Koka Nikoladze is a Georgian composer and sound artist based in Oslo. Koka is a true mastermind when it comes to creation, his lifestime passion has been music and has been taking a unique approach by creating his own instruments. He has not only designed and hand craftted all of his instruments himself, they are all engineered to be programable as well. In the era of software and hardware revolution, Koka makes a standout as a modern musician, maker and hacker.
Which platforms/events have been the most important to you, to present your work?
To me, festivals have been important platforms for quite a while now, recently there was Ultima in Oslo, Loopin Berlin, There will be Donaueschingen soon. Otherwise internet of course, mostly Facebook.
Programming beats is a standard way to make music, is something usually done on computers. You on the other hand create analog beatmaking machines by hand, using springs, coils, wood, and metal. What is your inspiration to create such masterpieces?
Well, first of all, I wouldn’t call them masterpieces. I simply love making stuff and instruments are just natural consequences of endless creative process. I’m not inspired by anything particular, just heavily addicted to creative labour. For making Beat Machines, I mostly use stuff that I find at home and at the local hacker space called Bitraf, here in Oslo. Several times I specifically bought fancy materials to build beat machines, but it never worked out. I’m satisfied only when I build them with found tuff.
Is there any particular material which you feel more identified in using while creating beats? and why?
Can’t think of it at the moment.. ..actually, I like acoustic sound generators. Mostly small objects that are heavily amplified. Why? Well, making elephants out of flies, especially gigantic dancing elephants that jump hundred meters high.. ..is fun, isn’t it?
How would you define your style?
Well, at the moment I’m working hard on a new orchestra piece — Interactive Symphony, preparing for a hardware startup in 2018, wrapping up my thesis, preparing a lecture course, and yes, I just became a father, so between all that I’m warming up milk to proper temperature, changing diapers, singing and making weird faces while being yelled at; and once in a while I’m loudly crying on the shoulder of my wife .
I’ll probably be able to answer this question clearer when I launch my first beat machine dance music album in 2019.
This chaos will be gone by then. For now, A Man With OCD in Chaos is the name of my style.
What was your first technology encounter?
A tape player, used to hack cassette tapes and make loops when my mother was not at home.
You got to know about Machina through and event organized by MTV. What was your first reaction when you heard about Machina’s MIDI Controller Jacket?
I was curious, simply wanted to try it out.
How has Machina’s MIDI Controller Jacket changed your performance with some of your machines?
I think wearable technology is fun, especially wearing a MIDI controller — it’s a lot of fun. I do use it when I feel playful; and the jacket itself has made me super playful several times. One could easily adopt it as a performance instrument. It is definitely a cool thing. I’m looking forward to its further development and seeing how people will incorporate it in their creative practice.
We would like to thank MTV for making the introduction to Koka Nikoladze on his visit to Mexico City and our friends at Archivo, Diseño y Arquitectora for allowing us to make the interview at unique space.
By: The Machina Team — @MachinaWT