We’ve all been there, mid burn during a top notch techno set and there and behold, a searing, obscure cut of electronica you haven’t heard before and well, you just have to know what it is and Shazam ain’t playing ball.
Fear not, Australian born, Berlin based selector Deepchild has dug into his personal crate and unearthed some abstract goodness for ’10 Left field techno classics’ to show your mates at kick-ons.
The list follows the back to back releases on the Seppuku label with ‘Swagz’ and the ‘Tricks with Knives’ EP which are both dangerous bits of dance-floor kit that’ll get even the most stubborn feet moving.
Dj Spooky – Reload (Jimmy Edgar Edit)
Spooky’s 1995 classic jack-track still sounds ridiculously fresh, 25 years after it’s release. This is percussive, distilled, body-music perfection! Edgar’s rework ads sheen, pop, lock and fizz to a timeless original.
Levon Vincent – Love Technique
Levon Vincent’s machine funk sensibilities are equal parts sleaze, sweat and sex. Love technique lurches and grunts like an after-party extended 48 hours past its deadline. Glistening, post-human funk of the dopest order. The world needs more Love technique.
Modeselektor – The Black Block
Modeselektor broke everything. No, really. In a sea awash with gaunt frowns, skinny black jeans and man-buns, their irreverence bridged divides. Combining diamond sharp minimalism and punk attitude, their hedonistic hybrid of hip hop, dub and acid irreverence is infectious, wildly creative and close to perfect. Go on, fight me.
Kevin Saunderson Good Love (jay haze edit)
Jay Haze had his moment (more than a few infact) as the ‘enfant terrible” of a new wave of Berlin expat producers in the early 2000s, combining streetwise candor and unapologetic attitude with a wildly diverse output – spanning minimal experiments with Ricardo Villalobos and booty workouts with Samim, to lesser-known remixes like this offering for Kevin Saunderson.
Awash in ecstatic longing, this remix is a dark house masterwork which rarely leaves my crate. It’s also a reminder to me of the deeply sensitive and transformed man I came to know in Jay years later.
Kraftwerk – Expo 2000 (Abe Duque Remix)
Abe Duque is New York acid royalty. Dlassics like “What Happened? (feat Blake Baxter)” set THE high watermark for low-slung 303 sleaze far before the acid house revival which followed 10 years later. Duque’s grunty bootleg rework of this Kraftwerk classic is dark, unrelenting and jacks like a muel. Essential peak time grind.
Martyn feat. Spaceape – Is This Insanity? (Ben Klock Remix)
“Parasitical nature is the human savior, and limitation Fumbling and fussing as we fake behavior, in the mutation.”
2010 saw Berlin main rooms turn defiantly against the so-called “deep house” revival, ditching the onslaught of tech house indifference and vanilla “soul” in favor of far darker hues. Martyn’s “Is This Insanity” harnessed the prophetic tones of The Space Ape (best known for his work with Burial) on this seething and dystopic groove, retooled by Berghain resident Ben Klock to stunning, eerie affect.
Cosmin TRG – Izolat
Released on Modeselektor’s “50 Weapons” imprint in Berlin, Cosmin TRG’s “Izolat / Separat” EP left an indelible mark on Berghain’s main-room stack. Channeling and refining his UKG sensibilities from releases on the UK’s Hessle Audio, this Izolat is a stunningly pared-back techno tool – writhing, organic and cavernous. Techno perfection.
Blawan – Why They Hide Their Bodies Under My Garage?
Can a track be deemed “leftfield” when Skrillex bootlegs it? The original certainly was, and remains a contender for the “best track name of all time” award. Blawan continues to sit atop the throne of ‘proper’ techno royalty, with this grimey original cut cementing his stature as bona fide young prince of the new school experimentalists.
Plastikman – Spastik (Dubfire Rework)
It’s difficult to fault this audacious big-room weapon; which reads as THE definitive homage to the TR-909 drum machine – and was indeed originally penned using one by Richie Hawtin in 1993.
Given the Dubfire treatment, Spastik becomes a heaving, mutant funk workout – with nary a vocal hood, pad or conventional ‘hook’ in sight. As an engineering marvel, this jam loops its way into infinity – and is a joy to manipulate as a DJ, with it’s key parts almost mystically ‘tuned’ to the low, mid and high bands of a 3 channel mixer.
Throw an acappela over the top, and witness an exercise in unparalleled techno purity.
Aphex Twin – Rhubarb
Techno not techno. At days end, techno is perhaps thought of as an ‘experience’ rather than a sound – and Aphex Twin’s imprint on the genre’s remains indellible. Rhubarb is one of the tracks you know, but probably don’t know you know.
It’s an ambient work, sure – but it’s also the wounded cry of techno’s timeless futurism – a glimpse into a strangely human future we are still aching to make real, and a bonafide salve for the end of any rave. Sacred stuff.
Ooooft, couple clangers for the next weekend it seems! Be sure to also pop Deepchild’s newy in there as well and for those in Sydney, catch him at Loose End’s 13th bday this Saturday with Stereogamus, Matt Vaughan, Ayebaton and more.