Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Zodiac Cartel - Klappyn

As promised a week or so ago, it's with great pleasure that we can serve up the second tracks from the forthcoming Zodiac Cartel single, due for release on U&A on 27th October, exclusively at Beatport.

Another belting slice of jackin' house with a less sledgehammer and more funk in it's techno-boots.

Riva Starr : September 2008 Mixup

1) Riva Starr-La Conga (Dirtybird)

2) Riva Starr- Freedom (White)

3) Riva Starr- Squash (Made To Play)+ Winx- Don't Laugh (Nervous)

4) Riva $ Vs. Nick Cave - Black Betty (White)

5) Riva Starr - Snatch! (Made To Play)

6) Riva Starr- I Jack U (Southern Fried)

7) Riva Starr - Maria (Kindisch)

8) Radioclit - Secousse - Riva Starr rmx (Mental Groove)

9) Malente & Dex- Hyperactive- Riva Starr rmx Feat. Jammer & Frisco (Exploited Ghetto rec)

10) Riva Starr – Jack My Bell (Southern Fried)

11) FatBoy Slim Vs. Riva $ - Rockafella Starr (White)

12) Riva Starr – Riva's Snake –Bart B More rmx (White)

13) Funkagenda- Afterclub- Riva Starr rmx (Toolroom)

14) Stefano Miele-Kewok (daniel Haaksmaan rmx) white

15) Diplo Wassup Wassup' feat Rye Rye - Bart B More Remix (Mad Decent)

16) Daniel Haaksmaan-Who's Afraid of Rio (Riva Starr rmx) Man Rec

17) Mescal Kid-Magic (Size)

18)Rhumba Macumba voice tool

19) Oliver $ - Funk Mundial (Man Rec)

DOWNLOAD Riva Starr : September 2008 Mashup

Monday, 29 September 2008

Saint Petersburg (& the Tear-Gas incident)

morning had begun badly. The alarm had gone off late (6am as opposed to 5.30) and I was racing headlong down the M20 towards London with sleep still nestling in my eyelids and the ghostly dream of coffee many miles ahead of me. The ipod, hardwired into the car system is cranking out some of the new edits I've done of late, & subconsciously I'm already at work, analyzing the mixdowns with a fresh slant, deliberating on how to adapt them next time I free up some studio time. I'm going to be on time, no doubt, but living so far away from the airport means that you have to factor in the straight-up randomness of the M25 and leave plenty of time.

I meet up with Ben (Rogue Element) at Heathrow as we're scheduled on the same (indirect) flights to St. Petersburg, but already I've been shifting uncomfortably in my seat in a packed coffee house, watching a stubborn victorian fog enveloping the airport. A glance at the flight display. 80% of flights delayed by an average of 90 minutes, ours included. Connections will be missed in Frankfurt. "They'll put you on the 5.55 at Frankfurt sir". This means a 4-hour layover and arrival at 10.30pm local time .... as it is, we don't even leave Heathrow until 1.45pm and it already feels like we're halfway to Australia.

It's around 11pm when we arrive in this beautiful Russian city, but Ben is due on in under an hour & a half, and with a 30 minute drive to the hotel, and another 20 to the venue, there's enough time to drop bags, mentally note the contents of the minibar & head to the venue.

The venue is a giant & cavernous uber-Soviet exercise in super-sizing, all bare concrete & marble. Whilst the main hall would comfortably hold 6,000 people, we are playing in the vast entrance hall, which itself holds close to 2,000 at a guess, and the atmosphere in there is properly lively. Matt Cantor holds court with a set of pure bombastic badness - a carefree throwdown of bootlegs and gnarly thrash that veers from the disasterous (2 Unlimited Bootleg) to the magnificent (Fatboy Slim's original Renegade Master mix ... haven't heard that in, er, forever, but full-bore mosh-pitting ensues) to the sublime (finishing with a Ray Charles classic).

After a rockin' set from Meat Katie (video above) I play out the night at 4.30am and I'm pretty pleased with my set & holding the floor to the death. However, at one point I dropped a particular track that I'd been having one or two doubts about, arrangement-wise, and literally half of the crowd had disappeared when I looked up. It wasn't a 'I'll get my coat' moment, more a case of them having evapourated into thin air. Suddenly I felt like I'd smoked a pack of 20 & had something caught in the back of my throat, and this lasted until the end of my set just after 6am. It transpired that a fight had broken out, and someone had let off a Tear Gas canistor, hence the mass evacuation.

To my great surprise, Mark, Marcello (Plaza Da Funk) and Ben were still upstairs in the VIP area ... surprised because each time we asked for a drink, they'd bring half a pint of vodka or whisky, and a coke chaser, and they'd been mopping up everything that came their way for the last 5 hours. Despite Mark's best efforts to persuade us to indulge in the breakfast ("they'll bring us wine man" ... "it's a fucking breakfast buffet, man - they don't DO wine") we slunk off for a drunken 3 hour doze before heading off to face the long journey home.

Friday, 26 September 2008

The Universal Note

My speakers are ringing and my ears are blown. I'm livin kush at some dolls' afterhours. I'm sprawled out on a perfectly manicured back lawn somewhere in a suburban maze, a labyrinth of an american dream. and what was that George Carlin said? "You have to be asleep...". But more than that, i'm thinking about sound waves. Some believe that soundwaves never truly dissipate. That they echo into eternity, piling up on one another, every sound ever made from the bang up until now. What a cacophony that must be.

Some (and I) believe that the earth resonates at F#. That sacred sites around the world are accoustically tuned to amplify this universal note. But have you heard it on a moog, tonally augmented from decades of abuse and neglect, then trashed through a stomp box? Not very sacred, and probably not the direction the conductor originally envisioned either, but infectious nonetheless. Fair enough.

