[INTERVIEW] Lilly Palmer Dives Into Her Latest Anthem, 'My Fantasy,' The Evolution Of Techno, Upcoming Set At Groove Cruise 2024, + More

Lilly Palmer, Interview, Groove Cruise 2024

| January 12, 2024

Over the last decade, Lilly Palmer has risen to become a household name in the global techno circuit. Lilly's stage presence, versatility behind the DJ board, and spellbinding productions never fail to put her audience in a trance. From her roots in Zurich's thriving underground scene to headlining the world's most iconic festivals and venues, this techno sensation's exponential growth has flooded into 2024.

Now Lilly has linked up with iEDM to provide a deeper look into her project. She broke down the process and inspiration surrounding her 2023 hit single, “My Fantasy,” her perspective on the evolution of techno, and shared a sneak peek into her upcoming arrival aboard Groove Cruise 2024.

Check out our exclusive interview with Lilly Palmer below.

 

iEDM: Your journey in electronic music has taken you to various countries. How has this diverse cultural exposure influenced your music and performances?

Lilly Palmer: The last few years, especially after COVID-19, have been crazy. I love traveling and experiencing the different impressions of all cultures, whether it is the exchange with the people I meet, their perspectives on life, the food, the views, and much more. 

Besides DJing and doing what I love most, it is like a second reward that comes with my life as a touring artist.

iEDM: Embodying the phrase “music is freedom,” how does this mantra reflect your creative process, especially when producing tracks like My Fantasy”?

Lilly Palmer: For me, music has always meant freedom. Expressing myself, and dealing with my emotions, whether pain, sadness, joy, or love.

Moving people with the music I play as a DJ and bringing them joy means a lot to me. So the next logical step for me was to do the same with the music I create alongside my husband in the studio. 

 

iEDM: “My Fantasy” has a more accessible and eclectic sound within the techno genre. What sparked this deviation, and how do you weigh this level of experimentation while maintaining your unique style?

Lilly Palmer: That is a very good question. One of the signature elements in my productions is my voice. It connects many of my tracks. I like to experiment, and most of my productions also stem from my emotions when I am in the studio. 

I also like to be subliminally provocative or to push the energy of the music with short vocal fragments in a direction that you can understand on the dance floor without having to give a lot of explanations. 

For me, it is about the connection to people that I try to build with my music; to inspire and motivate them. 

 

iEDM: The music video for “My Fantasy” is so mesmerizing and captivating! Can you share more about the creative process behind it, particularly your inspiration drawn from TikTok and the use of AI-generated armor? 

Lilly Palmer: I often take inspiration from TikTok and Instagram. The idea for the video came spontaneously. I had it on the same day we shot the video, in the evening at the beach here in Holland. 

I think the algorithms from TikTok in particular is the reason that I kept seeing clips of women wearing AI-animated armor. Inspired, I got myself a real suit of armor and didn't know what to do with it until I pretty much had the idea for the video off the cuff. 

It aims to be an atmospheric video, with a focus on me and the vocals, creating a calm, not necessarily high-energy rave video.

 

iEDM: As the co-owner of Spannung Records, how does running your label affect your artistic freedom, and how do you balance your roles as a label owner and an artist?

Lilly Palmer: My label is run by my husband Egbert, my manager Karl, and me. We have a clear division of tasks. I take care of the music that I want to release because it should be music that I enjoy playing. 

That way, I can guarantee the artists and tracks my full support. I wouldn't release anything that I liked but unable to play regularly. Spannung Records has become my own label home base, and there is some great news surrounding it coming soon. 

 

iEDM: Related or unrelated to music and nightlife, what are your favorite parts and aspects of Amsterdam? How has living near this city helped shape your musical identity and sound?

Lilly Palmer: To be honest, I do not have much to do with Amsterdam and am usually only there when I fly or land there, or when I play. It is an amazing city, but I prefer to live in or near nature. 

With my hectic life and a ton of stress, I need peace and relaxation in my little free time, whether it is with my horse, kite surfing, or going for walks. This is where I often find inspiration for new productions.  

iEDM: As someone who discovered minimal techno at a young age, how has your taste and appreciation for electronic music shifted, and what genres or styles are currently catching your attention outside of techno?

Lilly Palmer: It is normal for tastes to change. I will probably always love techno and electronic music, just as I will always love metal. The music I play or produce has also changed over time. 

For me, music has to bounce and make people dance. At the moment, I tend to play harder and sometimes even a bit faster. My main genre is Peaktime Techno, but I still play groovier and more raw techno when it suits the club and the vibe. 

I do not want to define or brand myself. In the end, it is about great music that I stand by, that moves me behind the decks, and with which I can build a connection with my audience. 

Click to dive into our top 10 must-see artists aboard Groove Cruise's 20th-anniversary sailing, featuring Lilly!

 

iEDM: Over the last decade, in what major ways have you observed the techno scene evolving? What predictions do you have for the direction it is headed in the future?

Lilly Palmer: So the two most obvious directions are certainly melodic techno and hard techno. Two extremes, so to speak. I always believe such developments are good because they can also inspire and extend the audience for techno. 

It is difficult to predict the future of techno. There have consistently been such developments, and, as an example, electronic music became harder and harder until it came to a stop and something new could emerge. It all culminates in a kind of commercial overkill. 

Techno originated in underground clubs and scenes until it was commercialized. A lot of money was made until it collapsed again and new styles originated, inspired by these developments. 

Music will forever remain exciting and interesting. It is like a river, always moving.  

iEDM: You are hosting a Mario Kart activity with VNSSA aboard Groove Cruise. Who is your favorite character from Mario Kart and why? 

Lilly Palmer: Mario. I have loved this character since I first saw him as a child. He is just so cute and his voice is funny.

FOLLOW LILLY PALMER: INSTAGRAM | SPOTIFY | TIKTOK | SOUNDCLOUD

 

Photos courtesy of Lilly Palmer and Groove Cruise.

 

Read more iEDM Exclusive Interviews HERE!

 

Ring in the New Year with an updated rave closet for the upcoming 2024 festival season! Check out the latest iEDM apparel and accessories HERE! 

CONNOR PHILLIPS

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Fueled by his passion for EDM, Connor’s life revolves around dance music and its ability to bring people together. Raised in upstate New York, Connor was deprived of festivals and raves until he attended Florida State University, where he was instantly hooked. Fast-forward to today and Connor has become a house and melodic techno DJ, an avid EDM-based interviewer and writer, and has worked PR for the likes of Matroda, Bleu Clair, and other new-wave house icons.

Outside of music, Connor loves pretty much any sport (huge Knicks, Yankees, and NY Giants fan), going on hikes, traveling, and food. Based in Florida, there’s a good chance you will eventually run into Connor at one of the popular festivals and clubs throughout the state.

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