To celebrate in the best possible way the 10 years birthday of the fantastic Toi Toi Musik family, we have ready for you an exclusive mix by French-born Alex Troubetzkoy, who's also known for sitting behind the 'Pocket Club' alias, where he feels free to unleashes his inner jazzy-soul.
Alex will be part of a huge line-up which includes giants such as Sammy Dee, Dan Andrei, Dubtil, Vincent Lumieux and Brad into a huge marathon (21st and 22nd Feb) that will take place first at Guesthouse and then at Vissual (RO).
The Toi Toi crew will visit many spots during the upcoming months including Lisbon, London, Barcelona and many more. Make you sure to keep an eye on their pages, so you won't miss out anything in the future!
Hi Alex, you're going to play 21st and 22nd in Romania (Guesthouse and Vissual) to celebrate 10 years Toi-Toi Musik. How long have you been in this family and how did you get into it?
It was about 1 year ago that I joined Toi Toi. It was very special for me as I’ve always been sensible and close to their esthetic of sound, I danced in front of that roster quite a few times before I became a part of it... So yes it was a huge honour to be able to join this family of artists, and at the same time, it went down pretty naturally, as it feels like we are all kind of on the same page. I actually met Isis on something that didn’t really have anything to do with music, then followed months of talks and parties, a few trips abroad... It was a pretty smooth meeting :)
How does it feel to be part of such a big family like that of Toi Toi? is there anything that sets you apart from other roosters?
Well, it feels motivating of course, and sometimes reassuring too. As much as I love the party scene, my main purpose was always to create music, and so it was important for me whichever way I would go, to surround myself with people like that too. Most of the artists on the roster and around it were really key influences for me as producers, and how special it is to be able to have conversations and build relationships with the people who you looked up to all this time! I feel lucky and humbled.
Are you excited about your upcoming gigs 21st and 22nd? Have you ever played in these two famous clubs?
I'm super excited! I’ve played once in each club last year, Guesthouse being one of the most comfortable clubs to play in, geeky as I am it’s always a huge pleasure to put some music there. Vissual is one of my best memories of parties in Romania actually, the vibe was amazing and I’m looking forward to seeing everyone there again!
Do you have new productions coming soon?
Productions are coming, and possibly a live-set soon too. I’m making music all the time but it’s sometimes hard for me to know where to stop as the process is really never-ending ... I’m trying to be patient, I would like a certain balance between my ideas and the quality of sound I would like for those ideas before I start sharing my music more widely, but I'm getting closer to it!
Tell us about your new label/alias 'Pocket Club'. Which sonorities would you like to share? We've heard some serious jazzy influences coming from you lately!
I used to play instruments and I went to music schools before electronic music actually, so jazz was an influence before that and still is! That’s why «Pocket Club», is a group of different influences. Sometimes it will be more jazz, sometimes more minimal, and on some projects, you will hopefully not know what you are listening too, a mix of all the details I like in everything, from how the vocals are recorded in Bossa Nova, to how smooth a jazz drum sounds, some noises and misunderstanding of minimal music but with a 1950’s warm and romantic melody over it ... a best of the details that changed my life in a pop music format. In the idea of «intelligent pop music».
Is there any particular artist (or artists) that you'd like to collaborate with or you'd like to have on your label?
Well, it’s a little early to say, musicians will be involved, friends that are not working in the scene too. For the rest, I think I prefer to let you follow my journey. Time will tell!
Words by Francesco Quieti
Yamen & Eda are back to roots with their brand new live performance, bringing the house music roots to the new decade.
They are the kind of great grand story of friendship, a musical complicity and combinaison that started 8 years ago in 2012. With their mutual interests for music, that begun on social MySpace website, the two friends from south of France wanted to create something different, which comes out a bit from what they used to listen to while staying true to their origin.
Their desire take its roots onto music that they take pleasure in producing, and that does not seek to stick to a particular genre, even if they clearly extolling a house music comeback.
At first, Yamen & Eda were not just a simple duet but were represented as a quartet. It was after landing in similar envy that François and Hadrien started to perform DJ sets and now a hard-hitting live performance, which represents a real turning point in their careers.
Like any DJ, the goal is always to produce one of a kind thing, growing a connexion with the folks to can make the most passionate dance. In general this is mostly represented as the first track of a vinyl (A1) or otherwise called banger. Their approach to composing having changed over time, it is with this live that they decided to come back to ignite the dance floors and demonstrate a new identity, equally in coordination with their past releases.
Having always produced numerous banging tracks on several major labels like One Records, Earlydub or Elephant Moon, the duo were able to express their talent in this way before launching their own label Maison Mère in 2018, polished grooved releases at the menu.
By meeting several times a week in the studio and having the advantage of living in the same city, the two Montpellier based DJ have managed to find a creed on which they are in perfect agreement and having received many positive returns, the result of long hours of production.
Continuing their ascension slowly but surely, the duo joined Bucharest based Reciproc agency, known for bringing the hot vibe we looking, a roaster always surrounded by some 5-star guests. For this year agency anniversary, they will share the decks with the agency team and friends.
We are looking very forward to hearing from them, and to continue to follow their groovy releases. While waiting, here's a preview on what they can do together :
Unknown djs Berlin debuts at Hoppetosse this Sunday, February 16th with COSMJN, Remelie, Daniela Cast and project heads Alexander Kraemer & Dean Marc.
Electronic music is all about reinventing itself. So what best way to do so than through the new event series Unknown djs focused on showcasing as its name expresses, up- and- coming talent, in the legendary Hoppetosse in Berlin?
The concept behind this new event series is very simple: showcase new talents from all over Europe, giving them the best spot to play, alongside them with renowned artist such as the captain COSMJN, in this case, who will have to guide the ship.
