Home Listening is a new RA series together with Sonos in which we document a listening session in an artist's home. We'll peel back the curtain to find out what they listen to in the company of close friends, away from the pressures of the club and festival circuit. The first edition took place in a leafy corner of North London at the home of Andy Ferguson, who, alongside Matt McBriar, is one half of Bicep.
Together the duo have enjoyed huge success. You can trace their ascension back to the day in 2008 that they started the Feel My Bicep blog. Flick through the archive and you get a glimpse of the musical discoveries that have shaped the duo's productions and DJ sets—Italo, techno, disco, boogie, funk, ambient, house and more. These days the Bicep logo—a three-pronged wheel with bulging-arm spokes—adorns much more than their blog, with the duo currently juggling a record label, parties and a line of merch.
The pair's relentless quest for new music makes them a natural choice for the Home Listening series. Ferguson and McBriar spend much of their free time digging in the basement of the Lucky Seven secondhand record shop in Stoke Newington, pulling out old trance 12-inches and playing them at the wrong speed to see if they're ripe for DJ use. (Lucky Seven's basement is where they found a copy of Dominica's "Gotta Let You Go," a forgotten mid-'90s Euro house tune they revived last year with a hugely popular edit.)
2016 is shaping up to be another big year for Bicep: they've got a gruelling tour schedule and a new hardware-based live show that debuted at Belfast's AVA Festival in early June. (Their second live show was a blistering performance on the RA stage at East London's Field Day festival.) But before all of that kicked into gear, the pair invited over a small group of friends, ordered in pizza, poured some gin and played the kind of music they like hearing when it's time to unwind.
Listen to the playlist on Apple Music
Hear the session in full
Across 90 minutes, Ferguson and McBriar's listening session spanned golden-era hip-hop, classic ambient and UK electronica, before taking a turn towards post-punk and disco. They picked some bonafide classics—think J Dilla, Aphex Twin, Orbital, Autechre and The Future Sound Of London—and told their friends the personal stories behind each selection.
Full tracklist /
01. Souls Of Mischief – 93 'Til Infinity
02. Erykah Badu - Sometimes
03. A Tribe Called Quest, Tammy Lucas – 1nce Again
04. J Dilla – Two Can Win
05. Flying Lotus feat. Niki Randa – Getting There
06. John Roberts – Went
07. Aphex Twin – Alberto Balsalm
08. Boards Of Canada – Music Is Math
09. Kuedo – Ascension Phase
10. Autechre – Nil
11. Orbital – Halcyon & On & On
12. The Future Sound Of London – Papua New Guinea
13. Severed Heads – Dead Eyes Opened
14. Eleven Pond – Watching Trees
15. Up Front – Infatuation
16. Connie – Experience
17. Devo – Gates Of Steel