Everything’s In You delivers eleven minutes of intriguing, brilliance which never falters from exploring as many ideas as humanly possible. Its journey through sounds encompasses a diverse range of influences while defining its own path, shooting out across the distance. A breath-taking production which fuses haunting sequences together with a smouldering, uplifting intensity feeling nothing short of delicious. The more introspective, though equally stunning, 311 Trillion Years follows probing more atmospheric richness while this time allowing for more space to do so.
Insanely good. When you love four beats to the bar, and within that space the message is spelled out loud and clear, then this latest from Claude VonStroke & ZDS is that explosive. Excellent that there is only one version to date as the sizzling combination of hot vocal and intense, heavy-duty instrumentation delivers addictive, do it again sounds. All over again…
What can I say about DJ W!ld that you don’t know already. You either tune in and turn on to his unique sound or not. This new EP for Cardinal solidifies the thought process with further crunchy grooves worming their way into your consciousness. As always with the artist it’s the splashes of soulful musicality which helps to set it all alight and on the opening Grass Lighter that’s very much in evidence. Cab Drivers supply the remix injecting more electricity into the heady arrangement. While the punchy Goutte A Goutte follows suit compacting the shuffle of swinging rhythms together with brutal intensity, leaving the excellent title track to complete via twisted disco and a bag full of attitude. Play Loud.
I’m not going to risk boring you with the word otherworldly. Although, of course, it does fit this strange concoction of ever expanding soundscapes. But because listening to the artists music, predating him signing to 4AD, is a blissful experience that tugs at the edges of beauty, albeit in slightly unnerving ways. It is slightly confusing to think that these tracks have been transferred from cassette tape as the sheer intensity of it all speaks volumes about the music itself rather than anything else. You could imagine the breath of Nick Drake’s voice adorning the acoustic guitar strains on Something About Hope. While, All The Mirrors In The House conjures up a sinister imagination, contrasted by the turmoil injected emotional rush of Because Piano. This is music which exits beyond time and place. Completing via the melancholy sensations of the F Choir. If it’s safe to use the word, spiritual then let’s go for that instead.
The word Joy popped into my head when I opened the box to reveal what lay within this tastefully packaged compilation of gems from the history of movie soundtracks. So it turned out to be entirely relevant as this selection charts moments of elation, alongside deeper darker terrain. From outright Classical via the brilliance of Claude Debussy and Beethoven through to old-time songs from the likes of Ray Charles this release contains it all. It’s enjoyable to let the sounds escape and weave from the room to room filling empty spaces, as not only music but likewise the accompanying pictures generated in your mind while remembering snippets from celluloid, or even imagining new ones. There’s also lots of Mozart with a great quote on the sleeve stating: “Mozart is for eight in the evening. Beethoven is for midnight”, Jean-Luc Godard. If indeed you did need reminding about the sheer strength contained in orchestras, as well as the traditional assembled array of played by hand instruments, then this is also an excellent place to start. Besides, Erik Satie is present too with his lone piano and for beautiful, unequalled poignancy there is none better: Gnossiennes No.3 Lent. A diverse selection of films are drawn on across the three-CD boxset from such disparate classics as Rosemary’s Baby through to The Italian Job and Clockwork Orange, alongside The Man Who Fell To Earth via the outstanding Mars by Holst. There are so many movements that feel reassuringly familiar, and yet almost forgotten until you reengage with them again – preferably with the volume turned up. And you really should engage again.
Welcome to Magazine Sixty, Nico Stojan & Timujin. Let’s begin with your new release for Rebellion: Oktoberfest. Can you tell us about where the title originates from and how your relationship with the Crosstown Rebels’ sister label happened?
Hello hello, thanks for having us!
The main track of the EP is named after the big folk festival in Bavaria. We both have never been to this festival and always wanted to go…the voice in the track is manifesting it for us.
The release moves across moods and atmospheres impressively with sublime use of guitar and both Satsang and Higher Altitude. Can you tell us about the influences which have informed those more musical aspects of what you do, and in particular about your favourite guitarists?
It is a beautiful instrument with a lot of charm if you know how to play it. Our friend completed the idea that we had in exactly the way we were writing the notes for him. We wanted him to play it in the mood of joy. We also blindfolded him and told him that he couldn’t leave the studio until he delivered the final piece!
Can you talk us through the process of how you produce music together: how initial ideas are realized and then turned into tracks? Are there any pieces of software/ hardware that you always like to use when creating music?
