Balmy club sounds from one of LA's finest.
Cooper Saver has been throwing parties since before he was old enough to get into a bar. Now his Far Away series is approaching its seventh anniversary. With Far Away, Saver helped kick off a new wave of Los Angeles warehouse parties, events that largely focused on house and disco and drew a much younger crowd. The party's long tenure—along with its founder's supremely chilled-out personality—makes Saver a beloved fixture of his city's scene. You're as likely to catch him DJing on a hotel rooftop, a warehouse rave or on his long-running show on Dublab. These days, Saver increasingly finds himself playing further afield. He made his Panorama Bar debut last year, and has been touring regularly since. Last summer, Saver's remix of The Golden Filter's "Talk Talk Talk" was caned by everyone from Avalon Emerson to Solomun. Earlier this year he released his first few records—a run of three EPs on Internasjonal, Permanent Vacation and Biologic Records—showing off the sound he's developed over the years: melodic, big and classic, rooted in his love for DFA Records, Italo disco and Belgian new beat.
Saver's RA Podcast works along the same lines. It's a mix of old records that sound surprisingly fresh, and new records that sound vintage, including cuts from Chris & Cosey, Mental Overdrive, Lauer and Redshape. There are some candy-sweet goodies, like the centrepiece, Abfahrt's "Alone (It's Me)" (you'll know it when you get to it). The mix shows off the style that's made Saver a beloved DJ both at home and abroad.
What have you been up to recently?
I've been home since April, things have been mellow but good. Far Away turns seven years old this summer, so we've been working on a couple parties to celebrate and we just released the latest cassette in our tape series, which is a Floating Points set recording from our archive.
Where and how was this mix recorded?
At my old place on my good friend and former roommate's setup right before I moved out. CDJ 2000s, Technics, and DJM900 mixer—thanks Nik! I recorded several takes with slightly different sequences and then put two of my favorite chunks together in Ableton.
Can you tell us about the idea behind the mix?
First off, making clubby mixes at home is really challenging for me. I tend to gravitate toward slower tempos when I'm doing my radio show or even just playing records at home, or at the bar gigs around town. So for this I wanted to dive right into club territory while still keeping things personal.
A lot of these tracks are personal favorites from the gigs I've been playing over the last little while, plus some things I rediscovered while digging my through collection for this. I also wanted to highlight some artists and labels that have deeply inspired me since the beginning, such as hometown hero Secret Circuit.
You've been DJing and throwing parties in LA for basically your entire adult life. What special insight can you give us on the city's club scene? What makes you feel at home out there? What are some new and interesting things happening right now?
LA's club scene is always changing, but that keeps things interesting and exciting in my opinion. In fact, we don't even have much of a club scene at all—almost every party every weekend is a DIY or underground situation. This has its pros and cons, but it definitely makes for a strong sense of community that I feel is only improving. Right now is a particularly refreshing era for alternative LA nightlife. There are many fresh faces bringing new energy to the scene lately, alongside people who have been doing their thing for a very long time. And the best part is, you can go to pretty much any of these parties and know you're going to run into a ton of friends no matter what, that definitely makes me feel at home. Same goes for Dublab, they're so welcoming and supportive to everyone.
Respect to everyone doing things here. It's not easy with so many cards stacked against us in terms of laws, lack of venues, and the unpredictable nature of the warehouse game. The LA Nightlife Alliance has been doing great work with initiating important conversations over the last year or so, that's a recent development this city needs.
You released your first three EPs in the last few months. What caused this burst of creativity? What has your journey as a producer been like until now?
I've always been making music, but it got to a point where I had to pump the brakes on throwing parties all the time so that I could get into a more relaxed and creative state of mind and focus. I became very burnt out and anxious from being totally consumed by the promoter life, so taking a step back for the sake of my sanity and health had a very positive effect on my music production—a massive stress relief. I was just doing remixes for years, which was super important because I learned so much from doing them regularly. So I think the burst just comes down to timing. It's a combination of all these factors and finally feeling happy with myself and the things I'm working on.
What are you up to next?
My summer is pretty mellow—I'm pretty much home the whole time. Excited to hit the road again starting mid-September to play some fun gigs in Europe. Until then I'll just be working, chilling, skating, enjoying downtime, living life etc. Regarding releases, I'm in the process of finishing a 12-inch for ESP Institute, and there's another EP for Internasjonal on the way. A couple compilation tracks are out in the near future too: one for Hivern Discs and one for Fantastic Twins' Microdosing series. More remixes and collaborations with friends too. Thanks for listening!