Diddy and Guy Gerber at their Miami listening party on Saturday. Photo credit: Robert Snow/Red Bull Guest House
After more than three years in the making, the most surprising musical collaboration of the year has come to fruition. 11:11, the collaborative album between hip-hop mogul Diddy and Israeli DJ Guy Gerber, is finally—finally!—completed. According to Gerber's press agent, the 11-track album will be released next month.
On Saturday evening last week, Gerber and Diddy threw a listening party for a small group of guests at the Red Bull Guest House. "I personally wanted to call it Ketamine," announced Diddy minutes after walking on stage to introduce the album—but the label wouldn't let him. He went on to praise Gerber for being the type of DJ who "plays what you need, not what you want." The unlikely pair's bromance was on full display. "I love you man," Diddy said while giving Gerber a clap on the back.
About the album, Diddy noted that it is an underground dance album, not an EDM album suited for the big stadium scene. "If you're looking for that big drop where you jump up and down like a pogo stick, this is not for you," he said.
The 11:11 album has been an object of fascination by the industry ever since reports surfaced several years ago that Gerber and Diddy were working together. Gerber, a big believer in occult practices and mysticism—his summer residency at Pacha Ibiza was called Wisdom of the Glove and referenced the Zoltar fortune telling machine—and all of that fueled the fire by shrouding the project in mystery. Even the album's title has a curious significance; according to New Age beliefs, 11:11 is an auspicious sign that signals the presence of spirits. (Don't ask.)
As for the music itself, the album cycled through minimal techno and Ibiza-style deep house, evoking Gerber's signature emotional swells and lush textures. Vocal samples by Diddy himself were sprinkled throughout, as were his masterful production techniques, and an emphasis on hi-fi textural dynamics gave it a hint of Nicolas Jaar.
At the end of the listening party, Lee Foss and Jamie Jones stepped up to the decks to close out the night. Diddy was digging all of it.
Watch out for THUMP's documentary on the relationship between Guy Gerber and Puff Daddy, out on May 11