top of page

214 items found for ""

  • 106 - Aaron J

    The first Patterns of Perception mix of 2023 comes from a luminous presence and dear friend of our collective - label head, mix series curator, promoter and esteemed selector Aaron J. Over the years, a combination of passion, openness and tireless energy has seen Aaron become a trusted voice for experimental, boundary-pushing electronic music across both the US and the wider scene. Founded over eight years ago, Aaron’s much-loved platform Sure Thing is the embodiment of his forward-thinking curation and clarity of vision. Now based in Brooklyn, Sure Thing started as a series of parties in San Francisco before growing outward, later blossoming into a renowned mix series and record label. As a DJ, Aaron’s level of empathy and attention-to-detail are unmistakeable, allowing him to deeply connect with the dance floor no matter the context - layering, building and driving emotions ever onwards. Aaron J's Patterns of Perception 106 is both radiant and personal - an idyllic snapshot of the perfect dance floor, glowing with wide-eyed energy. Pensive darkness simmers into hedonistic psychedelia. Intensity turns reflective. Endless rhythms vibrate and flare into nurturing light. Links: Aaron J - SoundCloud Aaron J - Instagram Sure Thing - SoundCloud Sure Thing - Bandcamp Sure Thing - Facebook

  • 105 - KMRU

    Joseph Kamaru, aka KMRU, is a sound artist and experimental ambient musician, raised in Nairobi, Kenya, and currently based in Berlin. Recent years have seen KMRU find a place amongst the most stirring voices within the experimental music space, courtesy of his distinctive usage and combination of field recordings, noise, ambient textures and expansive hypnotic drones. A luminous presence within the scene, KMRU has garnered critical acclaim not only for releases on the likes of Warp Records, Editions Mego and Subtext Recordings, but also for his live performances, which have seen him take the stage at high-profile events across Europe and the globe. KMRU’s Patterns of Perception 105 is a poised and evocative passage which floats gracefully between delicate instrumentation, melodic phrasing and abstract ambient textures. Sparked by recent inspirations and experiences, this indelible set embraces peace, stillness and vibrance in equal measure, coming together as a carefully divined tapestry - meditative and shimmering. Links: KMRU - SoundCloud KMRU - Bandcamp KMRU - Instagram KMRU - Resident Advisor KMRU - Twitter

  • Future Patterns Release Night

    02.12.22 @ OHM, Berlin Featuring Spekki Webu, Nicole & DBR (live) What will the dancefloors of tomorrow feel like? What forces will inspire expression and movement? How will technology influence creativity? What will music sound like? -- Future Patterns is an annual VA project that invites both artists and listeners to explore the future of electronic music and the forces that will shape it. Join Patterns of Perception and Minimal Collective at OHM Berlin to celebrate the launch of the VA series, featuring a future-gazing live set from DBR, plus colourful, driving DJ sets from Spekki Webu and Nicole. All profits from this event and the Future Patterns project will be donated to Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk. The Future Patterns 01 VA compilation is now available to pre-order via Bandcamp. Selected listening Future Patterns VA DBR Nicole Spekki Webu More info: Facebook / Resident Advisor

  • Introducing Future Patterns: Annual VA series with Minimal Collective

    We’ve joined forces with our friends from Minimal Collective to launch an annual VA project, Future Patterns, which invites both artists and listeners to explore the future of electronic music and the forces that will shape it. The project takes the form of a various artists compilation release available digitally and as a limited edition CD with accompanying 3D animated artwork and visualisation. Pre-order your copy via Bandcamp now. This is not your standard VA compilation: the partnership with Minimal Collective means the project has just as much focus on the visuals as on the music, with the aim of pushing the boundaries of multidisciplinary craft within the contemporary electronic music industry. Out November 30, the first compilation features music from C-Refund, DBR, HOMI, Jasmin, Jay Duncan, Konduku, Mary Lake, Nali, Nicole, Solid Traveller, Spekki Webu & Altjira, Sunju Hargun and VC-118A, as well as visuals by Rotterdam-based, Italian-born artist Deborah Mora. The project was initiated and co-ordinated by the Patterns of Perception team, with visual concept and direction by Minimal Collective, an Amsterdam-based platform and artistic network operating at the intersection of music, art, and technology. All profits from the first release will be donated to the German children’s charity Deutsches Kinderhilfswerk. Through Deborah Mora’s approach, which is situated between the physical and the immaterial, the visual concept of the Future Patterns release weaves together natural and fantastical forms as a means of depicting new worlds, but also as ways of tapping into a reality that is already present – resembling the experimental visions that the musical concept of Future Patterns seeks to provoke. Deborah has presented work and performed at festivals such as FIBER (Amsterdam), Balance Club Culture (Leipzig), GOLF (Haarlem), Mediamediterranea (Pula) and FAKE ME HARD (Rotterdam). Artists were invited to submit music in response to the concept based on a series of questions about the industry’s future including: What will the dancefloors of tomorrow feel like? What forces will inspire expression and movement? How will technology influence creativity? What will music sound like? These questions will be further explored through future releases and emerging Future Patterns side projects. Future Patterns 01 was mastered in Berlin by Patterns of Perception’s Andreas Maan. The compilation is now available for pre-order via Bandcamp, with a release party at Berlin’s OHM club on December 2.

