Monday, March 26, 2007

Machines Playlist 24/3/07 & Competition & Other Musings

A good show last night. No guests but after the shenanigans of the night before at The Junction I wasn't really in the mood to interact. I think I spoke a bit too much over and in between tracks, and my voice definitely sounded a bit huskier than usual, but apart from that a highly enjoyable couple of hours. The night before had seen the arrival of “Kill 'Em All Let God Sort It (or is it them?) Out” in Cambridge. I arrived during just before The Righteous Rockers took to the main stage. Before them some band were playing. The first thing that struck me was how the sound had improved since my last visit. Anyway there I was busy lapping up The Righteous Rockers dj set when Harry Sword commented on how shit the sound was, and when I said it was a vast improvement on the last time I'd been, and how I was enjoying the music, that too was derided for being cheesy by Priory resident The Fish.

The upstairs room opened at 11:30 for The Priory and was rammed from the start. I wa up there for the duration making occasional sorties downstairs. At 2 I wandered downstairs for the rest of the night and Erol Alkan was opening his set. First track I caught was “Let's Dance” by David Bowie, causing me to rewind a couple of decades to when The Tube played the video of said track as a “worldwide exclusive. It was a bit of a big deal a it was something of a change of direction/beginning of a new era (the end?) for Bowie. I always preferred his Iggy Pop penned follow up “China Girl” though.

Anyway, here's the playlist for Saturday's show:

Auf Dem Hot (Freaks Funk That Disco 2006 re-do) – Kalabrese (Stattmusik)
Disco Sick – Alexander Robotnik (Hot Elephant Music)
Temptation – GummiHZ (Mobilee)
Stolen From The Jake (Droido remix) – Gary Beck (Fine Art Recordings)
La Fee Verte – Daso (Connaisseur)
Merman – Sian (Karmarouge)
Cuckoo (Motorcity Soul remix) – Brett Johnson (Freerange)
Cult Copy (Dexter's Dikke Cult Copy mix) – Aardvarck (Rush Hour)
Eirtanz – Touane (LAN)
Summer In The Wood – Mudd (Rong Music)
Hybrid – Mauler (Trapez Ltd)
Jewelsweet Grove (Kiki remix) – Jesse Somfay (Audio Invaders)

Ralph Lawson Fabric Radio Mix:

Escape – Paul Woolford aka Bobby Peru (20/20 Vision)
It's So (Will Saul remix) – Content (Simple Records)
Metro Transit – Sebo K (Get Physical)
Let Me Dance – Martin Landsky (Poker Flat)
Title Unknown (Jesse Rose remix) – Soho Dolls (Label Unknown)
Pecan – Microfunk (Remote Area)
Gravity (Peter Dildo remix) – Sasse (Moodmusic)
8 Bit – Mike Shannon (Cynosure)

And the competition question, to win two copies of the excellent new Mudd LP “Claremont 56” (Rong Music) is the stunningly simple

Which city is the home to Rong Music?

Please reply by leaving a comment on this blog and don't forget to leave all contact details. Alternatively, you can reply to or to The competition will be kept open until the 10/4.
And finally, as mentioned before there is to be a party at The Coldham's Lane warehouse complex/industrial estate/fucking impossible place to find your way out of in the middle of the night when you're pissed. I received this email from Mr Tom Hallmark towards the end of last week, and it's so dramatic I just had to reproduce it word for word.

"Yes it true, Flex will happen on July the 14th Hosted
by me Davo and Pickles. Mr C has confirmed (payment
being a mattress), Le Jockey, Alex pickles + Tom
Hallmark back to back, Ian P, not sure if Mark Henning
is booked yet, also trying to get Jane Fitz of peg
down but shes unsure of her commitments.
All the best mate

And before I forget, another reminder that the latest Horseplay Records party at The Box Tree is this coming Saturday 31/3, featuring yours truly, Sam I Am, Dave Kelso, Tom Akam and of course Le Jockey. TTFN.

Oh, and another thing. Reading matter at the moment is the excellent
“Paris The Secret History” by Andrew Hussey. Andrew obviously has a liking for the seedy side of life and wastes no opportunity to include sex, drugs and as many grisly execution details as he can in his wonderful tome. He acknowledges a debt to Peter Ackroyd's “London The Biography” and having read the latter I can say that “Paris . . .” so far stands up well to it. Excellent stuff and just the thing to take the edge off all the miserable twats on my bus every morning.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Machines Are Funky: 24/3/07

Something I don't normally do is preview my radio show on this blog, normally because I forget, so in an attempt to remedy this, here's a blurb for Saturday's broadcast.

On this week's emission I'll be giving two lucky listeners the chance to win Mudd's new cd on Rong Music “Claremont 56” and featuring a Ralph Lawson Fabric mix. As well as this , you'll be exposed to plenty of wonderful new music, the like of which I can scarcely contemplate.

