End-of-year list season can end up being a rote exercise in plugging the biggest albums you already know. But sometimes lists can be informative and intriguing, offering insight to the people writing them and shining a light on music you might find otherwise. Juno Plus used to do great coverage at the end of each year. So last year I asked some friends and erstwhile JP scribes to ape that particular style and write some different lists for Bandcloud. We're at it again, with some familiar faces and some new entrants (and new approaches). Here's Part I...
Some things I enjoyed this year...
- Jabu - Sleep Heavy
- Lena Willikens at Rural festival
- playing at Freerotation
- Ploy's Intrigued By The Drum and Unruly EPs
- When the exit poll dropped on election night
- Quay Dash - Transphobic
- Steevio at Timedance
- MIST - Hot Property
- Everything PAN released (mono no aware and the M.E.S.H. album especially)
- Sapphire Slows - Time
- Ken Burn's Vietnam War
2017 some highlights
Collaborating with Jorinde Voigt at Lisson Gallery. Releasing stuff on Hessle Audio, The Trilogy Tapes, Timedance and Paradise Bangkok, Duke Ellington’s Afro-Eurasian Eclipse, Laurel Halo’s 'Moontalk', Bill Evans Trio at Village Vanguard, Errorsmith’s 'Internet of Screws', Rian Treanor live, Lucy Railton live, Mohamed Reza Mortazavi live, Klein live, NTS, SHS, playing at MUTEK Montreal, Documenta Athens, Dekmantel, b2b with Ben UFO at Brixton Academy, Killasan in Rome, Hessle 10th b-day and Peak Cavern caves, Derbyshire at AND 2017.
Flora Pitrolo (A Colder Consciousness)
5 First Times
HLLW Restitution (Lobster Theremin)
Draeil Untitled (Perfect Aesthetics)
Caterina Barbieri Patterns Of Consciousness (Important)
noch limbo (self-released)
As Longitude Blauer Part EP (Knekelhuis)
Nocturnal Emissions Nocturnal Emissions (Mannequin)
John T Gast Inna Babylon (Haunter)
DATA Could You Find Your Analogue Mind? (Discom)
Various Sammlung (Elektronische Kassettenmusik, Düsseldorf 198-989) (Bureau B)
Silvia Silvia (Dark Entries)
List of pre-party foods for both attenders and DJs alike:
Kombucha/Some sort of Probiotic drink
Turmeric (golden milk) tea or drink
A decent-sized meal of pasta, preferably with some sort of protein
-Think about stamina and all the things you're going to be putting your body through for the next few hours
For hungry DJs during the set:
I like ProBar & Kind is ok
-Bring a meal bar or granola somethingoranother — basically you want to eat something that you can hold in a wrapper. Nothing too sticky, crummy, liquid
Hungry DJs & partygoers post clubbing:
9 out of 10 slices of pizza taste good no matter the quality after partying
A bodega sandwich, because it's made out of pretty well preserved cold cuts
Any noodle situation
Tamales from the truck
Empanadas from the late night/trucker spot
-Stay away from mysterious cart foods where the foods hang around all night,
you'll regret it in the morning or right after ;)
Sold (Hugo Ball, Neon Falls)
7 Mixes or Radio Shows That Turned Me Onto Music I Loved So Much I Immediately Went and Bought It
1) Kat O'Rly - Destination Unknown, Monday 10pm-12am CST, WLUW 88.7fm
A constant source of inspiration for new music is Kat's (@baba_o_rly) show Destination Unknown (@DUnknownRadio). Kat's show is weekly, so she is always trawling Bandcamp for sounds that are inexplicably Kat. I've bought too much to remember because of DU, but the two most recent were:
Santiago Salazar - Aspirations for Young Xol
F INGERS - Awkwardly Blissing Out
2) Wonja and DJML - Herzog Hangout, Sundays 11am PST, chew.tv/herzog-hideout
I've met far too many amazing artists, writers, selectors, & people via twitter, and two in particular whose interests align in an *extremely Glorbis way* are Wonja and Dan Letson. They have a chill out afternoon show on chew.tv complete with a video stream to highlight the "cactus of the week" as they play records. One Sunday they put on an unbeat hip house-y track that bubbled up out of the speakers like a happy stream. I immediately bought the record from work (@gramaphonechi).