COSMJN is part of the third Romanian generation of amazing artists that the southeastern European country has delivered and continues to fascinate audiences all across the continent and abroad with his minimalistic signature and, as his name suggests, galactic style. His characteristic sound drives from minimal house to a more technoid sound, always providing a distinctive futuristic edge. During the last couple of years, he has seen his music released on labels like RORA, Subtil and Eastenderz to name a few.
He has started 2020 in style with his "Soul Things" EP on playedby and is a regular guest at the renowned Sunwaves Festival. His last release on Romanian playedby label it's just small yet substantial anticipation of the incredible COSMJN talent that you’ll be able to experience.
For the first Unknown deejays event series, London based Remelie will be the second guest and new talent invited on the boat. Her tactful selection and delicious technique will make you rolling in the deep with pulsating basslines and catchy atmospheres. She's definitely a one to watch for 2020 thanks to her hypnotic grooves glued together with dark tones to keep the dancefloor enthralled.
Local Berlin selector Daniela Cast and founder and Unknown Djs’ residents Dean Marc and Alexander Kraemer will also show their distinctive signature, showcasing a wide display of brand new music. Hailing from Argentina, but now based in the winter dance music Mecca, Dani Cast has a vibrant selection that has led to her establish herself in the local circuit. She's going to get the night started with her lush and deep minimalistic approach, while founders Dean Marc and Alexander Bleh will represent Unknown djs. This Sunday is going to be a night to remember, one that will pave the way for more newcomers and talented artists, a much-needed space for renewal and creation within the electronic music.
Click HERE to see more infos about the event... see ya on the boat!
Words by Daniel Ordonez
People tend to associate cheesy, overdramatic power ballads with Valentine’s Day. But we’re here to challenge those preconceptions and bring you some leftfield tunes to make you feel all the feels on this gooey and lovely day. From minimal and deep house to 80’s rock n disco, it's all about the love! Grab some hot chocolate and indulge yourself in this compilation of underrated romantic tracks obviously involving your partner!
"There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved" (George Sand)
1. Ricardo Villalobos - Baby
2. Anonym - Love You Like I Can
3. Casco - Cybernetic Love
4. Charlie - Spacer Woman
5. Daft Punk - Something About Us
6. Maceo Plex - Vibe Your Love
7. Beach House - Lover Of Mine (Rojid Edit)
8. Sieg Über Die Sonee - Hot
9. English Boy On The Loveranch - Sex Vigilante
10. Dead or Alive - You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)
Music selection by Caterina Fidelbo
Cutting edge and London based Into The Woods brand constantly brings top-tier talent from Europe and abroad to their parties, and for their first event of the year on Friday, February 21st, they will go all-in until 6am: hosting Alci, a rising face in the minimal house scene hailing from Zurich and the new french wonder kids Miroloja. Residents Tarek Charbonnier, Kolo & Dyze and special guest and Artefax movement label boss, Oside, will ignite the dance floor on warm up duties and will get the evening started properly. Into the Woods with Alci and Miroloja as headliners will be off the books as the night will be a beautiful gathering that revolves around a highly curated line up and minimal entrancing rhythms in addition to top quality sound provided by the venue’s incredible Funktion one sound system.
Alci, one of the latest Swiss exports, is a unique and avid selector that has played and delighted international dancefloors such as: Berlin (Hoppetosse), Paris (Rex Club), and Ibiza (DC10) going all the way to beloved Sunwaves Festival or Vietnam’s Epizode for instance, and keeps gaining attention for his signature laidback charisma behind the decks and eclectic record collection which keeps providing smiles and endless dancing throughout the globe. The Swiss selector and resident of Sunday Breakfast Club (Zurich) will display his sophisticated selection, impeccable technique and deliciously contagious minimalistic house infused beats which are indeed a unique treat to enjoy that will keep you energized and dancing incessantly until early hours of the morning.
Correspondingly Miroloja is one of the latest French exports and will add the French flair and elegance to such diverse and dynamic line up. The duo has been producing some serious grooves that have landed them parties around Europe and releases on labels like Infuse, MTM and the NG Trax label owned by the esteemed, Nima Gorji. If one thing is certain, is that French minimal house and techno has a deep touch and chic style that will keep the dance floor on fire. Tip: listen to their exclusive Meoko mix below!
In the past ,Into The Woods events have hosted the likes of Afriqua, Ben Balance, Alexra, Traumer, Nacho Bolognani, Petre Inspirescu, Sammy Dee and Voigtmann to name a few of the amazing guest selectors that have been part of these long and exciting nights for locals and foreigners at the British capital. Be sure to bring your dancing attire for this evening accompanied by the best music and vibe at Mick’s Garage. This will be a top quality music and promising evening you won’t want to miss.
The fun will not finish at 6am as the ITW crew have secured an intimate spot for the occasion. After party will be held at a brand new location for ITW and close to the main-event venue, by featuring the full works. Miroloja,Gabriel amaru,Davide Decay,Max Frisina,Tarek Charbonnier,Ollie & Beal will be behind the decks between 4am and 2pm.
Tickets on Resident Advisor18+ Please bring ID
Written by: Daniel Ordoñez
More ITW; Facebook / Facebook Event / Tickets
More MEOKO: Facebook / Soundcloud / Youtube
It is increasingly common in the current scene to find artists who more and more often like to hide behind secret monikers, and the guys of Carebears have been surely one of the most successful unknown-duos during the last couple of years.
With appearances on Niko Maxen's OFF Path, Blind Vision, Purism and ROWLE's sub-label Abduction, these guys have put out an incredible number of quality analogue jams, receiving support from the biggest in the industry. In fact, they track have been played by Cabanne, Varhat, Roger Gerressen, Petre Inspirescu, Dorian Paic, Markus Fix, Raresh, Cap and Arno to name a few. They're now back on their own self-titled label with another infectious 2-tracker vinyl-only EP.
