Gravity Podcast #13 – Dtekk

Author: Jonáš Verešpej

Taking us on a sci-fi drive through his favorite stellar systems, Dtekk has recorded the 13th episode of our podcast with stuff he almost never pulls out of his record bag in a club.

For a big movie buff and passionate record collector as Dtekk it is only natural to own a music collection with a big section of original movie soundtracks and scores. Awaiting the perfect opportunity to put them to use has arisen and we can now delve into a 70 minute journey through the artist’s beloved cinema sounds. We’ve also spoke with Dtekk – née Jędrzej Dondziło – about the mix and his life as a local patriot of Białystok.

Tell us a bit about your podcast. How did you approach it, how was it conceived? Which movie scores and soundtracks are included in the mix?

I have a considerable collection of records that are “redundant” from a club-DJ standpoint. It’s been quite a while since I had a turntable at home, so I missed playing them a lot. Movie soundtracks, combined with my recollections from a movie, usually convey different emotions. I thought it would be a challenge to make the mix coherent in terms of both sound and emotions. The mix combines lots of my favorite movies’ sonic moments, eg. Alien, Interstellar, The Fountain, as well as sound design from the third season of Twin Peaks – a TV series that shaped my sensibility in a major way.

Have you been watching a lot of movies recently? What were your favorites? What would you recommend and why?

I love science-fiction movies so no wonder that my recent favorite is Villeneuve’s new Dune :) I’m glad this is not another action-movie aimed at reaching blockbuster status. Same with his sequel of Blade Runner - Blade Runner 2049. Amazing.

Are there any movies which you think are good only because of their music? What are your most favorite film scores and film soundtracks?

I don’t think I have ever had such a conclusion. At least I can’t think of any movie like this at the moment. Among my favorite OSTs and scores are Angelo Badalementi and Dean Hurley’s Twin Peaks (of course), lots of Phillip Glass’s work, some Clint Mansell's, Hans Zimmer’s work. I think there’s no surprise here. I love this kind of music, as it takes me on such trips as ambient music does. It makes my mind at ease, stimulating it very much at the same time. It’s usually very uplifting and comforting.

As a DJ you have a very wide range of genres you can cover. How do you make decisions on what styles and genres will you play at an event? Were there any genres for you which you thought you would never listen to, but you ended up building affection for later anyway?

Generally, it is the promoter / booker that makes that decision for me usually haha. I like taking some detours though, usually in my techno sets. My electro sets are never only about electro, they often include ghetto house, acid, or raw, funky techno elements. A few years back I wouldn’t think I’d enjoy amen breaks this much in the future. After decades of neglect, jungle and bass music in general, has sneaked into my life and it gains more and more territory :)


Dtekk's daughter helping with the selection.

What does it take to have 'the perfect' night for you at FOMO club? Tell us a bit about the club itself. How are you managing in these times?

You touched on a very vast topic – I don’t think I can sum up the club in a few words, as the foundation that we’re building it on is something that is usually not taken into account when starting a club. For us FOMO is more than just a venue – it's a vision stretching far beyond the typical activity of a music club. Our programme, visual identity and communication rely on quality and attention to detail, with each one as important as the other. Our mission is spreading awareness – musical, artistic or social – and our main goal is building a strong local scene and cooperation with the "Eastern Bloc", with our friends from Lithuania, Belarus and Ukraine. Despite (unfortunately) opening our club just 6 weeks before the first national lockdown, we don't compromise and still believe that creating a valuable venue like this requires integrity, consistency and determination. We are very proud of what we’ve achieved so far, but we well know that there’s still even more work ahead of us. With the pandemic taking away a year of our life (and earnings), the club's situation is very shaky. We are convinced, however, that the struggle will be worth it.

The perfect night at FOMO? A night at which the right people coming lose themselves in music and in conversations with other like-minded people. A night accompanied by open-minded people who are coming to get to know our world, and are falling in love with club culture.

What are your plans for the future of Up To Date festival? What are your biggest dreams yet to be accomplished there?

Frankly speaking, my dream is to survive and get a shot for development of all the ideas that we’ve had to put aside for better times. Although we managed through the pandemic with no break in throwing editions, it damaged us in many ways. There is also a bright side in all of it – UTDF has built a trust among its audience with the line-ups we have. People don’t expect recognised names that much anymore. I hope we will maintain the freedom in programming while still being able to gather new passionate people around the festival.

Do you consider yourself a local patriot? I can imagine making a living off running music events, especially in a city as large as Białystok, can be challenging.

I am definitely a local patriot. Long time ago I made a promise to myself to make things work in Białystok and it has been a crazy ride. Just before the pandemic the things started to look very promising, as we had the 10th, the most successful edition of Up To Date Festival and we opened FOMO, which took off in a very enthusiastic way. 6 weeks later, when the first lockdown came, the collapse started… So the biggest challenge is to work hard to get back the moment we had back then. What is more, we need to face all the changes in culture and the scene that came with the pandemic times. Some of them may last long, some may stay with us for good...