Sometimes I really trip on the idea of vinyl. I can't get my head around it. Music is etched - notes and ideas, passion and feeling, into grooves on an acetate platter. And seriously, I've read the manual, I know what's happening ...it's just one of those things that seems like magic to me. I look at the vinyl I've released, that I've framed and placed on a wall, doomed to live without its purpose simply because it's mine, and I'm overwhelmed by the thought that a simple beat, originated in my head one lonely night has traveled the world over. This is my connection, my inner child manifested as a loud, raccous extrovert. And I'm left to wonder about the strength of the connections we now create in the digital divide that paves the way for creative expression in this age.

Remix Radiohead's Reckoner

After the insane response they got from the Nude remix stems and the site that was dedicated to the remixes...
[Unique visitors: 6,193,776, Page Views: 29,090,134, Hits: 58,340,512, Bandwidth: 10.666 Terabytes, Number of mixes: 2,252, Number of votes: 461,090, Number of track listens: 1,745,304] ... Radiohead thought it only fair to do the same with a tune that at least is in 4/4 - and thus was born the Reckoner Remix project. You can get the stems (the different instruments/elements) from here (itunes)

Sample, cut, take the sounds, whatever. Play it in a club. Or your room. Then if you want you can upload your finished mixes to
http://www.radioheadremix.com and be judged by everyone else.

To start things off they asked unknowns
James Holden and Diplo to do their versions.

So, if remixing be your ting, look no further & get cracking!

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Hijack - September Mix '08

HiJack's September Mix (zShare)

01. Blaze - Do You Remember House (Solid Groove Accapella)
02. Dave Basek & Phil Smart - Smoke Yourself (Consistent Dub)

03. Twocker - Ruffneck (Riva Starr Remix)

04. Jesse Rose & Sinden - Me Mobile (Duckbeats Remix)

05. Oliver $ - Hot Flash Volume 3

06. Gutterpunk - Up 2 11 (The Yank Remix)

07. Hustle & Flow - Don't Mess With Us (TJR Remix)
08. Liam Vizzle - That Banana Track (HiJack Remix)
09. Jak Z - Cutie Pie
10. Dope Freq’N’C - Kickin’ Da Funk (HiJack Remake)

11. Samim - The Lick (Derrick Carter Remix / HiJack Edit)

12. Modeler - Getts Down

13. Ruffcut - Fazzjunk

14. Southside - Jack (Natty Jack Remix)

15. Moston & Malente - Do The Right Thing (Clark Able Remix)
16. Dirka Dirka - Stretch Out

17. Blatta & Inesha - Blow Up (HiJack Remix)

18. Tommy Sunshine - Limit Of Your Mind (Nic Sarno Remix / HiJack Edit)

19. Tom EQ - Off Limits

20. Bart B More - Killing It
21. The Sound Republic - TSR Macromix (Jacob London Remix)
22. Duke Dumont - Feltham

23. Crookers - Unknown

24. Larry T - I Love U (The Bulgarian Remix)

25. Wongo - The Buff Up

26. Groove Allegiance - Ramp It Up (HiJack Remix)
27. Lee Mortimer - Moaning & Groaning

28. Rene Van Munster - Grasscourt Blues

29. Clark Able - Back In The Bronx (HiJack Remix)
30. Solid Groove vs. Brabe (HiJack Bootleg)

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Burning Man : The Lee Coombs Story 2008 (part three)

Friday – 29th August

Friday was a blur and I slept for most of it.

Night time came and I had 2 more gigs. The first one was @ Tantalus which was way out on the playa, 1000m north of the man I think... There were 2 massive art cars, The Garage Mahal and Shagadelica buses meeting and joining their systems together, this is always a great laugh and really something that only burning man can do well.

We all had a good time grooving around in the playa. I got to play a totally different kind of set opting for a more low slung tripped out groove in my music, the only way to have it out in the open desert I think.

The next gig was at Nexus which was closer to Opulent Temple, this is run by the Santa Cruz posse and they do it up well. They play all sorts there but their big sound right now is all the west coast glitchy grimey dub step. Bassnectar and the Glitch Mob are their biggest names. It’s seriously underground and always a solid vibe. But guess what? I got stuck on the Shagadelica bus out at Tantalus and totally missed my spot. Bummer I was really looking forward to that one too. Next year hopefully…

Saturday – 30th August

Saturday was what you call a ‘White Out’, this is a huge dust storm that gets everywhere, I mean everywhere! These are the moments that decide whether you are a true Burner or not. It was painful. There was about 8 hours or so of wind and dust. If you don’t have an RV you have walk around with a mask, goggles and hat on. Your tent gets full up with playa dust and everything you have brought to BM gets trashed. The only thing to do is sit in a car or someone else’s RV if you can.

I had stayed on the other side of the playa Friday night with Kim and my only salvation was all the way across the other side. There is no way of getting there in the storm because you can’t see more than a few meters in front of you. It is very dangerous to try and go somewhere because if you get lost you are basically up shit creek!
Kim was in a Burning Man fashion show at about 6 pm with some of the people we were camping with on that side. I have to say this was a lot of fun but when I looked round at the people who were watching it all I saw were burners who looked like they had been sand blasted and thrown out the back door. Very surreal but cool at the same time.

The dust storm went on so long that they were talking about cancelling the Burn.

This is the highlight of Saturday night and everyone comes to the playa to watch it - about 50,000 people. Luckily the storm calmed down and disappeared when it started to get dark. I wasn’t DJing and had a night off, Saturday is by far the craziest night with everybody having been there for at least 3 days by now, some about 2 weeks! Kim and I were travelling home on Sunday so we took it easy and slept in the tour bus. At last some comfort! Saturday day time was harsh to say the least!!

Sunday – 31st August

So it was time to go, it is always a bit sad leaving BM as you really get adjusted and acclimated to being there, you meet wonderful friends new and old, and have some of the most exhilarating experiences in your life. We packed up and picked up all our MOOP (this is strictly a leave no trace festival, everything must leave with you including your cigarette buts, dirty water etc).