Check the 209 or show link at the side. The Lawson mix will be the Fabric radio promo one. I wasn't too impressed with the actual release, which wasn't bad but just didn't stand out. I've also recently taken delivery of "Get Lost 2" mixed by Jamie Jones on Crosstown Rebels and "Boogie Biytes 3" by Modeselektor on BPitch. The Jamie Jones is definitely more up my particular strasse, but more on that sometime soon.

Will be checking out Erol Alkan and local heroes The Priory at "Kill 'em All . . . " at The Junction this Friday 23/3, and playing the latest Horseplay Records party at The Box Tree on the 31/3 along with Le Jockey, Sam I Am, Tom Akam and Dave Kelso. I've also just heard that there will be another party at the famed Coldham's Lane warehouse on the 14/7, nearly a year after the last one. DJs on the night will include Le Jockey, Mark Henning and Mr C (apperently becuase he's bought a mattress off the venue owner and decided the best payback was to spin). I'll believe it when I see it, but anyone with more authoratitiive knowledge on this matter is welcome to leave a comment.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Monday, March 12, 2007

The Bottom Heavy Jinx

The Bottom Heavy jinx struck again last night. I've now missed the last two due to events beyond my control. I suppose last night was in my control, but when you've just become a father and your partner has the impression (rightly or wrongly) that she's doing everything and you're gallivanting around town without a care in the world, discretion is called for. I hope you had a good birthday Largo. Sorry I couldn't be there. So no photos of Trevor Rockliffe, etc , on the blog today. Still, not to worry. I've got another ancient Mayan carving from the Bruges Museum of Chocolate for you.

Been listening to loads of stuff recently. Very impressed with “Claremont 56” by Mudd aka Paul Murphy on Rong. Opened the show with a track from it last night. Psychedelic disco/soul is how I'd describe it. If I was a wine critic, I'd be saying stuff like “I'm getting The Mamas and The Papas on my palate, with an explosion of The Byrds combined with Arthur Russell . . .” which is nice. I've just reviewed “Fuse Presents Steve Bug” on Music Man for Resident Advisor. If they accept it it'll be linked on the right. If not I'll put the review up here within the next few days. It's very good by the way. Got myself a copy of the new “Get Lost 2” mixed by Jamie Jones on Crosstown Rebels, more on that later, and Fabric have just sent me the new “Fabric Live 33” mixed by Spank Rock. A good few days intensive listening coming up.

It's been a lovely day here inna Babraham. So lovely in fact that I'm going to barbecue half a leg of lamb and make a gratin Dauphinoise to accompany it. Mustn't forget the red wine. How's about a Bordeaux 2005? Still a bit young, but widely regarded as one of the best years in living memory; no such luck. It's a Corbieres from Budgens in Sawston. A few more days like today and little Marcel's crying will be easier to bear.

This week's show was originally going to feature Kittenflux and Subculture stalwart Dave Kelso. He ran into a spot of bother on the day of the show though, so Ed Sexton of Badger Attack bravely stepped into the spotlight at short notice. Thanks again, Ed.

The first part of the show featured a two part interview with Ed.

Speilplatz – Mudd (Rong)
Material World – Comtron (Rush Hour)
Let Me Dance (Sebo K remix) – Martin Landsky (Poker Flat)
Revoltec – Sven Weissmann (Styrax Leaves)
Jazz – Brendan Moeller (Third Ear)
Flower – Fuckpony (Get Physical)
Dig Your Own Rave – Zander VT (Memo)
Berghain – Aril Brikha (Kompakt)
Verde Confeti (Pan Pot remix) – Damian Schwartz (CMYK)
Swoon (Shonky remix) – MIA (Substatic)

Ed's Mix (Badger Attack Fireside Favourites)

Scarlito – Mikael Weill (Karat)
Bash the Bishop – Sweet n' Candy (Dumb Unit)
Am I Bothered Though? - Mark Henning (Found Sound)
Ruby Darling – Mossa (Morris Audio)
Tanz der Polymere (Hemmann & Kaden remix) – Misc (Sender)
Black Worm – Funk d'Void & Phil Kieran (Soma)
Positive Education (Richie Hawtin's Stripped mix) – Slam (Soma)
Strip Down – Glimpse (Glimpse)
Two Bags of Grass – Loway (Dorigen Music)

Thanks also to Axel for being the Duty Manager at the studio for my show.