CLICK HERE TO BUY CAREBEARS 505
The A-side is a bubbly rhythm track with harsh chords and a straightforward dose of 909 grooves that take you back to the heart of a dance-floor with futuristic menace. The track is filled with unexpected female vocal samples and prickly hi-notes that help to keep pressure and involvement at seriously high levels.
On the flip, '505B' keeps using 909 groove elements, but directing the track in a deeper way, with rhythmic congas, dubby pads bubbling sub-bass, accented by infectious male vocal hooks throughout.
Words by Francesco Quieti
Sunwaves 27, the first wave of artists revealed! It is that time of the year again, the anticipation to the Spring season, a new year ahead and another special edition of the renowned Sunwaves Festival starting on Thursday, April 30th and going till Wednesday, May 6th in Mamaia Nord, Constanta in the Romanian coast.
The festival will be celebrating its 14th year of existence with a highly curated line up that will bring people from all over the world together as the sun and ocean witness another magical Spring edition for the books. Only 27 names of artists were revealed out of the 95 that will be present at the festival, each with a unique take on avant-garde music, a truly one of a kind experience that revolves around music and culture.
27 names of the first wave artists below, take a look! (in alphabetical order)
Arapu Cap Cuartero Dan Andrei DeWalta Dubfire Dubtil Floog Gescu Herodot Jamie Jones Joey Daniel Kozo Lee Burridge Loco Dice Mahony Marco Carola Mihigh Paco Osuna Petre Inspirescu Pîrvu Priku Raresh Rhadoo Ricardo Villalobos Sonja Moonear Tulbure
More artists will be announced as the festival date gets closer. In the meantime, take a deeper look at some of these top-class talent and get ready to embark and enjoy this unique musical gathering filled with beautiful sounds within a sublime and peaceful setting from sunrise to sunset.
More Sunwaves: FB Page / FB Event / Tickets
More MEOKO: Facebook / Soundcloud / Youtube
Soundopamine is a duo live act who combines warm microcosmic grooves with the human touch. They are a fresh breath of air in the Romanian music scene, always keeping the crowd craving for more.
Chris & Natasha are lifetime musicians that met at the courses of the National Music University in Bucharest, back in 2012, creating their own everyday paradise soundtrack ever since. In 2017, the duo - live act took part in the #wildmusictracks experiment in which they transformed a bus into a musical instrument on the way to Sunwaves Festival and they were also invited as production trainers along with Rhadoo, Mahony and Fouchat, in the Romanian DJ Bootcamp. 2018 had even better energy, as they've by being nominated as one of the 2018's "ones-to-watch" artists.
The summer brought a collaboration with the Open-Air crew in Portugal which culminated with a huge party under the stars in central Lisbon, and in July the first 12' Moment EP came on vinyl, released on their own label EverydayParadise.
Fast-forwarding ahead after all this flashbacks of Waha Festival, Amural Festival, 3SmokedOlives Festival, Electric Castle Festival, Neversea Festival, Untold Festival, Airfield Festival, Picnic Fonic 2019, Snowfest France, Open Air Portugal, TEDxBucharest, Musai Fest / Club Eden / Club Control / La Gazette (Cj), Floreasca Pool, Oha Beach, H2O Beach, Monteoru Mansion in Bucharest and many others.
2020 will bring us their 2nd vinyl release ''Una Cu Natura'' EP, which will include 2 lovely originals and two remixes by Harrison BDP and Swoy. Their Bandcamp page is loaded with more digital goodies and we're thrilled to share with you an exclusive FREE DOWNLOAD new track called 'We Should Talk' as part of the ''On The Road'' VA special compilation. A personal and close to their heart track with no strings attached.
6 Years after their debut, road trips, festivals and obscure events playing along with Archie Hamilton, Afriqua, Mano Le Tough, Tulbure, Ada Kaleh, Charlie, Bryz, Harrison BDP, Los Bastoneros, Prichindel and other cosmonauts, they've put together a stellar lineup in one of the main electronic music culture spots in Bucharest, at Club Guesthouse with S.A.M. (Delaphine) & Varhat (Yoyaku), around their live act and some local support from Grizzly (evp) & Vlad Bretan (evp).
The night will be completed by a visual trip made out of paintings and visual mapping!
Getting hyped up? You better, as we’re all gonna get first row tickets deep outer space and flowing in zero gravity. Suit up, pull up your hypnotic panties, do some pushups or whatever you need to get ready for a joyful ride into the micro-cosmic grooves asteroid.
More MEOKO; Facebook / Soundcloud / Youtube
Kharkiv’s underground institution Moskvich Bar had a massive 2019, continuing to host both rising local talents and renowned DJs such as Gel Abril, Pillow Talk, Nasser Baker and Kirik to name a few. During these 8 years since its opening, the bar crew's impeccable music taste and competent international DJ booking of artists from Germany and France, the UK, and Israel, helped Moskvich to rapidly grow into a favourite spot for lovers of quality electronic music and carry its mission today.
Click HERE to listen to the PREMIERE of Christian Burkhardt - Chameleon
To celebrate the bar's birthday, they’ve decided to prepare a special present in the form of launching an in-house vinyl label. The debut release delivers a compilation of tracks by seasoned friends whose historic sets went into Moskvich's history. "MOSKVICH BAR INFINITY ANNIVERSARY” features 4 killer tracks that come from the likes of German top-producer and Cocoon-associate Christian, Ukrainian Kirill Kirik, Anton Kubikov from Moscow duet SCSI-9, and venue's longtime friend — JOSS, who’s also the head of Kyiv label Artreform.
