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Indian E-music – The right mix of Indian Vibes… » Music


Let’s talk leftfield techno, with moody synth gems from Lars Hemmerling

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Fri 13 Sep 2019 1:09 pm

Known for his collaborations with Dasha Rush, Lars Hemmerling shows off on her Fullpanda label his full spectrum of synthesis and production chops. We spoke to him about how he works.

In turns as murky as a depressive overcast German day, as cosmic as a starfield, as brutal as some smelting action, Lars’ latest is all about electronic range and attention to detail. This isn’t any quick fix production – each track is obsessively focused and exquisitely unique. These synths sounds brood and groove, enveloped in wet, fuzzy reverbs, like so much electronic ooze.

You don some waders and head into a swamp of sound in Lars’ work, in a pleasant way. But that to me also comes from his approach to his machines, in finding their organic, particular character. So I wanted to speak with him a bit about how he has found that direction.

Lars is a Berlin native and has been active since the early 90s raves of Rüdersdorf, but you may know him from LADA, his live duo with Dasha Rush. Dasha helms Fullpanda as a trove of underground techno-related (or at least techno-adjacent) fantasies. But Lars has also been active on DOCK records, a good home for ambient-to-leftfield-techno offerings he co-manages. And speaking of things only the in-the-know know, his under-the-radar duo with twin brother Gunnar has also cranked out unique productions. Gunnar takes on a fascination with vintage digital to match Lars’ digital analog proclivities, as Gunnar collects old chip machines like the Commodore and its SID. (Listening at bottom.)

PK: Can you tell us about your approach to instrumentation, and how you assemble these track?

LH: Well, I used different sequencers and synths, but only hardware and no software instruments. I only used some software plug-ins from Eventide, Sonible and Waves in my DAW for the pre-master mix. Usually I record multitrack sessions with some additional overdub recordings. I also reroute synth lines out of the DAW to do a separate FX mix.

The first recorded FX tracks are mostly a blueprint of the sound character of the piece I am working on. This gives me the ability to work more subtle with EFX.

Gear, track by track

A1. “Bless”:

  • Kick: Elektron Analog Rytm
  • Synths: Yamaha TX802 (which I feed with my self-programmed sound bank from my DX7)
  • Sequencing: Elektron Octatrack
  • Pad sounds I played live

A2. “Releasing Strains”:

  • Drums: Analog Rytm
  • Synth: Behringer Model D (yes, and I am not afraid to say it)
  • Sequencing: polyrhythmic multi-sequencing (filter, pitch, amp etc..) by Wintermodular Eloquencer [Eurorack module]

The Rest is just FX modulation. There was another synth line of my Arp Odyssey, but I took it off.

B1. “Lars Wars”:

  • Drums: Analog Rytm
  • Synths (yes) Behringer Model D again and my Arp Odyssey
  • Sequencing: both Model D and Odyssey sequenced by the Eloquencer.

B2. “Artarpet”:

Here I did not use any sequencer (no MIDI or trigger gate), but instead VCA-Level on the Model D and Arp Odyssey FM, and LFO modulation, with pad sounds on the DX7 live. Surprisingly, the recording went so well that I didn’t need any EQ-ing in my DAW or any pre-master ambitions.

“Running away from myself” (Digital Bonus Track):

Analog Rytm and two Dave Smith Instruments Evolvers. [DSI is now again Sequential]

PK: I know this just because I’ve watched over my shoulder as you mixed my album, and because I know you resist going to plug-in crazy with anything else. You’re still making a lot of use of the Eventide stuff in finishing the album, yes?

LH: Yes. I truly love Eventide! I use the hardware like the Space Reverb and the Time Faktor Delay a lot, and as well the software plug-ins. Mostly I use the Blackhole, H3000 (Band Delays and Factory), and the Omnipressor on the stems of a recording. Eventide just works for me, and it will not change probably to the end of my days. They’re workflow-friendly and creative tools, from my perception. If you work with Eventide, you can feel and see that the engineers and developers are crazy, sound-dedicated freaks like you are. Or even more freaky.

[Ed.-That was not a paid placement in any way. I can vouch for this because every time I ask if Lars has seen a new processing plug-in, he reminds me that he’s perfectly satisfied with the Eventide stuff and tells me the importance of really learning to use one set of tools. -PK]

Can you talk about what inspired this release?

