DJ Food ‘Music On A Shoestring’ mix [Psychonavigation 2000 – 2015]

MusicOnAShoetringHere’s the details for the Psychonavigation Records 2000-2015 mix CD I’ve just finished: 23 tracks from the 45 track ‘Music On A Shoestring’ digital compilation, mixed by yours truly into a 74 minute head trip. Here’s an online stream of the mix in full, see what you think…

If ambient electronica, deep space dub, classical piano and acoustic pieces are your thing then this is for you.
Some names you might recognise from the line up: The Future Sound of London, Autechre, Brian Eno, Alex Paterson, Thomas Fehlmann, Dr Atmo, Spacetime Continuum
It was very hard to fit all the tracks I wanted onto one disc as the hit rate on the compilation is so high, my original wishlist was 35 of the 45 tracks. You can pre-order the mix CD here or buy the full digital compilation for only €10(!), selected by label boss Keith Downey from the last 15 years of releases. I can’t convey how many beautiful tracks are on this comp and all for €10 is an absolute steal, some of them are available to preview on the Bandcamp page right now.

45 Live Radio Show on Dublab.com starts Nov 2015

45 Live Radio ShowWe’re excited to announce a brand new radio show broadcasting live out of Los Angeles CA, on Friday 6th November, 8pm US PST (4am UK GMT) on the legendary Dublab.com featuring the entire 45 Live Crew!

‘The 45 Live Radio Show’ will be on air bi-monthly which will fall on the first and third Friday of each month. Your host will be soul, funk & gospel connoisseur DJ Greg Belson, and it’ll feature a guest on a rotational basis from the 45 Live elite (full roster here if you want to know who will be featured).

DJ Food meets Ambigraph – Dune AV mix

Last Saturday (Sept 12th) I played an hour long set after a showing of ‘Jodorowsky’s Dune’ documentary at one of the FEAST film nights in West Norwood’s Portico Gallery. During the mix the audience were greeted with a film of the slowly evolving, geometric designs of Ambigraph aka Ameet Hindocha.
Night co-ordinator Pete Williams recorded the mix and Ameet has reworked his visuals to accompany it in an hour long, meditative soundscape where all tracks are sourced from releases connected with Frank Herbert‘s most famous novel. *I recommend viewing in HD, probably late at night with the lights off.

Dune Screening
Over the decades many artists have been inspired by this work and there are many concept albums built around themes from his books. As well as Toto‘s score for David Lynch‘s big screen adaptation there’s also music from the forthcoming soundtrack to the documentary I mentioned and tunes from Bernard Szajner‘s ‘Visions of Dune’ release among others.

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The Tracks Go Off In This Direction… a Star Wars mix

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Finally, after a long hiatus, I’ve managed a new mix, and a audio visual one at that. The school summer holidays are a killer creatively when you have kids to attend to but now that the little ones are back to the 9-3.30 I’m back in gear. Something else that’s been occupying my time this summer, since May to be precise, is Secret Cinema‘s production of The Empire Strikes Back that I’ve been playing at in various locations and guises since it opened. Last night was my last gig, sound-tracking the Cantina Bar post-film with the run finishing completely in two weeks.

SWSC poster
To say it’s been an experience is an understatement and it’s one I will cherish forever as it is like nothing else out there. If you were one of the thousands who attended then you’ll know what I’m talking about and I’ll do a full post about my time there in a few weeks time when it’s closed as I don’t want to spoil things for those yet to go. But to commemorate the end of my run I’ve put together this 30 minute Star Wars-themed mix, complete with a video accompaniment, featuring some of the songs I played in amongst the rest of the themed tunes selected for the different areas.


Titled ‘The Tracks Go Off In This Direction…’ it follows the hunt for the Droids as songs and styles from the SW canon get progressively more random. It’s all Star Wars, plenty of which you will have seen and heard before, but I like to think I’ve dug a little and unearthed some hidden gems that might not be as familiar as Meco‘s ubiquitous disco-fied Star Wars Theme.

Rico - Ska Wars

For example: Rico Rodriguez, The Specials‘ trombonist who recently passed away, released a cover version called ‘Ska Wars’ (what else?) in 1977 on Island records which I’ve included as a tribute. Dickie Goodman, creator of the infamous UFO ‘break-in’ records’ made a ‘Star Warts’ 45 to cash in the same year, I’ve included a later (better) version and several cuts from Herbie Hancock‘s modular synth sidekick, Dr Patrick Gleeson‘s analogue Star Wars album.

Rave Wars disc
It’s not all period covers though, there’s plenty of modern day Hip Hop, Rave and Techno from the likes of AGT Rave Cru, Mark Archer, DJ Shadow and all manner of, shall we say, ‘copyright infringing’ releases under pseudonyms. At the start of the Secret Cinema run, when they also ran a separate satellite Cantina Club in Hoxton, I made a ton of video clips to go with tracks for a one-off AV performance and some of the work I put into those has found its way into the video mix. With a property like Star Wars this is a red flag to a bull so how long it will stay up is anyone’s guess. Grab it while you can…  UPDATE – Sorry folks, I’ve been asked to take it down…  back up!

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.