“Moskvich Bar is the homeplace, cosy and warm. The place where friends gather to hug and smile, connect and dance. The unique venue where each worker feels like the owner. This approach changes each mindset, that of a chef, a waiter, a barman, who gladly devote themselves to their jobs and follow their calling. Ultimately, it creates an exclusive atmosphere, that is tastefully underlined by your favourite music,” says Moskvich Bar boss Anton Slepoy.
Kickin' off with the deep and minimalistic ‘She Appears’ by JOSS who sets the standard with minimalistic drums samples programmed with a housey swing, rolling basslines, lush pads and sweeping synths, making of this opening tool the perfect cross between dancefloor mover and trippy after-hours mood.
JOSS (ARTREFORM, Memory Remains)
Thus, the legend of Christian Burkhardt delivers ‘Chameleon’ and as the name says, this one will definitely fit in any situation. It’s a proper tech-house roller, with tons of percussions, vocal shots and a simple but effective up&down bassline, ready to shake the crowd in every corner of the world.
Christian Burkhardt (EASTENDERZ, Cocoon)
On the flip, Russian Anton Kubikov steps up with the deep and smooth ‘Winter Never Come With You’. It’s an intense journey with deep Rhodes, delicate female vocal parts and a touching piano part that suck you in and keep you there for the duration.
Anton Kubikov (Kompakt, Mayak)
Closing the EP is Crocus label head Kirik who has delivered an impressive number of quality tracks during the last couple of years, oftentimes hiding behind the Unkown artist moniker. His a track 'HS001' features a rolling and rubbery bassline, shuffling drums and involving grooves, giving life to another dancefloor rocker.
Kirik (Crocus, UZVAR)
Words by Francesco Quieti
Ampere is a unique gem for music and culture in Antwerp, Belgium that consistently hosts incredible talent and this February 15th , will be a special night for the city as they invited two of Berlin’s finest selectors, Nicolas Lutz and Binh along with supporting acts Curtis and Laurens, for a new edition of their incredibly curated parties.
Lutz and Binh are internationally known for their mind bending sets that range from Noon at Club Der Visionaere, Undersound, Breakfast Club and the mythical Fabric London to name a few. Both guests for this unique gathering are constantly working on ambitious projects besides their role as DJs, such as Lutz’s My Own Jupiter imprint and Binh’s role as producer having releases on highly respected labels like the legendary Perlon label and Cabaret Recordings among others, establishing them in the international electronic music scene as they share their love for music in all its forms with people across the globe. Curtis and Laurens will be on warm up duties for this extraordinary night, as they display their skillful mixing techniques and delightful selection that will gracefully induce dancers into a state of disinhibition and unison in anticipation to the rest of this extraordinary evening.
It’s no surprise that Nicolas Lutz and Binh will provide the dancefloor a truly exceptional night this February 15th, as they showcase their honed craft behind the decks and drop carefully selected tracks one after the other, as they dive into the deepest territories of minimal, house, electro and UK techno and garage from past decades to the most recent releases, exploring and pushing genres beyond norms. Their mastery to mix music that ranges from different eras and sounds reflects on their years of experience behind controls and devoted digging which takes audiences on a timeless journey, a vortex of beautiful sounds.
The event will be one for the books, two of Europe’s best vinyl selectors in an incredible location, affordable tickets and most importantly, love driven music for the public to dance off, an unmissable one of a kind experience courtesy of Ampere.
After making a huge impression in its first year, the magical UNUM Festival returns to the Albanian Riviera from May 28th to June 1st 2020. The first wave of names for this sun soaked, naturalistic getaway include Raresh, Seth Troxler, tINI, Sonja Moonear, Dyed Soundorom, John Dimas, Priku, Praslea, Cap, Digby, Cesar Merveille with many more to be announced.In 2019, UNUM made an immediate mark with its debut edition, that played out on the stunning Albanian Riviera with a world class line-up. The festival really shined a spotlight on the last untapped corner of Europe: Rana e Hedhun, in the town of Shengjin, on the idyllic Albanian coastline.
Now running even longer by starting Thursday and continuing non-stop until Monday, music plays both the day and night, so you can expect blissful sunrise and sunset parties, as well as a wealth of water sports, local culture, rich food and drink offerings and a music loving crowd from all corners of the world. There are also isolated bays and golden sand beaches to explore, and all with the stunning Albanian Alps as the backdrop. UNUM is the type of blissful and dreamy, organic and natural place, that feels undiscovered and hidden away from the rest of the world.In 2020, there are once more three stages: The Beach Stage, which runs from sunrise until sunset, will be more experimental and chilled during the daytime, to give people a place to enjoy the surroundings. The Main Stage, which runs from sunset until dawn, and finally the Into the Pines Stage, which runs 24 hours a day and mixes world renowned names, regional artists and a mix of alternative and experimental musical styles, all in the shade of lush pine trees which infuse the air with their scent.
Credit: Oli Riley Photography
More than 50 international and local artists from across the house and techno spectrum will perform, such as Raresh, Seth Troxler, tINI, Sonja Moonear, Dyed Soundorom, John Dimas, Priku, Praslea, Cap, Digby, and Cesar Merveille.This is a boutique event that offers the chance to experience a brand new and lesser known corner of Europe with a world class soundtrack. There are also pre-parties lined up from now until the festival in Berlin, Zurich, Geneva, Istanbul, Tirana, Skopje and Belgrade.
Credit: Valeriu Catalineanu
LINE-UP PHASE ONE
Jonny N' Travis
+ more TBA
Montevideo-born and Berlin-based producer and DJ Ema Remedi (Melisma, Drumma, Sketches Records) is ready to drop her debut release on the legendary Visionquest label. 'Outsider' EP consists of 4 original cuts, in which Ema melts her typical Latino groovy-roots together with the most avant-garde European meticulous approach, giving life to some lovely deep house pieces of art.