During the production process, I was going through a very difficult time, and I was in a very unstable situation from an emotional perspective. And some tracks were produced under very weird circumstances, as well. I am not getting into details here, because it would be too private.

Many people say that I’, a very kind soul. And at this time, it felt like that my soul was bleeding.

So, the entire EP is truly an imprint of my soul at those times. A valve of emotions. That’s why I called it “Bloody&Soul”. And of course, I liked the word game.

Thanks, Lars. I certainly hear that need to have this valve for our hurting souls – and have a listen, readers, as the results are beautiful and may heal your bleeding spirit, too.

One more wonderful cut from an upcoming VA:

Check this terrific DOCK compilation, including Lars’ work (as “out there”), or also ambient rounds Vol.0:

Lars’ first EP outing with Fullpanda is also essential, with a Space Bolero for you cosmonauts to dance to at your space station’s cantina social:

For a bit of Lars&Gunnar together, check:

More:

https://fullpandarecords.bandcamp.com/album/bloody-soul

The post Let’s talk leftfield techno, with moody synth gems from Lars Hemmerling appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Sampa the Great: The Return review

Delivered... Rachel Aroesti | Scene | Fri 13 Sep 2019 10:30 am

(Ninja Tune)
She’s charismatic and her challenges to western orthodoxy are welcome, but Sampa needs to find a fresher sonic palette

Over the past decade, hip-hop has relaxed its borders - welcoming in a flood of new styles, characters and concepts. One thing that still unites most rappers, however, is braggadocio; the aggressive, occasionally tiresome boasting that stems from rap’s battle past. As a Zambia-born, Botswana-raised, Australia-based woman, Sampa Tembo belongs firmly in rap’s inclusive modern age – but as her moniker suggests, she’s no stranger to a spot of rampant egotism. “I’m boutta blow up soon / I ain’t wasting time chilling with you”, she crows on Grass Is Greener, before describing herself in more biblically bombastic terms – as “The end / Beginning and on / and on” – over the intricate percussion of Dare to Fly.

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Charli XCX: Charli review – a raw, rousing step towards superstardom

Delivered... Laura Snapes | Scene | Fri 13 Sep 2019 9:00 am

(Asylum/Atlantic)
The embattled singer reveals her anxieties and coaxes brilliance from various guests in a candid, confident third album

In the five years since Charli XCX released her last album, she’s sworn that industry interference meant she would never make another. But here we are: after an overwhelmingly productive half-decade of unofficial releases and collaborations, Charli is an album proper, a diminishingly important semantic distinction but one that puts the 27-year-old firmly at its heart.

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The Shock of the Future review – when synths ruled the world

Delivered... Phil Hoad | Scene | Wed 11 Sep 2019 5:00 pm

A young woman in late-70s Paris explores the thrilling possibilities of electronic music in a drama with a timely feminist slant

From Vangelis to John Carpenter, synthesised music was a liquescent shot in the arm for late 70s/early 80s cinema. Now French musician and producer Marc Collin has mounted this perhaps over-reverential tribute, which makes a timely nod to a nucleus of female pioneers, among them Delia Derbyshire, Laurie Spiegel and Wendy Carlos. If that doesn’t have the needle spiking on the hipster gauge, Alma Jodorowsky – granddaughter of Alejandro – plays Ana, a frustrated jingle-writer in 1978 in Paris who is beginning to see the landscape-shifting possibilities of the wall of synths and sequencers in the flat she is housesitting.

Collin is clearly a stan, the camera lovingly worshipping the banks of dials and knobs, the soundtrack overflowing with the likes of Nitzer Ebb, Throbbing Gristle and Jean-Michel Jarre, the retro-futuristic love-in extending to all manner of directional brown-and-orange furnishings. Ana has a full-blown techgasm when a friend turns up with a Roland CR-78 beatbox.

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Objekt: the pioneering producer uniting chinstrokers and ravers

Delivered... Kit Macdonald | Scene | Wed 11 Sep 2019 1:45 pm

TJ Hertz grew up without a clue electronic music existed. Now he’s the genre’s most cutting-edge star – but the studio still gives him the jitters

It is 4am on a balmy June night in Barcelona, and on a beachside stage at Primavera Sound festival, one of the finest talents in electronic music is leaping into the unknown. TJ Hertz, AKA Objekt, is one of the most beloved DJs and producers around. His tracks and albums routinely top end-of-year lists in the dance music press; their density and technique pleases the chinstrokers at the back, while their goofiness and fun gets hands in the air down the front.

