Formerly a member of Glasgow’s now-dispanded electronica trio the Marcia Blaine School For Girls (along with Ruaridh Law, aka The Village Orchestra), Dave’s had outings under his Production Unit guise on keen-eared labels such as Highpoint Lowlife and Stuff Records.
The EE mix was recorded in March to coincide with my ICU Tracks EP for Broken20, and I was very specific about getting the right sort of sounding tracks for it – mostly very dry, sparse and economical, like the EP. I think it’s one of the best I’ve done (and I’ve done a few!) and I felt it had to be so, because EE is a big deal.
I wanted there to be a sense of energy so I scratched and messed with the vinyl as much as possible. I thought that was necessary because this music can seem austere but if it’s treated with loving violence the natural funk comes out a bit more. In other parts there’s more of a narrative and that’s something I always try to do. ”Quiet ones at the start, bangers at the end” is just hopelessly wack to me.
The sounds I used on the ICU tracks were very emotionally resonant for me, again suggesting that there’s more to a stripped-back sound than just po-faced minimalism, and in much the same way this mix brings back a lot of those memories. It felt like more of a personal statement than other mixes I’ve made, and for me that means it’s come out much better as a result.
I usually mix by key but with some of this stuff it’s not necessary and can actually work better if it jars a little. There are other points, like the Peverelist tune, where it was vital to link everything harmonically as well as rhythmically/narratively.
Future release – my album, ‘There Are No Shortcuts In A Grid System’ will be out in eight weeks or so. It’ll be digi and a stunning looking set of art prints, trinkets and a USB drive housed in a bespoke collection box.
At Broken20/60 we really strive to make our physical editions worth owning and I think this will be the pick of the bunch so far. Musically it’s TOTALLY different to ‘ICU Tracks’, like Mark Fell meets Req uptown at Threshold House. I used to fixate on trying to make music in a particular way so that people who liked the older stuff would find some value in newer stuff. Now I realise that the thread that runs through it is me and if I follow my own voice I’ll be happier; whoever comes along for the ride is welcome to do so. The appreciation of others is a bonus, not the end in itself. That’s not meant to sound arrogant, but I create music to make myself smile a little when I fall asleep each night, no other reason.
I’m hoping to get another techno EP done soon, probably again for Broken20. I’ve got a hip hop beat tape planned soon too and maybe some fake pirate radio broadcasts from 2001.