‘Stupid Enough’ film premiere

My good friends, Sarah ‘inkymole’ Coleman and Leigh Adams have made a short film about working creatives called Stupid Enough (the reason for the title becomes evident when you watch the film). They talked to friends in a multitude of different creative industries about how they work and each give a glimpse into how they started, got to the position they now occupy and impart their personal knowledge of how to make it on your own in worlds with few rules or guides. I feature alongside rapper Sage Francis, director Gareth Edwards, gallery owner Jonathan Levine and more and its got some great advice buried in it.

Interviews were conducted over a period of six months in New York and at locations around the UK, including a Bristol barber’s shop, gallery space; a Manhattan apartment, hen-filled workshop, steamy kitchen and Battersea Park. Where possible, they filmed people in their working environments – and any background noise was just part of the atmosphere on the day.

It’s being premiered at creative event ‘Schmiede’​ in Austria, on Thursday 10th September, and shown again at a historic cinema ‘across the river’ near Salzburg on Sunday 13th September.

The film was made with the purpose of touring it to colleges and universities here and abroad, presenting and engaging in lively discussions about the nature of creativity in business, and installing (hopefully) enthusiasm and optimism among people about to embark on their creative careers. If you are a lecturer or tutor; student president or keen student about to enter your final year and want to show the film – then let them know, they are reaching out to these educational sorts over the next few months.

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Jodorowsky’s Dune showing + DJ Food DJ set

Ful Dune flyer
On Saturday 12th September I’ll be at the Portico Gallery  (23a Knights Hill, West Norwood, London, SE27 OHS) to play one of my Future Shock DJ sets of space music after a screening of ‘Jodorowsky’s Dune’ – the documentary of the unmade sci-fi classic. This is part of their regular FEAST Film Nights where they show a rarely seen film with sympathetic music selections afterwards and my set will be accompanied by the amazing geometric animations of Ameet Hindocha. The price is £5 and I’m excited to be part of this in an arts space that’s local to me, supporting people doing interesting things in less obvious spots in the city. 7.30pm Doors open – 8pm Film screening – 9.30pm DJ set
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The Dragons in Shindig! magazine #49

Shindig Dragons1
My article on The Dragons is in issue #49 of Shindig! Magazine – out now, 6 pages too. New interviews with Doug & Dennis Dragon plus Donn Landee who produced their BFI album. After their recent publisher troubles the mag is back and as good as ever, you should be able to find it in most WH Smiths and decent record shops. If the article piques your interest and you want to hear the music they made then Ninja Tune still has digital and CDs in stock although the vinyl is long gone.
Shindig Dragons2 Shindig Dragons3

Psychedelic Sushi at Brilliant Corners – FREE!

PsycheSushiflyerAbove is the flyer for Psychedelic Sushi the first of what I hope will become regular nights at Brilliant Corners in Kingsland Road, London. Myself and Matty from Skylab will be playing Psychedelic music in all its myriad forms on vinyl whilst diners scoff from the excellent japanese menu. After 11 the tables get pushed back and we go until 1.30am – entry is free so Turn up, Tuck in and Freq out! PsychSushiEyeLogo

Videocrash – huge AV show in London

Videocrash-Webversion1Very pleased to be headlining this great line up of Audio Visual artists for the re-scheduled Videocrash show (that was originally planned for last night). I’ll be debuting a new AV set called Future Shock, based around the similarly named mixes – lots of electronica, both new and old. Expect a lot of sci-fi imagery and weirdness… also expect Robin Hexstatic to reprise his incredible Acid set from the Solid Steel 20th anniversary party, complete with visuals and Cheeba and TomCentral to premiere new work. Tickets are on sale here

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Coldcut ‘Journeys By DJ’ 20 Years on by Joe Clay on the Quietus

quietus_coldcut-70minutescropJoe Clay interviewed Coldcut, PC and myself back in January for a 20th anniversary piece about the making of ‘Seventy Minutes of Madness’, Coldcut‘s contribution to the Journeys By DJ series back in 1995. It seems crazy that this was two decades ago now but time flies when you’re having fun. It’s a pretty extensive delve into the circumstances and techniques involved in the creation of what they’re calling ‘the greatest DJ mix album of all time’ *blushes*.
This piece also reveals why Coldcut never made a follow up but highlights the logical successor to the mix and kicks off a series on the Quietus where writers pick their favourite mixes. Incidentally the photo above was taken in Japan around 1996/7, back stage with DJ Takemura before a gig. If you’ve never heard the mix before or fancy a refresher after reading then someone called GarethisOnit has put it up on Soundcloud as part of a Classic Mix CD Series he’s creating.

