Whether you’re prepping for the weekend ahead or still recovering from the last, we select the mixes you need in your life right now.
This month we were moved by onslaughts of heat of very different kinds from Kampire and Discwoman’s Shyboi, while re:ni and Ciel turn in fine justifications for their growing hype. On a left-field tip, look our for Susanna’s stunning collection of folk and the dizzying array of sounds LOFT laid down for our own series.
Asaf Samuel – Garzen Jukebox 13
Garzen is the Israeli label run by Red Axes, releasing an eclectic mixture bound by an intangible layer of sleaze: trashy glam, wigged-out chuggers and frenetic, grubby punk. Asaf Samuel is another from Israel who wanders a similar musical path, pushing oddball pop and doomy ambient via his own Malka Tuti label. The two entities combine here as Asaf gives an impressive showcase of the threads that bind underground music in Tel Aviv today.
Ciel – ZeeZout Podcast 059
Ciel features in this round-up again after last month’s guest slot on Noods Radio. Where the jungle focus of that show was something of a one-off, this ZeeZout podcast is more typical of the Toronto DJ’s approach. That’s not to say it’s any less exhilarating, shifting in pace and feel with a weightless ease. Ragga basslines, trance arpeggios, low-slung keys and classic vocal tracks all swim together in this living, breathing swamp of a mix.
Kampire – Sounds of Sónar
Kampire throws down an hour of undeniable heat in the lead up to her set at Sónar by Day. Hailing from Kampala in Uganda and a core member of the roster at the skyrocketing Nyege Nyege collective, Kapmire shells the dancefloor heaters of consistent intensity, with slick blends of dancehall, RnB and bass-led music from across the African continent. Gear up for your weekend.
re:ni – Air Mix 013
re:ni’s gigging schedule continues to ramp up, and as she continues to tick off some of the UK’s best and most beloved parties like Whities and Livity Sound, her assured mastery of a distinctive breaksy repertoire ever grows. Stepping up for Happy Skull’s Air Mix series, re:ni’s latest recorded set blends electro, garage, breaks and techno to slot seamlessly into the Bristol Label’s aesthetic, which itself moves from strength to strength.
Leif – Blowing Up the Workshop 85
Until My Heart Stops honcho Leif adds a captivating lushness to everything he touches, and revered sets at Freerotation and his excellent 2015 LP Dinas Oleu have carved out his deserved reputation. The latter’s name means ‘city of light’ in Welsh, and this mix for the superlative Blowing Up the Workshop series begins with a similar twinkle. Thereafter a mesmeric construction builds slowly, sparse yet warming, into a breathtakingly beautiful hour of music.
Midland – NTS Radio 28.02.18
Such a joyous mix from one the UK’s finest. It’s something of a curiosity that Midland hasn’t made more radio appearances, and of all the guises he wears as a musician, he is at his most endearing when he is as eclectic as he was for this show. Plenty of sludgy, sexy EBM, Balearic meandering and tracks from the first Intergraded release are here, which, together with his ease with a radio mic make for an engaging and personal couple of hours. Look out for a couple of tracks from the amazing Covered in Gloria compilation too.
LOFT – Crack Mix 197
Beginning with the strangled yelps of the Cardigans’ Lovefool pitched up and twisted into a gurgling menace, LOFT sets about crafting a sense of heady tranquillity, smashing together the concussive and violent with long soothing sighs of relief. The mix reaches a zenith when a robotic vocal recites abstract musings atop the screech and hiss of feedback, turning from sweetness and devotion to darkening obsession. Emerging from their dense musical thicket at the mixes end, the watery echoes of Rihanna’s Diamonds still ringing in your ears, you’ll want to turn around, and dive back in.
Shyboi – RA Podcast 615
Full on techno madness from the Jamaican artist. Talking to RA in the accompanying interview, she revealed this mix was recorded during a late night/early morning pocket during which she had been waking and recording, which goes some way to explaining the towering intensity of the podcast. A stated godly ambition (“Let there be light” growls a vocal snippet at the introduction) is vigorously met as thunder claps belonging to Zeus himself start to rain down, before hurtling to a trance-infected peak with apocalyptic bell tolls ringing above the din. So much fun.
Nathan Fake – Dekmantel Podcast 170
With his Dekmantel entry, Nathan Fake treads the familiar path from ethereal wooze to pointed body music. Touching base with the pillars of IDM, Aphex Twin and Ceefax Acid Crew, on whose shoulders his own works tends to be built, it is the quasi dubstep of Pev’s classic Roll With the Punches that marks the intensity shift. The set’s strengths lie in what follows, as Fake’s edits and unreleased pieces from friends shimmer in the Janus-faced style he epitomises, pounding away yet strangely cushioned.
Susanna – FACT Mix 644
An hour of visceral beauty. Having collaborated with Jenny Hval a few years ago, Susanna exists at the pin-point where traditional folk and modern experimentation meet. Right from the off, with a sharp steeliness cutting through sweet sounds, this mix takes hold like a siren’s call, leading the listener deep into the black forest of Susanna’s musical map. Steel-eyed chill and a deeply buried warmth intertwine throughout like two sides of an irresistible coin.