Girl Talk is the pseudonym of DJ and remixer Greg Gillis. A Pittsburgh native who works as a biomedical research engineer during the day, Gillis channels his other creative energies into Girl Talk, whose sample-based dance tracks have made him the Jo...
Girl Talk is the pseudonym of DJ and remixer Greg Gillis. A Pittsburgh native who works as a biomedical research engineer during the day, Gillis channels his other creative energies into Girl Talk, whose sample-based dance tracks have made him the John Oswald or Christian Marclay of the mash-up generation: each of his songs are built on recognizable samples of recent hit singles, recontextualized into an entirely new piece. Not just a geeky studio boffin, Gillis is also a manic, intense live performer known for his high-speed exhortations into the mic and tendency to strip to his underwear on-stage while dancing circles around his laptop and DJ setup. At first a teenage punk performer inspired by Japanese noise acts like Merzbow and the Boredoms, Gillis made the surprisingly slight conceptual shift into copyright-flouting sample work around the turn of the millennium. Hooking up with the proudly anti-copyright collective Illegal Art, a shadowy label vaguely connected to the pioneering samplers Negativland, Gillis made his CD debut with 2002's Secret Diary, an artsy and largely conceptual release that turned the recognizable snippets into brief blasts of glitchy noise. 2004's Unstoppable was far more direct, using fewer and longer samples to create more recognizable mash-ups in the manner of early KLF singles, making Girl Talk suddenly by far the most pop-oriented and accessible project on the Illegal Art roster. After a pair of vinyl EPs, 2004's Stop Cleveland Hate and 2006's Bone Hard Zaggin', Gillis' third album as Girl Talk, 2006's Night Ripper, split the difference between his two previous full-length efforts, with the playfully recognizable samples of the second and the more complex structures of the first.
Celebrating 10-plus years of sample-obsessed production and relentless touring, Gregg Gillis returns with All Day, his fifth album as Girl Talk, and his most epic, densely layered, and meticulously composed musical statement to date. Continuing the saga from the previously acclaimed albums, Night Ripper and Feed The Animals, Gillis lays down a more diverse range of samples to unfold a larger dynamic between slower transitions and extreme cut-ups. With the grand intent of creating the most insane and complex ³pop collage² album ever heard, large catalogs of both blatantly appropriated melodies and blasts of unrecognizable fragments were assembled for the ultimate Girl Talk record (clocking in at 71 minutes and 372 samples).
Since the release of Feed The Animals, things have flourished for Girl Talk. He's played almost 300 shows and hardly taken a full week off from hitting the road. He's playing even larger venues and making even more of a spectacle -- he's employed a small crew of toilet paper launching stage hands, who also propel confetti, balloons, and inflate oddly chosen props into the audience. For the New Year's Eve show to ring in 2010, a team was hired to build a life-size house, with attention to fine details, on the stage at Chicago's Congress Theatre. Described as the craziest house party ever, Girl Talk continues to please live audiences as the mass of sweaty bodies at his shows continually grows. Touring highlights from the last couple of years include the Vancouver Olympics, large festivals such as Coachella, Austin City Limits, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, V-Fest, Sasquatch, Rothbury, Monolith, Planeta Terra, and trips to Australia, Japan, South America, Europe, and Mexico.
Earlier this year, Girl Talk finally took a break from touring, festival dates, and college shows, in order to create an album that is being released immediately after its completion. While posting the album as a free download on the Illegal Art label's site allows All Day to reach his fanbase quickly and with minimal cost, Gillis spent more time on this album than any previous release and considers it the most fully realized and evolved manifestation of the Girl Talk aesthetic.