Click HERE to buy your copy of VQ081 at deejay.de
Visionquest's 81st release kicks off with 'Even Odds', characterized by curious vocoderized parts, which turn to be almost sung by robots. The vocals float above sharp compelling groove and under short and panned arpeggiators, whilst deep chords are joined by various tiny elements.
A2's 'Why' is a hell of stripped-back number with a mean bassline, modular sounds, repetitive distorted vocals and a powerful dose of 909 grooves.
Click HERE to listen to the exclusive premiere of 'Open Closing'
On the flip, 'Open Closing' is a proper deep house tune within which you can (easily) find all the Berlin-ish typical elements: dancefloor-oriented grooves, delicate cymbals, deep pads, sparkling and crispy synths, all together perfectly in keeping with the rolling sub frequencies drawn into an addictive low-end pattern.
Closing the EP is the creepy 'No Sun, No Problem (feat. Sol)' which features sinister keys, distorted effects, unexpected squelches and rattles. The track is raw, gloomy and murky and proceeds with solid sub-bass, piercing hats and electric synths, wrapping the listener in a halo of mystery, as the title track itself foreshadowed.
Words by Francesco Quieti
Parisian top-producer Traumer is back on Berg Audio for his most immense project to date - Assembling Pieces LP - an outstanding triple vinyl LP consisting of 8 originals + 3 exclusive collaborations.
Traumer is a familiar face into the Berg Audio family, in fact, his latest track called 'Citron' was released on the label as part of the 'Construction Tools Vol. I, II & III'. Going back even further in time, his original 'A Different Path' EP came out in 2017 and it was one of the earliest releases of Berg Audio, a label that since its first chapter showed an incredible musical output.
This huge LP showcases his marvellous talent in the studio, and the EP's name - Collecting Pieces - may refer to the unrestrainable musical research of his current idea of sound, a perfect blend of dub techno, minimal and deep house. Inside, we can find three collaborations with top-notch producers such as Steve O' Sullivan, Priku and Cristi Cons, and this contributes to making of this already massive LP a really epic one.
Words by Francesco Quieti
With a vast catalogue that spans from Knee Deep In Sound to Stereo Productions and Do Not Sleep, Southampton's Ronnie Spiteri has made a name for himself during the last years, becoming a reference point for the whole UK scene. He's now back for the 3rd time on Alan Fitzpatrick's label We Are The Brave, showcasing his attitude and versatility in the studio, as he's always been able to deliver both techno and tech-house brilliant cuts.
Your 'Dèjà Vu' EP marks your third appearance on WATB. Seems like there's a good connection between you and the label! Do you think it's because WATB represents your actual idea of sound?
Yes, this is my third release with the label and I’m buzzing about it. Also, it’s great to have my mate A.S.H on the remix! Brave always allows me to express myself as an artist and musically I think it fits well for both of us.
Tell us more about the making and ideas behind the track and the remix from A.S.H.
The idea behind the track was to make something with an old school feel but with a modern sound. It took me about 5 versions to finish the track. The final version has been tried and tested thoroughly and it’s getting a lot of great reactions from the crowd, especially when I played at the show with Eli Brown at Hull Tower! It went off!
The remix is on point and it was a nice addition for A.S.H to take it a little tougher with his sound, really happy with the remix and fits perfectly into the final package
What about your Kenja Records label? With a high-quality catalogue, it represents your more deep and techy side. Why haven't you proposed this sound on your productions lately?
I have 2 releases already booked in for the label, and I’m making an album for it later this year, so you should expect more to come about that soon. The two upcoming releases are very deep and chunky musically speaking, and can’t wait for them to drop, as my sound has progressed into a slightly harder and energetic vibe that it has been before.
What are the plans for Kenja in 2020?
As mentioned above, those releases and my album. The album won’t be something that I’d play in clubs, and it's going to be more of a listening piece of music that I’ve written. We also have releases planned with Markus Homm, Oscar L, Chus & Ceballos and more!
I am excited to be getting a solid release schedule planned for the label this year, it’s something I have wanted to do for a while and these guys are all putting their own stamp to Kenja.
Name the label of your dreams where you'd love to release next.
I would love to get a release on Drumcode, for my tracks which are more ‘techno’. I still have the rolling chunky side to my music, so those releases I would love to see on Hot Creations! Both awesome labels which I have always looked up to.
'Multiply' was definitely one of your high-lights tracks if not a true "turning point" for you, I believe. Do you think that there's a turning point in every DJ career nowadays? And have you felt that 'Multiply' was something different from your other tracks?
Yeah ‘Multiply’ def got a few heads to turn and I was really grateful to Daly (Hot Since 82) for believing in my music. I believe that when it’s your time to shine, you will. Just be all about your music and enjoy it. Hard work pays off, but it goes a long way. I think maybe there is always some kind of turning point after the hard work, maybe it's a track that blows up or a gig that gets you a lot of exposure. But I always think, whatever or wherever it is, it was just the time for you.
Special plans or announcements for 2020?
My special planned announcement for 2020 is that I have just been signed by Alan Fitzpatrick and his new management team. They are taking the reigns now for all my career, and I couldn't be happier to be a part of such a good team of people. I am making an album for Kenja, which is going to be a huge musical focus for me and a big project and then I will also be doing a collaboration with Alan towards the end of the year. Really excited for things to come!
Ones to watch / upcoming artists for 2020?
Definitely watch out for follow brave Artist A.S.H he’s cooking up some big tunes at the moment.