And yet this is his first ever live set, a show he brings to the UK this week. Hertz stands behind a bank of equipment playing crystalline, deconstructed club music and singing through a vocoder while Ezra Miller, a young American visual artist, stands opposite triggering mesmeric visuals in time with the staccato beats and broken melodies.

Objekt and Ezra Miller play at the Islington Assembly Hall in London on 12 September.

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Loraine James’ sound is intense, mixed up, and essential

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Tue 10 Sep 2019 7:06 pm

The newest release for Hyperdub, in its untethered torrent of distorted rhythm, feels personal and liberated – and today, gets one of the more significant recent video releases, to boot.

It’s a fine line to tread, being uncensored but precise, irregular but inevitable. But Kode9’s Hyperdub imprint has a solid track record of finding inventive grooves, and lately has been on a serious role. “Sick 9” is intelligent and intimate all at once, as Loraine James stretches her exceptional rhythmic language, from some deep center.

And I think for anyone wanting to liberate their own production voice, here’s something beautiful – even in the press statement, James says that as she navigated a “queer relationship … and the ups and downs,” that music was a vehicle for expression she couldn’t find elsewhere. She writes: “A lot of the time I’m really scared in displaying any kind of affection in public…This album is more about feeling than about using certain production skills.”

There’s something encouraging about seeing a press statement where the artist says what she does: “I’m in love and wanted to share that in some way.”

But so there’s a message to other artists: you can let that feeling out in the music, without worrying about how skilled others may see it, even when those feelings are hard to share in other ways. I mean, it’s obvious, it’s presumably why people make music – but it’s also obviously something we all can get away from.

‘Sick 9’ is a single now, emblazoned with her holding up a photo of her childhood estate flat, and it’s hard to stop repeating. (I would say something here about “this sick beat” but I don’t want to offend Taylor Swift’s lawyers):

You have to wait until the 20th for the whole release, but then today Loraine dropped her collaboration with rapper Le3 bLACK and an accompanying music video, with glitched-out, crushed beats underneath. It’s powerful stuff, an insistent cry:

The visuals are familiar UK drab and city tropes, but director Pedro Takahashi and DOP Liam Meredith find swooping, lyrical rhythm as handicam videos make you ever so slightly motion sick and small. Le3 bLACK grunts with frustration as the motion’s adagio sways around James’ pounding broken repetition.

As UK and America hang again between our dark pasts and future potential, this seems a time only music can really express.

You’ll be able to get the music on Bandcamp, natch:

https://lorainejames.bandcamp.com/

And more is on Hyperdub’s site:

The post Loraine James’ sound is intense, mixed up, and essential appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

Octo Octa: Resonant Body review – upbeat, free-spirited electronica

Delivered... Tayyab Amin | Scene | Fri 6 Sep 2019 10:00 am

(T4t Luv Nrg)
Octo Octa’s trans journey is mirrored in her electronic palette, using crunching beats, ambience and supple synths on celebratory tracks

For Octo Octa, music has been a journey of self-discovery that’s mirrored the development of her own identity. The electronic music producer and DJ publicly came out as trans in 2016 and refers to prior albums such as Between Two Selves as a “coded message” for her experiences. Since that pivotal moment, she’s found herself embraced by queer scenes all over, a shift that goes hand-in-hand with her move away from live sets and towards DJing, following a year of heavy touring. Her dance music baptism came in the form of drum’n’bass and breakcore, where percussive chaos channelled the same free-spirited energy she now also finds in house music. All three genres serve as major influences for her latest album, created in her New Hampshire cabin home.

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‘My home got raided seven times’: the Criminal Justice Act 25 years on

Delivered... Ed Gillett | Scene | Wed 4 Sep 2019 2:21 pm

Labrynth promoter Joe Wieczorek looks back at a career of antiestablishment mischief-making, and the moment 25 years ago when British dance music was politicised

Joe Wieczorek, long-time rave promoter and serial thorn in the side of the establishment, is marking the 25th anniversary of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 (CJA) by cheerfully miming the insertion of a solemn legal document into a sensitive part of a policeman’s anatomy. The founder of the east London rave Labrynth, Wieczorek remains one of dance music’s most unique characters, all spiky irreverence, Cockney enthusiasm and relentless disdain for authority. Many of his peers have settled comfortably into rave’s middle age, but Wieczorek gives the impression that the culture’s real value lies in putting powerful noises out of joint.

