Welcome back to our monthly round-up of the finest mixes to be found across the web.
This month we’ve been gassed by not one but two outstanding jungle sets, from a Bristol perspective on the one hand and the Netherlands on the other. We’ve also got two sets of full of cosmic disco and house by two DJs at opposite ends of the climb to the top, though neither disappoint. With angular sounds from South Africa, new faces of 140bpm and woozy ambient for the downtime thrown in too, there’s plenty to explore.
Rose BonicaUpperberry Vibrations
Named for a particularly hardy type of rose, the Cape Town producer Rose Bonica wears her chosen name snugly, blending a penchant for tender melodies with rattling, cacophonous drums. This set lays these traits out succinctly, her own tracks prime examples of the shifts between jagged texture and bursts colour that make it so captivating. Check her label Wet Dreams for more SA music of this ilk.
Orpheu The WizardThe Ransom Note Mix
You’d be hard-pressed to find someone more influential in Amsterdam’s rise than Orpheu The Wizard, who through co-founding Red Light Radio and affiliation with institutions like Dekmantel has been spreading his love for oddball tunes rooted in intergalactic experimentation far and wide. His R$N mix, like any of his sets, contains plenty of obscure and out-there tracks, never once relinquishing its irresistible groove. A master at work.
One of the original members of the Honey Soundsystem in San Francisco, Bézier is arguably the lesser-known of the core crew. His tracks and releases, however, are some of the most thrilling to come out on both the Honey label and the ever-impressive Dark Entries too, living on the darker outskirts of Italo and Hi-NRG. This set is something of a statement given the platform, and with it he demonstrates a welcome disregard for genre, looking for consistency in its sweaty, murky moods instead.
Elsa HewittSelf Portrait
One of Brownswood’s Future Bubblers alumni shares an hour of her own unreleased tracks for Stamp the Wax’s excellent ‘Self Portrait’ series. Hooks and footholds of definite melody float by in a woozy soup, like bursts of focus from a distracted mind. Hewitt’s voice swims naturally among her hazy landscapes and the lack of structure encourages a subconscious acceptance of the sounds and textures. Catch her at Gilles Peterson’s We Out Here festival this summer.
Sicaria SoundHyp 393
Sicaria Sound send up a blistering set all but cementing their place as torch-bearers for modern dubstep and other 140. The pair have been much hyped after their appearance at the second Bass & Percs Boiler Room party earlier in the year and last weekend they closed the Gully Blues stage at Glastonbury festival along with several other young champions of bass-driven music. Inventive sound-design, balanced light and dark, and beats too hard to ignore are the watchwords.
Shanti Celeste & Chris FarrellJungle & Hardcore Special for NTS
From their time together at Idle Hands and the years spent running Brstl, Shanti Celeste and Chris Farrell clearly have natural chemistry behind the decks. They are also two of the deepest musical scholars to come out of Bristol in the past few decades. Add that together with the promise of two hours of jungle, and you get one of the most riotous shows on NTS for some time.
The Leaf LibraryBandcloud Guest Mix
London ‘looping drone’ outfit The Leaf Library are a loose collective of musicians who make heart-wrenching ambient music, a sort of muzak for the womb. Their releases have appeared periodically in the outstanding mail-outs from Bandcloud, and here they supply a longer set of influences and peers. Put simply; it’s a beautiful hour of music that soothes without becoming stale.
Vio DJBump 'n' Flex
Vio DJ of Berlin contributes a headsy and eclectic mix for the good folks at C Minus in Kansas. Catch him on Cashmere Radio and on guest shows elsewhere in Europe as well as the party he curates, Leihhaus. Expect weird obscurities in boogie, house and Italo, with joyousness at every turn.
Solid BlakeLobster Theremin Podcast 086
By now, Solid Blake is one of the most respected purveyors of dark and doomy club sounds in Europe. Both as part of the now-defunct Apeiron Crew and alone she has played a big part in Copenhagen’s rise in reputation and is now regularly on bills at institutions all over the continent. Recorded mixes are always excitedly received, and this is no different: a journey through the booming breakbeats and electro wiggles she’s known for. Left turns and end to end dancefloor destroyers abound.
Coco BryceDummy Mix 554
This column is a bit of a sucker for era-specific jungle mixes, and every time we hear a new one we’re a little more blown away by the potency of the creativity on show during those early years in the 1990s. Coco Bryce has been in music since the mid-90s and his productions continue to mine that fertile ground while being decidedly forward-facing. His Dummy mix takes us back to 1992, just before jungle and happy hardcore split and both directions are still audible in the tunes. Heady days indeed.