Words by Francesco Quieti
Harry Light - Take A Journey [ARTREFORM]
Buy ARR037: https://www.deejay.de/Harry_Light_Take_A_Journey_ARR037_Vinyl__942924
Listen to the premiere of Harry Light - Entrance: https://soundcloud.com/meoko/premiere-harry-light-entrance-artreform
Ukraine is one of those countries that is slowly making his appearance into the European scene, being influenced by the “Rominimal” sound from the West and the more techno-oriented sound from the East. Within the vast panorama, JOSS’ label ARTREFORM has been a stable point over the last 8 years, with releases that involved names such as the local studio-wizard iO (Mulen), Chaim, Ugur Project, Tripmastaz, Rhadow, FilOu, Christian Burkhardt, GFD, and Kirik to name a few.
Label owner JOSS
The 37th release comes from the wise hands of Harry Light, who’s back on the label after three years since his debut EP with the entitled three-tracker ‘Take A Journey’. Kickin' off with the main track, Harry delivers a huge a dancefloor tool with a bouncy bassline, siren-ish synths and a solid 909 rolling groove; here, the aggressiveness of the track is contrasted by a whispering female vocal and some epic sinister atmospheres. Next, is ‘Faux Bro’ where punchy kicks and 909 open hats perfectly match with an old school-sounding bassline (remember the old Hot Creations stuff?) and more female vocal chops amongst sweeping synths and rich drum shots.
Closing the EP is 'Entrance', marked by lovely deep pads, which are later joined by dubby and delayed synths. Little by little, the track evolves with skipping drum licks and bubbling sub-bass, accented by infectious female vocal loops throughout, rounding out an impressive EP.
Words by Francesco Quieti
2019 was a great year for music from both new and emerging artists as well as the usual suspects! 2020 looks as though things are going to be taken up a notch too as we see new names entering the scene on an almost daily basis. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, we’ll leave that up to you to decide...
Regurgitated ideas, stagnant genres and too much of ‘the same’ are lines we hear far too often from people as artists tend to stick to ‘safe’ sounds, ‘safe’ track ideas and ‘safe’ structure because they know it works well and they’re afraid to push the boundaries and break the mould for fear of it not being right.
But what is right…?
In this guide we’ll be taking a look at the artists we’ve been keeping a close eye on over the last 12 months (and longer in some cases) and highlight them as people to keep an eye out for in 2020! This guide isn’t to be treated as an ‘up and coming’ list like you might be used to seeing in other places, as some of the artists listed here are more established than others. Yes, some are fairly new to the scene but generally, these are artists we’re predicting to do great things at the start of this new decade…and hopefully further into the future!
Alfie Jack appeared on the scene late on in 2019 but is someone who should definitely be on your radar for 2020! Working closely with another rising star from Manchester, Josh Baker, the lads have been cooking up a storm in the studio with lots of music to come! With an EP already out on Archie Hamilton’s Moscow Records and two more upcoming Eps on Burnski’s ‘Constant Sound’ sub label, ‘Aesthetic’ as well as another confirmed EP on You&Me. Alfie Jack has joined the ranks of the Manchester party starters ‘You&Me’ who have also been making waves with their events all over the city so expect to see his name on more event posters over the next 12 months. A couple of festival slots are already in the diary for summer 2020 with more info on those coming soon and an exciting collaboration project with fellow You&Me regulars Seba&Emile which will focus on the deeper sound house (think small hours kinda’ vibe). Solo wise, he has a couple of EP's signed and ready to go and has already gained support from the likes of Enzo Siragusa, Archie Hamilton, Ben Balance, Fabe and Okain amongst others!https://www.facebook.com/alfiejackdjhttps://soundcloud.com/alfiejackdj
Barut had an amazing 2019 and 2020 looks like another great year for the Miami based DJ and producer. His 4 track EP on the Botanic Minds Sunset Series towards the back end of the year really stamped his name on the scene and gained some fantastic support from the likes of Barac, Alci, NTFO, Sepp, Nu Zau and many more! Another 4 track EP on the ever-impressive Sintope came earlier in the year, make sure you keep an eye out for his return on the imprint later in 2020. With some nice gigs lined up and a mini tour in the diary for later in the year, Barut is a name to keep at the forefront of your minds!https://www.facebook.com/BarutmusicOfficial/https://soundcloud.com/barutmusic
BRYZ is another name to add to the list of impressive artists to come out of Romania. Whilst being on the scene for a number of years now and a well-respected artist, he is someone we have earmarked to have continued success in the new decade. With previous releases on labels such as Samani, Tzinah, ID Music, Wizz, Moira, Welter, Lethal Script amongst others, his hypnotic sound is one you’ll quickly fall in love with, just like I did! Keep an eye out for BRYZ throughout 2020, you won’t be disappointed!https://www.facebook.com/Comanbr/https://soundcloud.com/comanbr
Camelia is another artist who had a fantastic 2019 and 2020 is looking just as bright for the US based talent. Having played in Turkey, Mexico and the Dominican Republican for the first time, he’ll soon be able to add some more worldwide destinations to the list as the year goes on.His EP on Fake Society was a real standout achievement and if its something you haven’t heard yet then I suggest you check it out right now! He’ll return to the label later in the year and will tour Europe in February so if you get check to go see him then we’d highly recommend it!https://www.facebook.com/CameliaUS/https://soundcloud.com/camelia_music
Casey is someone I’ve known personally for a number of years now and someone whose music we’ve always really enjoyed so to see him put his foot on the gas in 2019 was great to see! 2020 is shaping up to be even bigger for him so we’re looking forward to seeing what he can make of it! 2019 saw him set up his own imprint ‘Temperature’ as well as releasing on the mighty Fuse London’s sub label ‘Infuse’ which really got people talking! His no nonsense London infused (no pun intended!) sound has made its way into the record bags of some of the top selectors around the world and continues to get plays on dancefloors wherever you go!2020 will see him releasing more music on Temperature as well as some other labels he has a close connection with so keep your eyes peeled on your favourite outlets to keep up to date. Gig wise, things are being kept under wraps for the time being but its safe to say you’ll be seeing a lot of Casey throughout 2020!https://www.facebook.com/caseyspillman/https://soundcloud.com/caseyspillman