It’s pretty simple. Just searching for the right dead body in the cellar and try to reanimate it with combining the skillz of our musician friends while putting a lot of pressure into the session so they will deliver what you want and rounding up the track and make it alive.
How did the two of you first decide to work together? And can you tell us about the studio you like use?
We were both playing one night on two different art cars at Burning Man and the drivers were totally lost in the sandstorms. They crashed into each other and all over sudden we ended up playing b2b until the sun came up. So we decided to keep on collaborating
How do you feel about the place of nostalgia in music as your sounds feel very new and contemporary?
Aren‘t we all a bit happy and sad at the moment. That is how we would describe nostalgic. If we can put that feeling into frequencies and make people feel the same way when they listen to it you can call it a big failure at the end.
Can you tell us about the favourite places you have DJ’ed? And what feelings/ thoughts you like to convey to the people who dance?
When my great grandmother was turning 90 we took her to Fusion Festival and played house music for her. She loved it and got her groove on!
Outside of electronic music which artists, writers, painters etc have most influenced what you do?
Definitely Odem, Phos4 & Banksy and of course not to forget Damian Hurst. We just bought him in a glass container sitting on the toilet reading the news. We think Everyone should have his own Hirst!
And finally. Tell us about your forthcoming plans to work together?
We will see what happens but right now we are busy learning more about reincarnation and life after death.
Nico Stojan & Timujin – Oktoberfest. Released 24th May 2019 on Rebellion.
Welcome to Magazine Sixty Rich. Let’s start with your new EP: The Four Slip co-produced alongside East End Dubs. Tell us about how you first met, the decision to work together, and what the title refers to?
Cheers and thanks for this chat! I am very happy and excited that East End Dubs and I finally got together to make and finish an EP. We first met when FUSE was still at 93 Feet East every week. It was the summer of 2012. I had been on Beatport that week buying new tunes when I came across his stuff. When I heard them and saw the look of the artwork, I was thinking ‘hold on a sec this must be someone out of our East London scene’ and sure enough he came and said hi that very Sunday. I was playing his tune Jazz Me, we got on and have stayed in touch ever since. It took a while before we got into the studio together and that good because when we did it was nice an easy and natural, good timing. The title refers to when we work in his studio, we would wear slippers, so two pairs of slippers became the Four Slip EP.
Your production style is very intense and feels like a rush of ideas all at once. Who and what have most influenced what you do in terms of Dance Music? And are there any artists or writers etc from outside of the electronic world that have impacted on you creatively?
I have been influenced by many different types of music, from rock to hardcore, jungle to pop and loads in-between. In the early 2000’s it was more about club music, different shades of progressive, then new wave electro, then minimal house. I always want my music to have an impact, both physically and emotionally. People get the same amount of listening pleasure from so many different styles of music so it’s important when writing to stretch the boundaries a bit and do things a little differently. That said it would be wrong of me to try and pretend that our music doesn’t have a framework. Some things just don’t work on our dancefloors, but nevertheless the parts of our brains that might interpret the grunge angst of a Pearl Jam song are the same as those which respond to the intricacies of a subtle bassline harmony in a minimal house record. The maths and science are the same and music and its effect on feelings can be really subtle in its execution.
Can you talk us through the process of co-creating one of the tracks from the EP, including any software/ hardware that you like to use?
We just went into the studio and dived in. He had a basic loop that he was working on. I find it’s always better to start a collaboration with a loop, just to break the ice. We’d go through software, plug-ins and techniques that we enjoy using and as we talked and showed each other stuff, the track layers naturally started to build up. We left quite a long time before getting together again for another couple of sessions where we reviewed everything and started to realise the path of the tracks and way take forward to completion I really like using Native Instruments Battery 4, particularly for adding touches of percussion and FX to an almost finished track as glue to help the flow and feel. Whenever I am in the studio with a friend, I like to go through this piece of my arsenal.
In terms of the Art of production. Do you feel Dance Music is in a good place? And what are your thoughts on the function of nostalgia in it all?
I am really excited about where my dance music scene is. All of my label mates from FUSE and INFUSE are producing incredibly diverse, well produced beats with dancefloor impact. I am being sent loads of interesting music and taking it to DJ with real excitement. On the next What NxT Various Artists, I’ll be featuring as always tracks from established artists (Cuartero, Kepler and Nico Maxen) alongside newcomers (Antss, Aaran D and Marvin Morgan).
