Nina Carina - Brighton's Rising Techno Queen
Updated: Mar 3
We're so excited to bring back our Brighton Mixtapes Series. Since the success of our beloved Berlin Mixtapes Series, which has featured awesome guests so far, we felt there was a real gap in terms of showcasing the amazing talent within our own home city right here in Brighton. We have a wide spectrum of artists that span acrossany genres therefore we decided we would create the 'Brighton Mixtapes' Series, so that we can not only showcase established artists but also feature up and coming musicians that would like a platform to be heard.
Equally, whilst our focus at Berlin has always been somewhere between Deep House and Techno we can now open up and extend a wider reach into other genres that Brighton has to offer. Also each artist will be subject to a series of one answer quick-fire questions to accompany each guest mix to give readers a quirky insight into the artists' likes and dislikes.
Next up we bring you Nina Carina, originally from Brixton in South London, Nina has grown roots in Brighton over the last 12 years, establishing herself in our vibrant music scene. As a DJ, vocalist, songwriter, producer and radio show host, music is Nina's number one passion!
She has been a resident DJ on Brighton's own Codesouth.fm, where she rocked her weekly radio show 'Phat Fridays' which went live every Friday night 10pm - Midnight and gathering a fervent support in the process. She hosts a monthly show called 'Techno Invasions' on Radio RUAR and has played for Sol-Beat radio, based over in sunny Spain.
Nina has played at some of Brighton's best clubs and bars, including events at the Volks, Twisted Lemon, Back Beat Bar, Block, Grand Central, The Tempest, Waterbear and The Arch.
Lockdown times saw her livestreaming for the likes of United We Stream Brighton, Beats HD Records, Red Wine Sessions, Spacemonkeys UK, Sizzled Sundays (for Slightly Sizzled Records) and supporting Saytek Live on a Dark Matter London livestream.
She pours her heart and soul into selecting the finest music to lift your spirits, make you feel energised and bring out your best bass face! Come and get lost in her tunes! She also recently launched a fantastic new Sunday party at Block in Kemptown called G3T LOO5E, which has been growing in popularity over the last year, dubbed the best place to hang out on a Sunday.
Nina's career has been blossoming as of late with many guest appearances across various streams and radio shows as well as a selection of releases under her belt. A much-loved figure within Brighton's music and LGBTQ scene.
We caught up with Nina to find out more.
Hi Nina, how are you and what have you been up to this week?
I'm good thank you! It has been a busy week for me. A lot of it has been spent hiding indoors from the cold UK winter, but it has given me lots of time to plan and get ideas together for the year ahead and the events and adventures to come! Looking to be an exciting one!
How long have you been DJing?
I've been involved in music now for about 15 years as a vocalist, songwriter and making tunes with different artists. I had dabbled on the decks for a long time, but it is over the last 3 years that I have really gotten my head down and pushed hard with my DJing. I started off as 'Peachy'- my first alias, and now here, as Nina Carina. I have been loving every minute of it!
You used to run a Friday night show on Codesouth FM, which gave you a great platform when you started and now you have a show on RUAR Radio, tell us more about that show.
Yes, I had a great couple of years doing my Phat Fridays show on Codesouth FM, going live from the studio every Friday night 10pm - Midnight. I played anything from minimal, house, jackin house, tech-house to techno. Over the two years, techno really came to the forefront of my show. So now I do a monthly show called 'Techno Invasions' on RUAR Radio - It is a great gang of DJ's to be a part of!
When can people catch your show?
My monthly Techno Invasions radio show on RUAR ( www.radioruar.com ) goes out live on the 2nd Thursday of every month, 8pm - 9pm (UK time). I also stream live on www.facebook.com/OfficialRUAR and www.mixcloud.com/live/ruar/.
What sort of music can people expect?
Techno Invasions does what it says on the tin :D Expect your ear holes to be invaded with techno!
What fond memories do you have from the Codesouth days?
I think some of my favourite moments in the Codesouth studio were the back-to-backs I did with other Codesouth DJ's. They were lots of fun! One that really springs to mind was a b2b2b I did with Adam Bang Tidy and Sami Kubu. We planned to do it as a warmup for an event we were running on the same evening called 'Twisting Your Lemon' at The Twisted Lemon in Brighton. We had a right old laugh and there is a great clip out there of us all dancing like crazy to a cheeky remix of Abba's 'Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie' by Eckk called 'Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie (A Gram After Midnight). Good times haha!