2019 was definitely somewhat of a turning point in DJOKO’s career having signed to the incredible PIV brand and releasing music on their consistently strong label, which has led to him, taking the music thing a bit more seriously. Gig wise he had the honour of playing in the UK and the Netherlands a couple of times but if he had to point out a gig that really stood out it would be the PIV showcase in Amsterdam during ADE.2020 will see a full EP on Berg Audio at the beginning of the year and also the first full vinyl release with his collaboration project with PIV head honcho Chris Stussy. There will also be an EP coming on the French label hedZup with a remix by Mancini and he’ll also make an appearance on a V.A. on Politics of Dancing. Make sure you keep an eye out for some more breakbeat-influenced music that he’ll be releasing throughout the year under a new alias ‘Kolter.’ https://www.facebook.com/DJOKOCOLOGNE/https://soundcloud.com/djokocologne
Herck is a name that should be known by many after the 2019 he had! The Romanian native was one of the most consistent artists in terms of releases and quality of releases throughout the year. The last 12 months saw him release on labels such as La Mesure, Curtea Veche, Chroniques Binaires and Otomoji to name a few!2020 looks like it’ll be another great year for Herck with lots of projects in the pipeline bubbling away waiting for their release as well as an exciting tour for him to get stuck into!https://www.facebook.com/herck.ro/https://soundcloud.com/herck
2019 was a very successful year for Ida Daugaard as she played at Garbicz Festival, a beautiful festival deep in the Polish forest with a lot of beautiful art and light installations and spacy work shops to stimulate all your senses! The Block in Tel Aviv, a club with excellent sound, great minimal line up’s and a very heart warm, dedicated and welcoming team behind it was also a gig to remember! La Fenêtre Secrète, a group of young talented artist and creatives in Gotenburg making events where music & art is aligned to help you reach a higher level was another venue Ida thoroughly enjoyed!Ida found herself in South Africa for New Years and played a long set into the sunrise of 2020 in a beautiful nature reserve for Search Festival. Soon after she’ll be back playing at Reset in Cape Town, one of her favorites in the city. Followed by a gig in Zurich with Varhat at a very cosy afterhours clubs Kauz, February will see her going on a Australian tour and in March she’ll be looking forward to catching the Berlin spring before the festival season begins. Ida’s mantra for 2020: ‘continue to do what makes me the happiest, spreading love by playing music that inspires me.’https://www.facebook.com/IdaDaugaard/https://soundcloud.com/ida-daugaard
2019 took Lola to various destinations around the world that included Stockholm, Barcelona, Kiev, Bucharest, Strasbourg and many more! Release wise, Lola will deliver an EP on Berg Audio and has some other exciting releases up her sleeve, which I’m really looking forward to hearing!2020 will see Lola spending a lot of time playing across Eastern Europe but will also be jet setting off to South America for a couple of dates later in the year so if you do get chance to go and check her out at some point during the year then we would recommend it, she’s a real talent!https://www.facebook.com/lolapalmerofficial/https://soundcloud.com/lolapalmer
At the beginning of 2019 Marlie founded Click Agency with her friend and business partner Cass Pitman - Touring artists from Europe to Australia. This contributed to the growth of her brand Roots in Sydney which she also started in London when she relocated. Her first gig of the year will be at her home in Sydney for the world renowned, S.A.S.H.She’ll then head back over to Europe where she has several gigs locked in for Greece, Switzerland and London so far! A promising 2020 lies ahead for Marlie so get her on your radar guys!https://www.facebook.com/marliedj/https://soundcloud.com/marlie-8
Basel based Mikhu had a fantastic 2019, releasing some massive tracks and remixes as the year went on! 2020 will see him releasing a collab project with Alice Clark on vinyl as well as another collab project with his good friend Fulvio Cala which will be released on Blind Vision Dubs. He’ll also be launching his very own vinyl label ‘Mormorio Records’ where the first release will be a special collab between Mikhu and Lorik. We’ve had our eye on Mikhu for quite some time now and really believe 2020 will be the year that he’ll kick things up a gear or two!https://www.facebook.com/mikhumusic/https://soundcloud.com/mikhu_music
Becoming exclusive to Belisa Booking propelled Monika to the next level in 2019! Also playing every weekend and becoming friends with her long-time favourite artists has been a surreal experience! Her most loved country to play in 2019 would have to be Switzerland - a truly beautiful part of the world!Lots of music is planned for 2020 : Weather Recordings, One Records and Talman will all host remixes and a few new tracks of hers early in the year. She then plans to focus on some more solo works and perhaps an album which would be really exciting!Monika will be in Australia for the first February so will start the year off in the sun! Then its off to Bulgaria, Romania and back to Berlin for the summer!https://www.facebook.com/miss.monika.ross/https://soundcloud.com/monika-ross