 

The final 3-Way Mix tonight at the Funk & Soul Club


Above was filmed at the Erarta Museum of Contemporary Art in St. Petersburg earlier this year, check around the 1 minute mark for the stage-diver :)
Tonight DJ Cheeba, DJ Moneyshot and I retire the ‘3-Way Mix’ live set as part of the line up at the Funk & Soul Club at the Electric Ballroom in Camden. It’s been 18 months since we debuted it in Paris and since then we’ve toured it across Europe, to Russia, Canada and Australia, adding a full video component as we went. The 25th anniversary of the ‘Paul’s Boutique’ album it’s based on has come and gone and the third anniversary of MCA‘s death fast approaches. Time to put it to rest and move on…

3-Way Mix LDN poster

Last performance of the 3-Way Mix in London, April 17th

3-Way Mix LDN posterDJ Cheeba, Moneyshot and I are putting our 4 deck, 3 DJ reconstruction of the Beastie Boys‘Paul’s Boutique’ album to bed for the foreseeable future on April 17th at the Funk & Soul Club in London. We feel that it’s done it’s job and we want to end it 18 months after it’s premiere and just 2 weeks short of the anniversary of MCA’s death on May 4th. We’ll have the full AV set up for this gig and Moneyshot’s other group, The Allergies, are also on the bill amongst others with Mixmaster Morris playing the second room as well. It’s at the Electric Ballroom, Camden and tickets are £8 advance.

Future Shock AV show premiere at Videocrash, Koko, London

My new Future Shock 2 mix is getting a lot of love on this week’s Solid Steel and now I can reveal that I’ll be premiering the AV show that goes with it at Videocrash at Koko, London this May 23rd. *UPDATE – Soundcrash cancelled this gig after changing the line up four times in two weeks. It has since been rescheduled for another date in December at a different venue.

‘Future Shock 2′ mix for Solid Steel

A new mix I did back in January has finally come to the top of the pile for Solid Steel. ‘Future Shock 2′ is the follow up to last summer’s first outing of retro electronica and future beats. This was completed just as Edgar Froese passed away at the end of January and I went back to it to include a track and interview snippets in tribute to him. Sadly it’s been waiting in the queue for a spot on the show for two months so the moment has gone plus we’ve lost other greats or equal importance since but that’s what comes with popularity and the show has been going from strength to strength over the last couple of years.

The first 10 minutes of this took an age to get right but it’s one of the most satisfying slow build intros I think I’ve ever sequenced, the pacing and layers unfold in a way that’s hard to engineer often. From then it’s a measured climb into harder and heavier waters until we hit Mark Moore & William Orbit‘s remix of ‘The Future’ by Prince. In fact there are many builds and breakdowns in this mix but of the slow burn variety rather than the euphoric kind, I’d imagine it’d be pretty good to drive to at night.

Big Fish Little Fish at the Imagine Fest

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Big Fish Little Fish was amazing on Sunday, god knows how many people crammed into the Clore Ballroom at the Southbank in London. So many at one point that we had to stop the music for 10 minutes for an unscheduled break while the staff tried to calm a swell of the people trying to get in. Above is at the start as people were coming in, you can see House of Pain’s ‘Jump Around’ on my laptop as the opening track.

BFLFSoutbankcrowd2
The parachute dance (above) is a regular feature of the BFLF parties and this one was different in that they did it three times so that people got a chance to be under it, still didn’t stop a fight by two mums nearly breaking out to get underneath :). Below you can see just how much it had filled up by the end as families poured into the totally unprepared ballroom to rave inside away from the rain. Despite it being a roadblock all the staff were lovely and Hannah and Natasha from BFLF handled the whole thing like pros.

