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Guests are encouraged to explore a bit further into their collections with an opportunity to step away from the dance floor if they desire.
For the thirty sixth episode we invite Noise Casino to provide the soundtrack, who hails from Manizales, Colombia and currently based in Berlin. The mix is a melting pot of bass influenced breakbeats, rhythms and grooves staring at a steady 100bpm slowly working with the tempo as the mix progresses, keeping it modern and engaging which is a nice refreshing change from the more high octane sets I have come across of late.
This was recorded at the Delphic Iris Records launch party, a new label I co-own which was recorded at Kimchi Records in Berlin.
An excellent soundtrack that paired well with the informal afternoon summer vibe of the launch and was a standout on the day (as were all of the guests). Im happy to have a chance to review the track list to dig into some of the excellent producers and labels that are new discoveries to me also.
As always, turn it up lock in and enjoy the music.
1 Floating on the Dead Sea - Toumba [All Centre]
2 Breach - Realitycheck [Comic Sans]
3 Solo Use - Toma Kami [Man Band]
4 Plant Passport - Glimmerman [Egregore Collective]
5 BAMBÚ - Invt
6 Slow Stings - Rhyw
7 Treats - Puncta [N-Face]
8 Amapicante - Toma Kami [Livity Sound]
9 Console - Pluralist [Le Chatroom]
10 Mi Cuerpo - Pearson Sound [Pearson Sound]
11 It's All Relative - Cando [Livity Sound]
12 Hymn to Atabey - Nicholas G. Padilla [Space Tapes]
13 Policy Limits - Danny Goliger [Scuffed Recordings]
14 3Am - Guim [Discos Marcianos]
15 Baile Bias - Liebus [Holding Hands]
16 One That's - Betas [Vista]
17 Arenga (Remix) - Fedra [Vista]
18 Redshift - TX4, SOS_carloss [Laye Audio]
First I wanted to say, thanks for sharing the recording of your set with RecThera for this episode. I really like the change in tempo as the mix progresses, what was the inspiration for your selection choices?
Definitely, the chance to play in a record store. It’s been years since I played a set in the afternoon, and, on top of that, in a small setting with a nice sound system that wasn’t all about loudness and bass. So, this set was the perfect time to play music at a slower tempo and in a less club-oriented fashion.
I decided to start around 100bpm and then smoothly go up until 125 or something like that. It was really different and very refreshing. Also, with dance floors getting faster and faster nowadays, it was a nice challenge to find slower music in my library that still represents my current sound and vision of electronic music.
How do you find the music scene in Colombia compared to Berlin?
Talking about the big cities in Colombia (Medellin, Cali or Bogota) they have their own distinct music scenes compared to each other or to any European capital, like Berlin, or Madrid. I could talk a bit about the parallel between Bogota, where I used to live, and Berlin, where I live now, and definitely one could find some differences:
I reckon both Berlin and Bogota are still pretty techno-focused. I’d say Techno is still the most predominant go-to style in the electronic music scenes of both capitals. The thing is, a bunch of promoters in Bogota, and in Colombia in general, are looking to replicate scenes like the ones in Berlin, Barcelona, etc. They want to follow the models of parties like Herrensauna, El Row, Afterlife, Dekmantel, among other well-reputed events in Europe (even some of these parties have had their own versions on Colombia).
Now, some of these attempts work out, riding on the European hype and a good amount of neo-colonialist manoeuvres, backed by big money, but some others just don't click with the Colombian crowd and fade away after a couple of tries. The good news is that there has always been a resistant contra-culture of lesser-known parties and music scenes that continue to thrive to this very day. On top of that, things are changing.
There's a resurgence of local music scenes, with both old and new labels doing their own thing, crafting unique sounds without worrying about what's hot in Europe or the USA. Showcasing a fusion of cultural influences and club sounds, seamlessly blending native rhythms and the intricate socio-political landscape into the cities soundscapes, irrespective of genre. It is worth mentioning some of these labels I believe are doing so: Artificio, From A Lost Place, TraTraTrax, Paria, Pildoras Tapes, Furatena, Muakk, to mention some.
Venues like Video Club, Calle 9, Rio, or Tunnel are doing a good job merging the touring artists from Europe with the diverse roster of Colombian artists making a name for themselves. One can feel these clubs aim for a more horizontal hierarchy in the line-ups and bet more for a “de-berlinized” music offer than other places in the country; nevertheless, it is still a work in progress.
After a trip to Colombia last month, I also noticed some things that I don’t like very much, but are still happening. You've got the informal approach to DJ deals, VIP zones around the DJ, charging for water at parties, not enough awareness staff in some venues, allowing camera flashes on the dance floor, and overpacked clubs. Hopefully, we'll see some positive changes in these areas over time.
On a brighter note, the vibe of the crowds in Colombia is just something else. Ask anyone who's toured the country; the enthusiasm for partying and dancing is unparalleled. Whether you're in the crowd or behind the DJ booth, you can feel that electricity buzzing through the air the moment you step into a dancefloor. In Berlin, I feel it tends to be more a personal ritual, where the size of the crowd matters less.
Simultaneously, there's occasionally an openness to meeting new people in the club; individuals are simply immersed in the music. The energy may be less collective, but the extraordinary quality of sound systems and venues raises the experience to a superlative level.
It's quite challenging to make a direct comparison; each has its unique highs and lows. Both are equally captivating, each representing its own distinct universe.