We had a flight out of Reno @ 7.40 PM. So when we got stuck in the line to get out of BM we soon realised that we were going to miss that! It was a bit stupid really thinking that we could drive out and catch a flight in the same day. It took 4 ½ hours to get to the exit gate in the searing heat of the afternoon.
The only thing to do is to get to Reno and find a hotel. Guess what? All booked up on Sunday night. This was a real shame as we could have stayed for the Temple Burn which is the last thing to get burnt on Sunday night. This really is a special thing because it’s a shrine to all the people that you miss. Our close friend and San Fran ‘Legend’ Otto Schutt had just past away with Cancer and there was a huge amount of people staying to give their respects for him.

Monday – 1st September

We had a flight out of Reno on Tuesday so we checked into the Sierra Nevada Hotel and Casino for the night. You can get a room for $49 if you book it right and it is nice with everything you can imagine, especially a pool. So there was an after burn party at the pool put on by some of the Nexus friends. As I was there I offered my services and played the end set of the day. It was loads of fun playing and hanging with friends that had decided that they just didn’t want to go home yet, and definitely the best way to become acclimated into the real world again…even if you are doing shots of Patron all day long.

Can’t wait till next year!
Thanks to all for tuning in & for sHack for coding all the postings up!

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Baobinga on zer mix ...

Download Baobinga Mix (Sept '08)
(tracklisting in the zip)

Beatport Chart Roundup #001

A new series for you on the blog ... thought it would be a nice touch to post up a list of DJ's Beatport Charts that are floating our boats here on the blog. DJs wanting to be considered for the list, drop us a line in the CBox to the right.

Calvertron 10 for September

Prok & Fitch September Sensations

Perc Chart - September

Deadmau5's Decibel 2008 Top Ten

Bart B More's Get Up Chart

Wonk's Fidget Smidget September Hot Picks

Martin Eyerer Pix

Joseph Capriati

Delon & Dalcan

Moston & Malente

Broombeck :: DJ Mix Sept '08

I've been really digging the Broombeck stuff for a while now & for those into the techy sound of N.O.W. he's definitely one to follow very carefully over the coming months. Here's a promo DJ mix for you ....

Monday, 22 September 2008

Zodiac Cartel - The Robots (part one)

Here's an upfront streeeeeming preview, EXCLUSIVE to the Manifesto, of one of the two tracks that make up the debut Zodiac Cartel single, set for release on U&A on 27th October.

Hot stuff indeed!

A Spanish Conquest ...

Just back from a fun weekend - started out with the Future Music party at the Scala where I got to hook up for a hoedown with 30Hz & Kid Blue and then after a couple of hours kip, drove back up to Stansted for a mass meet-up with Asad, Rennie, General MIDI and a whole host of others for the trip out to Spain.

The only complaint I'd have about the party was that the configuration of the second stage really wasn't ideal, given that there was a huge swimming pool infront of you while you were playing, and it was that that enjoyed the best of the sound all night (!), but as per usual the Spanish crowd showed that when it comes to the partay, there are few crowds as up-for-it and impassioned as they are. I'm back out in Spain in a few weeks times. Can't wait! :)

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Audiojack : September DJ Mix

I make no bones about being a big fan of Audiojack - I love their lightness of touch & the way they're able to craft an infectious groove out of very little indeed, without being in any way allied to straight up BORING drip-drip-mnml. Long live the Jackers.

1. Sven Van Hees – It's so Real (Den Hetrix Remix)

2. Stimming – Una Pena (Original Mix)

3. Minimono – Ratman (Hugo Remix)

4. Matthew Dear – Dog Days (DJ Sneak's 420 Dog Remix)

5. Broombeck – Mono Turn (Original Mix)

6. Shusi Khijada – Breaking the Bass (Original Mix)

7. King Unique – Dirty (Paulo Mojo Remix)

8. Noir & Martin Thomson – Lessons (Audiojack Remix)

9. Default – Reflex (Original Mix)

10. Onionz – Nothin but Love (Tiger Stripes Remix)

Audiojack : Promo Mix : September 2008

Birth of the Combo



Well, I haven't done one of these mini-updates for a while now, which comes as no personal surprise given how busy I've been setting up the new BLOG, and beavering away for the winter season of DJ Shows.

Several months ago, just before I played at the Glade Festival, I'd really got to the point where I felt like I was drowning under a sea of data - every day dozens & dozens of new pieces of music were making their way onto my laptop, and come the latter part of the week I'd find myself embarking on a a crazed orgiastic listening-frenzy, usually selecting around 20 new tunes for the shortlist of re-editing, re-sequencing and re-processing.

Two days later I would still be burning CDs on my way out of the door after a manic session on the mouse, with a wallet stacked full of another 20 new tunes to play out that weekend .... only to find that I was booked for an hour's set at a megarave somewhere where they only wanted massive breakbeat anthems. The reality is that those two days were wasted days, and whilst my ever-increasing library of CDs left me perfectly equipped to play a 12-hour Garnier-sized marathon, it was leaving me baffled & exhausted come Monday morning.

Now I've been known for a while for my re-editing of tracks ... sometimes this process involves little more than switching round a couple of sections of a track, but I've often done re-edits that have taken tracks into whole new forms, to the point where they verge on being something new, and this became the focus of a new series of edits I began work on, primarily looking at building some completely fresh rhythms and then delving into a series of tracks in similar keys for components that would work well with one another.

On some occasions, this meant complete bassline re-programming from a single note, on others whole basslines and leadlines were lifted and grafted onto the new rhythms, wholesale. Either way, it was an exciting way of deconstructing familiar material and recycling it in a unique way, and now, as we hit mid-September, I find myself in a position where I have at least 20 of these finished tracks, which I have decided to christen, the COMBO (click the image at the foot of the post ... ;).

With the advent of technology that allows you to be way more individual and creative than ever before, and with the vast majority of people having decided that they are no longer willing to pay for original productions, in some ways the logical conclusion is for the artists to look to play DJ sets full of bespoke material, rather than to devalue it's worth by adding it to the swirling vortex of free music out there.