BFLFSoutbankcrowd3
I made a mix for them back in January that I’ve been meaning to post it on here but what with the Selected Aphex Works mix I didn’t want to push too many mixes out there. But here it is – Warning! Pop Alert! This is made as much with kids in mind as adults, probably good for a picnic or birthday party rather than the more adult-centric classic rave and jungle I played on Sunday.

Selected Aphex Works mix for Solid Steel

Record_Collector_8_AFXFew can’t have heard that earlier this month user48736353001 started uploading copious amounts of old tracks to their Soundcloud account claiming that they were a fan of Richard D James aka Aphex Twin and had made lots of tracks in his style. Very quickly speculation spread that this was actually Richard and these tracks were selections from his mythical archive or thousands of unreleased tunes, some dating back from before he broke through in the early 90’s. As more and more tracks appeared and comments started appearing from the user it became apparent that this was indeed the real deal and Xmas had either been delayed by a month or arrived ridiculously early.

I was suspicious at first but when a track named ‘8 Utopia’ was uploaded I knew that even if the person uploading and commenting wasn’t Aphex then the music was. Way back in the mid 90’s I was made a ‘best of’ tape of unreleased work by a friend of Richard’s on the condition that I kept the content to myself. As you can see from the track list above, the compiler wasn’t 100% sure on a lot of the titles but the track that starts side 2, ‘The one that makes you shiver’, was the same as ‘8 Utopia’, albeit in far worse quality. As more tracks were uploaded I started recognising more tunes with even a couple of titles matching. A total of 5 out of the 17 tracks from the tape appeared, with another 7 having been heard on RDJ-related records elsewhere since the tape was made, leaving me no doubt that this was Aphex. Here’s how the original tape titles match up (and bear in mind that the cassette titles could be wrong in the first place):

i. ‘AFX vs UZiq’ = not uploaded to Soundcloud
ii. ‘-?-‘ (’94) = track 11 from the Joyrex tape that was uploaded a few years ago, although at a faster speed
iii. ‘Untitled Jungle tune’ = track 10 from the Joyrex tape that was uploaded a few years ago, although faster
iv. ‘Epic Breakbeat’ = not uploaded to Soundcloud
v. ‘Mantra’ = the track known as ‘Humanoid Must Not Escape’ from the Caustic Window ‘Joyrex J9′ picture disc (303 side), you can hear a sampled voice say what sounds like ‘Mantra’.

After ‘Mantra’ comes a short 30 second piece of electronic glitching with the sample, “I had to kill Bob Morgan because he made a mistake”, the same as on the ‘Bob Morgan’ track included in the uploads.

vi. ‘AFX vs. Uziq’ = ‘Giant Deflating Football’ from the Mike & Rich album on Rephlex
vii. ‘unreleased Ventolin’ = ‘phlangebeat’ although a lot slower on the tape
viii. ‘Bradley Styder’ = the first track from ‘Bradley’s Robot’ from the Strider B. 12″ on Rephlex
+ scanning by R.James‘Phone Pranks’ (Part 1 & 2) from the original Caustic Window LP that was finally released via a Kickstarter by WATMM.

i. ‘The one that makes you shiver’ = ‘8 Utopia’
ii. ‘-?-‘ (’93) = not uploaded to Soundcloud
iii. ‘GAK track’ = ‘d15-10 dulcimer dub’
iv. ‘—- ” —–‘ = ‘Untitled’, track 5 from the officially unreleased ‘Analogue Bubblebath 5′ EP
v. ‘-?-‘ (’91/92) = not uploaded to Soundcloud
vi. ‘Dance To The Beat’ = ‘dance2thebeat’ although the tape version is speeded up noticeably so that it clocks in at under 4 minutes.
vii. ‘Fresher + Cleaner’ (The Best Aphex Track Ever!) = ‘Fresher + Cleaner’ minus the intro hi hats
viii. ‘AFX vs Wagon Christ’ (Hissy Mix) = not uploaded to Soundcloud