  • 104 - Blume

    Raised in the underground music scene of Buenos Aires, recent years have seen Blume continue to hone her vision in Europe - first in Amsterdam and now Berlin. With a complex approach to beat programming, hip-hop inspired use of samples and a melding of odd melodies and experimental textures, her sets are distinctive, technical and enthralling in equal measure. A passionate contributor to the scene, Blume hosts the bi-monthly show "The Otherness" on Noods Radio, and runs the record store Format Wars, which provides her with another channel to express her unique tastes - from lavish ambient to bracing jungle and beyond. Originally a digital shop, Format Wars will move into a physical space in early December 2022. Blume’s Patterns of Perception 104 is an homage to a multitude of formative moments in Berlin: indelible, visceral musical experiences that have shaped her vision and being. Crystal clear reflections of hazy sequences in which the unexpected became the norm. An emotional connection of disparate times as unfettered energy warps into mind-bending experimentation. Sharp polyrhythms expanding out of mesmerising, high-speed techno trips. Endless energy and motion. This mix reflects the feeling and eclecticism of odd Berlin nights - the discovery, the euphoria and the memories that never die. Links: Blume - SoundCloud Blume - Instagram Format Wars - Instagram Format Wars - Discogs Tracklist: 01 . Beatrice Dillon — Workaround Ten 02 . aya — If [redacted] Thinks He's Having This As A Remix He Can Frankly Do One 03 . Ikävä Pii — Process Fatigue 04 . Awo Ojiji — Ridicoloum (blume edit) 05 . SKSSS — Resistance M1_Seph_16bit 06 . CCL — Drum On 07 . Vel — Freed And Delicious 08 . Nebuchadnezzar — Passion of my Failure 09 . Konsudd — Lift Clique 10 . LEVL — Nullpunkt #2 11 . Thugwidow — A Reduction In Stress 12 . Rhyw — Caramel Core 13 . Sputnik One, EMBY, Honeydrip — Supa Natural (Honeydrip & Spud Remix) 14 . Delay Grounds — How To Monetize Existential Dread 15 . Basic Rhythm — Le Samouraï 16 . Shiken Hanzo — The Reaping (VIP) 17 . GOD69 — Drakx 18 . Martsman — Subbed 19 . Plus One — Trial 20 . Cressida — Move To The Witness (blume edit) 21 . Felix K — Flower Of Destruction #8 22 . Tangerine — No Upcoming Shifts 23 . Homemade Weapons — Svalsat (Donato Dozzy Remix) 24 . Xen Model — V9 Flash (blume edit) 25 . exael — Ice That Melts The Tips 26 . Deactivation of Hal 9000 27 . Laughing Ears — To Cover 遮掩 28 . Monolake — Cern 29 . MSJY — Crab Walk 30 . DJ Double Oh! — Cuerpo 31 . Nick León — Fire Dub 32 . Toma Kami — Mzecal 33 . Katatonic Silentio — Waiting For The Dust To Settle 34 . Nina Simonishvili — Meanwhile 35 . LOIF — Dark Grid 36 . Monotronique — No Other Place Like Home 37 . dBridge — Depersonalised 38 . Cryptographic — Echo I 39 . Ghost Warrior — Frost 40 . borderland state_the best kisser in l.a. — iuo feat. anna b 41 . ben bondy — mi bebe

  • 103 - HOMI

    Before the pandemic began, two members of our collective, Steve Duncan and Kim Bergstrand, went to a techno party together in Helsinki where they saw a standout live set from local artist HOMI. In Steve’s words, his sound came across as delicate, detailed and psychedelic, yet also with groove and power. They connected with HOMI (real name Harri Homi) afterwards, setting the wheels in motion for the second release on the Patterns of Perception label. In the lead up to the release of HOMI’s Välitila EP on November 4, we’re excited to share the recording of a recent live jam Harri recorded at his studio in Helsinki. This jam is reflective of his distinctive sound, gliding from moments of lean, Detroit-infused energy into rolling, kaleidoscopic vistas tinged with (more than) a hint of acid. But what feels even clearer during these 55 minutes is Harri's improvisational and intuitive approach, which takes us on a free-flowing journey that's both unpredictable and irresistible. Links: HOMI - SoundCloud HOMI - Instagram EP links: Previews - SoundCloud Full release - Bandcamp

