Decoded Radio presents Soulful Techno with Gabriel Ananda

Soulful Techno run by Gabriel Ananda is a record label which represents a home to authentic music from any techno genre. Music always brings people together and Soulful Techno are here to create a musical experience that will take you places, make you explore and urge your body to move. Soulful techno is a language of feelings.

Gabriel Ananda was captivated by the sound of Classical music by the early age of 8 years old. He was encouraged by his family to practice the cello, but it was through playing the guitar that fuelled his motivation to continue to learn about music. The guitar became a useful tool to express his creativity, but Gabriel was not finished searching for his musical direction. In 1995 that changed. A DJ set by Sven Väth was the pivotal moment that ended Gabriel’s search to find his passion.

Decoded Radio manager Daz Pearson gets the low down on Soulful Techno in a very candid interview with Gabriel including the next release on the label, Gabriel’s feature guest mix and his views on music hosting platforms.


Hi Gabriel thank you for joining us on Decoded Radio. Are you ready for the run up to Christmas?

Thanks for the invitation! Around Christmas we have the longest nights, in Chinese medicine we go deeply into our Yin. The senses focus moves away from the outside and into the inside, every work I do feels a bit too much and every moment I take to calm down and relax I can benefit a lot at the moment. So I look forward to take a few days off and spend some time with my family and friends.

Absolutely. Lets start with the newest release from Soulful Techno with a wonderful James Harcourt EP. What was it about the tracks and Jame’s style which suits the label so well?

James Harcourt is definitely a guy who feels what he does. It’s less about the effect of the track but more about the emotional content. That’s our philosophy, music made with the heart. He really has a deep love for the music, he is more about creating an experience and putting himself into his musical work, playing on a stage is more secondary for him. I think that when making music mainly means expressing yourself, over creating something for the club or a certain crowd ends up being much more personal and emotional for a listener. And that’s the beauty of Soulful Techno Music.

Soulful Techno 07 is due for release next month with a 3 track EP from MOHN. Can you tell us about the artist and the tracks due for release? I believe this will be a 3 track EP?

Menno (MOHN) is a really charming young producer from Netherlands. He sent us two singles by the end of the summer – The Night and Dinky – and it was a no brainer for me, two really nice, emotive musical stories. Dinky really took me back to childhood, I like those twinkling leads. The Night is more driven, groovy and somehow it ended up being in two versions, one of them is a bit more deeper, dreamy and warm.

Soulful techno originally started as a podcast which then expanded into a record label. Can you explain its transition and why it felt the correct direction to take?

Many of the tracks featured in the Podcast are from newcomers, people who just made their first releases, having 800 likes on Facebook etc. I found it cool that they could benefit from the podcast, same as I could benefit by using their music. So the idea to give theses people a nice label platform was only logic. I also felt having a new label anyway and Soulful Techno made a good concept and name for me. Soulful Techno is not a musical style, its more a philosophy on how music is made. Its about the intention that you really wanna express your feelings in music and that it is well made enough so other people can go into resonance.

You first turned your hand to label management in 2008 when you founded Basmati. How much did you learn from running Basmati which has helped with the launch and management of Soulful Techno?

With Basmati I did all artist communication, music selection and I had to take care of the artwork. I didn’t do much office management. But I was pretty anal with selecting tracks and how everything had to sound like. The label, every record and every track had to be a perfect peace of a whole puzzle to create an idea of sound and atmosphere. On Soulful Techno we gave everything more freedom. As long as the music really makes us feel something, we are interested. So its less about style, more about content. That feels right.

Your Soulful Techno Podcast is nearing its 50th show which will be a special video recorded show. Will this be a new format for the show in the future if everything goes well?

Haha, I don’t think so. Making the mix is so much work, usually it takes 2 or 3 full days. Most time I spend on finding nice music and putting it together into a mix which has a topic on the one hand, the right timing and the right dose of diversity on the other hand to keep it interesting. When I do the mix it is usually late in the night and I would definitely look super tired in front of the camera. I wouldn’t be the hip party entertainer which most people would like to look at. So better not :-)

All tracks played on your podcast are also added to your Spotify account. Do you find Spotify a good promotional platform to use? How important is it for you to explore alternative platforms away from Soundcloud etc?

I think it is important. We need a platform like Spotify where the computer automatically scans the music to pay the copyright royalties to the right people. YouTube and Soundcloud doesn’t have it. The result is that YouTube takes my mixes down and Soundcloud told me a few times that they want to delete my account. I mean, WTF, everybody benefits from being featured in the mix. Its great promotion. I see it the same when I’m featured in other mixes. The major music industry is so backwards and the German copyright controller, Gema, is a big lobby which is controlled by people who wanna benefit themselves.

I’m impressed with the Ananda On Tour short cuts videos. For anyone wondering how your sets go down these are great little videos to check out. What tour dates have you got lined up over the Christmas and New Year period?

Great you like the videos. We thought that we should merge all this little amazing situations which happen on stage, together in this short cuts. We don´t feel like doing high quality produced HD movies. It was more bringing the vibe directly on the screen.

