Berlin based Korean DJ and producer, Peggy Gou, recently gained a lot of attention and critical acclaims from many electronic platforms and labels. Once before, she was working in a record store in Berlin and studying fashion, but then she realised that music was the thing she wanted to chase and started to make music.
It was not easy for her to start up her music career. In an interview with Mixmag, Gou reveals that the process was difficult at the beginning and she always felt dispirited. When she sent her first record to labels and producers, they all said no to her, which made her discouraged.
What’s worse, some people even thought she was just selling sex and didn’t do serious things. Gou heard about it and later described her feeling “that super hurts”. However these acid remarks couldn’t stop her progress and at the start of 2016, she launched her first EP, The Art of War, followed by Day Without Yesterday / Six O Six on Phonica White, and The Art of War (Part II).
She continued to manifest a strong producing ability in her EP Seek For Maktoop, which was released in October 2016. The first track “Gou Talk” delivers a dreamy and blurred vibe subtly. The micro-beats fuses into its exotic synthesizer, consistently fluctuating up and down with the trembling bassline. It’s like a kaleidoscope reflecting a mirror of miniature.
The next song on the EP, “Maktoop” is more bouncy and gleaming. Surrounded by the psychedelic atmosphere, the chilling groove illuminates the track flexibly and makes it vivid. With the echo effect and textured vocal of Gou, it feels like dancing in a dark room with dim lighting when listening to the last track, “Rose”. The game-like electronic loops and twisted funky beats somehow brings a sense of retro-futuristic feeling.
Following her EP releases, she began touring many different countries and venues, including electronic underground sessions and some indie music festivals, and gradually became well known amongst Electronic music lovers. She soon signed to Ninja Tune and announced she would be releasing her new EP Once in 2018.
I also began to notice her in this period. After I found a lot of electronic websites such as Mixmag and Resident Advisor were trying to recommend her, I gave her a shot and found that her music is definitely elegant and luxuriant but also bouncy as well.
The new EP, Once, mixes bouncy dance-beats with airy and lush synthwaves. On the first track “It Makes You Forget (Itgehane)”, the bouncy stabs float between its blurred synthline and looming percussion, creating a dreamy and venting dance-floor session.
Along with the slightly sparkling created by its subtle riffs, it seems like flowing in a shimmering river – soft, flashy but also filled with shinning moments. Personally, this track is also my top 3 favourite tracks in 2018 so far.
On the second track “Hundres Times”, the fluctuating micro-house and clubby groove keep sprawling and growing, injecting the EP with more dynamic and switchable elements. For Electronic lovers who love Bicep and Hammer, I highly recommend this track to you.
Influenced by 90s electro music, “Han Jan” has a smooth synth sweep and breezy yet pulsing beats. Just like the first track, the Korean lyrics and her blurry vocal in “Han Jan” cover the EP with a vague and mysterious exotic texture.
Last week, she released a brand new song titled “Travelling Without Arriving”. Just like her other songs, it is filled with sparkling acid beats within the airy synthline, but the new song is basically more breezy with the fresh riffs and lush composition, bringing a relaxing vibe just as kiting in the sky.
For a long time, it’s been very rare to see an Asian artist stand out in the indie-electronic industry, but Peggy Gou is proving her producing ability and aesthetic sense. As an Asian who has a huge affection towards electronic music, I’m also very proud of her. Listen to her new track “Travelling Without Arriving” below, and keep tabs on Peggy Gou on Facebook and Instagram.
Words by Neo Chen