New mix: Autopilot

folder

This one goes out to all the self-driving cars, vacuum-cleaning robots and anything else doing stuff we humans would rather ignore so we can play Pokemon Go. PS: That Marquis Hawkes album is killing it.

Download from Mediafire

01. Margaret Dygas – Wishing Well – Even 11 (Perlon)
02. Stimming – Pressing Plant – Alpe Lusia (Diynamic Music)
03. Mr. Fingers – Nodyahed – Outer Acid (Alleviated Records)
04. Blond:ish – Nada Brahma (The Persuader Mix) – Welcome To The Present – The Remixes (Kompakt)
05. Horsepower Productions – Kuriosity – Crooks, Crime and Corruption (Tempa)
06. Todd Terje & The Olsens – La fête sauvage (Prins Thomas Remix) – The Big Cover Up (Olsen Records)
07. Simian Mobile Disco – Staring At All This Handle – Staring At All This Handle EP (Delicacies)
08. Lawrence – Clouds And Arrows – Yoyogi Park (Mule Musiq)
09. Shadow Child – Work – Waves & Shapes Vol. 1 EP (Food Music)
10. Maymind – Prophet – Prophet EP (New Kanada)
11. Audion – Sucker – Alpha (!K7)
12. Tangents – Jindabyne (Four Tet Remix) – (bandcamp)
13. Patrice Bäumel – Dum Dum – Speicher 89 (Kompakt)
14. Marquis Hawkes – Fantasy – Social Housing (Houndstooth)
15. Donato Dozzy – A.Ritmica – That Fab (Spazio Disponible)
16. Junior Boys – And It’s Forever – Big Black Coat (City Slang)

Mixed June 23, 2016 by Dave Morris a.k.a. deemo for a-void.ca

New Mix: Paintbox

paintbox

When it comes to labels making four on the floor tunes, I play favourites. Lot of stalwarts of my digital crates here – Kompakt, obviously, Hyperdub, Get Physical, M_nus – and a few relatively new entrants like Black Acre and Aus Music, neither of which I would dare sleep on. PS: this mix is gym-tested-and-approved.

Click here to download from Mediafire

1. Dan Shake – Traders II (feat. Rennie Foster) – Out of Sight (Black Acre)
2. Saschienne – The Era Of The Leopard – Golden Prints (Kompakt)
3. Weval – Easier – Easier (Kompakt)
4. Phon.o – Der Lude – Werkschau03 (Shitkatapult)
5. Bwana – Flute Dreams – Flute Dreams (Aus Music)
6. Sascha Funke & Haito Gopfrich – Disconnected (Sascha Funke Mix) – Disconnected (Boxer)
7. Sebastian Mullaert & Patrick Siech – Genome (Original Mix) – Genome I (M_nus)
8. Gerry Read – Cosmoid – 3,2,1 (Aus Music)
9. Voigt & Voigt – Supertrip – Speicher 82 (Kompakt)
10. Chelonis R. Jones – Le bateau ivre (Booka Shade remix) – Get Physical #BeatPortDecade Deep House (Get Physical)
11. DJ Pierre – What Is House Muzik (DJ T. Remix) – What Is House Muzik
12. Duke Dumont – The Giver – EP 1 (Virgin EMI)
13. Chemotex – Snake Inside My Leg – Snake Inside My Leg (The Trilogy Tapes)
14. Gingy & Bordello – All Day – Warehouse Series Compilation (Turbo)
15. Kode9 – Oh – Hyperdub 10.4 (Hyperdub)
16. Ricardo Villalobos – Voodog Pt. 1 – Voodog (Pressure Traxx)
17. Hysterics – Empty – Hysterics EP (Night Slugs)

Deemo – Paintbox by Deemo on Mixcloud

 

Mixed on Feb 14, 2015 by Dave Morris a.k.a. Deemo

a-void.ca’s best albums of 2014

Click here to listen to the Soundcloud playlist, featuring tracks from each album

WHERE IS T-SWIFT?

Ok, I admit it, I didn’t listen to it. Nor did I get through albums by Ariana Grande, Ed Sheeran, Jessie J, Keyshia Cole, Calvin Harris, et al and sundry. I also didn’t hear all of Ariel Pink, Foxygen, Swans, TV on the Radio, Leonard Cohen, Julian Casablancas and too many others to count. Don’t even talk to me about jazz or country. (I wouldn’t have much of interest to say.) So WTF *did* I listen to? I’m not even sure how to describe it. Dave-core? Morris-dance? …maybe it’s better if I don’t.