  • A chat with HOMI

    Before the pandemic began, two members of our collective (Steve Duncan and Kim Bergstrand) went to a techno party together in Helsinki. The set that stood out from all the rest that evening was from a local artist called HOMI: in Steve’s words, his sound was delicate, detailed, percussive and psychedelic, yet with groove and power. They connected after the set and became good friends, setting the wheels in motion for the second release on the Patterns of Perception label. More than two years later, we can still hear the similarities between that first live set and HOMI’s Välitila EP. In the lead-up to the record’s release on November 4, we caught up with HOMI to hear the story behind the record from his perspective and to explore some of his more unexpected influences – from the DIY ethos he brings into his studio space to the impact of becoming a dad not so long ago. You can listen to previews of PTN02 on Soundcloud and pre-order your copy via Bandcamp. Where does the story of this EP begin for you? For this particular record, it started I'd say already two years ago, or even more. We got a studio space with my friend here in Helsinki, and I moved my production completely there. Before that I was doing music at home all the time, like in all the cracks in life: in the morning, in the afternoon and at lunch hour, really just all the time. Then I started to spend good eight to 10-hour days at the studio. Music-making and being with music were more focused on these intense bursts in the studio, so that was quite a shift. At the same time, I changed my production. Before I didn't build a track by multi-tracking, I was jamming basically. All the instruments, synths and whatnot, were always on. When I was finished recording, I just erased everything so there's no going back. Now I started to do a multi-track recording and arrangements which evolved over time. And the arrangement process itself, it took place over time. So I started to kind of prototype tracks – I’d do 2, 3, 4 prototypes in one day – and just let them sit there for a week or so. And then I’d see what I created, and what's interesting, and continue working with those. Production-wise, that was a very big change. What impact do you think it had on your sound or the music you were making? It got more complex in the sense that you can imagine that if you're jamming there are limitations on what you can do: you only have a set amount of hands. So that changed things quite radically. When a track has been sitting around for a couple of weeks and you come back to it, you are maybe not interested in some elements anymore. But some are super interesting and you start to focus on those. I tried out things that I wouldn't have tried otherwise. Also at the same time, I got interested in more fast music. Before, BPM-wise, I was usually at like 120 or 30. And nowadays, it's 140, 150. I don’t know why that happened. Any clues about where that came from? These tracks were the first batch in that study of faster music, which nowadays is defacto for me. There was a particular record, which was Rod Modell’s Captagon, that I was listening to. It’s very dubby stuff that’s super fast at times. It’s an absolutely amazing record, the only record that I haven't played in any DJ set. But looking forward to it, maybe one day. Have you had a similar evolution of your sound as a DJ? I haven't been DJing much lately and am more focused on the live. I have a background in guitar playing and live jamming, and the improvisation part is the thing that fascinates me the most. I'm most interested in music-making anyway. When you are performing live, you kind of memorise a bunch of stuff that you've created and then you improvise a set based on that. Basically, anything can happen. It sounds like the spontaneity of playing live is what appeals to you most. It’s absolutely the key. I'm not the guy who likes to finish tracks; I'm not the finishing type of guy. I just love making music and improvising – the finishing of a track is almost secondary or the byproduct of music-making for me. Every once in a while you have to nail things down, and that comes when you feel you have something to say. It's the moment that you say, ‘this is interesting and this is what I want people to hear’. Music-making has also always been an escape in some sense. Music is a space where the rules and the axiomatic facts of life don't hold true anymore. You can do whatever you want. You can do anything, and it’s okay as long as you dig it. You have some very interesting musical projects going on alongside your electronic productions, can you tell me about them? I have been, for maybe two or three years now, practicing and playing West African music. Usually, I play the djembe and DunDuns, and rehearse the traditional songs. It’s a little bit different in the sense that in my production and music making, I am exploring things, but here I am exploring African music and trying to understand and feel what it is about. I don’t improvise so much. I try not to make my own music but get into that music, and express through that. It is an interesting avenue for me to express through something that is already created. Then last year I started making drone metal. It’s electric guitar, which I haven’t