Rising New York House DJ Yulia Niko Effortlessly Blends Sultry House Vibes with The Underground!
For some people, dreaming of the weekend helps them keep going on the weekly hamster wheel of their ordinary 9 to 5 office life. For others, the draw of something a little more bespoke is too strong to ignore. For Russian-born Yulia Niko, a life less ordinary was always her dream, a life she now leads with vigour, playing all over the world alongside her DJing heros, making music that inspires them and running a successful record label, all from her homebase in Berlin.
Born and raised in the rural heartlands of Mother Russia, her interest in House music began early. Buying ‘western music’ in the post-Glasnost record shops of her hometown, she was quickly gripped by the sounds of X-press 2, and by 14, she was a regular at the local dance club (where IDs were optional). Making new friends, she became familiar with a great many artists and sounds, which inspired her to begin collecting vinyl. “It was a real journey to learn how to buy music on the internet,” She says, “Because in Russia, it is not that easy to have a credit card.” After practising solidly for two months, Yulia’s first gig was on Boxing day, 2005. Mixing commercial sounds with her passion for minimal techno, she learned the art of DJing making her something of a local phenomenon with her first residency in Sochi.
“From the very beginning, Gui Boratto and Pig&Dan were my favorites. Then I started to move to more housey sounds and Luciano and DJ Sneak became my heroes…”
It was leaving Russia after university, that’s been the making of Yulia. Now living and working in Techno’s number one city, Berlin, she began her global travels in the sunny climes of Greece where she spent a year. Yulia then moved to Brooklyn, New York where she learned music production. Sharing a studio with Martinek in Bushwick, she set about writing her first album and had 10 tracks spare to send to labels. Initially signed to Deep Season, she now enjoys releases on Baile Musik, Get Physical, Plant74, MATTER+ and more. Starting her own imprint, the vinyl-only Tochno Techno, has been a labour of love. Working from the premise of “If the track works well, I sign it.” Yulia has begun to stamp her mark on the industry as an all-round business women as well as a crowd-pleasing DJ and producer.
“My life has always been about supporting friends and helping new people in who I can see future potential.”
Whether it’s supporting Thugfucker in Los Angeles or via Mixmag (who have named her one to watch in 2017), being streamed live across the world, Yulia Niko brings with her an energy and passion for dance music only a seldom few have. Her ear for a tune means she is in high demand with tours this year alone in South America and Mexico, and gigs across Europe and Russia, with regular stops in Ibiza. But it wasn’t all global travel and glamorous event locations, Yulia has spent years putting in solid groundwork at residencies for Verboten, New York and Heart, Miami adding up to the unique position of having a lifetimes DJing experience to take on the road. Her star is still on the rise too, one can only imagine how far she’ll go in 2019 and beyond.