So chatting to him, post "Unity" it seems Damu's been working on a bunch of new material, some of which is inspired by current techno. When he mentioned this, I instantly thought of the parallels between his colourful sound and the euphoric sweeps of classic techno. So I thought I'd put together a playlist of Detroit classics to share with him to see if he found something he liked.
Once I'd shared it with him, well, I thought I'd share it with you guys too as the idea of someone hearing World 2 World EP or "Desire" for the first time via this blog is really what it's all about for me.
I have a mixed relationship with techno, especially Detroit techno. I began listening to it in about '96. But as I outlined in my Resident Advisor chat with Todd, two factors separated me from daily consumption of it. Firstly was the realisation that I'd mostly been working backwards through techno, not forwards, and so when I'd unearthed all the main gems, it became a law of diminishing returns, literally in some sense, given Jeff Mills and Robert Hood's pioneering of minimal techno.
Secondly I fell in love with London, became massively inspired and influenced by its surroundings, multiculturalism and pirate mindstate and began to find techno as a scene uninspiring culturally as well as musically.
On reflection, when I look back to techno, my feelings coalesce into two camps.
Things I don't miss from techno:
- The rhythmic stiffness, lack of offbeats, corrupted rhythms
- The reliance on straight 4x4 kick as the primary driver
- The purist mentality and how it feels disconnected from multiculturalism
- Minimalism as an end unto itself
Things I will always love & cherish:
- The sense of pure, epic synth-driven euphoria (quite distinct from the drug-tainted chemical chords of trance)
- A love of detailed, mid and upper synthetic melodies
- An attuned sense of abstract texture, space and detail - esp from Basic Channel (though they're not from Detroit, obv).
- A spirit of an unbeatable underground movement
Model 500 "No UFO'S"
Model 500 Night Drive [Time, Space, Transmat]"
Carl Craig "At Les (studio version)"
Rhythim Is Rhythim "Strings of Life (Original Mix)"
Derrick May "Icon (Montage Mix)"
Rhythim Is Rhythim "It Is What It Is"
Underground Resistance "Jupiter Jazz"
Galaxy 2 Galaxy (Underground Resistance) "Hi-Tech Jazz"
Galaxy 2 Galaxy (Underground Resistance) "Journey of the dragons"
World 2 World (Underground Resistance) "Amazon"
Red Planet "Star Dancer"
The Martian "Firekeeper"
The Martian "Voice Of Grandmother"
The Martian "Windwalker"
Reese "Just Want Another Chance"
Suburban Knight "Art of Stalking"
Robert Hood "Minimal Nation"
Robert Hood "Detroit: One Circle"
Robert Hood "All day long (b2)"