This way, when you come to see me play out over the next few months, you will be certain that you'll be hearing something unique and something you simply won't find in any other environment than the live arena.

Brooklyn Vice Squad

I've been tracking the progress of Nathan Vice for quite a while now and was close to signing a track to U&A earlier in the year, but on reflection it did kick my face off a little too hard to sit quite right on the label. That's not to say the man's not making some interesting (and punishing!) music. Dip into his world with his brand new mixtape.

Download Nathan Vice Mixtape


1. Bobby LaBeat vs ATCQ - Here We Go (Scenario)

2. Machines Don’t Care - Afro Jacker

3. Harvey Mason - Groovin You (Morsy Rmx)

4. The Aston Shuffle - Stomp Yo Shoes (SHAZAM Rmx)

5. Treasure Fingers - Cross The Dancefloor (Lifelike Rmx)

6. Database & Midnight Martyn - Party People

7. DJ Trajik - Pants R Saggin

8. Spankrock - Bump (Switch Rmx)

9. Fake Blood - Mars

10. M.O.P. - Ante Up (Tittsworth Rmx)

11. Larry Tee feat. Princess Superstar - Licky (Herve Goes Low Rmx)

12. Kudu - Let’s Finish (Sinden Rmx)

13. DJ Blaqstarr feat. Rye Rye - Shake It To The Ground (Jokers Of The Scene Rmx)

14. Bumblebeez - Flying Down To Rio (Crookers Rmx)

15. DLake - White Pants

16. Boy 8-Bit - Suspense Is Killing Me

17. Romanthony - Curious (Treasure Fingers Rmx - Roman’s Extended Edit)

18. Vivek Shraya - If We’re Not Talking (Ben Mono Remix)

19. AC Slater - Party Like Us (Udachi Remix)

20. Machines Don’t Care - Jugs

21. Evil Nine - They Live! (Trevor Loveys Rmx)

22. Nathan Vice - KINK

23. Matt Nordstrom - The Way It Is

24. Kid Cudi - Day ‘N’ Nite (Crookers Rmx)

25. Surkin - White Night Two

26. Little Boots - Stuck on Repeat (Fake Blood Rmx)

27. Flash Night - I Might Not Say No No No

28. Rrrump - Motion of the Ocean

29. Nathan Vice - Change Of Heart

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Jon Cates 'Harpo' (Monism)

Artist: Jon Cates
Release: Harpo w/ Rmxs
Label: Monism Music
Release Date: 10/30/08

Jon Cates' 'Harpo' is a dark, moody breakbeat number with slightly lilting keys riffing in the higher registers. The track holds on a minor chord and progressive tip for the most part with a disjointedness that'll keep dancefloors guessing as to where it's heading next. The dreaminess of the end loop brings to mind some ILS tunes...in a good way.

'Harpo' gets properly remixed by glitch guru Si Begg who reels in some of his subversive sound for this release and delivers strong with his unique manglings. Both of Si Begg's mixes are haunting and musically engaging, the intro/outro of both are fantastic minutes long explorations of a musical depth that dancefloors dont get the chance to enjoy often enough. And would work nice for either end of a mix as well. Some Si Begg tracks take a bit to get your head around, but these are wholely accessible and can be easily incorporated into more diversified, dynamically changing sets.

U.S. Breakbeat legend Simply Jeff adds Adachi to his moniker and rounds out the remixes with the most tech funk leaning cut of the bunch. Jeff stays loopy with most of the elements, which works as a deeper track, but the bass is the standout element here. The bass gets large the last couple of minutes of the track, and in fact, that entire rinse is a bumper. One might loop it out for his own extended live mix excursions.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Metallica - R.I.P. Magnetic

I'm not the biggest fan of Metallica, but I am a fan of well recorded, well mixed and well mastered music.

Metallica and producer Rick Rubin - for reasons unknown - certainly feel otherwise! The new album Death Magnetic sounds like, well, sounds like something I would've mixed eight or nine years ago had I not known any better. With my monitors switched off. And every dial set to 11.

Having read about this on a number of music forums (and in honour to Lars Ulrich vs. Napster) I downloaded a few of the album tracks to hear for myself. Death Magentic has to be the worst casualty of the Loudness War in history. Painfully clipped. Distorted to hell. And back again. Limited to within an inch of it's life.

Go and find some FLAC versions of the CD and see for yourself. The wave form is pure comedy. Over on Gearslutz the mastering engineer on that project, Ted Jensen, was quoted to have said that he is not proud of the work and that the mix files came to him already limited to the max. Why didn't he send them back? Anyway. Not for me to speculate.

This link has all the info you could possibly want on the matter so I'm not going to recycle the author's words again for the sake of one mouse click. No matter what your thoughts are on Metallica or commercial rock music ... if you are even remotely interested in good quality, well recorded music, take 5 minutes to familiarise yourself with how not to do it.

Burning Man : The Lee Coombs Story 2008 (part two)

Thurs – 28th August

After a great sleep in the tour bus (I have to say this is seriously Pimping it @ Burning Man as most people have to staying a tent out in all conditions which are HARSH!, I feel very lucky to have this) I found my people and began exploring.

You have to bike everywhere on the Playa, it’s too far to walk everywhere and Burning Man is all about discovering the amazing art pieces that they plant randomly across the Playa. The theme of Burning Man changes each year and this year is ‘The American Dream’. Make of it what you will....

My good friend Peter Hudson is an amazing artist and this year he had Tantalus, which was a huge spinning Uncle Sam’s hat which acted like a giant Zoetrope - this is basically a 3D movie. It was about 25 feet tall and 40 feet wide and when it spins it seems like there is a life size man coming out of the ground trying to grab an apple out of a big hand above. Pretty crazy stuff and this is a major achievement to build and get it set up in the middle of the desert and it basically takes all year to do it.