done in a decade or longer, but I got interested in that and got sucked into it. It was listening to this album from (American experimental metal band) Sunn O))) called Life Metal. Fuck it was mindblowing. The project was bubbling for maybe two years before I decided I had something to say and started to explore that avenue. It strikes me that these two projects show two sides of your relationship with music: studying and creating. Yeah, the African music is completely about exploring the interest and respect for the music. It’s a tribute to it. The drone metal is the same, but I want to expand the territory or the concept of what it can be by creating new things. I would say the difference is this: being an artist is the expression of something through your own ideas, while musicianship is expressing through an existing piece of music. In a sense, you know what you are doing. For me the artist is totally the opposite: not knowing where you are, but improvising. Has becoming a dad had an influence on your music-making? After becoming a dad, the musical landscape is for me even more open. Even more things are possible now when I am making music. It can be even more abstract. For the last maybe six years I have been very interested in techno and driving music that can live in a club setting. Now the interest is more focusing on explorations, where anything is possible, even more than it was before. I also had to go through quite an identity crisis in one sense, where you really rediscover yourself. Through that kind of discovery, or rediscovery, you start to think about what’s important in music for yourself. And during COVID also, I wasn’t going to clubs and would be a bit lost about what to do (music wise). So then I would always start to fall back to just making something and being amazed at what came out. When was the last time you went to a gig? The last time I went to a gig was with Samuel (van Dijk, aka VC-118A, who contributed a remix to PTN02) to see Autechre. And reflecting back after that, the music that I’m making now, well I don’t even know what it is anymore! It’s more about the shapes, timbres and whatnot, I don’t have any fixed time or anything. It’s just a mesh of sounds. Before the gig, I had been exploring those domains and acquired a SOMA Ornament sequencer. With Autechre, I took it as a sign that this is how it should feel. So the equipment is also quite crucial to this latest evolution of your sound? The equipment is an absolutely huge thing for me, what you can express through certain instruments. I was about to become an instrument builder, that was my childhood dream: inventing instruments that could express certain sounds. I was on that track and the music playing happened instead. What other instruments and equipment have you made yourself? I have always been making stuff with my hands, it could be anything. I built an electric guitar when I was maybe 15 or 16. Then it was like, ‘I can do anything with this’. Then there were keyboards and turntables, and for two-track recording I had a tape machine which I took from school, from language class. It was a kind of hacky solution and I started to do tracks with that. That was maybe 7th grade. I think in 9th grade I got a four-tracker classic tape machine and added more keyboards and turntables, and it just went from there. I can’t believe you built an electric guitar at 15! Where do you think the drive to not just make music but also the actual instruments comes from? I was always the guy who likes to make things with his hands, to create and build things. Somehow it felt natural. And I still create things and build things: lots of the equipment here in the studio has, even on a smaller scale, been made by me. I made these “distorters” with diodes soldered straight into the cable. Very lofi but I still use those on a daily basis. And some of the electronics like delays I created. I even built some of the studio furniture. I see the studio as an instrument itself; it’s my instrument nowadays. The ergonomics of where things are, building the table, putting stuff there: it’s very DIY. I’m constantly building and modifying things. You’ve said that you consider yourself an artist, rather than a musician. Why is that? I consider myself an artist because I like to perform and improvise. I improvise music and present it to others. But musicianship is just a different kind of trade where you have a very, very special relationship with an instrument. The musician, it's a profession. Many of my idols are musicians or have been musicians. I have zero interest in being a musician by making my living with music. Just making the music and sharing it with other people – like-minded people, hopefully – that's the primary goal. And I'm also so very sensitive in that I bet that if my artistic career would kind of get going, it somehow could be influenced by the attraction of making a living out of it. Then it wouldn't be very good for my music making. What drives you as an artist these days then? I don't know what it is. You make music and you find something very interesting and you work with it. You try to express things; it’s all about expression in the end. HOMI’s Välitila EP is out on vinyl and digital on November 4. Pre-order your copy via Bandcamp.

