How Brazilian Ad Man Gui Boratto Became a Techno Titan


Berlin has been the epicenter of modern techno and minimal house. For this reason, it’s atypical that Gui Boratto—one of the scene’s most celebrated figures—hails from São Paulo, Brazil. While life in Berlin might be about making music, networking and parties, Brazil offers more of a “normal” home life for Boratto. “I do think it’s nice to be far away from all the parties because you can be more focused to produce music,” says Boratto. “But at the same time, I think it’s good to live around the music and references. I still live in Brazil because I love my country, my way of living. Also, I have family here, my wife, daughter, my parents and friends.”

Although he’s relatively new to the dance music scene, Boratto spent nearly a decade making music for Brazil’s advertising community. Some of the skills he picked up while making music for advertising is often displayed in Boratto’s trademark melodious techno tracks. “Chromophobia and my new album, Take My Breath Away, were albums created without thinking about the dance floor or clubs. There’s no concern about dancing at all,” Boratto says. “When I was doing music for advertising, the thing that most annoyed me was an obligation to reach the clients expectations and the product’s needs. That’s one of the reasons I’ve decided to make my own music, absolutely for pleasure.”

“I don’t think too much when I compose. It’s a thing that comes really natural.”

With music based more around melody and song structure, as opposed to simple 4/4 beats, it might not come as a surprise that Boratto’s source of musical inspiration comes from a who’s who of melodic and melancholic artists including Sisters of Mercy, The Cure, Tom Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes, João Gilberto, Dick Farney and Ivan Lins. While not overt in Boratto’s sound, these artists were all floating in his subconscious during the production of his latest album. “I don’t think too much when I compose. It’s a thing that comes really natural. Maybe, sometimes, I’m angry and I try to express my anger with melodies. Melody is a think that can make you sad or happy, without any substantial reason. That’s why music can be really incredible.”

Words: Justin Kleinfeld

as featured in Issue 26