Check out more of his work www.hudzo.com

Thursday night was my first and biggest set of gigs; I started of @ Root Society playing at 10pm. This is very early to dj at BM but it was an excellent way to start off, It is a huge open aired dome (one of the biggest in the world I think) with a massive sound system. The place was full (about 1000 people) and rocking by 10pm and I had a blast.

So then I was off to Opulent Temple which was all the way across to the other side. This was a journey that I had made about 5 times already and it was painful. The Playa had a soft layer of dust most of the way all over it about 2 inches thick. The Only way I can describe it is like the Moon…you have to choose your moment to cross after a while because it really gets to be hard work cycling in the thick sand like dust, and it will beat you up if you don’t pace yourself.

Now for the Big event, I always look forward to my Opulent Temple sets, and can truly say that they all rank highly in the greatest moments of my DJ career. This year they were pulling out all the stops with a new DJ booth and which had a bigger flame thrower on the top, bigger sound and giant dance platforms with lazers and massive projection screens. It was like nothing you had ever seen. AWESOME! I played after Marvin (Dylan Rhymes) who was rockin' it in the ‘speaker bending and bass wobbling’ way that he does, always large.

The Opulent Temple crowd is really a crowd that you can take places and really give them a musical experience. I had a bag load of bullets this year and I have to say it was probably one of my favourite gigs ever. It could not have gone better, with everybody lapping up the strange acidic basslines that I wanted to give them. I was in my element and am totally hooked on this. Especially having the controls of the giant flame thrower which you could let off at the biggest moments!

After my set I felt like I had achieved in a big way so it was party time, between all of us we waded through countless bottles of Russian Standard Vodka ....me, Marvin, Syd and Sam, all the OT crew, Smoove and his lovely girl friend, Leslie From Dj Mag, DJ Dan, Tim Healy and loads of other amazing people who I met and had a blast with but can’t remember what I did or got up to…..


Thursday, 11 September 2008

Live Rigs (pt.1) : Simian Mobile Disco

Thought this might be of interest as an occasional series for those of you into the production and live performance side of making music.

Burning Man : The Lee Coombs Story 2008 (part one)

Wed 27th August

Burning Man is the highlight of my year and I always look forward to the whole experience from getting there to staying and then coming home. Because of where it is the whole experience is very different every time. Let's face it Black Rock City is planted squarely in the middle of the playa desert in Nevada.

This is one of the most remote places in the whole of the United States. Syd Gris @ Opulent Temple had agreed to fly me in from Reno straight into Burning Man in a single engine Cessna with only 5 seats. I sat up front and chatted to the pilot and I have to say this is definitely the way to do it. Absolutely stunning views of the mountain scenery then Pyramid Lake and then Burning Man appears from the distance. I thoroughly recommend this!

So we get in and I realise that no one is there to pick me up at the small cabin that they call BRC airport. The thing to do when this happens is climb on an art car and hope that they can drive you somewhere close.

Everyone is a friend at burning man and if you need help you will get it almost straight away.

So now I have to find my wife Kim and friends who had already arrived.

The site is shaped like a huge horse shoe about 6 miles if you follow it round and 1 ½ miles across in the gap at the bottom. My new friends with the art car (which was an old silver Nissan car with the roof chopped off and a frame welded on with a giant swinging chair hanging and a massive sound system blasting) gave Dylan Rhymes (who I found in my bus still out from the night before) and I a lift straight across the playa to the Deep End.

This is where I thought my people would be, so I started walking around and soon realised that I couldn’t find anyone.

All you can see is crazy mutated cars and odd looking shelters and tents that all start to look the same after awhile. This really is like looking at a post nuclear war zone in the future or Mad Max if you like.

There’s only one thing to do, go into the Deep End and get a cocktail! The perfect way to start Burning Man! (The Deep End is an institution of BM, it is a giant film set like structure that looks like an old Wild West town, it’s basically an all day open air club and it goes off from morning to night non-stop).

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Hyperion - Gotta Hold It (OUT NOW)

As promised, and to celebrate the Beatport release of the MASSIVE new single by Oz faves, Hyperion, here are the two remixes of the original. Both parties have smashed it good & proper here, with both Lee Coombs and Calvertron both somehow finding the wherewithal to step up to the plate and give the original a run for it's money.

The Burning Man Files

Following on from the success of the
Meat Katie Australian Tour Diary here on the Tech Funk Manifesto, I decided to approach a few friends to do a similar piece on the Burning Man Festival
that's recently taken place in the US, and festival devotees (christ, these guys evangelize about Burning Man as if it were the holy grail) Lee Coombs, Dylan Rhymes and DJ Icon all got back to be instantly with offers to put finger to typepad and write up the events that unfolded during their recent sojourn to Mad Mad Desert.

So, coming up over the next couple of weeks will be a whole bunch of ramblings from the frontline, along with, er, world class documentary footage of their shenanigans. I for one have the fear just thinking about it ...

Disco of Doom have landed ....

Disco Of Doom EP 1

This week sees the first Disco Of Doom EP - EP 1 exclusively available to buy from Trackitdown.net

The promos of this have been doing the rounds for a while & I can safely say it's not for the faint-hearted. Whilst the tempos might be stripped back from the breaks-zone a little, it offers up space to ramp up the noise quotient, and on the original mix it's nigh on punishing, such is it's reliance on distortion & old-fashioned nastyness. Whilst this probably won't win Ben (Rogue Element) and Tom (Real) many new fans, given how closely it allies itself with breakbeat culture, it's a hot-blooded statement of intent and well worth checking out if you're into your bloghouse & filthy cut-n-paste.


Find out more about Satan's estranged love spawn:

Saturday, 6 September 2008

disuye084 out now

disuye084_artwork.pngd: thursday 4th september 2008
#: disuye084
1: whømp "sprinkelanlage"
2: whømp "so not so"

another pair of techno odd 'uns from the elusive mr. whømp - available now from our page at beatport.