The next weeks are quiet and relaxed. On 17.12. I play at Warehouse in Amsterdam and Luxor in Arnhem. NYE I play at my home base, Artheater, in Cologne and on the Subcultuur NYE in Nijemegen. On the 1st I play at the Nieuwjaarsbal at DOK from Click. So I took 2 weekends off in December.

Which have been some of your most memorable gigs of the year so far?

Difficult to say, there where so many nice ones. But on a Monday I have to think hard where I played on Saturday. I am constantly on tour since 16 years, so I forget a lot to not be totally overwhelmed by all the countries, people, emotions etc. I could check my calendar and could probably tell you about amazing events. But I am too lazy. All I can say is that I love open air parties with a slight hippie charm. Thuishaven in Amsterdam is definitely amazing and Georgies’ Wundergarten was too good, Cirque Magique in Belgium… so many good parties :-)


Lets now talk about your label feature mix. I’m sure all ears will stand to attention from the first track with your interpretation of Pachelbel ‘Canon in D Minor’ released earlier this year. For the readers and listeners If you don’t know this piece of music by name it will be instantly recognisable. Could you explain a little more about the mix from here?

The original Canon in D Minor is for me one of the most soulful pieces of music in history. My version can give you a glimpse of the original which blows me away every time I listen to it. So it made sense to put it at the beginning. For the mix I put all the tracks of the young label together and chose not only my favorites, it was also important to put them in a mix which can stand for itself. So I had to leave out some favorites to keep the atmosphere in balance and make the mix coherent. I am happy that it worked so well after such a few releases.

Lastly is there any upcoming projects or news for us to look out for or anything you would like to add for our readers and your fans?

After this small calm down period in December, we will start the new year with some great projects. My “Selected Remixes Compilation” out of 20 of my favorite remixes of the last years will be released in January, I´m already working on my new studio album, we could arrange some great cooperation’s, and we have an awesome Asia/Australia tour booked for March. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, so it will be another year full of amazing new projects. But if someone knows DJ Sasha, please tell him his manager blocks all my requests. And since I am his biggest fan I want a mix from him for Soulful Techno.

Thank you Gabriel we always enjoy your fresh, innovative and experimental sound. I wish you all the best and success with the future.

Thank you for the interview! Maybe we meet in person one day. All the best.


Decoded Radio hosted by Ian Dillon presents Soulful Techno with Gabriel Ananda.


Ian Dillon

Decoded Hot Picks Chart Countdown

#4 Sébastien Léger – Stingray (Original Mix) [Hope Recordings]
#3 Ten Ven – Gandia (Original Mix) [Sincopat]
#2 Maceo Plex – Motor Rotor (Original Mix) [Ellum]
#1 Sasha – Rivaldo (Nicole Moudaber Remix) [Last Night On Earth]

Mini Mix

01. KatrinKa feat. Thomas Gandey – The Nameless One {Dan Grassler Edition} [Chapter 24]
02. Michael A – Native (Original Mix) [Asymmetric Recordings]
03. Guy Mantzur – Blooming fields (Original Mix) [Plattenbank]
04. Third Son – Aspirations (Original Mix) [Natura Sonoris]
05. Yotto – Fire Walk (Original Mix) [AnjunaDeep]

Gabriel Ananda

01. Gabriel Ananda – Canon in D Minor
02. MOHN – The Night (Unreleased – Coming next on ST)
03. Qbical – Back To The Start
04. SevenDoors – Bowhead
05. Steve Slight – 9000
06. James Harcourt – Wonderland
07. Gabriel Ananda – The Little Creek Behind The House
08. James Harcourt – The Happening
09. Steve Slight – 9000 (BP Remix)
09. Rico Püstel – Yvish (Unrelesed)
10. MOHN – Dinky (Unreleased – Coming next on ST)

Listen Via:

01/12: Radio Bondi FM: 1pm AEDT (GMT+11)
01/12: Tenzi FM: 8pm-10pm IST (GMT+5.5)
01/12: Radio Ettlingen: 2pm-4pm (GMT+1)
01/12: Casafonda: 4pm-6pm GMT
01/12: Krafted Radio: 10pm-12am GMT
02/12: DNA: 10pm-12am ART (GMT-3)
03/12: Midnight Express FM: 10pm-12am CST (GMT-6)
04/12: Tempo Radio (Red Stream): 10pm-12am CST (GMT-6)
05/12: LeChic.FM: 10pm-12am GMT
05/12: Mio Radio: 3pm-5pm UTC (GMT+2)
06/12: Studio Lux FM: 11pm-1am CEST (GMT+1)
07/12: Nube Music: 4pm-6pm ART (GMT-3)
08/12: Radio Bondi FM: 1pm AEDT (GMT+11)
08/12: Casafonda: 4pm-6pm GMT
08/12: Krafted Radio: 10pm-12am GMT
09/12: 6am-8pm EDT (GMT-4)
10/12: STROM:KRAFT radio (Electronic Channel): 11pm-1am CET (GMT+1)
10/12: Deep London: TBA
On rotation: Inside My House Radio

About the Author

UK based former DJ and promoter, co-owner, director, writer & creative at Decoded Magazine. Studied at the University of Wolverhampton graduating in Graphic Communication & Typography (BA Hons). In house video editor and avid MMA follower with a keen ear for dark, twisted, hypnotic, tribal progressive house and techno.