ERSATZ is our new favourite trance deconstructionist
“I think it’s a weakness in music to explicitly discuss politics, as opposed to reacting abstractly and poetically. PC Music or Arca, let’s say, are both political but in a beautiful and expressive way.” Speaking to London producer ERSATZ, it’s clear that he’s serious about his craft. “My music is about London. From production tropes I’ve adopted to folk music genres endemic to this city, or the ephemeral non-musical events we hear daily on public transport, or even the memories and fantasies I’m reminded of as I cycle along local streets. It’s all impacted me.”
The end result of this lifetime absorbing the metropolis is a considered but deliberately assertive sound – glossy club soundscapes morphed into murky, cheerless reflections of a grey future. “I tend to envisage the perfect setting for how this music will be shared as bass laden amplification in a dark, drunk basement somewhere in London. That is where I’ve had my most inexplicably transcendent moments and I’d love to offer that to other people”. His latest release with London creative collective PLZ Make It Ruins is available to buy on a sliver bullet-shaped USB drive housed in a velvet carry pouch. Like PC Music and perhaps the NON Collective, there is an abrasive hyperrealism to the PLZ aesthetic which is highly prevalent in ERSATZ’s shellacked club rattlers.
Where PC Music use populist commercialism as their imagined dystopia, ERSATZ and his peers use the dancefloor. Like Evian Christ and, more recently, Lorenzo Senni, the “rave” becomes mythologised – a prism through which real-life can be viewed and challenged. Through their releases and their GÆZ club-night in London, the crew are hoping to “represent confidence and flexibility”. While some post-everything art units can come across sneery and vacuous, ERSATZ and the PLZ collective are honing a platform for statements best served “loud AF”.