineties techno and golden-era power ambient, the German rising-star spearheads a new wave of techno artists and demonstrates how far the genre can be stretched — something that captures the imaginations of the experimental and hearts of the purists. Inspired by the avant-garde sounds of Erik Satie, the melodies of Johnny Flynn, field recordings of Cosmo Sheldrake, as well as a contemporary classical approach gathered from her time working at the Bavarian State Opera, CAIVA is carving her very own lane and continues to garner an increasing amount of attention from across the globe.

Most notably, CAIVA’s melting pot of sounds can be heard throughout her forthcoming debut EP Fatigue on the esteemed Lobster Theremin imprint, featuring two monumental remixes from fan-favourites Julian Muller and Trudge. Following last years hugely popular “Take Me Higher” single (recognised as one of Lobster Theremin’s best selling techno releases from 2021) the in-form youngstar continues to demonstrate why she is one of the most exciting prospects to date and it is only a matter of time until CAIVA is dominating the very upper echelons of the techno scene. We caught up with CAIVA, featuring her on our popular ‘On The Rise’ feature. Look out!

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you first got into music?

My name is Betty and I come from (and live in) Munich, and I’m a DJ, producer, guitarist, saxophonist and singer! I started with several instruments when I was little and have a very musical family, so I was kind of born into that, I guess. My main instrument is the guitar, I play a lot of fingerstyle music and stuff. The last ‘instrument’ I tought myself was actually Ableton a few years ago.

To someone who’s just discovered you, how would you describe your sound and direction?

I try to mix techno and trance with many other genres and add my own vocals and instruments. That makes it hard to name a special direction and I feel like my sound is still evolving. For me, my music is also very rich in contrast, it can get very soft and emotional, but also nasty and hard. When it comes to describing my sound, I guess most people would emphasise the vocals I record. I love to express myself with my voice and to use it for my tracks.

We’ve read that you used to work at the Bavarian State Opera! What did this involve and how much did this influence the music you produce today?

Yes, I was working there during my studies. Of course it enriched me musically because I could listen to a lot of operas and so on, but it was also very interesting to watch people while they are listening. I see many parallels between classical music and electronic music like techno, especially when it comes to music reception. You need to immerse yourself in it, sink into it, in order to feel and maybe understand it. I still try to remind myself of that. I laughed at times because I noticed parallels between guests at the opera and at the club/rave, some were there to be seen rather than for the music. At the opera I was really impressed by the ballet dancers who feel the music through their bodies with so much passion.

You’re set to drop a captivating release on Lobster Theremin. Can you tell us all about what we can expect and how the relationship with LT started?

Yes, I’m so happy and thankful to have such a great and experienced label by my side for this release! It will be my first vinyl so it’s not a secret that I’m very excited. I got in touch with Jimmy from Lobster through Julian Muller, and Jimmy loved my tracks from the start. The whole team does everything they can to make the release as great as possible, so you better be ready for the full release in March!

What was the creative and production process behind the EP?

For this EP I wanted to create a vibe and mood that is really hard and fragile at the same time. The two tracks have the same theme: fatigue. Being tired of everything, and two different ways of dealing with it. And then there are of course the two absolutely great remixes in which Julian and Trudge show my approaches in a whole new light. Funnily enough, the order was reversed from the release order. First I finished “Vigour”, after that I created “Take Me Higher” as a kind of answer to “Vigour”… as a kind of counterpart.

Where do you see yourself this time next year? And do you have any ambitions in the coming years you can tell us about?

I see myself being very happy holding my first vinyls in my hands, and playing a lot of gigs and hopefully doing a lot of great studio sessions. When it comes to techno, I want to show a new side with tracks without vocals and some really nice collabs. And next to this I want to record an album with acoustic music as well as more experimental sound. In the coming years it’s my dream to build a live-set-up, maybe even with a band, and make live music for clubs and festivals. 

Quick-fire Questions: First…

1. First club you ever attended? 

Bullit Club Munich.

2. First vinyl you bought? 

Schacke – Kisloty Forever.

3. First night you played as a DJ? 

Douala Ravensburg.

4. First piece of studio equipment you owned? 

Guitar, microphone and my loopstation Boss RC-505. 

5. First song that pops into your head right now? 

I’ve had a catchy tune from Planet Funk – “Chase The Sun“ for days now. Send help.

6. First time you were star-struck? 

When I talked to Jon Gomm after his concert. I asked him about his pickup system and forgot the answer in my excitement.

7. First artist you fell in love with? 

Johnny Flynn!

8. First thing you’ll buy if you won £100 million?

Tons of studio equipment, guitars and chocolate.

9. First time you realised you wanted to become an artist? 

I think that was the moments after my first concerts, the absolutely great feeling that you have after a performance on stage. 

10. First song you’ll play in your next mix? 

Maybe one of the new master tracks for Nali4 I’ve just received, can’t wait to play them!

Fatigue is dropping March 25th and is available to pre-order via Bandcamp.

More Stories
001: Andy Kas