Tag Archives: Justice


first off, i must apologise for the huge delay between instalments. life always seems to get in the way you know. but finally, here it is, my 90-minute round up of the year that was 2007. yes, 90 minutes. whenever i try to make a mix, i always try to keep it under 80 minutes, as if i were going to put it on a cd. in this case i had to keep it at this length. it just felt right.
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two thousand and ‘i prefer the switch mix’ six

i’m going to kick this off with a disclaimer – over the last few years i’ve made a point of never copying a dj’s mixes, ie if someone mixes two tracks together that sound great, i’ll go out of my way to find other ways of mixing them. i don’t wanna jock nobody’s style. but i’ve done it in this mix. not as a ripoff, but as an homage. it was in 2006 that i first saw the great man that is erol alkan play, and his opening tracks that night were his own remix of i don’t feel like dancing by scissor sisters and trentemøller‘s remix of go by moby. after that, like many of his sets, i was completely stumped – it always seems that he kicks off with something HUGE, then follows it up with an hour of obscurity, and lays the bangers on thick for his grand finale. later on that night i heard him play some of the tracks that have come to define that year, half of which are included in this very mix. bump, sitwoc, magick. that was 2006. this was year zero for the current crop of electro kids who never before had any interest in “dance music” – rock and rave had already come together through the likes of soulwax and lcd soundsystem, now labels like modular and ed banger were, i wouldn’t say consummating that marriage – they were f*cking like rabbits. it was wild.
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i read yesterday about sufjan stevens‘ latest venture – as p4k’s head put it, Sufjan Makes Instrumental Album With Stepdad and National’s Bryce Dessner. it’s part of asthmatic kitty‘s library catalog music series, the aim of which is to make what is essentially background music. on one level this could be seen as a perverted, introspective approach, making music that isn’t meant to be listened to but simply heard, not unlike the sound of the rain or of passing traffic, but the more i think about it i think it’s a delightfully novel approach which goes against everything i think is wrong with music right now. this is what the site says about the project:

Asthmatic Kitty’s Library Catalog Music is a series of instrumental albums designed for possible use in films and television, background sounds for home or office, or personal needs, such as relaxation, stimulation, meditation, concentration, or elevation. For your listening pleasure, we asked a select group of talented artists to create a unique recording for this collection. Specific uses for the music is this series may include accompaniment to cooking, eating, sculpting, exercising, high stakes poker, soaking, panoramic landscapes, cuddling, car chases, drawing, knitting, bandaging, romance, playing chess, or planning the rest of your life, of which this is the first day.

now i’m trying to apply this logic to club music. the library catalog wouldn’t ever work in a club (well i guess it wouldn’t, from the blurb above) but i think that it raises questions about people’s intentions when they make music. when kids are first learning to make music in their bedroom, they’re going to look to their idols – and right now those idols are people like boys noize, crookers, justice etc – most of whom are known for their peak-time bangers. no-one starting out is going to want to make a track that a dj will play to an empty floor as soon as the doors open. but the dj has to play something. so when does a producer make the transition, from making, as i call them, peak-time bangers, to tracks that just sound good at any time?

listening to chromeo’s dj-kicks i was really taken aback by the contribution from perth’s shazam. the guy’s already made a name for himself with that awesome remix of dance wiv me, as well as the unstoppable pool party 2009 (i swear i heard that in arnotts last week and thought it was late 90s french house – it’s that good), and now this track shows his abilities range far beyond late night fare. this slow-burning disco track fits in beautifully to the chromeo mix, in that it’s got that cheesy 80s sound – you know, that dancing organ sound, the soft warm synths, the seinfeld bass – it’s all there. this guy is, what, 19? i think more producers need to take a leaf out of his book. go hard in what you do, yes, but you don’t always have to go hard.

Shazam – Luckier


despite the fact that sometimes they’re not that well made, or they’re pretty thin plot-wise, i love good horror films. i’ve seen some awful ones, and there’s a whole genre out there right now that doesn’t really float my boat (the saws, hostels etc), but when they’re good, they’re great. and it’s not because of the gore – that’s purely incidental. one of my favourites is the texas chainsaw massacre, in which very little visceral horror is shown. another is the wicker man, which is a completely different kind of terror.

a few years ago i watched dario argento‘s suspiria for class, and i hated it. part of that may be down to the fact that i had just been hit with tonsilitis, but either way, i really hated it. the music was, of course, bizarre and haunting, but the film was, in my opinion, a big opulent and indulgent mess. i came across the theme tune a few times in 2007, in justine d‘s incredible rvng cd, and then again as smashing pumpkins graced the stage at pukkelpop. goblin also caught my attention that year as their theme tune for tenebrae, another of argento’s films, was used by french act justice in phantom and phantom pt ii. it was probably my favourite track of 07, so it’s some surprise that i’ve left it this long before watching the film.

well, there’s so much to say. i loved it. the wildly panning camera. the pages of the eponymous novel shoved in the first victim’s mouth. the fake blood. the fact that an axe flies through a window and chops off someone’s arm. it’s completely ridiculous, but all the better for it. watching a film made nearly 30 years ago one can easily slip into a frame of mind that thinks “this is dated, it looks crap” etc, but watching the film on its own terms makes for rewarding viewing.

on the subject of horror films, i have to mention the farm, irish director dáire mcnab’s debut feature the farm. it was recently shown in the ifi, and it really does what i think all horror films should do – it looks great. the overexposed exteriors as the lead characters drive around at the film’s opening. the subtle but swift shift from day to night. the potentially grating but ultimately thrilling use of night vision footage. all of these aspects lend to this film a level of artistry that sets it apart from other more mundane examples of the genre. check out the trailer here, and watch some of the opening minutes of the film here.

and for more irish horror, have a look at this video.

Goblin – Tenebrae (Main Title)
Justice – Phantom
Justice – Phantom Pt II

bank holiday thoughts

if you listen to hip-hop more it’s more than likely you’ve heard talk of blunts and phillies. lots of drug talk, yeah, but for a heads up on the evolution of such drug talk, check out this piece i found on brooklyn radio. written by jesse serwer, it traces the origins of the word blunt in hip-hop to rapper just-ice. not to be confused with french electro heads justice.

in other news,booka shade did the most recent resident advisor podcast.
check it.