Basic Soul Unit
Daniel Avery might just be one of Green Ray´s youngest ever programmers, but he feels like an old friend to us. Since he first started turning heads, we welcomed him as a revelation and in him we have put our trust, and his path so far has justified it all. Embracing the spacey and the organic, the fantastic and the intoxicating, Avery is a meritory successor in a lineage that we can trace back to Andrew Weatherall and Trevor Jackson and which continued with names like James Holden or Erol Alkan, but he has overstepped his initial fixation with the sounds of the past, through an ever increasing hunger to the sounds of here and now, specially through his growing fascination with the more dark and cerebral techno which dictates the current evolution of the electronic scene. What we mean his, the kid is all grown up and locked in to the pulse of techno´s state of the art and submitted it to his razor-sharp vision and uncommon sensibility. 2013´s Drone Logic album, and furthermore, it´s remixes, which brought on board people like Rodhad and Silent Servant, already hinted at this, but his most recent production work, as Rote (with Volte-Face) and on the quite new “Sensation” EP, show us a renewed Daniel Avery, going from the strength to strength in his ability to set the pace of electronic music with the same freshness and exuberance which he has shown over the last few years. His choices for the line-up speak volumes, and his presence will strengthen our assuredness, that this Green Ray will be the perfect trailer for the film of the next few years on dancefloors all over. It´s time for a dive into the future with Daniel Avery.
Dave Sumner isn´t a newcomer to Lux, but this will be his debut as DJ here. And surely Daniel Avery is proud of providing us such a tremendous opportunity of getting to know another facet of one of techno´s true icons. After all, according to Avery, 2015´s best mix, “Berghain 07”, was conceived by Function´s confident hand and sharp mind. His opinion is certainly shared by many of the genre´s aficcionados. Berghain 07 is a splendorous demonstration of technique, control, selection and sequencing, only possible for one of the truly Greats. It´s a perfect encapsulation in time, of an era in techno, inventive, sleek, dreamy and futuristic, combining past, present and future, with the fluidity, elegance and impact that only a veteran with an illustrious history but permanently on the lookout for what´s to come, could come up with. As part of the Sandwell District collective, Function was a defining factor for modern techno, and as resident at the Berlin club and one of it´s most striking creative forces, Sumner continues to perfect the style as a pillar of a bright future. And yet, he´ll always tell you all he wanted to do when he started out, was to overcome shyness by communicating through records. If so, then let´s allow Function, one of techno´s greatest storytellers, to give us a piece of his mind on this night.
Casper Clark defines himself as unmysterious, which, let´s face it, is a bit unlike what´s par for the course right now in the techno scene, where there´s a sometimes forced tendency to obscure the identities behind the music. But Casper would always have a tough time being mysterious. He´s been a mainstay of the London underground scene since 2006, long before he turned around his history and assumed the Volte-Face moniker. He collaborated as booker and programmer with the renowned Fabric club, and the well-respected polish festival Unsound, before turning his efforts to DJing and producing. And just as well he did so. Volte-Face his already one of the great white hopes of british techno, applying his vast background to tough and trippy sounds, in what can be considered a perfect mélange of different currents of modern techno, simultaneously mental and physical, sharp and psychedelic. This ability was already on display in his choices for his BleeD parties in London, where he put together overtly techno names like Surgeon, DJ Nobu and Svreca, along with unexpected names like Ben UFO and Helena Hauff and including ambient music artists, turning the dancefloor into an extension of his living room. By complementing his increasingly recognized DJ activity, with productions both solo and on a “face-off” basis with his good friend Daniel Avery (as Rote, and for whom he did a remix for Drone Logic), through his BleeD Music imprint, Volte-Face, his most of all a masterful creator of atmosphere and passages of abstraction and escape, allowing us to foresee moments of collective hallucination on Lux´s dancefloor.
BASIC SOUL UNIT
Concise but never basic, efficient but always full of soul. Canadian Stuart Li has based a merit-filled career on traits such as these, which are transversal to his work, whether it is more deep-house inclined or more warehouse techno indebted, and has conquered the perennial admiration of his peers, with a string of releases on milestone labels, which many spend whole careers trying to achieve. You can find on Steffy´s Dolly or Boddika´s NonPlus, on Ostgut Ton or Mule Electronic, and you´ll be faced with his uncanny ability to stradle different genres with the same dexterity, coupling engrossing rhythms with a sometimes penetrating, other times floating musicality. He recently delivered the “Under The Same Sky” album on Dutch label Dekmantel, achieving what might be his pinnacle so far and where he flexed his techno muscle, in a vein comparable to Shed, for example. In the words of Avery himself, he´s “one of the best in the game” and it´s we all recognize this.
We´ll never quite know how to do this man justice, all of us for whom electronic music is a way of life. Would our collective history be the same if, in the late eighties, Andrew Weatherall had not revolutionized the sound of a, until then, competente but not extraordinary, iindie rock band called Primal Scream, by producing “Screamadelica”?. We don´t think so. Producer, DJ, remixer and broadcaster, Weatherall is electronic nobility, an unavoidable name on ith´s pantheon. Both solo or as a member of Sabres Of Paradise and Two Lone Swordsmen, amongst others, he applied his indelible Midas Touch, made of dub, house and balearic, to everyone from Happy Mondays and Ricardo Villalobos, to Future Sound Of London. He dragged dance music into the indie and alternative status quo, and made two worlds collide in an explosion of color and inventiveness, breaking down walls, and delivering on the ethos of inclusiveness and communion which stand as pillars of this scene. With unswerving enthusiasm, he gave us names like Fuck Buttons and Daniel Avery as their worthy successors. It´s that insatiable drive to broaden frontiers which he brings to Lux again. Be ready for an incredible voyage to the kaleidoscopic world of mister Andrew Weatherall.
Don´t be fooled by her fairy-like image and name: Barcelona-based, french (from the Basque Country) DJ and producer Morgan Hammer brings us the mystical and ethereal but also the fire and steel with which to forge moments of efervescence on the dancefloor. Morgan enchants us and chills us with cosmic tonalities and sparkles of euphoria, frequently adorned by a black veil of mistery. It´s been enough to seduce tonight´s curator, Daniel Avery (whom Morgan names as a major influence), or Optimo Espacio´s JD Twitch, mastermind at Optimo Trax, who´ve recently released a split EP from her and Golden Filter. Her productions, strong on new-wave, post-punk, acid techno, synth-pop and EBM influences, belong to many eras, but exist beyond a sense of time. In old British legends, Fata Morgana lead King Arthur to an eternal existence on the paradise island of Avalon. Morgan will lead us to a similar idillyc musical existence on this night.
Words: Nuno Mendonça