Welcome to a fresh edition of our mix roundup, bringing you the latest and greatest blends at the hands of some of the best selectors out there.
February saw VTSS call down an intergalactic thunderstorm for Discwoman while Mor Elian and Hodge each tapped into the zeitgeist in their own way. Sybil brought the heart rate almost to a flatline and King Midas Sound swallowed us whole in yawning darkness. We also select the first of a new official mix series available from Beats in Space, helmed by Japanese selector Powder. Its inclusion here, like Leon Vynehall’s DJ Kicks last month, is yet more proof of the continued appetite for a format – official mix CDs – the internet was supposed to bury.
PowderPowder in Space
Tim Sweeney’s canonical radio show Beats in Space enters the world of label-cleared mix CDs with Powder, her naturally conceptual approach to mixes making her an inspired first choice. For this, her focus is on patterns, which are “always ancillary and never playing the leading part of things, and the patterns themselves recognize this fact and act low-key.” The resulting body is at once gripping and shrouded, never shouting for attention but invariably holding it. Certain tracks like Tiago’s Roy Brooks and Ancient Echoes by The Sun God act like snags to pull you in just as the mind wanders, and Powder’s glistening New Tribe serves as an irresistible centrepiece. If Powder in Space is to set the standard for the series, we welcome it with a happy heart.
SybilDeep Mind Music 5
Sybil’s irregular Deep Mind Music series of ambient mixes took on its first guest at the beginning of the year with fellow Siren DJ, Moonbow, launching it as a full-fledged entity. Back to Sybil, ambient sets are an increasing part of her repertoire and each announced set and entry is as welcome as the ensuing calm. That this was recorded on Corsica Studios’ mighty room one soundsystem, at one of its biggest parties, Make Me, is symbolic of the chill out room’s return to club consciousness. We are fully here for it.
Discwoman celebrate the latest addition to their roster with this breakneck mix from VTSS. Her release last year on SPFDJ’s nascent Intrepid Skin imprint was a very impressive debut, or as one unnamed artist put it, “sound[ed] like the future of techno”. A stretch perhaps, but this is a killer example of the hard, gothy sounds that have put her name and that of Brutaż (the nomadic Warsaw party where she is a resident) on everybody’s lips. Strap in for this one.
Crack Magazine has always been impressed by how DJs like Objekt and DJ Bus Replacement Service mix polyrhythms and styles – it’s something that few DJs manage to pull off well or with style. DJ Marcelle joins Objekt and Bus Replacement Service in the top tier: she mixes with three turntables and far from blending 4/4, the ingredients are a thick stew of cosmic sounds, staccato rhythms and all manner of textures. She tends not to play too many shows but has recorded a couple of sets recently, including this one. Not to be missed.
King Midas SoundEchoes of Solitude
King Midas Sound return to the blue-black pools from whence they drew their latest album, Solitude, for a complementary mix. Softer than the album, it’s the aural equivalent of warming up after surfacing from Solitude’s icy depths. The motif is made clearest with Tom O’Bedlam’s reading of Bukowski’s The Bluebird, a poem Roger Robertson reimagines on their second album, while a similarly haunting echoes permeate this hour of blended sounds. A stunning accompaniment to a stellar piece of work.
Lafawndah’s music challenges and delights in equal measure, so the prospect of her dropping by the Lot Radio studios in New York to share some of the tracks she has been bumping recently was always going to excite. Sometimes cinematic or soothing, sometimes tough and jarring, but always a healthy way into left-field, it’s a scatterbrained journey through woozy hip-hop, diamante glitches, arty goth-dub and whatever else besides, plus an outing for Nicolette’s Dove Song, one of the weirdest classic club bangers ever.
Hodge is one of Bristol’s finest exports of recent years, and like so many of his peers from the city, he occupies a space at the razor’s edge of UK techno. Speaking to Groove, he confesses that he finds recording a mix “an absolute nightmare” and ends up doing several takes, “so the end result is tunes I could listen to over and over” – lucky for us. With a tracklist reading like a who’s who of in-demand producers and some obligatory unreleased tracks from friends, Hodge delivers a high-definition snapshot of club sounds today.
Cotch InternationalLyl Radio
South London’s Cotch International step up for Lyl Radio to showcase some new label gems as well an insight into the mish-mash of global party bangers that make up the label and party’s raison d’etre. Representing worldwide music is something a lot of people stake a claim to but Cotch’s commitment to the offshoots, cross-pollinations and other musical accidents makes them worthy of their name. Lock in to this set on Lyl Radio for an idea of just what that sounds like. Bonus points for playing the Ocarina of Time-sampling Nemo by Sam Wise.
Mor ElianMixmag In:Session
Mixmag’s In Session series does a good job of satisfying the wide range of dance music fans the magazine caters for – no easy feat. After a run of relatively big names for big rooms like Eats Everything, they swerve a little with Mor Elian. She splits her time between Berlin and LA, running a label, making jewelry and playing all over the world, so in all likelihood her workrate will land her in those same big rooms eventually. For now listen as she contructs the classically intensifying set through snappy and rumbling breaks to an extra-terrestrial culmination.
Turtle BuggRA Podcast 664
The Thing in Brooklyn is one of the infuriating places on the planet. Or, if you are differently inclined, it is a utopia of endless possibilities. Having worked at the junk shop with the cavernous basement full of records for many years, Turtle Bugg probably falls in the latter camp. His digger’s spirit is as evident in this mix as his Jersey/New York upbringing, both converging in the funk-indebted blends of house and techno that have become his calling card. His RA Beautifully crafted and imbued with a soul often absent from a lot of dance music. We suggest you dive in.