Meet the artists of Costa Rica’s 2018 Ocaso Music Festival: Carlo Lio
Costa Rica’s new underground getaway, Ocaso Music Festival, is preparing to soundtrack the pristine Pacific playa with some of the underground’s most sought-after house and techno artists, January 4-7. In its second edition, Ocaso has become a prime destination for the global underground elite, offering a who’s who billing of beaconing industry titans. This year’s bill includes the infamously secretive Claptone, West Coast house originator Doc Martin, as well as Kenny Glasgow, Carlo Lio, HECTOR, Dirtybird’s Sacha Robotti, Huxley, the Desert Hearts crew, and many, many more. Ahead of Ocaso, Dancing Astronaut’s teamed up with the festival for an ongoing interview series spotlighting the cultural hotbed’s alluring, world-class acts.
Known for his emblematic assortment of cosmic house and captivating, minimal techno, Toronto’s Carlo Lio deservingly runs with a prodigious pack of producers. Having teamed up with Nathan Barato in 2005, the two formed the aptly-named Rawthentic Music label. From its inception onward, Rawthentic’s aimed to redefine the true meaning of cutting-edge tunes. The label takes pride in its gritty sound and it’s surely evident in their artistic cultivation. Over the years, Rawthentic’s gained the vast support of dance music icons. Artists like Nicole Moudaber, Pig&Dan, Monika Kruse, and more, have even released on Rawthentic.
Traveling the world and spreading the gospel of pulsating tech-house, Lio credits artists like Dubfire, Carl Cox, and Loco Dice as his influences. He kickstarted his career with a remix of Dubfire and Oliver Huntemann’s “Diablo,” which without his hesitation, dominated the charts. A year earlier Lio had released “Breakfast In A Bag,” which had sparked the interest in him on the international circuit. After the Cocoon Recordings mix in 2011, Lio’s discography began to amass a multitude of labels. Dubfire’s SCI+TEC, Bedrock Records, MOOD, Desolat, Suara, Intec Digital, and Mindshake Records are just some of the few he’s released on.
While Lio’s talent in the studio spans over the last ten years, his music has also been captivating dancers, and touching down on dancefloors around the world in the midst. Though he looks to both Toronto and Barcelona as his home bases, Lio is the epitome of an international artist. Earlier this fall, he released a sinister techno EP called Psychout, showing once more that he lacks any intentions of ending his time in music. Lio’s stylistic curveballs in fact signify that he’s still batting high, and he will continue to be up for quite some time.
Carlo Lio will be playing at La Senda, in the Costa Rican Jungle on Saturday, January 6.
What was your first label release? Would you still play it in a show?
“The first track I’ve every released was called “EVERYBODY”.. and it was on my label Rawthenic. But at that point it was Nathan Barato who owned Rawthentic and he actually signed my first track. Yes i would still play it in a show.”
What has been the biggest breakthrough of your career?
“As for breakthrough, I would have to say in 2010 when I release a track called “Breakfast in Bag” which really got attention a lot of international attention & support and really set off my career.”
What’re your thoughts on the potential of Costa Rica as a cultural hotbed for underground house and techno?
I’ve always loved Costa Rica’s vibe and passion for the music. It always gets better and better every time I come back. I feel the potential is massive.”
What are you looking forward to most about Ocaso Festival?
“Just to feel the unique vibe the Costa Rican people have to offer. I’ve never played an actual festival there so I’m anxious to see how this goes on a much larger scale.”
If you could be another artist for a day, whom would you pick?
“Tough question, but I would have to say Luke Steele from Empire of the Sun. I love their music and would love to see how his mind works.”
If you could recommend three artists to catch from the lineup, who would you pick?
“I would have to say Kenny Glasgow, Doc Martin & Rodriguez Jr. Huge talent these guys!”
If you were recruited to provide an Essential Mix in 2018, what’s the one song you couldn’t leave
out and why?
“Well with essential mix you always need to showcase your depth as a DJ and I think Boris Werner “Set it Off” (Makam Orchestra Drama Remix) is a timeless classic that would fit perfectly into the mix!”
Ocaso festival will be held January 4 through January 7 in Tamarindo, Costa Rica. Tickets, lineup, and more information are available here.