It was also amazingly powerful to be able to do the show throughout all the lockdowns we had here in the UK, talking and dancing with friends new and old all around the world every Friday night. Having a place to go to by myself to play and connect with people from afar was really special.
How did you get into music?
Music has always been my main passion. I was always singing non-stop and messing around with different instruments when I was a kid. The first job I ever wanted was to be a singer. Whilst at uni, studying English literature and creative writing, I did a music crossover module on songwriting and that really planted the seed in me to venture more into that world. I started off writing and singing on mostly garage and bassline tracks and I loved being in the studio with people bouncing ideas around and learning more about production.
That passion grew over the years and I have now worked across many other genres, including drum and bass, house and of course techno! In terms of DJ'ing, I used to genuinely have actual dreams when I was in my early 20's that I was DJ'ing in front of crowds and I used to wake up completely buzzing from them. I knew then that I had to learn how to DJ and follow that passion too!
You have a rich history of experiencing much of London's nightlife in particular in Brixton. What were some of the best night's you had and what made them special?
Growing up in Brixton was great for music. I was a junglist / drum and bass head in my teens, so I would have most often been found at Mass (a big club in a church in the centre of Brixton). If I was on a garage flavour, I'd be two-stepping at Bug Bar or for a ragga-dancehall fix, I’d go by the bar at Fridge (now called Electric). I also used to be a regular attendee at Whirl-y-gig events, Planet Angel nights and various different squat parties in the middle of nowhere! Fun times! :D
You have a few releases under your belt. Tell us more about those.
I have a fair few releases with my vocal work on, such as Tropical Selecta Ft. Peachy - Honey Bee (released on Project Allout). This one was featured on Pure Bassline 2 and went rather large! King Hydra and Won't Ft. Peachy - Streetlights (released on 24 Hour Garage Girls label) and more recently, a techno track out on Silent Storm - 'Chemical Play Feat. Nina Carina - Lost Inside' and a couple of house tracks with Nick Hook on his amazing album Asylum Earth - 'Utopia' and 'Outsiders', with Outsiders being featured and played a few times on BBC introducing. Last year I had my first solo techno release 'Reckless' out too on Spanish label Sagmen. I have lots of plans this year to get lots more music out, so watch this space!
Where was your first gig in Brighton? My first gig in Brighton was at The Richmond for 'Dance Upon A Time' under my old DJ / music alias 'Peachy'. I came straight from Phat Fridays and got caught in a massive storm on route, so did my set wet to the bone but with a massive smile on my face!
You have played for us a couple of times at our daytime sessions at Block in the summer as well as more recently at our new venue the WaterBear back in November for our 7th Birthday and our NYE party. What is it that you think makes the night special for you?
There is such a sense of community at the Berlin events. Everyone there is united in music and friendship, whether old friends or making new friends on the night. Everyone is there for the pure love of it and everyone is in full support of the artists who play there. The vibe is always on point, everyone's always in a great mood and everyone shakes their rumps all night long! Love it!
What can people expect from a typical Nina set?
Whichever genre I'm playing, the vibe is usually always chunky and phat! I love to go on a journey from softer to harder, slower to faster, so you will usually feel the build-up and progression in my sets and the bass face usually intensifies over time. I love a quirky unique sound or vocal too, so plenty of that will be thrown into the mix too.
Where's your favourite place to just to kick back and chill in Brighton?
I'm a huge nature lover, so get me on the beach, in a park or up in the downs for a chill.
And equally, where's your favourite place to let loose?
I love letting loose at Waterbear, The Tempest, BLOCK, Volks and Chalk, to name just a few places. I also love a good house party!
Talking of letting loose, can you please tell us more about your 'G3T LOO5E' events? I set up G3T LOO5E last year, with the first of the monthly events kicking off at BLOCK in August 2021. They run on the first Sunday of every month, with a wide variety of local DJ's playing all things tech- minimal, deep tech, tech house and techno. I love getting people to come and play and always try to support new and up-and-coming talent too.
We have had a great time so far as there is always such an amazing and fun vibe there. Having my event compared to a Boiler Room session a couple of times has been a huge compliment and I really can't wait to party with you all some more this year!
Which other DJs or producers are you liking right now?