What has been influential for you musically in the past, and also more recently?
Uff, lots of things. If we talk about the past, the young me was definitely influenced by the first time I heard Ismael Rivera or saw the music video for Kraftwerk’s Das Model. I was lucky that my dad showed me both when I was a kid, giving me the diverse taste in music that I think I have. He had hundreds of folders of all sorts of music he liked on a Dell laptop, which I used to borrow on weekends to explore all this music.
I love salsa and cumbia, so labels like Discos Fuentes and Fania played a key role in my desire to select and collect music. I started manually creating discographies of all the artists I liked thanks to Ares and LimeWire, a thing I stopped doing when streaming services emerged. I collected and organized lots of music files on an old iPod from my pre-adolescence until 2012.
I also had an online radio station when I was in high school with an old friend named Jose. We did all sorts of programs and specials, ranging from Metal to Ambient, from Disco to Punk in Spanish, and everything in between. We promoted local concerts where his band and other friends' bands played. Since we were underage, going to clubs was not an option, so we spent a lot of time at small concerts and local festivals where people we knew performed. I think the desire to select and mix tracks comes from those times at our programs.
In my first year of university, I remember a student who introduced me to Autechre. He was kind enough to load up an old MP3 player I had with their extensive discography, it filled almost all the memory of the device, so I mostly listened to only Autechre for a couple of months. From that point, I started to see music in a different way. This sparked my interest in exploring the so-called underground music scene.
I began attending parties, and at that time in my hometown, the electronic music scene was divided between minimal techno parties (I saw all the MINUS artists you can think of, haha), (literally) underground drum and bass raves, and latin-fusion parties that were very popular in universities at the time, mostly featuring electro cumbia and other stuff from labels like ZZK Records, Polen Records, and such.
When I started DJing in the mid 2010s, and until this very day, labels like Warp, Djax, Comemé, Nice & Deadly, Hessle Audio, Ilian Tape, Hypercolour, among others, greatly influenced my sound, and they continue to do so. Locally speaking labels like Discos Nutabe, Ediciones Danza Negra, and Move were also quite significant. Running a podcast for almost two years, where I interviewed Colombian artists from various scenes about their careers, taught me a lot about how they crafted their own styles for years before breaking out in specific niches.
This experience helped me learn to respect and appreciate all electronic genres and types of parties, regardless of style or origin. It also made me a versatile, genre-fluid DJ. I started playing in all sorts of party formats and mixed a bunch of different styles.
I could go on mentioning moments and music that have inspired me, but the things I just mentioned kind of summarise the whole experience, I guess.
What are you listening to right now?
*Opus by Ryuichi Sakamoto, but the (slower) version from the asian release of the album Playing The Piano / Out Of Noise (hope I am not wrong).*
Who or what is inspiring you musically and otherwise?
I find musical inspiration in many things, not just within the realm of music—visual arts, audio-reactive creations, movies, books, articles, and more. For example, Mark Fisher’s books got me hooked lately, and occasionally reading Shawn Reynaldo’s newsletter is very insightful. But what I've found most inspiring recently is attending live gigs of various genres, even when they are entirely unfamiliar. Seeing people in real time, immersed in their craft, makes me appreciate what I try to do with my music even more and alleviates a bit the impostor syndrome that we all experience when creating.
For example, this year, I had the chance to listen live to the Guatemalan cellist and singer Mabe Fratti. It was a stunning! Listening to her concert with his guitarist companion (I don't remember his name) made me think about my exploration of making music outside the dancefloors and how this can also nurture inspiration for my club-music projects, much like a feedback exercise.
Where can we see or hear your next project?
There is an EP soon to be released with my project SVNDS, which consists of my long-time friend Aeondelit and me. This marks our first EP after almost two years. The music we create together is not necessarily club-oriented, although some people have played it in such settings a couple of times.
The intention behind SVNDS is to explore concepts of human concerns in the digital world through music. We like to contemplate current global dilemmas and reinterpret our feelings towards them in our songs. Regarding the upcoming EP, we were focused on the duality between creating art outside the algorithm and the trends while simultaneously aiming to craft something good enough to grow organically—a bit of a paradox in today’s world.
Also, with my partner and later two other colleagues, launched a party series named Ruta. Our goal is to promote electronic music from diverse diasporas, extending support to fellow migrating artists like ourselves. We not only invite these artists to showcase their work but also feature their music, alongside our own, at our events and on social media channels. Additionally, we collaborate with local labels and collectives that align with our sonic and political ideas. We are based in Freiburg, Karlsruhe and Berlin.
On a personal note, I am currently working on an EP for the Colombian label Artificio, which has been releasing some amazing music in recent months. I had the opportunity to participate in a VA release with them last year. Additionally, I've been learning sound design for visual media and have created a collection of new track ideas I plan to use soon.
Anything else you would like to share?
This mix features some tracks from Latin American artists whose music leans more towards the bass and breakbeat side of things, a sound that might not be what one expects from Latin artists.
It's worth mentioning that, with the rise of the so-called Latin club sound, people from around the world are once again delving deeper into the music scene of Latin America. They're discovering a diverse world of music styles and genres beyond the “andean” downtempo of the early 2010s, the Baile Funk revival from the late 2010s, and the Latin Club sound of the 2020s, which will hopefully receive the same well-deserved attention as those mentioned.
I also want to say sorry in advance if I didn’t mention or may have dismissed important friends, colleagues, or venues that could had been essential in this story.
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