  • HOMI and VC-118A step up for the Patterns of Perception label

    The second release on our label is a small snapshot of the Finnish scene: a collection of fast, psychedelic techno from Helsinki artist HOMI with a slow-burning remix from VC-118A. Pre-orders available here. Recorded at his studio space in Helsinki, HOMI’s Välitila EP begins with three tracks of percussive, acid-tinged techno, primed for peak time. The B-side features a remix of the title track Välitila from Dutch-born and now Finland-based VC-118A, delivering a winding, slow-burning counterweight to Homi’s dancefloor-oriented original. The digital edition includes a bonus fifth track of quirky breakbeat techno from HOMI titled SmallBisnes. Inspired by fast ‘90s techno in the vein of Detroit legend Rod Modell, the record is at turns delicate yet powerful, high energy yet melancholic. It also marks a turning point for HOMI (real name Harri Homi), coinciding with a shift away from a pure jamming approach and an expansion of his music-making techniques in studio, adding greater depth and complexity to his output. The release itself came about after Patterns of Perception crew members Steve Duncan and Kim Bergstrand saw Harri perform at an event in Helsinki before the pandemic hit. His performance was a real standout: delicate, detailed, percussive and psychedelic, yet with groove and power. They connected after the set, and Steve and Harri have gone on to spend many hours together in the studio since. This is the second release on our label since we launched a year ago with the Chance Encounters EP from Australian producer Nali. Our goal with the label is to showcase the playful, psychedelic and warm musical direction that our community has come to expect of our other platforms, including the mix series and events. Showcasing artists like Nali and HOMI is very much in keeping with the label ethos of creating a platform for up-and-coming artists to share their stories and musical vision. PTN02 was mastered in Berlin by Patterns of Perception’s Andreas Maan, with artwork by fellow collective member Ray Pham. The release will be available in record stores and digitally on November 4. Pre-order your copy now via Bandcamp.

  • 102 - A Walking Contradiction

    Remember Chinese Whispers, Stille Post or Rikkinäinen Puhelin? That children’s game, known all over the world, that illustrates the difficulties of transmitting information, but which also reveals the creativity of discontinuous conversation? It feels like the Patterns of Perception and A Walking Contradiction collectives have been in such a conversation for the past years across a multitude of label nights, private hangouts, and shared festival experiences. Based in Basel, Switzerland but unhinged from national contexts, A Walking Contradiction is a label for music and research. Curated by Varuna, Lemont and Dead Electronic Space Limited (Dead Electronic Space Limited), the collective share a penchant for beats - broken and straight - yet can't help but churn out music for the quiet hours. A deeply reflective group, you’ll find snippets of their conversations on social, political, economic, and environmental issues hidden in sounds or in plain sight on the sleeves of their records. Compiled entirely from new and unreleased material, their Patterns of Perception 102 is but the latest product of interlocutions and whispers between Basel, Berlin, Helsinki and the world in general, paying tribute to the significance of community where the legitimacy of commons is increasingly impugned. Levitating within a field of sophisticated textures and percussion, this set burns slowly, but with a luminescent intensity. Angular experimental ambience builds into winding, complex rhythms. Inspired minds elevate delicate melancholia into a true sense of hope. Links: A Walking Contradiction - SoundCloud A Walking Contradiction - BandCamp A Walking Contradiction - Instagram Varuna - SoundCloud Varuna - Instagram Dead Electronic Space Limited - SoundCloud Lemont - SoundCloud

  • 101 - Solid Traveller

    Meeting in Berlin in 2014, Julia Lipniewicz (Toxido Mask) & Sarah Kranz (Saramé) quickly found a harmonious connection between sound & spirituality. This formed a solid, mutually supportive base that allowed them to build their collaborative & personal practices across the arts, complimented by their studies in sound design & engineering. As Solid Traveller, the duo’s collaborative live sets are propelled by the symbiotic flow of their back-to-back recordings - each section representing a certain moment, mood or influence that they take with them into the studio. A respect for contrasts leads their sessions as euphoric pieces melt into grittier sections, morphing the textures of the composition into both rewarding and somewhat challenging moments for the listener. For Patterns of Perception 101, the duo have crafted an exclusive live set which embodies their practice of improvisation, manifestation and creation. Both profound and deeply meditative, this remarkable work flows effortlessly through different dimensions, simmering with a slow-burning energy all of its own. Links: Solid Traveller - SoundCloud Solid Traveller - Instagram Solid Traveller - Facebook Saramé - SoundCloud Saramé - Instagram Saramé - Facebook Toxido Mask - SoundCloud Toxido Mask - Instagram Toxido Mask - Facebook Modex21 - SoundCloud Gear used: AcidLab Miami 808 Analog Rytm Cirklon Sequentix Eventide H7600 Jomox Modbase Modal Argon8 Mutible Instruments Elements Roland 606 Sherman Filterbank Syncussion Vermona Perfourmer Virus Access Darkstar

