The most difficult aspect of teaching himself music was finding and defining his own style. "I liked electronic music and I liked music that was melodic. I felt most electronic music lacked organic elements. I wanted to make the music more human. So I recorded live instruments to make not everything from a computer or synthesizer. I combined elements to make music that is quite minimal, but with deeper frequencies speaking to each other."
Though his music is promoted as techno, the results of Löffler's experiments are something more symphonic and accessible than what most people consider electronic music. He cites the work of the German DJ Lawrence as a major influence. "The music Lawrence released on Dial Records was an eye-opener. It was indie and had a melancholic vibe not meant for a dance floor, but it worked. You could listen to it at home or at a club."
South Florida can make a closer examination of this chill-out dance music when Löffler plays at Floyd June 22. Miami is a city he always makes sure to play when he does an American tour. The Magic City even inspired the creatively spelled song "Myiami" on his 2015 record, Mare.
"I spent a week at DJ Tennis' studio. The song came from a rainy day in Miami Beach. It was gray and stormy — unusual for Miami but very inspiring. This time I won't have the time, but it's always good to walk around and see the galleries."
Visual arts are also something Löffler — a painter and photographer — takes seriously. Visuals are a large part of both his live shows and his recorded work.
"Sometimes there's a painting that inspires the music. Most of the time, music inspires the painting. On the first track [of the new record, Graal (Prologue)], 'Ry,' I was painting at a time I wasn't doing music. But the painting brought out the song."
Audiences at Floyd will be able to dance to his visual and aural spectacle. "There is photography, painting, and video. I play with the computer and two drum machines that aren't synced to the music, so I'm always running out of time. I play the synthesizers live, and in Miami there will be a special guest onstage I can't announce. I'll play the tracks I have to play that fans are waiting for, but I add new stuff I'm excited about."
Among the new stuff he's excited about are songs in production set to compose another full-length album due in the latter part of the year. He's also working on his biggest light show yet, one he hopes to bring to Miami in 2020. But in 2019, Miami (or "Myiami") will find itself content dancing to Löffler's current output of music and art.
Christian Löffler. 11 p.m. Saturday, June 22, at Floyd Miami, 34 NE 11th St., Miami; 786-618-9447; floydmiami.com. Tickets cost $10 via floydmiami.com.