I'm a huge lover of all the amazing local talent in Brighton. We have such an amazingly supportive network of DJ's and friends who all attend each other's events and who are very talented! It really is an amazing crew on the go! In terms of techno DJ's / producers, I really dig Blakeit, Reinier Zonneveld, Bec, David Cost, Zero Dayz, Globurst, A.P, Rudy Ripani, Palma (PT), Alex Lentini, Kento, Joch, Rhalef and Mark Broom, to name just a few.
I love hunting out new up-and-coming producers to incorporate their tracks into my radio shows and sets.
What are your go-to labels?
Drumcode, Sagmen, Filth On Acid and Autektone rarely disappoint!
You have compiled our latest Brighton Mixtapes Series Episode 012 - Tell us more about your mix.
I wanted to do a mix that best represented the techno that excites me most. I usually enjoy the tougher end of the techno spectrum, so this showcases these flavours, from chunky melodic vibes, to big acid basslines, to dark hypnotic rhythms and finishing hard and dirty.
What else can we expect from you soon? What's next on the horizon for DJ gigs, where can people see you next?
I'm really looking forward to my G3T LOO5E events growing more this year and seeing what I can rustle up there. That should be the next place you catch me very soon at Block. In terms of the rest of the year, I am aiming to ramp things up a big notch. I will be playing back at some of my favourite events and venues across Brighton over the year. There are some fun Pride plans in the pipeline too and I am working on expanding out to more events across the UK (with some plans in place for some gigs up't North). You might even catch me abroad this year! Watch this space!
Exciting stuff! It's been an absolute pleasure as always talking with you Nina. Next up here's the Quickfire Round:
Favourite Colour: Black or Red
What do you put on your chips? Mayo
Apple or Android: Droids!
Pioneer or Denon: Pioneer
Rekordbox or Serato: Rekordbox
Can you juggle?: A little bit - not worth hiring for a kid's party though, I will disappoint haha!
Weirdest/Coolest item of clothing: A dress I bought in Tokyo with mushrooms on it with writing which says 'Mushrooms - Please Watch Us Who Shine' on it...
First record ever bought: Robert Miles - Children
Favourite place to hang out in Brighton: I love hanging out at Block in Kemptown. Always a friend or five there, doing an event or having a drink!
Best club: Waterbear in Brighton is great!
Where does the best roast: The Railway
Coffee or Tea: Decaff Coffee or Herbal Tea
Favourite Beer: Bloody Mary
Favourite Track right now: Too many to choose from!
View on Seagulls: I love them, unless they are ripping up my binbags / pooing on me / stealing my food!
Favourite seafood: Lobster or mussels
Favourite word: Moist
3 words to describe your mix: Empowering, Emotive, Energising
To find out more and listen to Nina's music catch her on these socials:
1) Marco Faraone & Ian Urbina- Stop the Operation – Synesthesia Media
2) Gizmo & Mac- Freedom – Phobiq
3) Patrick Berg- Never Stop – Terminal M
4) D-Unity- Let There Be House – Unity Records
5) Alex Lentini & STOMP BOXX- Solstice – Drumcode
6) Crossbow- Techno Is My DNA – Codex Recordings
7) Robben- Dark Territory – Electropical Records
8) Return Fall- Diliriant – Eclipse Recordings
9) Zero Dayz- Fuck Society – Ithica Records
10) Reinier Zonneveld- Only One Way – Filth On Acid
11) Harvey McKay- Dragons Dynamite – Second State
12) Alessandro Grops- Velox – Tronic
13) Mark Broom- The Start Up – RSPX
14) Mark Broom- Game – RSPX
15) Palma (PT)- Atmos – Room Trax
16) Palma (PT)- Forced Hire – Room Trax
17) PRYDIE- Sensation – Ithica Records
18) Aurelio Mendoza- Red Aura – Black Line Recordings
19) Marcelo Demarco- Possession – IAMT
20) Marcos Fagoaga- Kisses Under The Strobe (Zisko Remix) – Concepto Hipnotico
21) AINT.S- Boundless – PACE PACE
22) Dusty Kid- Sysma (Locked Groove Remix) – Suara
23) Kiki Solvej- Deutsches Rave Madchen – Filth on Acid
24) Angy Kore & Gabriell Padrevita- You Know Why – Himmel