"sprinkelanlage" was a huge favourite with former yumla resident vincent azé, who was affected by the track so much he left hong kong and started a vineyard in the south of france. this track is twitchy to say the least. words can do nothing to help us sell it. and yes, the name means 'rotary lawn sprinkler' in german, for obvious reasons. this track was first conceived in 2005, and is so far ahead of it's time ... it still doesn't fit into anyone's sets. oh well.

"so not so" is more on the dirty fuzzy electro-techno trip and sounds a bit like a unkempt pacman doing the funky chicken to the 1970's batman theme tune. just take a listen. that description does actually make sense. crowds end up looking much the same when played this track so well worth it on comedy value if nothing else.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Bleek @ Barsoma

I’ll be honest with you, I’m not a big social person, sure I’m willing to meet people, but it’s generally if there’s a reason for it, or if they are a friend of a friend. Going out to have a good time and meeting people? That’s not generally my thing. So, only having turned 18 in the past few months, I told myself that I would go out clubbing, but with a catch: I’d only go if there was an act that I wanted to see. This meant for the past few months, everything had been relatively quiet in Brisbane, until Meat Katie touched down last Saturday at Barsoma.

I was a little worried about my first night out on the town, as I didn’t know what to expect. However with my newfound friends Hyperion and Bitrok by my side, it certainly made the night one of the best I’ve had in ages. The trio of Meat Katie, Hyperion and Bitrok sounds like the best way to begin one’s clubbing experience, and it was. Meat Katie being one of my influences and heroes, I got to thank him and even give him a manly pat on the shoulder (Whilst cheering like a fanboy in my head).

Meat Katie obliterated the dance floors by opening his set up with Miles Dyson’s grinding electro remix of Elite Force’s Melodik Hypnotik. The rest of his set consisted of some tracks I hadn’t heard of and some tracks that you thought you knew but didn’t (At one stage I thought he was bringing in ZC’s remix of FCB’s Beaver Blink) However, most of his set consisted of grinding electro thumpers, such as Blende’s remix of Aaran San’s Ozlow Nyzz, and obviously the highlights of the night, which were Hyperion’s remix of Dylan Rhymes ‘I Am Sweet’ and their original due out on U&A soon ‘Gotta Hold It’. Having experienced the whole “underage” dance parties in my time and having no clue what the hell the DJ was actually playing, this was one of the best changes as I stomped on the dance floor enjoying myself, as well as screaming like a girl when a track I knew was blasted about. (See the video I attached with Meat Katie slamming Hyperion’s Remix of Rhymes) Apparently, my friend said there were chicks behind me pointing and asking “What the hell is wrong with this guy?”

Do I care? Not one bit, because I was waiting for Hyperion to jump on the decks and show everyone why they are Brisbane’s best new producers around at the moment.

Max wasn’t too sure whether replaying the tracks Mark (Meat Katie) played was a good idea, and I guess I’d question it as well; does the dance floor need to hear it again? Of course it did! Being a little weary of moving closer to the DJ booth, I took the plunge and started filming on the side and eventually made my way into the booth for a couple of seconds. The boys slammed down their own tracks, including Gotta Hold It and their remix of I Am Sweet and I’m glad they did, as they continued to lay waste to the dance floor as the audience just kept on moving. Later in their set, Max came over to me and said “Nick, you’re gonna love this, mate!” Max patted me on the shoulder accompanied by the biggest grin he could present and moved back over to the CDJ’s in the middle of the booth. Soon after, I heard the main synths from Groove Armada’s ‘Get Down’ kick in and I instantly knew that they were playing one of my favourite remixes of last year / this year. Elite Force’s sadly overlooked breaks, electro rework of Get Down. This one hit me personally, I doubt that Max & Jim knew it, but I felt as though they did a personal song request from me and played it to the audience, who absolutely loved it.

What a fantastic way to start my clubbing experience, by watching one of my heroes play and watch my newfound heroes show everyone what they’ve got. Thanks Mark, Max & Jim!

My HUGE apologies to Ryan & Oli from Bitrok for missing their set. I really wanted to see it, but I had work about 2 hours after Hyperion closed their set. You have my word that next time I see you guys, I’ll shout you both a beer and I’ll stay and watch you guys tear the place apart.

Photo's via Inthemix.

Dirtybird Remix Contest

There's still plenty of time to enter the latest remix contest run by Dirtybird Records.

There's 10 days to go until submissions close on September 15th.

IMPORTANT: the results of this contest are NOT ultimately decided by votes. The winners will be chosen by Dirtybird Records.

So you can upload your completed remix on September 14th and it has just as much of a chance as the person who entered two days into the contest.

Download the parts at www. dirtybirdremix. com today. It's free to enter.

Meat Katie - Australian Tour Blog pt.3

Having the whole week in Melbourne was great.

I caught up with Nick Thayer and swapped up some music. Nick is a lovely guy, and he has some really cool music in the pipeline. I also caught up with an old friend Lynt, who was one of the real heads in Melbourne when I first went there (he’s had a bit of time out in recent years, but be warned - he is armed and ready to go again!). Another friend, Dusk (from Adelaide), was in town so I also had chance to catch up with her & had dinner with two rappers from LA called The Grouch & Eligh from the Living Legends. It's funny how you can have similar opinions on life, love, politics & music ... the only difference is the way you deliver your message. (I would like to think we
all have something to say?). Anyhow something interesting may appear from this hook-up with some very talented & knowing people.

My second Melbourne show was at Brown Alley along side my mate Jamie Stevens (again), and Michael (Butter Party) who were playing in the same room, with the other room being predominantly breaks. Before the show I had dinner with Chris who was taking care of things (while Dan Darkbeat was out of town) & we discussed the politics of breakbeat and dubstep, had a moan about certain dj’s and praised others. These guys are very dedicated to breaks and it was so inspiring to hear some passionate views by some young up & coming guys. We were not just dissing anything 4X4 for the sake of it, so much so I felt the need to email Shack (Elite Force) to suggest it's time we represented a little with a breaks-only release…. (two breaks tracks not just the one we had planned, a view which was embraced!!). I enjoyed that dinner, and a quick mention of Chris our host - I have a feeling in the next few years Chris will become a real player within the Melbourne scene ... a true music lover with the best intentions and great people skills, I'm sure I will be working for him in the next few years. I really hope so, infact.