It's now about four hours later and I've just had dinner. The lamb was cooked to perfection and the gratin, despite having a bit too much liquid, was also very good. I'm sitting in front of the tv with
Marcel, who is starting to make gurgling noises, watching some football. I was playing the Jamie Jones mix cd and came downstairs a couple of tracks from the end, sounded good. Easy to hear/see why certain people in the know have compared him to Terry Francis. The Spank Rock cd is yer typical mash up. Well executed but not really my cup of tea. Some more detailed feedback to follow. Have a good week.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Stratospherik Chart

I thought I'd put a few words down about a new net label run out of Barcelona called “Stratospherik.” It's three releases old at the moment and while what it produces isn't necessarily ground breaking it's certainly good, deep techy house and absolutely gratis. The releases are, in chronological order:

In an Empty Room/Threshold – Clarke Cassidy
LaidMeBack/Dainty Day – Stratoliner
Mindnone/Nippondark – Clarke Cassidy

I'm a big fan of mood setting music that does exactly what it says on the tin, no strings attached. If you've ever wondered why, in The F Word, uberchef Gordon Ramsay almost always gets his arse kicked when he challenges someone to make a better dessert than him, it's because he insists on being too clever. He puts secret ingredients in his brownies that completely ruin the flavour and the expectation. He creates something else which, while tasting nice isn't what was wanted. I want my roast potatoes to be crispy on the outside, fluffy inside and seasoned simply with some sea salt, black pepper and maybe a little flat leaf parsley on top (oh, and don't forget to use goose or duck fat in the oven with them if available). I've never been able to understand most titles in techno or house. It's all about evocation I suppose, but I definitely think that Clarke Cassidy's first double header contains more than a hint of the words used. One of my favourite titles of any piece of music has to be “Condor to Malaga” by Jeff Mills. Whether the music fits the title or not, I feel like I'm flying over the Med when I listen to that track. Likewise, I'm having a dainty day when I listen to Sratoliner's track of the same name. The stylings are almost oriental in this one and it lays down a metronomic groove that takes it up a notch from it's predecessor “Laidmeback.” By the time we've got to the third release “Mindnone” we've come full circle and we're back with Mr Cassidy's kick drum. Listening to these three in order does give one a sense of symmetry. Stratoliner injects some uncertainty and drugginess into the proceedings and this flows over into “Mindnone” which is toughened up by an off key bass that harmonises with a disembodied vocoder. “Nippondark” is perhaps the most overtly sinister of all the tracks on offer here, with it's rumbling, industrial sub bass and busy Duracell bunny-like snare drum. You can find all these tracks here. I've no idea who made them, but that shouldn't stop any one wanting to inject their sets with some darkness from snapping them up pronto.

Here's a chart. Didn't have time to do one last month, what with babies being born and all that. Again, what you read about might not be amazingly recent, just the stuff that I'm playing at the moment.

My Rendition – The Martinez Brothers (Objektivity): I've written enough about this one already. Click on the link opposite to read my full Resident Advisor review.

Tranquillite – Jens Zimmermann (K2): A lot going on here, and a bit of a departure for K2. Disembodied Gregorian chants and a murkiness keep this one going through a miasma of unsettling but rhythmic percussion.

Whenever – Dolly la Parton (Bemysheep): First came across this one on the Marco Carola Fabric mix cd. It's Alex Under at the controls and the Robert Hood-like harmonics that he's taken a notch or two higher are dribbling in and out of the driving beat.

Czeslawa – Ben Klock (Ostgut Ton): The stamp of Robert Hood again, more noticeable on “Warszawa” than “Czeslawa.” It's debatable whether Klock and his ilk really realise that they are making something derivative (and I mean that in the nicest possible way) because this stuff sounds so fresh. “I remember (adopts the voice of a venerable old reptile) buying “Minimal Nation” on Axis in the mid 90s and they all thought I was mad.”

Dig Your Own Rave – Zander VT (Memo): Named after the legendary T Bar Sunday daytime knees up of the same name. Melancholy and optimistic simultaneously.

Galaxy 82 – Makossa & Megablast (GStone): Not an imprint that usually crosses my path, but I've got the good people at Phonica to thank for this one. Asking what a certain record on the wall was, I was given this to accompany it, as they were both from the same label. My original request didn't cut it, but this one more than does. An early evening crowd pleaser as well as and end of night floor shaker.

Alone on Mars – Redshape (Present): I'm really checking everything by Redshape at the moment and not being even slightly disappointed. Classy Detroit-inspired but entirely European techno. Not nosebleed but tear-jerking.

Housemusic/State of Mind – Motor City Soul (Lo Fi Stereo): Classy 21st Century house that houses more than it techs. “State of Mind” is the one for me. Underpinned by a bass line you've definitely heard somewhere before, a keyboard stabs away insistently bringing the track to a hands-in-the-air climax. Check the recent remixes for Fuckponydelic on Cocoon and for Dani Casarano on Connoisseur Superior which are both superb.

Viellees Canadiennes EP – Luci (Titbit): Montreal's Luci comes correct with a four track EP that peddles what is basicaly a leftfield version of what used to be called “funky house” but, thanks to K sounds a little bit more warped than your average four to the floor. This EP reminds me of Brett Johnson in parts and is suitably wonky enough to keep things interesting.

No Model No Tool – Luciano (Cadenza): Double pack from Luciano that contains something for everyone. It's the two elongated workouts “Keridos” and “Saulitude” that are the only ones I'm bothering with though. The smaller tracks on disc two all have their place, but would only work as layers on the dancefloor.