December 29, 2022 | Guest Mixes

#119 Vani Vachi for Deeprhythms

Vani Vachi is a Ukrainian DJ and producer currently relocated to Berlin from Kyiv. She a resident of Ukranian queer parties Veselka and is a familiar name in the european festival rosters.

She mixed an uncompromising and creative set, smoothly shifting gears and genres for the whole, almost two hour, duration. Many thanks Anita!

Hi there, how’s things? Can you introduce yourself briefly to our listeners?

Hi guys! Things are going. I’m Vani Vachi, a DJ/producer and music enthusiast, currently living in Berlin.

What’s been keeping you busy of late?

Moving to Berlin from Kyiv this year due to the ongoing invasion of Ukraine has obviously changed many life directions, caused shock and sadness, but also opened new possibilities. Pretty much I’ve been busy finding myself as a part of Berlin’s scene and bigger community, playing some exciting gigs, developing new ideas with Veselka and also putting work focus into finalizing my first album.

What drove you to electronic music in the first place?

Really, the combination of two things. First, is the technology to be able to endlessly experiment with music, there are a million sounds that can be created and yet to be discovered. It’s such a dynamic environment, like a living organism. Second is the community – the level of openness that raves can bring, self-expression, mutual exchange. It’s very important in our era.

You are a regular name in club and festival rosters - what’s the most rewarding part of DJ’ing?

Definitely the adventure of playing and the crowd you are playing for. It is endlessly rewarding to share the music that unites the whole dancefloor, and to dance within this flow, to play with the flow, to take it into many directions. I find it to be pure magic.

Another rewarding part is the people you meet — in any part of the world, those who resonate with the same music often have a lot to exchange. I have made many friends that I would never meet if it was not for electronic music. 

How have your sets evolved during the years?

I feel like my music is in the constant search for new discoveries. When I started playing a few years back, my focus was on darker, slower sounds, more EBM-y and dark disco like. Then it shifted more towards electro, for some time I think I was only playing electro and breakbeat.

Then I think now it all came to a logical mixture to me - faster, straight-beat focused, trancy sounds, some techno, but also with occasional spice of what I used to play before. There are different approaches on that – I know people who stick to the same sound over years, but I feel like for me, it’s essential to constantly explore and push boundaries.

Name a few records or songs that had a big impact on you in your early days and why?

Aphex Twin - Come To Daddy

“Wtf, this is also music?”

New Order - Blue Monday

Not only that I love New Order, this particular classic has played as a closing track at one of the first raves I’ve ever been to. Forever in the heart!

Massive Attack - I Against I

One of the first tracks close to club music and electro that I’ve heard ages ago.

The Prodigy - Firestarter 

Also something of the earliest discoveries, where everything was enchanting – music, aesthetics, lyrics.

Susumi Yokota - Acid Mt. Fuji

Definitely this whole album as a masterpiece of electronic music and a huge inspiration.

Did DJing eventually turn your attention into making music or was it always there right from the beginning?

I think that kind of always went in parallel with each other. But I’ve only arrived at the time of finalising my tracks and actually working on final products this year, before I was always just jamming on my analogue equipment, recording jams, but never turning them into tracks. 

What’s your setup like and how do you work on music (process, themes, details)? 

So my “jam setup” is Kong Electribe ESX-1, Korg Minilogue and Behringer’s clone of TB-303. What I use now for creating tracks is mostly Roland TR-8S and Ableton Live, sometimes only the Ableton (and some VST’s). I feel like I came to this point when I already know the ideas, and I just need to finalise them — and Ableton is super handy for that, in contrast with analogue setups that get me into an endless flow of jamming. 

Process-wise, I like to start with the rhythm — so the kick, snare, percussion. Then think about the bass, align it with the kick — from here you can already see the track outline. After that it’s good to get into melodies, space, atmosphere – and then back to improvement of the rhythm. When I get stuck, I go back from production into digging – and looking for inspiration in similar tracks, mostly old school ones. 