 

United States of Audio ‘A History of the KLF’

USA23.2webOn the 23rd anniversary of The KLF retiring from the music industry, deleting all their back catalogue (and later vowing 23 years of silence), comes this new mix from United States of Audio. He’s assembled a chronological trip through the band’s history from underground bedroom samplers to Stadium House pop overlords.

As ever with USofA’s mixes it’s perfectly threaded together with interview snippets that tell the tale (listen out for how they build ‘Doctorin’ The Tardis’ sample by sample at one point). If you don’t know their story then jump in and if you do then all hail the Mu Mu, The Timelords and the Kings of Low Frequency and wonder where that 23 years went.KLF_exit NMEad

Brand new Solid Steel website by antipattern

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We have a brand new Solid Steel website, built for us by antipattern, which finally does all the things we wanted it to do with the vast archive of mixes we’ve accumulated from the last 27 years. We’re very pleased with the results as the site is full of easy to navigate touches that leave plenty of room for a gallery of artwork and photography to grace your desktop, tablet or phone whilst you listen.

Here’s a quick walk through: (above) Main landing page with Featured mixes bar on the right – just tap Featured to close it. (Below) Once a mix is selected just hit play on the Solid Steel logo on the left, you can jump through the mix once it’s loaded or pause by tapping the logo again. Click Tracklist to open a side bar with a scrollable tracklist.
SSSite_Tracklist

SSSite_Tracklist

(Above) Click the Synopsis tab to bring up details of the mix plus a link to Soundcloud where you can find the mixes and leave a comment or download. (Below) If you fancy finding an old mix there are several ways of accessing them: the good old Search button in the middle of the three top left circles or the Timeline button next to it which brings up a new graphic showing the decades from 1988 to the present.

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(Above) Click the Year you want and a side bar will appear with a scrollable list of all the shows from that date. You can also then scroll vertically through the years too. (Below) Finally there’s an A-Z directory down at the bottom left so that you can see if an artist you love has contributed a mix to the show, hit the name and all their mixes will appear in a scrollable side bar.
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Big thanks again to Suki and Paul at antipattern, go visit their new site, DK for producing the whole project and Tom and James at Ninja for the behind the scenes help.

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 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.

DJ Cheeba’s ‘Plan 9 From Outer Space’ rescore

Cheeba_Plan9My man DJ Cheeba recently performed his live rescore to Ed Wood‘s infamously so-bad-it’s-good B movie, ‘Plan 9 From Outer Space’ at the Watershed in Bristol. He’s just put a mixtape version online for all to hear as well and, even though I’m biased and it features two tracks of mine, it’s excellent.
During the live show he uses two decks, a third QFO turntable and even Coldcut‘s VJamm software to remix live. He’s also looking for shows to perform it at and you can get more info about it here. Book him, he’s one of the most forward-thinking DJs utilising new technology out there today as well as one of the most creative.

Plan 9 From Outer Space (music that inspired the BFI re-score) by Dj Cheeba on Mixcloud

Boca 45 ‘Dig, Eat, Beats, Repeat’ LP

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Scott ‘Boca 45’ Hendy has a new LP out at the end of March, a collection of old school beats, breaks, raps plus a trio of the highest caliber soul/funk joints I’ve heard in a while featuring Stephanie McKay on vocals. The Good People also feature on one track, ‘People Are You Ready’ which I saw tear up the room when Scott dropped it in Bristol late last year. ‘Dig, Eat, Beats, Repeat’ is out on March 23rd and a very limited run of 300 LPs is available exclusively upfront from the Digga Please? Bandcamp page right now. Here’s a 5 minute taster of the album below…

Boca45_LPlabel

Being one of the men behind the new 45Live collective Scott also has a brand new, all 7″ mix bursting with the Funk as well as Hip hop classics and a few left turns like Pierre Henry‘s ‘Psyche Rock’.

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.

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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.

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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

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.

Raiding the 20th Century (Words & Music Expansion) is 10

DJFood_Raiding20thcover_B&WSepA decade ago this week (I think it was a Monday or Tuesday) I debuted the expanded ‘Words & Music’ version of ‘Raiding The 20th Century’, this time lengthened to an hour and featuring specially recorded voice overs from Paul Morley. It was an attempt to chronicle a fragmented history of sampling from the advent of music concrete through to tape cut ups, sampling and finally the Bastard Pop/Mash Up phenomenon at the turn of the century.

Paul’s inclusion was through his book, ‘Words & Music’ that I’d read shortly after completing the first 40 minute version of ‘Raiding…’ the year before. The two mirrored each other so closely in places that the opportunity to revisit and revise was too good to pass up. Also the fact that I’d cribbed the title from a piece of text Paul had written nearly 20 years before didn’t go unnoticed, sometimes there are too many coincidences to ignore.

Since then it’s had a cease and desist take down notice from EMI and an attempt made at a video version but still, through the miracle of the internet, it endures. Here’s a collage that I started back at the beginning of 2006 and finally finished this morning, based on the Sgt. Peppers cover, of Paul and I alongside Alvin Lucier and Kylie, surrounded by some of the cast of thousands that make up the recording.

You can still listen to the mix here via UbuWeb but it’s out there in all sorts of corners of the internet.