‘I started producing music that connects with my true self’

Music producer Chris ‘Goa’ Farrugia speaks about his upcoming new release and the journey that led to it.
Music producer Chris ‘Goa’ Farrugia.

Musician and producer Chris Goa has been creating music from his very early teenage year, constantly reinventing his style and dabbling within the spheres of techno, hip-hop, acid and electro. Now, he returns to his first love – oriental and ethnic influences. His recent releases on various international labels have been very well-received on streaming platforms and during live events.

Anticipation is now building for his upcoming new release, Jewel of the Nile, which will be out on May 31. The track is a collaboration with George Curmi ‘il-Puse’’. Here, the artist shares the journey that has led him here.

“When I’m asked how long I’ve been involved in the music scene I like to joke and tell them that music was my first teenage love. Since a young age I never put any barriers or frontiers between genres. My first flirt with electronic music came when I bought a techno cassette from the flea market at age 10. After some time I also discovered Goa trance and psytrance. A genre that always influenced me greatly in my productions. 

“Production quickly followed. I’ve been producing electronic music since the tender age of around 11 or 12. Throughout these years I reinvented myself many times, and my style always reflected the phase in life I was going through. Back in the early 2000s I started with techno and acid. Back then I remember I had founded a group called Septic Youths which infused live DJ sets and live techno. At that time the concept was quite fresh and we had done a couple of warmups for foreign acts. 

“Then I went and did something that at the time was considered blasphemy. I ventured into hip-hop production producing hip-hop instrumentals to various hip-hop MCs on the island. This was a time when tribalism amongst genres was rampant. However, the way I saw it, music for me was always sacred, no matter the genre – and to be honest I always hated labels. Music is music, just sonic frequencies arranged in such a way to evoke something deep within your heart and soul. 

That stint in hip-hop helped me venture into breakbeat, taking what I learnt and merging it with my techno, acid, electro and Goa influences, and creating something fresh. The result was several tracks and remixes which appeared on a number of foreign labels – Anarchy in the Funk (BR) Advanced Records (NL) and later on on Tropical Underground (NL). 

“As I said earlier, my style always reflected particular stages in my life and from each stage I always took something which influenced the next stage. I feel right now my sound has turned around full circle. Like a lot of people, when COVID hit I had time to reassess myself from within.

“It gave me time for a lot of introspection and soul searching. After a lot of processes and interesting encounters, I started producing music which comes from the soul and the more I connected with my true self, the more I returning to the love of my teens. A time when I used to hear Goa and oriental electronic music and I used to feel truly connected with the earth and the cosmos.

“This gave birth to the Cosmic Dance sessions. In these sessions, I tend to use meditation and electronic music, for connection to one’s true self, to the cosmos, and beyond. Using hypnotic and oriental rhythms to create a safe space for connection, in a drug and alcohol-free environment.

The new upcoming track is a collaboration with violinist George Curmi ‘il-Puse’’.

“Last year I had a Cosmic Dance session under the Tuscan stars for the yearly Eurotas convention. Unfortunately, there are a lot of misconceptions about electronic music, that you can only connect with it through drugs. However, the high-vibrational nature of electronic music can be used for healing and self-discovery without the need for external substances.

“Nowadays I can describe my sound as an amalgamation of all my experiences and tastes I gathered along the years with ethnic music serving as a base, mostly that hailing from the Middle East using organic and Middle eastern sounds and instruments, fused with the hypnotic sound of the TB-303, a sound that always stayed close to my heart. As much as possible, I am also collaborating with talented musicians both locally and abroad.

“The past four months I had four different EPs being released on three different international record labels: Evolve and Sol Aeterna, featuring vocals by a local Yogi called Karmanand on Tibetania records; Welcome to Shambhala on Lump Records (Chile); and Etheric on Muzik Colours (Tunisia).

“Now, I am now very looking forward to my next release, a single called Jewel of the Nile, on the label Cafe de Anatolia’s Lab imprint. What is special about this track is that it was born out of a collaboration with renowned Maltese artist George Curmi ‘il-Puse’’. George and I met in January through a common friend, Geordie from Malta School of Sound. We hit it off immediately and one day we were at my studio and I invited him to play some violin on a track I was working on.

“We had great chemistry and things flowed easily. Working with George was a really beautiful experience. We hit it off immediately and I’m really looking forward to spend more time in the studio together.

“A little fun fact, the title of the track is an ode to one of my favorite childhood movies of the same name. Ironically enough, it was the soundtrack of this movie to give me a first taste at such a young age to ethnic music mixed with synthesizers.

“As of last year I’m also resident at the Earth Garden Roots stage, opening the stage every day and curating and playing a selection of music in between each act. so you can catch me this year too at Earth Garden Festival A week before I will also be hosting a Cosmic Dance session at Boomerang festival on June 1.

“The Cosmic Dance session is part of a workshop which I’m collaborating with Claire Mangion from Yoga Space Malta and Sara El Haouari from Healing Om. Afterward, I will be opening the Cafe De Anatolia Stage.

“Apart from that my monthly mixtape, Spirals of Manifestation is gathering some good traction on Soundcloud too. I also have some collaborations in the pipeline which I can’t wait to share with you all, so check out chrisgoa.com for access to my socials, music videos, mixtapes and more.”

Il-Pusè himself is equally enthused about this new collaboration, describing how he had initially planned to perform with the violin but ended up playing eight instruments – violin, clarinet, soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, guitar, duduk, theremin, and percussion.

“My versatility in performing various music styles ranging from classical to jazz and beyond, allowed me to fuse everything seamlessly in this track. Working with Chris in his studio was fun and pleasant, while blending acoustic and electronic music was an amazing experience. Looking forward to more collaborations. The song is going to be interesting and curious, especially for fans of ethnic organic house music.”

Jewel of the Nile is released on May 31. The track can be bought via Beatport and streamed on all major streaming services.

Related Posts