Regarding nostalgia, like any music, our music’s relationship with nostalgia can be criticised. Nostalgia for me works on lots of different levels though. My party experience travels with me everywhere I go and I want to recreate the vibes I have experienced for other people. Music always goes around in cycles, sampling has been around since the inception of the technology getting caught up in too much discourse around this or the merits of bootlegs, or whether it’s right to take from a sound that’s gone before, kind of takes away from the fun of it all.
You have been resident and involved with the development of FUSE since its inception over ten years ago. What for you are the most vital ingredients for running a party? And what is the most special thing for you being a resident DJ, rather than playing as a guest somewhere?
The most vital ingredients for a party as simple for me. Sound, music, people, venue and security. These need to be right or the rest doesn’t work. The most special thing for me about being a resident is the long term knowing of your sound and development, that feeling ‘coming home to play’ to our home party crowd, now that we all tour regularly, is a good one too. The party started here so just as important that as we take the sound on the road to all the great parties around the world, we still supply it here, where it all started, otherwise what are we?
Tell us about your history with 93 Feet East and what makes the club so notable for you as part of the FUSE story? How was the recent Bank Holiday event?
93 was really important as part of the evolution of my musical style. Being able to take my early tracks down week by week and test for the brilliant crowd and atmosphere along with the other tracks I would be playing helped me to learn what my DJ’ing style really was. When we returned for the 10th birthday after party last year, with all the people who were there from the start, reminded us of where this all came from and also showed how its grown. The recent bank holiday INFUSE event when I played b2b with Rossko was another perfect reminder of how we can still take it back to the roots and it still feels just as right as if we take it to Amnesia or Tobacco Docks.
And finally. Tell us about any forthcoming plans? Have you been thinking about developing what you do via an album?
My forthcoming EP with East End Dubs is dropping on Fuse London on 14th June, a month later I have an EP on Sante’s AVOTRE. After the summer I will release my 7th solo EP on Fuse London and the 6th release on NxT records which for first time has remixes on the label. What NxT is going to be producing two digital releases this year with some absolute dancefloor gems. Alongside all of this, I have completed remixes for Steve Bug on Snatch and Darius Syrossian on Moxy. About a possible album I don’t currently have active plans to seek to make it anytime soon. That said if it happens, it happens. Gig wise I have lots of look forward to like Cocoon In the Park, FUSE at DC-10, Deeperfect at BPM, Mint Festival and loads more… Nice speaking! 🙂
Love the tantalising combination of searing, dark beauty and pumping, succinct drums which never feel less than brilliant – also the accompanying artwork. There’s more than enough funk injected into the core sensations generated by this crisp, forward-reaching production that positively sizzles with tension as punctuating keys stab at the heart of the matter. And that’s just Signals. The effervescent, Intelligent Machines follows with more pace and furious rhythms dancing across the stereo as the warm musical rush of keys hit the airwaves during the breathless breakdown. More than enough…
Thonk! Sounds like completely the right title for this latest production from Dave Seaman. It sequences a wealth of creative flair with moments of poetic genius while always keep you guessing. Clocking up to seven minutes the experience sees you trip through a breathless reach of sounds that feel cosmopolitan in nature and yet worldly-wise and ultimately, perfect for the dancefloor. The excellent Whitesquare remix follows with guitar punctuated rhythms feeling even bigger than before, again signifying music of quality and distinction.
When the opening chords of Georgy Porgy wash over you in a tingle of anticipation, and then the voice of Cheryl Lynn arrives, you’re right back where you started from. Its moments like these that transcend time. This double CD compilation of the singers Columbia Records releases’ spans the years between 1978 to 1985, covering the best of six albums worth of R&B inspired gems. The title track, which she co-wrote, hits next and if you’ve been on a dancefloor anywhere in the world, or switched on the TV then at some point you will know this. But it’s not just the up-tempo numbers that gather harmonic pace as Cheryl Lynn’s voice shines on any occasion, fast or slow and low. It’s also surprising how many flashes of music are also seared into our collective consciousness such as the unforgeable bars of You Saved My Day. Keep It Hot and the life-affirming qualities of Shake It Up Tonight still remain personal favourites highlighting a time when music spoke an almost different language to what occupies dancefloors in modern days. By the second disc sounds softened with ballads featuring more heavily, including a duet with Luther Vandross on If This World Were Mine. Although standout tracks like the Jimmy “Jam” Harris and Terry Lewis produced Encore helped define not only the sound of American dance music but also that of the UK in 1984.