“We employed someone called Brian: Mr 10%,” he remembers. “Drove a turquoise and grey Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow, and he’d managed to get ‘the Right Honourable’ and ‘Sir’ put on his driving licence, so his sole purpose at Labrynth parties was to front the police when they showed up.”

Related: The month's best mixes: blood-pumping beats and meditative techno

Related: Sign up for the Sleeve Notes email: music news, bold reviews and unexpected extras

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Stereolab: ‘There was craziness in getting lost and dizzy’

Delivered... Ben Beaumont-Thomas | Scene | Wed 4 Sep 2019 10:37 am

Tim Gane and Laetitia Sadier pick their favourite tracks and reflect on two decades of pioneering electropop

Stereolab aren’t on the same page about why they’re touring again after a nine-year hiatus. “We’ve got seven albums coming back out...” says Tim Gane. “For the money,” Lætitia Sadier says simultaneously. They are the core duo of one of the best bands of the turn of the century: blending lounge-pop, punk, tropicalía and political poetry, they stuck out like a sore thumb during the Britpop era.

As Gane says, most of their albums are being reissued. But the pair were in a relationship for 16 years, separating in 2004; they weathered the sudden death of their bandmate Mary Hansen, and years of touring that Sadier describes as “crushing and exhausting”. So perhaps her deadpan cynicism has a grain of truth.

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One to watch: O’Flynn

Delivered... Kate Hutchinson | Scene | Sat 31 Aug 2019 2:00 pm
Flitting effortlessly between Afro disco and acid house, this young London producer is dancefloor dynamite

Nope, it’s not somewhere you’d end up on a wild out in Benidorm: O’Flynn is the alias of electronic music producer Ben Norris, purveyor of nimble, globetrotting house and disco jams. Since 2015, when James Blake played his track Oberyn on Radio 1, O’Flynn has been steadily releasing low-key secret weapons in DJs’ record bags. There’s Tyrion – inspired by the percussion he heard while on holiday in Morocco – which Four Tet dropped in a set on the streaming site Boiler Room. Or TKOTN, included by Bonobo on his mix for London nightclub Fabric’s esteemed compilation series.

O’Flynn’s music flits between contemporary takes on the Afro-disco revival and even, as on his recent Ninja Tune release, acid house. It calls into question the ease with which (largely white, usually male) music producers are using African samples (a children’s chant; a polyrhythmic drum beat) for some quick “exotic” flavour. But O’Flynn does it rather seamlessly, like a boogie-fied Auntie Flo. He has said his passion for African music runs deep and, in 2016, he was involved in recording the mataali drum and vocal troupe Mubashira Mataali Group in Uganda.

Aletheia is released on 6 September on Silver Bear. O’Flynn tours the UK from 16 September

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Clubnacht sounds: heavy techno from Jessica Kert,

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Fri 30 Aug 2019 5:24 pm

Let’s transport you to Berlin for a while – with three of us who share interests in techno and experimental electronic music, drawn from broader music and technological background.

I’m fortunate to get to join Jessica Kert, Lana Lain, and SDX tonight at Berlin’s Suicide Club. I’ve been a fan of Jessica’s music ever since first giving it a deep listening on her Detroit Underground outing. And as Jessica is deep into technology, it’s also worth noting that Lana Lain’s backround in techno is drawn from classical education. I think the days when there was a line drawn between such things are over. (That also means, in turn, erasing the attitude toward dance music as being a lesser form of expression, which speaking as an American to me suggests some fairly racist overtones.)

But let’s skip directly to the music. I’ve also got a new mix out this week, revealing some of the heavier sounds I’ve been into.

Jessica Kert (pictured at work, top) is a familiar face as one of the experts staffing Schneidersladen, but you should know her music as well – both solo and as half of the duo ZV_K.

Her outing on Detroit Underground DW is a modular magnum opus and one of my favorite DU releases of late:

But she’s also an adept live performance improviser – which will be on showcase tonight.