Niko Maxen…a name we’re sure most of you will be familiar with after the 2019 he had! Some standout releases include Rowle, Talman and Roche Madame to name a few! If you haven’t checked any of these out then we highly suggest you do!Releases for 2020 will be on OGE, Talman, Constant Sound and then he’ll also look to drop Maxen 02 and 03 which sound like they are shaping up nicely! Looking forward to getting my hands on these!His imprint Pathway Traxx will continue to showcase artists that he’s really feeling, mostly breakthrough or up and comers. Niko likes to give them full EP format with remixes from more established artists. One release that he’s looking forward to getting out there is an EP from LOy with remixes from Vern and Niko himself. The Off Path label is for up and coming artists which gives them a great platform to release on VA’s that DJs really wan tto play. And finally, Maxen is his signature label all about showcasing his range and what creative vibe he’s in at any given time!Niko is a long-time personal friend of mine from back home in Leeds so to see him stepping things up over the last 12 months and seeing his music get the recognition it deserves is great to see and I hope his stock rises higher and higher over the next 12 months!https://www.facebook.com/nikomaxen/https://soundcloud.com/nikomaxen
Nils’ Subtil showcases at Hoppetosse, Berlin along with his show for the The Block club in Tel Aviv and his USA Tour with stops over in; Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver & New York made 2019 a very successful year! 2020 will see him release an EP on Lazare Hoche`s Label, together with Alex Font and a remix from the almighty LIZZ amongst a host of other releases! He’ll also be looking at launching his very own agency which will showcase Subtil artists from around the world so keep an eye out for that coming soon! Nils will head back to the States and Mexico for 4 weeks in April and is working on a South American tour. Shows in Europe are also confirmed and he’s looking forward to finally heading back to play in London!https://www.facebook.com/nils.weimann.musichttps://soundcloud.com/nilsweimann
Nolga burst on to the scene with his impressive Ventura EP on Kepler’s label Perspective which drew some massive attention! A firm favourite in my bag over the past couple of months since its release! A collab EP with Michael James on Hoader, an appearance on Rubisco’s latest VA and a solo EP on Pathway Traxx with remixes from Silat Beksi and label head Niko Maxen have given Nolga a very strong collection so far!2020 will see his release schedule continue at a nice pace with an upcoming venture on Krab and and a remix on Aesthetic. Nolga is a name that you’ll be seeing much more of this year for sure!https://www.facebook.com/elliotnolga/https://soundcloud.com/elliot_nolga
2019 was a great year for Silat, someone we’ve been a big fan of for years now but someone who is arguably one of the most consistent in the business! With amazing gigs and tours in China, Australia and New Zealand keeping him busy! 2020 will see him move to Kiev, a city he finds truly and fully inspiring. fully inspired of this city. He has some brilliant solo and collaboration projects lined up for this coming year, something I’m really excited to see and hear! 2020 will also see Silat jetting off for tours in America and around Europe so make sure you stick some of these dates in the diary once they’re released! https://www.facebook.com/s.beksi/https://soundcloud.com/silat-beksi
2019 saw userUNKNWN release his first vinyl cut with Soyro on the Romanian label Piano Forest. The EP reached #1 on the main chart and was completely sold out on deejay.de and Juno in just 4 days! His ever impressive music has gained huge support from the likes of Sepp, Nu Zau, Crihan, Gescu, Silat Beksi, Ida Daugaard and many more and also got multiple plays at Sunwaves!Lots of plans are in the pipeline this year for him with an EP on a new vinyl label called Legacy which is a sublabel of Recordeep, which will feature 4 tracks with collabs and a remix. He will again collaborate with Soyro which will be released on a very interesting VA coming from a mysterious label in Panama!https://www.facebook.com/unknwnurl/https://soundcloud.com/unknwnurl
2019 was a great year for Vern, he had his first release on RE.FACE, after that saw his second release which was a special one on Joule with great support from Janeret! This release helped Vern discover a new sound…a melancholic dubby sound for his third release on Lokomotiv with a bomb remix from Silat Beksi! He finished the year with a nice VA for unutrei., a local label from his home town Constanta. Vern is preparing a remix for irv.in, a very talented artist and another remix for STAMP Records as well as appearing on a VA for Peculiar.2020 will see him putting out material on Rowle and Octophonic and a remix on Tzinah amongst other upcoming releases which are being kept under wraps for the time being. This year, Vern will be focussing much more on the production side of things so make sure you keep a close eye out for these as the year goes on! https://www.facebook.com/vern.romania/https://soundcloud.com/vern-ro
Viceversa is someone we’ve been keeping a close eye on for the last couple of years but he really stepped things up in 2019! Some noteable highlights include playing the first BRICH party with Giuliano Lomonte, IbizaUnderground Club, Supermarket in Zurich, Rokoko in Budapest, Half in Belgrade and the amazing night in Skopje! He has several remixes coming in 2020, the next release from his very own label viceversa008. Also in the pipeline are plans to release at least 3 new Viceversa EP’s which you should certainly keep an eye out for! 2020 will see him make his French debut and plans are well underway with a tour of Asia so expect to see plenty more of his name this year!https://www.facebook.com/viceversasounds/https://soundcloud.com/user-755367968-408842914
2019 was one of the most intense and exciting years of Yzi’s life! Performances covered a variety of directions and locations such as London, Zurich, Moscow, Leipzig, Dusseldorf, St. Petersburg, Sofia, Vietnam, Thailand and more!The new year will see her focus more time and energy into her ‘Myzique’ project where she highlights artists that she loves the most. Some of them are up and coming and some of them are already standing firmly on their feet in the business! 2019 saw her showcase some really awesome names like Cosmjn, Herck, Bruno Curtis, Lost.Act and many more!Some of her highlights from last year include playing at the amazing Epizode in Vietnam alongside Maayan Nidam, Oshana and Lamache. She also took to the stage at Waldbrand in Leipzig alongside Randomer and Youandewan, playing with Georgia Girl and Marlie at StarLane Pizza Bar in London as well Mata Hari in Zurich alongside Arkady Antsyrev.2020 is shaping up nicely too for this awesome talent so she’s definitely one we’d recommend keeping a close eye on!https://www.facebook.com/myzique/https://soundcloud.com/myzique