You currently reside in Berlin - how does it feel like doing your creative work with the situation being so dark in Kiyv, does it have an effect on your output?

Hm… I think it’s so scary and sad how now, 305 days through, the war is becoming our normal reality. Like when it started, every war-related content and news were deeply shocking. And I think now we are so adjusted to seeing this, speaking to friends who are still in Ukraine, receiving news from the frontlines, that it’s becoming weirdly normalised in our head. It’s been 9 months already, and unfortunately it does not seem to improve. 

In terms of creative output, I think the reality of the war made me somewhat more productive – I started to finish things and create more. The inevitability of death, and how close it is right now from us, made me feel that our time is limited, and somehow subconsciously it reflects on the work and workflow.

With the war raging on, what do you think are the short and long term effects on the Kiyv scene and community?

Very interesting subject. With so many Ukrainian artists in Europe, I think, we are becoming part of the larger European community and sharing our work, whilst being able to gather donations and support Ukraine from afar.

On the other hand, the scene in Ukraine continues to grow regardless of the hardships — it always pleases my heart to see new events happening and new, younger artist names appear.

Obviously, the full-on parties are at no place in Ukraine right now, but the scene still manages to run daytime events and use this space to gather money and support our army, volunteers and people in need. With this cause, you also see the real power behind the music community, and how it spreads beyond just entertainment. 

Can you name a few local acts, events or locations that should be on people’s radar - both Berlin and Kiyv?

Sure! A lot of great projects, it will be hard to mention everyone. From Kyiv’s scene I’d note Raavel, our dear friend who is now in Ukranian army but has also recently had a vinyl release with banging electro on Juicy Gang Records.

Also I can’t miss out on how many incredible female artists we havePoly Chain, Jana Woodstock, Ewa Nomad, Nastya Muravyova, Nastya Vogan & Gael

I think getting into Berlin’s and Europe artists would need to have a separate interview – there are so many great projects that I’m afraid to have someone left out :) But I have to say that Whole Festival and Balance Festival were probably the favourite places I’ve played this year! 

So the mix, can you tell us a little something about that? 

I really took advantage here of the no-time limit concept and made an extended, almost 2 hours long mix – I always love when there are no time constrictions as I think 1 hour is a very hard place to tell a story.

It’s a dynamic journey through all layers of trance, acid, techno, electro and everything in between – light and cosmic, but powerful. Everything you need to get through the gloomy winter! 


01 - Gotshell - Aguilas
02 - Identified Patient - Dead Demo [Unreleased]
03 - DJ Life & Reflex Blue - Shuttle Bug 
04 - Primitive Needs - Front On Contact
05 - Swooh - Shadows
06 - Baldo - Ex Machina (Trance Mix)
07 - Spray - Witches Drinner
08 - Saturn Reigns - Calling
09 - Moisk - Motunda 
10 - Maara - Take the Wheel Miss Sweetie
11 - Tiffany - Cast the Trance
12 - Perko - Connection
13 - Repulsive Force - Mega Feeling
14 - Area127 - Techno Shanty
15 - DJ Bondevar - Utomnu [Unreleased]
16 - DJ MARIA - Acid Sunrise (Original mix)
17 - Repulsive Force - Peace (Ipeo Remix)
18 - Victoria Messor - Feeling
19 - Jörmungandr - Skogsrå
20 - Marwaan - Fallen Angels
21 - Kineta - Grus
22 - Blue Hour - Emergence
23 - Hank LW - Tactile
24 - Tom Place - Crossota
25 - Viikatory - All is about Cosmic Stuff [Unreleased]
26 - DJ Freelancer - Mood Generator

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DJ profile
Vani Vachi

Location: Berlin/Kiyv
Instagram | Soundcloud

Vani Vachi is a DJ and producer currently relocated to Berlin from Kyiv, and a resident of Ukranian queer parties Veselka. Her sets are always unique and unpredictable, with the strong favour towards 90’s and 2000’s flavours, mixture of broken and straight beats, classical acid basslines and groovy sounds.

Full profile

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