Check out her mix, too:

She’ll be joined on live visuals by defasten, who has been up to some superb alien eye candy, produced with software (modular, of sorts) Notch:

Lana Lain was born in Russian Karelia, but established herself in Stockholm before recently moving to Berlin. She’s been hyperactive in the music scene, including building her ФОМО party series (and accompanying radio show on the UK’s Fnoob Techno Radio. That has carved a space in Sweden for international art friendly to gay, queer, and fetish culture. I hope to talk to her more about that network soon, but in the meantime, here’s the terrific techno mix she did recently for Fast Forward:

I’ll also share a new mix of my own, channeling some harder, driving sets and favorites – and digging through this, I’m encouraged by how the darker, weirder sides of electronic music have gotten some real popularity in techno. These artists aren’t fringe any more, at least getting a growing following around the rich networks of fans in parties in Europe and abroad.

ˈYO͞ONƏˌSEKS is the new podcast and party series from ANRI, the Yokohama-born, prolific producer, DJ, and party organizer. Her work got her deep into Tokyo’s underground, before bringing that sensibility to Berlin, where she’s served as a bridge between the techno communities in Japan and Germany. So it’s a pleasure to reflect a bit of what I’ve gotten to experience from her circle into my own response:

Track listing – go find those folks and labels on Bandcamp or your favorite store (like Rotterdam’s Mord, who I didn’t repeat her intentionally, but whose Bandcamp page is well worth a splurge):

  1. Pris – Ad Infinitum [Avian]
  2. Donato Dozzy – Parola featuring Anna Caragnano (Rework) [Spazio Disponibile]
  3. Judas – ID 14 [Arts]
  4. Th;en – Modular (Mike Vath & Robin Hirte Remix) [Tabula Recordings]
  5. Sawlin – Oblique [Arts]
  6. Ansome – Bearded Lady (JoeFarr Remix) [Them Recordings]
  7. Blawan – 993 [Nutrition]
  8. Oscar Mulero – Texture (Cassegrain Remix) [Warm Up Recordings]
  9. Rebekah – Code Black (Slam Remix) [Soma Records]
  10. Ethan Fawkes – Barricades Did Not Burn [Corresponding Positions]
  11. Fjaak – Drugs [Seilscheibenpfeiler Schallplatten Berlin]
  12. Dave Tarrida – Bound To You [Mona Records]
  13. Albert Van Abbe – In Rotterdam [Mord]
  14. Uun – Destruction of Heaven and Earth [Mord]
  15. YYYY – Repent [Weekend Circuit]
  16. Scalameriya – Crucible [Perc Trax]
  17. Thomas P. Heckmann – Bodywrap [Monnom Black]
  18. Paula Temple, Fever Ray – This Country (Paula Temple’s INSTRUMENTAL Version) [Rabid Records / Co-op]
  19. La Fraicheur – Eaux troubles (VTSS Remix) [InFine]
  20. Hiro Ikezawa – Spiral Arm [Murasame Industrial Records]
  21. Ket Robinson – The Fear (Mab Remix) [Taro Records]
  22. A001 – Cyprido [Mord]
  23. Nicolas Bougaïeff – Cognitive Resonance [novamute]
  24. Air Liquide – Semwave [Blue]
  25. Sleeparchive – Wood [Tresor Records]

Enjoy!

And if you’re in Berlin and want to stop by and say hi, that’ll be here, by Warschauer Str S-Bahn:

https://www.residentadvisor.net/events/1299870

https://web.facebook.com/events/2411618512416477/

More on music and visual artists from – well, this week, even, as Atonal is also on – very soon. Now excuse me; I may squeeze in a disco nap.

The post Clubnacht sounds: heavy techno from Jessica Kert, appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

The month’s best mixes: blood-pumping beats and meditative techno

Delivered... Tayyab Amin | Scene | Wed 28 Aug 2019 11:31 am

UNIIQU3 gives retro sounds a new sheen with her AFROPUNK mix, while MssingNo devastates with his glorious melodrama

Dazed Mix: Anthony Naples

Related: The month's best mixes: cosmic connections and oceanic electronics

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‘Dummy wasn’t a chillout album. Portishead had more in common with Nirvana’

Delivered... Jude Rogers | Scene | Sat 24 Aug 2019 5:00 pm
On the 25th anniversary of their classic debut, Geoff Barrow and Adrian Utley reflect on how the album came together

Twenty-five years ago, during the summer of Blur’s Parklife and Oasis’s Definitely Maybe, a darker, stranger record was released that would soon become huge. Its title and mood was inspired by a 1970s TV drama of the same name, about a young deaf woman in Yorkshire who becomes a prostitute. The lyrics spoke of emotional extremes, sung in an extraordinary, rural-tinged, English blues by the Devon-born Beth Gibbons, of “the blackness, the darkness, forever” in Wandering Star, or of the feeling that “nobody loves me, it’s true, not like you do” in Sour Times.