  • Selections: 150bpm+ with upsammy & Steve Duncan

    To warm up for our party at OHM this coming Friday, September 16, we invited upsammy plus Patterns resident Steve Duncan to share five tracks in the 150bpm+ range that have caught their attention lately. Selected by Upsammy Sub - Tensions "I think is a beautiful eerie track that merges IDM elements with DnB, also some electro. It feels quite organic and electric at the same time, something I really like in music." Opiate - People (Remember Salami) "This track also contains an eerie and floaty element. I enjoy the vocal-ish sound in this track and also the pads, they feel very nostalgic. The wobbly bass/synth gives the track some sort of underwater vibe." S’apex - Tonexad (Far Behind) "This track sounds hyper digital, it has a crispy 2000’s distortion to (even though it was released in 1998) which I like. I guess you would qualify this as DnB but the drum sounds are not so obvious, very well designed. It becomes quite futuristic, sci-fi and snappy." ИНФХ - Limitless body "This track is a bit newer and super futuristic, also quite deconstructed I would say. It reminds me a bit of recent Aphex Twin. I love the spiky, modulating, sharp sounds. It feels like I’m morphing in and out of different spaces." Nebuchadnezzar - Lethal Weapon "This track is aggressive and playful at the same time, it has a heavy bass that sort of skips around. Nice to play in a set as a pulsating half-time head nod moment." Selected by Steve Duncan Pretty Sneaky - A "The understated groove in this tune is pretty hard to pull yourself away from. It's also easy to get lost in the wonderful, free-flowing percussive details happening throughout." Actefy - Glow "Whirling rhythms and insistent percussion offset by a delicate melancholic pad. Lovely stuff!" Vel - Squirmin' Like A Toad "This track combines heft with cosmic psychedelia, but what sticks the most are the round, rubbery (squirmy?) kicks and wild rhythms." Martsman - Subbed "Have been coming back to this track regularly since I first heard it. There's something special in the simple, compelling arrangement - and the towering sub bass." Sage - Boy "Building around a simple abstract vocal sample, this track pulses with smooth energy." Full playlist: Patterns of Perception // upsammy & Felix K is taking place on Friday, September 16 at OHM Berlin. More info: Website / Facebook / Resident Advisor

