Vakula grew up in Konotop, a provincial city in northern Ukraine, but cut his teeth in the Moscow underground. It was here, at the tail-end of the 90s, that the man born Mikhaylo Vityk established his Detroit-indebted style when access to records was still limited, and ultimately becoming a resident at the famous Propaganda Club. It proved a foundational period and though the clubbing scenes in both Russia – and indeed Ukraine – have moved on since then, Vityk has remained a vital force, his wide-open taste (his response to growing up in an isolated town) and assiduous approach to record collecting standing him in good stead.
Now he brings his know-how to a new generation, playing clubs like Kiev’s much-loved Closer, as well as locking in slots at Dekmantel and New York’s Output. He’s also a hugely prolific producer, steering through styles, approaches and ethnic touch points – the folk music of his native Ukraine remains a key influence. You can detect this pluralist approach in Vityk’s exclusive playlist, featuring the likes of Roedelius, David Byrne and Joël Fajerman. There’s no theme here, but as always with Vakula, the playlist has its own internal logic.
Vakula plays at Lisb-On, Portugal, 31 August to 2 September