Its sound, woven together by Geoff Barrow and Adrian Utley, helped define what is known today in music as hauntology, the sampling of older, spectral sounds to evoke deeper cultural memories (Boards of Canada’s TV-sampling electronica, Burial’s dubstep, and the Ghost Box label’s folk horror soundworlds would follow their lead). But despite its starkness, Dummy became a triple-platinum seller and a Mercury prizewinner, perhaps because it struck a nerve in what Barrow calls our “sonic unconscious… when sounds can merge with other sounds from somewhere else, and ultimately create emotion”.

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One to watch: Velvet Negroni

Delivered... Tara Joshi | Scene | Sat 24 Aug 2019 2:00 pm

The US singer-songwriter’s free-ranging debut is informed by the constraints of a strict evangelical upbringing

Artists such as Velvet Negroni are emblematic of the disintegration of distinct genres in the streaming age. Real name Jeremy Nutzman, under his current moniker he makes gorgeously expansive sounds that meld and melt the lines between everything from lush synthpop, experimental electronic and choppy rap to reggae and dub.

Born in Minneapolis, Nutzman was adopted by a white evangelical Christian family and boxed in by stringent rules. From the age of five he would play classical piano for at least an hour a day; secular music was forbidden. In an interview with the Fader, he described discovering a pile of abandoned CDs on his neighbour’s lawn, though all his attempts to hoard such treasures – even hiding them in air vents – were found out.

Velvet Negroni’s Neon Brown is released on 4AD on 30 August

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From Soviet funk to a NYC DJ school and Playground: meet Ma Sha

Delivered... Peter Kirn | Scene | Thu 22 Aug 2019 6:16 pm

At a time when the world can seem over-saturated with DJs, here’s a different take – teach more, mix more, and don’t forget breakdancing to old Soviet funk records. We have a chat with Russian-born, NYC-based Ma Sha.

If collective action is part of DJ life in 2019, Ma Sha (aka Maria Koblyakova) is … everywhere. In her adoptive home of NYC, she’s built up Kindergarten as a playful, eclectic musical series. That in turn has had various offshoots (Playground, Recess), one of which I got to join once here in Berlin. But there’s also a regular radio show to keep the music and buzz flowing, for London’s Balamii radio. And Ma Sha keeps European connections going, with extended stints in Berlin and around Europe.

Kindergarten – party and radio show – are relentless and regular. So, too, is a new weekly get-together and DJ school, Hone.Social.

Kindergarten, NYC. Photos by Raúl Coto-Batres.

It’s DIY and international and open and constant – and in a way, the opposite of the alternative ethos of DJs which may have been more successful for some in the past. That model suggested keeping DJ technique (and music selections) a trade secret, making appearances scarce, and making the DJ a guarded and mysterious commodity.

That being said, I don’t want to get too far into that, because it takes away from our opportunity to breakdance to some Soviet funk records, in Ma Sha’s just-released mix for NTS in London. So let’s cue this up and set the mood.

You need the jazz/funk/disco/psychedelic you might have missed because you weren’t growing up in the USSR or former Eastern Bloc. Full track listing below, of course.

Can you tell us a little bit about this mix? How did you encounter this music – since you’re a little younger than the end of the USSR? (if there’s no tracklist or background on NTS, that’d be great!)

The mix is a cocktail of jazz/funk/disco/psychedelic from USSR and Eastern Bloc countries. My very first encounter with proper Soviet grooves happened when I was 13 and was learning to breakdance. Our breakdance trainers introduced us to pure psych//funk magic from USSR as well the classics: James Brown and Bomfunk MC’s. I still can picture very clearly us b-girling in the woods during the summer camp to the track of Russian genius composer Aleksander Zatsepin – Tanec Shamana

What are you teaching in the DJ workshops; how do you structure the curriculum?

Hone.Social is a free weekly workshop aiming to provide a place for everyone to learn and practice their skills in a casual, supportive, one-on-one environment. Since we are open to all ages and all levels of experience, the first step for us is to go over the  basic guidelines on how to use to prepare [your Rekordbox library] for the upcoming session (in case someone wants to focus on CDJs).