  • A chat with Felix K

    In his own way, Felix K is a historian. On a video call to discuss his recent four-hour mix for Patterns of Perception – itself a sign of the depth of his musical knowledge – it was hard to ignore the library of records covering the full length of the wall behind him. “What happens if I move out of this apartment?” he joked, though not without a hint of trepidation. Luckily, that’s not on the cards for the Berlin-based artist any time soon. As a music composer, DJ and label head, Felix K has accumulated a profound knowledge of genres ranging from jungle and drum and bass, to techno and house, through a methodical approach to record collecting and archiving. His mix for Patterns of Perception, the 100th in our series, focuses on blending classic, foundational dub with more contemporary UK sounds. In doing so, it showcases the connections between scenes and styles that the average listener, and many DJs, would be unlikely to make. Ahead of his set at our September 16 party at OHM Berlin, this interview explores the concept behind Patterns of Perception 100, as well as Felix's research-driven approach to digging and collecting. Photos by Chris Abatzis. Your mix for Patterns of Perception is quite an ambitious four-hour piece: can you tell us how you approached curating such a special musical journey? When I started working on it early in the year, I already had something in mind. I knew I wanted to do something longer, though not four hours – that just happened in the end. The original idea was something like a dub mix, but a dub mix that captures a house and techno vibe, because there have been a lot of movements in the UK by dub producers who got really into techno. For example, the UK producer King Alpha, when I listened to his records I thought, he was doing the stuff that techno usually misses. I wanted to make a mix covering tracks like this. But I didn’t want to do just a dub or reggae mix, because I am not really connected with the reggae and dub scene. I don’t plan to play DJ sets there; I would love to do it but it would be something completely new. I realised maybe it’s something you could do if you mix it with more styles. For example, there was a mixtape that Jah Shaka, one of the leading dub and reggae figures, made. He usually plays the original track, on the A-side, and then immediately afterward he’s playing the version. On one mixtape that I got to know via a friend, he played a house record that wasn’t at all known in the house community because I guess a reggae guy wrote it. It was just distributed within the reggae and dub scene. If you watch documentaries about the late ‘80s or early ‘90s in the UK, you can see reggae guys dancing to 1988 house music. In Berlin, this would never have been possible because these scenes were quite separated as far as I know. I really liked the idea to mix them and bring them together. So maybe this was the big idea, but in the end, I just went through and mixed the tracks without thinking about it too much. How would you describe the place where the mix ended up? You have to find tracks that fit together and, in the UK, it is so much influenced by the soundsystem culture that it is kind of a similar vibe or sound. Some of the more contemporary tracks from Livity Sound or Hessle Audio, it’s basically soundsystem music but it turns out to be a little different. They have the same starting point and they do it a little differently, but still, it has the same roots. The mix also gets faster over time. I think I like that you don’t really recognise that it’s getting faster. Over four hours, you have a lot of time to just tweak a little bit. But in the end, it is drum and bass, which is fast. I kind of like the effect. In the end, it is soundsystem continuum. Does stretching it over four hours give you more room to play? I listened to it again today and I thought maybe four hours is a little bit boring now. But now it’s there and I still like it, and the tracks are great. With a four-hour set, it’s not 100% interesting all the time. Maybe on the dancefloor, I would have stayed longer on the good moments and left out some other moments. If it’s a mix tape, you can go to the kitchen and cook something, then 10 minutes later you can go back and dance a little bit! Was creating this mixtape vibe intentional? Did you plan it this way from the beginning? I don’t think it’s possible to do it with another approach. If you mix a dub record, you cannot blend it like house or techno. The tracks are different. In dub, you mix it a little bit differently, so I tried to incorporate this a little bit. Et voila: you have a mixtape. Some parts were mixed by blending in the next track, then suddenly there are tracks that stop and the next track starts in a different way. The tempo is kinda the same but it’s not really like a blend you expect from a house set. You have to break it up a little bit to get everything in it. So it was kind of intentional but many things weren’t planned really. When I started to do it, after three hours, I wanted to stop. It went from slow to fast techno, you have a little progression. Then I thought maybe I could give a little bit more, then it got even faster. Then I thought, ‘okay just two more tracks’. And then I‘d have more ideas. In the end, the mix was something like 4 hours 20 minutes and I cut the last minutes because I just thought it was too much. But four seemed like a statement. You mentioned the Jah Shaka mixtape earlier - how has he been an inspiration for you? He’s a dub and reggae guy, and he’s on another planet. He’s also famous for inventing the more techno sound within dub. So he was the guy who played all these four-to-the-floor dub records that are very inspirational for me. He’s a really important figure for this kind of development. I remember the conversation about the mix tape but I don’t remember the name. I just know the house record because I ordered it from Discogs one day. But it’s a white label so nobody knows it and if you see it on Discogs, the producer seems to have never done another record so it’s quite obscure. What are some of the other tracks or artists from the mix that really stand out for you? The first record, which has a super nice house vibe, was on a label run by 4hero. They also started Reinforced some months before, this label was called Partners Inc. The first track was the first release in 1991, the artist was Adele. Partners Inc for me is like the UK-US house connection. They did it really housey, unlike Warriors Dance for example which was more progressive and really danceable in a way. Partners Inc was more sweet and jazzy. I really like both but this was the perfect track to start with. In German we say it’s an “earworm” track. It’s a great opening track. Have you been able to play it in sets or mixes before? No, never. Because for a house set, it’s too poppy in a way and the kick drum is very little. Usually, if you are in a set, if people are dancing, it’s maybe too soft and poppy for that vibe. But for a mixtape – it’s perfect. Any other tracks or artists that have a strong personal significance for you? In the end, they all have. The second track was done by Mad Professor, also on a dub label called Ariwa, Mad Professor’s label. The whole album is straight with a house kick drum all the time, so he implemented in the ‘80s this kind of vibe. I don’t know if anyone knows about it outside of the dub music scene. Maybe a few who are really digging deep but I don’t know if the connection is known to many people. So for you, the mix is really about showcasing