This is the odd post-poptimist desert I feel like I’ve been sent to, via my escape pod hurtling from the full time music-crit grind. The barriers have all fallen – like a lot of right-thinking people, I’m perfectly happy to flip flop from Nicki Minaj to Neil Young to Young Thug in the space of an hour, but what happens when you don’t have time to devote to what might properly be called truly Catholic tastes? Does my embracing of a specialty – electronic music, not even really including the hip-hop that used to be part of my professional bag – mean I’ve re-embraced some of the biases I spent the early 2000s working to shed, like an earnest young Chinese party bureaucrat devouring Marx and Mao, and then giving it up in favour of Day Trading For Dummies?

It’s not a question of openness, I’ve realized, but a question of how you apportion your listening time. For better or for worse, I shoved the stuff that seemed like a long shot into a hard drive folder marked ‘Later’ and threw on another platter of grime, and this is the list that came out.. There was certainly no kind of shortage of amazing electronics to digest; the volume of almost-worthy discs attests to that. (Sorry Tre Mission, SBTRKT, DMX Krew, Shi Wisdom, Mark McGuire, Run The Jewels, Pop Ambient 2015, I could go on.) The LPs that did make the cut seemed not quite dancefloor friendly, except in an abstract sense. Bits and pieces of LV and Joshua Idehen, Caribou, Distal et al slipped into my mixes with scant friction. But the inventiveness I loved often didn’t fit in the space between floor-filling singles, not that I mind. Still, this is a list borne of someone who experienced dance music in 2014 mostly in a bedroom or between headphones. Simon Reynolds’ inveighing against IDM-like anti-dancefloorism aside, I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

The startling truth is that being kind of lazy, in terms of challenging your sense of what you like, can still be an astonishingly rich listening experience. There was enough originality and delight in my year in albums to make the absence of all that pop and hip-hop I missed feel about as painful as the knowledge that I didn’t eat nearly enough artisanal cheese in the last twelve months – not quite the sting of regret as much as the vague acknowledgement that I may have missed something good, possibly, but it’s not keeping me up at night.

If I had one thing I would ask of dance music in 2015, it would be for the most hypnotic, challenging, arresting, electrifying albums to be a little more melodic. I love the discs I chose, but as a whole I felt like my diet was a smidge on the grey side. Producers like Mumdance and Logos, Peverelist, Objekt and others put out single after single of holy-shit-guys-listen-to-this-ism, but when I put them all in a mix, I ended up taking a bunch out and replacing them with some chooons to break up the monotony. And the grab-bag of albums felt roughly the same, though I didn’t curate this list in a similar way. You can’t turn down a slamming, mesmerizing beat like the ones all over the Next Life comp or the Clap! Clap! record, melody or no. Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker.

The five best records you missed in August

(Well I don’t actually know if you missed them, for all I know you’ve been bumping Lee Gamble in your jeep at all the cookouts I just don’t get invited to.)

jameshoff

James Hoff
Blaster
PAN

I did not know that James Hoff was 1) a “conceptual artist” – scare quotes very much intentional – or 2) that this album was made by infecting an 808 with a computer virus or something. It’s kind of a miracle then that the results are listenable in their own right, at least by my definition of listenable. I’m sure my neighbours wouldn’t agree. But that’s what you get for living next to a guy who enjoys fiery blasts of digital distortion seemingly spat out at random. Blaster is oddly musical in that way only noisy stuff can be – it gets your back up with the obvious affrontery of the genre, but then your brain starts looking for the stuff around the edges of the noise, around the relationship with the other musical elements, and you find yourself settling in for something like a pleasurable experience. I say bring it on.

Kompakt_Total_14_600

Total 14
Kompakt

I vividly remember the moment when I fell in love with Kompakt’s Total series. I guess I had read about it somewhere, and I made one of my awkward visits to a specialist DJ shop where the guy behind the counter looks at me flicking through the two racks of albums and not looking at the singles on the wall, and wondering what the hell I was doing there. This one was in a basement near Queen West and Spadina, and I recall checking out several tracks – gee buddy, I thought, how come your ‘new’ albums are out of the plastic and being handed over to n00bs like me to hopefully not scratch them with one of these turnable needle things I’ve heard of? – and being smitten enough to fork over an obscene import price that probably wasn’t even particularly marked up.

I still have that copy of Total 2, and digital copies of all the Totals since floating around various hard drives, and they are never, ever disappointing, which is frankly amazing. Kompakt has always escaped the boring-minimal-techno trap by embracing pop elements like vocals and layered melodies, and there are too many great examples in Total 14 to list. But extra credit has to go to striking cuts like Voigt & Voigt’s beat-pop workout “Tischlein Deck Dich,” Dawud’s slinky “Lydia” and The Modernist’s “Die Fette Gazelle and the Hidden Six Pack,” which is so perfectly paced it could be an Elmore Leonard novel.