Looking at some of the dates on the titles – mid to late 80’s – I’m slightly dubious as this would mean RDJ was making fully-formed gabba Techno at the same time as the Detroit pioneers were weaving their magic. Anyway, back to the present day and, eventually, 155 tracks appeared and, after making my way through them all, I pulled out 40 favourites for a mix. These were further whittled down to 31 with the addition of interview snippets from Radio 3‘s Mixing It show and John Peel‘s Sounds of the Suburbs TV program, and the whole thing clocks in at 86 minutes.

My Top 10 AFX Soundcloud tracks in no particular order:

Red Calx / Red Calx [slo]
Make A Baby
Luke Vibert – Spiral Staircase [afx remix]
Fork Rave
Moodular Acid
Th1 / th1[slo]
Heliosphan live
afx 126b
Utopia
Moodular Acid

DJ Food added to the 45 Live roster

DJFood_45L_labelI’m very pleased to be added to the roster over at 45 Live – a collective of DJs who spin 7″ only sets. The site was set up by Scott Boca 45 and Pete Issac (Jelly Jazz) as a hub for booking DJs who use purely 45s as their format of choice in their sets. This is becoming more and more popular and playing at Scott’s 45-Live night in Bristol last year convinced me to jump in. The site aims to also act as a magazine showing vinyl-related stories and mixes, a shop and, later, a label. Check out my profile here.

This doesn’t mean I’ll be ditching the Serato and AV sets by any means, this is more for special occasions where I’ll be concentrating on Rock, Psych, Electronic and Break-led sets like my ‘Magpie Music’ mixes, with as much new material as old classics. It’s a different kind of discipline and doesn’t reply on the ease with which digital files mean that every DJ can have every song they want. I like the challenge of that and, now entering my 30th year as a DJ, a challenge can revitalise you in all sorts of unexpected ways.

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The 3-Way Mix in St. Petersburg

St Peterburg_statue
I think Russia is rapidly becoming one of my favourite places to play, 3 gigs in the last 3 months, all memorable for different reasons and all the crowds have been so good. They seem way more into the music and not preoccupied with their mobiles, very vocal but in a positive way. Plus we got to play at the Museum of Contemporary Art in St. Petersburg with one of the biggest video screens yet.
One guy on Saturday night was stage-diving to the Beasties mix from the off, so much so that he got himself thrown out. Another kept shouting ‘more volume’ and led the crowd in his chant but we were already in the red. Afterwards we were informed that he’s a little bit deaf and always does this at every gig.

St Peterburg_Airportstatue St Peterburg_Erarta St Peterburg_Erartastatue St Peterburg_ice St Peterburg_poster St Peterburg_Putineggs St Peterburgx3

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A 2nd mix of ‘Magpie Music’ for Solid Steel


It’s been a while but here’s my first mix for 2015 and Solid Steel and it’s a second installment of ‘Magpie Music’, the name for mixes where I generally group the more psychedelic, fuzzed up, heavy beat productions I like. If it’s got a live band feel then it’ll probably be in one of these mixes for the moment but they can also include rawer, sample-led Hip Hop and Trip Hop cuts. My other series – Future Shock – is reserved for more electronic, sci-fi synth and soundtrack work although there’s always room for cross over.

I’ve decided to split music into there two camps for the foreseeable future as I find they focus the mixes more and make for a better overall listen rather than lumping the two together. There will of course be other themed mixes coming your way (I must get round to KKK9, The Lynch Party pt.2 and the Duck Rock audio documentary one day). Oh, and there’s the Alphabet Series too which comes and goes when it feels like it of which the mythical lost Sesame Street compilation is part of.

Anyway, this mix features some of my favourite songs from 2014, certainly from the second half of the year anyway. Plenty of The Heliocentrics, Jane Weaver, Temples and Ghost of a Sabre Tooth Tiger whose albums I adored and still do. I’m finishing up the second Future Shock mix right now so hopefully that should be along sometime next month too.