Next, during the session, we go over the techniques as well as the art and meaning of DJing. I make sure to engage everyone in discussions on the meanings and narratives behind mixes, the goals of the music community, and how we can influence life around us through music.

For people who have specific preferences for genre/equipment, we invite volunteer teachers who specialize in that topic. Since the workshop takes place at the radio station (Newtown Radio), we record all our sessions. We give the recording to our students, so they can track their progress. After a few overview sessions, the students record their first mix; I am available to provide feedback/advice if they ask for it. We can also review the mix later.

Recently we launched a website (shout out to ½ of Hone.Social, Lenora!) with all the information, as well as the calendar listing available slots. We work on organizing a series of events, where students can practice in a stress-free environment to improve the skills that they gained during sessions. 

Hone.social

Side note – Leonora is also one to watch; she runs SISTER, a virtualized global collective of female and gender non-conforming electronic music professionals and enthusiasts, and DJs as Circe, in addition to design and art direction work. [about Hone.social | Instagram | SoundCloud]

What do you wish someone had taught you – anything that you sort of struggled to figure out?

I wish someone would teach me not to be afraid to ask questions! I remember the first time I played a gig with a rotary mixer. It took me forever to figure out how it worked. I was afraid to ask other DJs for help because I didn’t want to look like I did not know what I was doing 🙂 Teaching Hone.Social workshop helped me to realize how much I can learn from thinking about other people questions  I finally started asking more questions myself. It really helps to understand the different angles and nuances of the craft. 

Any music you’re excited about these days? (Including any artists you’re working with in your events?)

After recording a mix of Soviet gems for PZRecords, I caught a spark of re-discovering my old passions. One example of such rediscoveries would be USSR funk, soul, and rare-groove music; another one would be Soviet movie and cartoons soundtracks. One of the greatest masterpieces of that era in my opinion is the cartoon called “Mystery of The Third Planet”. I highly recommend watching it, and especially listening to the music composed by Aleksander Zatsepin (yes, same composer I mentioned earlier who wrote the music I was breakdancing to when I was a kid).

Wow, he’s now aged 93 – check his work: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aleksandr_Zatsepin -Ed.

When it comes to specific artists, I am currently very excited –  I would even say obsessed – with a concept of combining performance art and DJing. For instance, one of my projects is club nights and a radio show on Balamii called “Kindergarten.” For our last party we had DJ Bus Replacement Service (who absolutely smashed it by the way!). I truly admire how she brings the performative aspect to her DJ sets by using humor and being “a groove digger/selector for Reddit jokes”.

What is a world like that has a growing number of DJs? Is there a way for them to make more opportunities – more chances for music – and not just crowd one another out of DJ booths?

Definitely! I truly believe in empowering each other through mutual support. More artists we have in the world, more minds and spirits can unite and bring bigger exciting and creative changes to our community. Proper education/training is all one needs to be empowered to connect with others.  If everyone has respect and positive energy towards each other, we will move forward as the team and will grow together. Support your friends, share their music with others, do not hesitate to tell someone that they inspire you, take risks! We can only progress if we are not afraid to make mistakes and fall 🙂 Because this is how we learn to fly.

CDM, an acronym which stands for as it has always stood for “Soviet Dance Music” (S looks like an S), glad to bring you the full track listing:

Collage – Mets Neidude Vahel
Оркестр и вокальная группа Диско – Мгновенье, стой 
Візерунки шляхів – Коло Млина Калина
Квартет “4М” – Бэбэл
Оркестър София – С Теб е Бил Той
Kamelie (Hana & Dana) ORM – Video-disco
Valentin Badyarov’s Band – Closer to Summer 
Krystyna Prońko – Jutro zaczyna się tu sezon
Els Himma · Kesköö
VIA Verasy – Aerobics 
Рижский эстрадный оркестр – Zeme zeid
Аида Ведищева – Арифметика
Velly Joonas – Käes on Aeg
Вокальный квартет “Улыбка” – Зимние страдания
Вокальный квартет “Аккорд” – Просто так 
Эстрадный Оркестр Ленинградского Радио – Час пик
ВИА “Здравствуй, песня” – Не обещай
Gunars Rozenbergs – Disco Rose
Муслим Магомаев – Лучший город Земли
Алла Пугачева. Все Силы Даже Прилагая

https://www.instagram.com/ma_sha_music/

The post From Soviet funk to a NYC DJ school and Playground: meet Ma Sha appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

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