and exploring the connections between dub, house and other sub-genres in the UK scene? UK music is about this, in my opinion. Sometimes it happens that I speak about music with people from the UK and if you speak about UK music, they know everything. Maybe not everyone is like this but I’ve met quite a few people like this and it’s made an impression on me. It’s given me a super high, romantic vision that it is really a blend of so many different styles. How did you discover dub and reggae? Did you start somewhere else that led you to dub? No, in the beginning, I started with jungle and drum and bass. This was in the ‘90s my music. When I bought records, it was basically just jungle all the time. More than 10 years ago I started to also get an interest in techno and then about six years ago, my behaviour changed: I didn’t go to record shops any more with just the next night in mind. It was like okay, I discovered something and now I want to know everything about let’s say house, and go through YouTube and buy stuff on Discogs. I just want to know what it was like in 1997 or ‘98 and I want to understand these connections. I’m not a music scientist or anything but I do it with method and a system, where I am really going deep. At the moment I am doing this with house and dub, and exploring the UK and US connection. It’s more like an addiction to knowing about it – to knowing where we are from. Usually whatever I do, at some point I want to discover the stuff under the hood. It is just my mindset. You’re almost a historian in your approach, would you say? Well if you really want to know about the history there are other guys. Joe Muggs and Brian David Stevens have a 500-pager about soundsystem culture, I just ordered it actually. And there are documentaries on the radio and on YouTube. The BBC made a documentary by DJ Flight from London about drum and bass and jungle. What I have heard of it so far was really good. I collected a few documentaries and house and techno and everything, maybe at the end of the year I will do a few threads on Twitter to recommend a few of these. So these are the historic documents. I am a consumer but maybe one day I can open an archive or something. I mean if I die, what happens to all of these records? Can you tell us a little bit about your process, your method? I am not sure if I really have a process for it but Discogs is a good tool. You might not get historical proof about anything. But if, for example, you go to Jah Shaka’s Discogs page and you go through credits to look for things like who are the musicians he worked with, what did they do and what was the studio where he recorded this record? Then you realise he did a few records in a studio called Addis Ababa and then you see it was started by two or three brothers from Africa who got into this reggae soundsystem world in the UK. They had a studio and this famous reggae guy produced his music in their studio. Then you see what did they do at the end of the ‘80s? They started a house label, probably the first UK house label. They released a record by Bang The Party, and Bang The Party was the first UK house producer duo who got a release in the US on one of the biggest house labels. Some guy wrote a comment on one of the releases and I think maybe it’s true, maybe it’s not. But the story is nice, and why not? Then you can follow the label they founded in 1986 called Warriors Dance. In the beginning it felt like a mix of hip hop, hip house, house, reggae. So they had the influences and then at some point, they kinda defined the UK sound of 1988. Then you go further and see who was influenced by it. Then you go to 4 Hero and when they started Reinforced Records, the first releases kind of sound similar to Warrior’s Dance. And when you know about Partners Inc, their house label, it connects in a way. So this is the process behind it: go through and follow the information that is in these databases. Can you tell us about one of your recent finds? Today I got a record, probably everybody in dub knows it. It’s a Channel One release from The Revolutionaries, originally from 1976 but it got reissued like one hundred times. This one is from last year. The story behind this is I found a track on a compilation in February. The track on this record had sounds that I knew from several drum and bass records – they sampled it. So I already knew the track without knowing it. Then I was at Hardwax and I spoke to Arthur to ask if he knows the original. He said it’s a famous riddim that’s used in a lot of reggae tracks, and he told me about a website where you can track down riddims. I went there and tried to find a record that just had the riddim without vocals. Then I forgot about it and last week, on one of my last days on vacation, I was just browsing the internet and suddenly I found this 7-inch with the same riddim. When it arrived it was like, ‘ah I can finally listen to it’. It made me very happy. Without the information, it would be impossible to find it, even though it is a super big hit. What was the turning point for you with taking this more methodical approach? Well it is kind of an addiction of mine. At some point, you grow older and other things get more important. This researching mindset, if it wouldn’t be music, it would be something else. It’s not just about collecting – I hate this. I couldn’t say, ‘oh now I move to Spain’, because what would I do with all this stuff behind me? It’s really a big rucksack that I can’t take anywhere. It’s a problem, it’s an addiction really. But I like the information I get out of it. Moving away from the classics, what new stuff are you listening to at the moment? I think at the moment Livity Sound, I don’t know how they do it but everything they put out at the moment is really good. Forest Drive West of course. Everything he is doing is magic. Let me look through my collection actually. On Fresh 86 there were some super interesting jungle revival albums by Kloke and FFF. Calibre had a really nice album on The Nothing Special. ASC did really cool records on Spatial. The records were new but the style is old: it’s mid-90s atmospheric drum’n’bass. Then there’s one really standout guy I would recommend because almost every track is great: Al Wootton. And then it’s Livity, Livity, Livity. I try to buy everything but I still miss so much by them. Do you feel like these artists are doing a good job of evolving the sound? Do you like the direction that it’s going in? At the moment I have the feeling I really don’t know about any directions anymore because everything seems to happen at once. Every detail is represented, so many styles are represented. If you listen to a DJ set, many people try to incorporate a lot of sounds at the moment. A few years ago, there were so many sets for one sound. Two hours deep techno. The tracks are great and they are doing a lot of justice to the genre of deep techno. But two hours of deep, stompy techno can be boring. Now it is like everything is in there. For me, maybe it is my age but I really do not know what the directions are at the moment. It is a melting pot like the early ‘90s when everything was possible. We will see where it goes. What do you think could be the reason for this? Maybe it is convergence, maybe it is a digitalisation thing because the information is there on Discogs for example. What I do, everybody can do. You just have to dig a little. Catch Felix K alongside upsammy at OHM Berlin for our next party on September 16. More info on Resident Advisor and Facebook. Photography: Chris Abatzis for Patterns of Perception

bottom of page