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Portable aka Bodycode

Portable aka Bodycode

Gay dance party Chapter 10 brings special guest Portable aka Bodycode to their warehouse party on Easter Sunday alongside the already stellar line-up of Rødhäd, Hannah Holland, Dan Beaumont and Charlie Porter.

The South African native, now based in Berlin (via Lisbon), is a former London resident who used to run the underground Süd Electronic parties with Lakuti as well as releasing amazing records on Perlon and Spectral, amongst others. Ahead of the party next weekend, we caught up with Portable to find out more...

How do you personally differentiate between Portable and Bodycode?

When I initially launched the Bodycode project it was to offer a straight-forward dance aesthetic, as the Portable moniker was initially experimental house/ambient.

Since then though, the Portable sound has mutated and in a way really absorbed a lot of the Bodycode aesthetic, so much so that I am often listed as Portable Bodycode at gigs and I often play both monikers tracks.

So I would say they are akin to reflecting sides of a coin. Constantly interchanging.

Do any tracks crossover between the aliases during production? You start writing it for one project and the more you work on it, it becomes clear it's more suited to the other?

Not really, when I start out on  a track I rarely have the end result in mind, Often it will be while I'm on tour, or out of the studio when a spark of creation will entice me, and the further production takes place at a later stage, in my studio.

Your South African roots are evident in some of your music, with samples from old vinyl records of African tribes appearing... what other more personal influences are perhaps less obvious in your work?

I would say the inclusion of my vocals relatively quite recently really gave birth to an even more personal reflection of  emotive elements in my music.

We previously asked Lakuti about her favourite gay clubs in SA- what were yours?

You know, I lived there so long ago, that I really can't remember any one place, and most likely they are long closed!

How did you persuade her to sing on your track Deeper Love?

Lerato and I have been friends for over 20 years, she's like a sister to me, so it wasn't difficult, and we come from the same musical fabric .

What prompted you to leave London, especially when you were running the successful Süd Electronic parties here?

Honestly , the weather, I went to Portugal, fell in love with the constant sunshine, and realised how much I missed the light!

How did your long-standing relationship with Perlon come about?

It sort of gradually just grew, Zip had invited me for some live shows for their Perlonized parties and I offered them tracks I was working on, and things just grew from there.

Where do you feel your live set-up works best- festivals, intimate basements, superclubs, warehouse parties? As you seem to run the gamut in your career, which, in your experience, best suits your sound?

It sort of fits in everywhere.my set is totally live, so I can really just decide what kind of atmosphere best suits the place I am booked to play in.

Do you think that LGBT people have enough visibility in dance music?

Visibility is just a perspective really. I am gay, so is Lakuti, and a number of people in the electronic music scene. Saying that, just recently there seems to be a change in that, just last week I was live at two gay parties in NYC and San Francisco, where promotors were continuously trying to change the stale sound of many gay parties.

Even though you have not lived there for some time, how do you feel about the situation for LGBT people in South Africa? Despite being the first country in Africa to legalise same-sex marriage, it does still seem very tough there…

Yes, on paper it's legal but there are many horrific situations happening across S.Africa an Africa as a whole, but like you said I don't live there, so I have the same information available to you.

You're playing at gay dance party Chapter 10... what are your favourite gay dance parties across the world?

One of my favourites is run by Honey Sound System in San Francisco!

Join Portable at the Chapter 10 warehouse party on Sunday 20th April at Autumn Street Studios from 11pm - 6 am.

Buy tickets from Ransom Note.

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Portable aka Bodycode