Quavius - Magic Man
3) Eris Drew - The Bunker Podcast 147
I'm probably biased in love everything Eris does for multiple reasons, but can I be wrong in loving the woman who gave voice to the Mother Beat for me? I'm lucky enough to be privy to her mixes before released, we'll be en route to get vegan milkshakes and then sit in the car waiting for the mix to finish as Eris, eyes closed and feeling it, narrates her programming. This wild ride of breaks and moments of solemn emotion came to a close as the second to last track came on and I had to ask "what the fuck is happening here?" It was too wild to comprehend.
Yoshinori Hayashi - Cooling
4) Kiernan Laveaux - Transmission Mix 001
One group I'm extremely blessed to know is In Training out of Cleveland. I've been following their seemingly infinite arc up since the beginning, and over the years have gotten close with all of the members. Each has their own unique sound that resonates with me equally, and Kiernan Laveaux mixes with her heart fully out on her sleeve, as she does in this mix. She ensured with her tightly wound mix of minimal, electro, tech and techno that something was bound to hit home.
Archetype - Untitled (A1)
5) Wilted Woman - Bandcloud Guest Mix - March 2017
Anytime I ask "what the fuck is happening?" during a mix/set/track/show/etc, guaranteed I am at the very least going to look it up. Suffice to say, that was about the entirety of Wilted Woman's guest mix for Bandcloud. Of course, there was no tracklist for the weird little mix full of banging breaks, strange stuff I couldn't tell if it was pitched down or...just...supposed to be like that, and dark brooding techno. It stuck with me, so soon as her album came out on She Rocks, I bought it guessing it'd be an approximation of the same bizarre sounds. Hoo was I right.
Wilted Woman - Diary of a Woman (album)
6) Wolfgang Amadidas - Super Cuts, Thursdays 8pm-10pm CST, UICRadio.org
Ken is another buddy I met online who quickly through constantly talking to me about music became a good friend. He started his radio show while in school where it's become supple ground for experimentation with sounds and new music, along with helping him as he starts his journey as a DJ. I was casually listening while chatting to him recently, and loved this song so much I bought it and used it for my next gig.
Ploy - Intrigued By The Drum
7) Aurora Mitchell - Guest Mix For Beatrice Dillon NTS August 2017
Aurora has such a special sound, in this mix she goes from twinkly and happy with undertones of yearning for the light sounds on the surface to downright moody dark techno at the drop of a hat (and she does it well). Although technically I did not run out and by the track I'm going to list here, I *was* going to and instead the universe gifted it to me on its own as serendipitous timing. I'd looked up the track that really got me only to find out my partner had recently bought it at Threads in Detroit and handed it over to me because she decided it wasn't for her.
Chiapet - Tick Tock (Apocalypse Now Mix)
5 YouTube videos from my 2017 browsing history
1. Björk - Modern Minimalists (Mika Vainio interview)
This is a segment from a 1997 BBC television show where Björk looks at the practices of different artists associated with minimalism. It’s less than a year since Mika Vainio died, and I’m not yet over it. I had the feeling he had some of his best work still ahead of him.
2. How to Make Techno
I think I must have stumbled on this at a moment of very low inspiration. Sometimes I feel like I forget how to make music. Watching this brought me a lot of joy because it’s a great reminder of the beauty of keeping things simple (and cheap).
3. Chua’s Circuits
Chua’s circuit is a small electronic circuit that produces a chaotic waveform, and there are lots of different videos of people using them to produce Haswellian sounds. This is my favourite.
4. Speaker Blowing Compilation
There seems to be a really active “blow up speakers” subculture. I don’t understand it, to me it’s just wanton destruction, but you can tell from people’s reactions, they just really love blowing speakers.
5. 10 Hours of Oscillating Fan