The Brown Alley show was cool. I did enjoy myself and it was nice to see a few faces from the week before. I played in that same room upstairs last year with Lee Coombs, and I felt this show was better, although I found it hard to connect with the audience the same way I did the week before at Miss Libertine, (but I did particularly like that venue - the sound and the layout). I hung out for a bit to hear Jamie’s set, which again I really enjoyed (he was playing back to back with another DJ from Perth ... and for love nor money can I remember his name unfortunately!). They worked really well off each other. I hung out with Michael and his girlfriend Nicole for most of that, then they came back to my hotel, so we could drink some more, (although the mini bar was slightly limited to alchpops) and we chatted 'till the morning about all sorts of things. I burnt a load of non dance stuff for him (which he has kindly repaid with a cranking 'back to mine' style mix a few days later).
Unfortunately time was not on my side and before I knew it, Agent Sam was on the phone saying ‘I'm on my way ... meet me downstairs in ten minutes’, shit, shit shit shit………….. another weekend of no sleep. Sam picked me up bang on time and off we went to the airport for our early flight to Brisbane.

Now to say I was nervous about playing the ‘Phunk You’ party which is run by the Ampt crew in Brisbane, is an understatement. I was shitting myself. The reason being, is for the last few years I have been playing for these guys and their shows have slowly become the highlight of touring Australia for me, and I have also become very fond of them all as people, and have had the pleasure to meet their extended famies who I've also become friends with. So, obviously I want to do my upmost for them, and keep our momentum going.
On my arrival I'm informed more tickets have been sold than last year and it's looking good - this time round they decided to try a different venue to switch things up (called Bar Soma) and we headed there straight from the airport to do a quick sound check.

As I walked in it felt like this place had some real potential. The venue looked as if it could take about five hundred people, had a great outside area with a big-assed sound system (which was also an area you could smoke in (that goes a long way!)). I ran through a few tracks to get a feel of the DJ booth, and the sound as with all the Ampt parties was perfect - warm & bass heavy, and the visuals were also insane ... but this does come standard with these guys. I headed to my hotel for a few hours sleep and then Steffy and Tim (two of the promoters) came to pick me up about 6pm we went back to the venue for some tapas and a quick drink then off to a local radio station for a interview to plug the show that night.

On my arrival at the venue later that night, it was wicked to see a queue down the road outside the venue. I can best describe the feeling as if you're about to have sex with someone who you really like, and you want them to like you the same way you like them …….. Anyhow, a DJ from Byron Bay who I really admire called Si Clone was playing - I've seen Si play three times now and have never recognised a track. He plays some really twisted music & I personally rate him to the ground. As I took over from Si my nerves seem to disappear (maybe it was so many familiar faces in the crowd), but I blasted through a two-hour set which went in a blink & was really happy with reaction (I'm not good at blowing my own trumpet, so im not going to…. but it went well).

Hyperion were taking over from me, and about half way through my set (I've never done this before) but I asked Max from Hyperion if I could play one of his tracks, which he gave me the green light to do. Now just to clarify this, I am fully aware of dj etiquette, and I am a huge fan of Hyperion (I genuinely believe them to be one of the most exciting acts emerging), and the reason I wanted to play their music at this show was it was their home town and the place was kicking, and I really felt that if they played the same music earlier in the evening, they would receive an ever larger response later. Well anyhow, I played the track to the same arms in the air reaction I have been seeing all over the world, and about 10 minutes later i saw an edit of their remix for Dylan Rhymes for Lot49 in my wallet, so I grabbed it and again pointed to it Max, who made the thumbs up gesture, and again the crowd just lifted. It was, however, pointed out a few days later (on a forum) that it was not a cool thing to do, even after asking them. Now if this did offend the guys I am extremely sorry, I really meant it as mark of respect and nothing else, (and the tracks smashed it later too…).

Anyhow I finished my set and hung out, whilst Hyperion ripped the club a new one as expected. I darted outside a few times to get some air as the main room was pretty warm, and the tech house being spun out there was simply bumpin' ... in the packed courtyard the crowd were voicing their appreciation, (as was I too). Oli & Ryan Bitrock took over and smashed it till 5AM.
All in all it would be hard to find a better balanced night anywhere in the world - I loved it - but……… with all the Ampt (and Logic) parties, the kick on is also an event in its self.

Steffy and Tim live in a large shared house, which has a huge balcony running round the outside (nothing like we see in the uk), massive kitchen, two fridges which were full of beers, vodka, and my personal favs, wine and whisky. My Australian tour was finished and I found myself sitting in the sunshine in what I would consider a tropical garden on a huge sofa drinking cold white wine and in their words…… 'getting loose’. I was hanging out with some of the funniest & genuine people I have come across (maybe I should mention messy too), and I was in my element. I think you can all get the picture ... I have to tone it down here to protect the (not so) innocent, but putting it into perspective, I woke up Monday morning with a bite mark on my leg a great white would be proud of - in fact, I'm laughing my arse off just thinking about it. Thank you Brisbane!

Well I did manage to make it to the airport Monday (which surprised me too). I flew up to Sydney and headed to Matty Dopamine's for a few days recording and a couple of meetings regarding label stuff, & I had a few well needed chilled few days, which I needed after that weekend. I get on well with Matt and Simon (his flatmate) ... Matt's a talented fucker. I think you will see a more of him via Lot49 in the next 12 months.