monopoly

Mono/Poly
Golden Skies
Brainfeeder

You don’t see a lot of releases from the old guard — and I use the term advisedly — of instrumental beatsmiths these days, certainly not as much as in the earlier part of the decade. But it’s not just longevity that makes Mono/Poly such a key figure in what’s left of the scene. Golden Skies is as richly textured and inventive as records like these get, with layer upon layer of dreamy melodic material over beats that gently propel the tracks along. “Alpha & Omega” is a highlight, all arpeggiated synths drifting off into space over a beat that sounds like a ping pong ball stuck bouncing in a vending machine. (In space.) If the frigid string swells and warm pads in “Night Garden” don’t make the hairs on the back of your neck do a little dance, you may in fact be dead.

leegamble-7.24.2014

Lee Gamble
KOCH
PAN

I feel like I get sent a lot of techno singles made up almost entirely of clanking noises, white noise, pink noise, brown noise and a fascist kick drum banging away for six minutes. It’s nice to hear a record – a full length, no less – that has all of those things, and a soul to boot. I can actually listen to KOCH all the way through without forgetting it was on, and feeling the urge to check the health of my refrigerator. It helps that Gamble plays the spare melodic elements off each other rhythmically in a way that sounds like a language that makes sense together, rather than someone just stacking drum machine patterns on top of each other until the track can take no more. (Can you tell I feel like whining about the state of techno?) Admittedly I could do without the purely ambient tracks, which lack Gamble’s deft rhythms to offset the slightly plain textures, but they make nice palate cleansers before the next slammin’ groove invades the ol’ ear canals.

flugel

Roman Flügel
Happiness Is Happening
Dial

OK this came out September 1 but who’s keeping track? It might have slipped by me anyways if i hadn’t listened past the odd first track, which feels like it was left off the end of a shoegaze album the mastering engineer was doing before opening the Happiness Is Happening folder on his desktop. But that’s more a testament to Roman Flügel’s range of material than a weakness, veering from the Kraftwerk-ish electro pop of “Friendship Song” to the Cybotron-like rising arpeggios and stadium-sized handclaps of “Parade” in the course of just a few tracks. Invention is the order of the day, and nowhere else is it in sharper relief than on “Stuffy,” whose chameleonic drum patterns and jittery synths hold onto a consistent mood while throwing the listener into a tumble-dryer of a track. It’s good fun from a stalwart figure who deserves more attention than he sometimes gets – being hard-to-pin-down isn’t a great marketing strategy but it certainly makes for a fun album.

 

Mix: Left and Right

leftright

So many total face-melters here. Both tracks with Riko make the case that he might be the U.K.’s most ruffneck MC. Repping the local scene with Shi Wisdom, who really ought to have been on the Polaris long list (apparently the album was like two minutes too short). Stray, who I didn’t know previously, was a nice surprise – Exit Records holding it down. And the footwork flip of “Luck of Luchini” was urgent and necessary. RIP DJ Rashad, gone too soon.

Click here to download from Mediafire

Deemo – Left and Right by Deemo on Mixcloud

  1. Loops Haunt  – IIVA – Exits (Black Acre)
  2. Bok Bok – Howard  – Your Charizmatic Self EP (Night Slugs)
  3. Kowton – Jam01 (Beneath Remix) – Livity (Ghost-202 Remix) / Jam01 (Beneath Remix) (Livity Sound)
  4. Jacques Greene – No Excuse (Yung Gud Remix) – Phantom Vibrate Remixes (LuckyMe)
  5. Martyn – Forgiveness Step 3 – Forgiveness EP (Ninja Tune)
  6. Wen – Play Your Corner (feat. Riko) – Signals (Keysound)
  7. Durban – Chimes  – Chimes (Lit City Trax)
  8. Footsie – Tekky – King Original Vol 3 (Braindead Ent)
  9. Shi Wisdom – Fly Too – Stranger Things Have Happened (bandcamp)
  10. Heterotic – Boxes – Weird Drift (Planet Mu)
  11. VesperTown – Tuff Luv – Kaleidoscope (Donky Pitch)
  12. Jailo x Ganz – Casino Royale – Turquoise (Terrorhythm)
  13. Visionist – First Love – I’m Fine (Part II) (Lit City Trax)
  14. Stray – Fragile – Chatterbox EP (Exit)
  15. Nomine – Zen Circle – Enma (Tempa)
  16. Terror Danjah feat. Riko – Dark Crawler – Hyperdub 10.1 (Hyperdub)
  17. Ital Tek – Control – Control (Planet Mu)
  18. Traxman – Your Just Movin – Da Mind Of Traxman Vol 2 (Planet Mu)
  19. DJ Rashad x DJ Spinn x Taso – Luchini VIP – Teklife Till Tha Next Life Vol. 1 (Teklife)
  20. Dibia$e – Hold It Down – Schematiks (10thirty Records)
  21. DAMH – Black Night (DJ Koze Remix) – Black Night (Kompakt)
  22. J Dilla – Here We Go Again – Lost Tapes Reels + More (Mahogani)

Mixed June 7 2014 for a-void.ca by Deemo a.k.a. Dave Morris