So that’s about it for my Australia adventure. I really didn’t plan on writing so much of my experience down. I left school early at 15 years old & I have always struggled with spelling and English (thank you for being my spell-check Shack). I'm what you may call 'uneducated' but I have to say I've really enjoyed sharing my experiences and thoughts with you, and I would like to leave you with this…

I've been fortunate enough somehow to have travelled the world over; I've been to some pretty cool & out there places, but I have to say I fell in love with Australia the moment I set foot there. The people, the culture, the lifestyle ... everything ... and that feeling has never waivered for me (even after Adelaide), so you will know when I've finally cracked it, because that’s where I will be living!

Right……I' m just about to board a plane to China, (another day at the office I guess!).

Meat Beat Manifesto - Radio Babylon (Lee Coombs mix)

Bearded wonder and all-round tech-funk legend, Lee Coombs, has given us the headz up on a brand new re-working he's just done of Meat Beat Manifesto's 'Radio Babylon'. Lee's been on fire recently, and since his move to Florida he's switched up his style slightly with more than a nod to the grind of the nu-fidget-skool, but still retaining that organic bootyshake of his earlier works.

Grab the full quality package now.

Meat Beat Manifesto - Radio Babylon (Lee Coombs Mix)

Thursday, 4 September 2008

Paul 'Trouble' Arnold swims to BESTIVAL

Travelling to Bestival is all part of the experience, feeling the excitement build as the Isle of Wight draws ever closer, gliding across the Solent on the ferry, it's the beginning of an adventure. For Chew The Fat's main man, Paul 'Trouble' Arnold, the excitement on the ferry clearly wasn't quite enough, so he, along with twelve fellow intrepid/crazy adventurers, has decided to swim 3-½ miles across one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world, brimming with sea-creatures and heavens know what else, all to get to the festival.

Of course, mere thrills aren't the only reason for swimming the Solent; Paul is raising money for three separate charities: Imibala, a small but worthy organisation created to assist underprivileged children to access an education in South Africa, Gosport's branch of the Chernobyl Children's Life Line, and Island Youth Water Activities Centre (IOW) Ltd, a local voluntary organisation run for the benefit of all young people on the Isle of Wight.

The swimmers will be in the water for between 2 and 5 hours, coaxed along the way by Bestival compare and Cuban Brother Miguel Mantovani from the safety of his speed boat before arriving at Ryde Pier on the Isle of Wight ready for three unbelievable days of partying.

What makes this act of bravery and generosity even more unbelievable is the fact that Paul is currently in remission after being diagnosed with Leukaemia last November, so please show your support by heading over to http://www.dropcash.com/campaign/PaulArnold/paul_is_swimming_to_bestival/

and donating. Whether you can afford £10 or 10p every bit extra helps and is very much appreciated.

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Legendary London institution 'The End' closes it's doors

Fuck me - first it was Turnmills, and now The End have announced they are closing their doors as of 23/24th January 2009, and I for one am gutted about it. Here's what they had to say ... (more info at The End's website)

The End has announced that the club will be closing those legendary metal doors for good in January 2009. The End & AKA will be closing in style, giving the venues the send off they deserve, and the chance for the different DJs and nights to say goodbye. We will be open as normal through autumn, with September, October and November's parties rocking as usual. The farewell begins with The End's 13th birthday on December 6th, with long-time favourite Sven Vath headlining. There will follow a series of closing parties featuring The End’s closest DJs and promoters, and then a grand closing weekend on January 23rd and 24th.

For a fuller insight, check the interview with Layo & Zoe Paskin on their website.

Monday, 1 September 2008

Force @ Forsage : an Eastern Adventure

Just back from a belting good weekend. Friday night I was playing at Mint @ Esko in Leicester, and whilst it wasn't the busiest night I've played at this year, the atmosphere somehow still managed to be absolutely cracking, which speaks wonders for the commitment and passion of the diehard Leicester crew who must surely win the award for MOST SOUNDSYSTEM IN A CONFINED SPACE. I was sorry to have to duck out so quickly, but literally I had an hour to grab a shower & cool down before driving the 120 miles down to Heathrow to catch a flight to Kiev.

Now, the Ukraine has been quite a favoured stomping ground for me over the past few years, but you can't help but be apprehensive, especially in the summertime, where the combination of holidays and changeable weather adds an air of unpredictablity to proceedings. Any worries were ill-founded though, as the Forsage had long lines outside when we arrived, and inside the party was well and truly ON with a sweaty throng getting lowdown to some frenetic breaks, courtesy of Roma on the decks. Well, there's not much more to add other than to say how much I enjoyed playing there & how the hospitality was, as ever, second-to-none & I can't wait to come back again soon!

Journeying home was a nightmare though (thanks BA!) ... what the fuck is it with passengers who check in, go through security and simply manage not to get on the plane. We waited the 45 minutes to find their luggage (drop it in the ocean for fuck's sake) and then bad weather in London kept us grounded for an extra hour - we then had 45 minutes circling round London :-/ As I got off the plane I ran into James Zabiela, struggling to get his shit off the plane (all that storage in business class ... such a drag!) and with a face like the thunderclouds we'd just been avoiding. I feel your pain mate.

Snapper by AudioEase - $79

Following on my post about AudioFile Engineering Wave Editor ... here's another bit of blinding OSX software which studio types should not be without. Snapper.

Again, as with Wave Editor - cheap considering the benefits - $79 - but this time Audio Ease (makers of the absolutely f*cking awesome Speaker Phone plug-in) give you a 100 day unrestricted evaluation demo. That's 3 months, no nag, complete use. I've had Snapper onboard for a while now and am not far off buying it.

What does it do? This is going to be really mundane ... in essence Snapper is a media player & sample editor embedded into the OSX Finder. Fascinating Dan! Told you, boring as hell on paper ... but go install it now, spend a few minutes digging around your audio archives and I bet you this application will change the way you use your sample library. Forever.

Was that 'forever' to much? Over played that end sentence. Anyway, click the link, watch the information video while you download the installer.