Getting yourself recognised in music is one thing – making sure it stays that way is another thing entirely. One person who knows a thing or two about longevity is Neil Landstrumm – with 2014 marking 20 years in dance music for the Edinburgh born producer. Highly prolific, Landstrumm’s career has been characterized by the constant evolution of a consistent set of core values. Always leaning towards the harder end of the House and Techno spectrum, Landstrumm started out DJ’ing parties with friends at the Sativa club in his hometown during the early 90’s – eventually meeting Chilean producer Cristian Vogel there, which resulted in a fruitful partnership under the name Blue Arsed Fly (or BAF). He carved a name for himself in the Techno scene early on, even receiving a shoutout on Daft Punk’s legendary ‘Teachers’, but his willingness to experiment is what set him apart. His discography includes forays into UK Bass, Dubstep, Grime and more – all of which have been appropriated by Landstrumm in his own inimitable style, allowing him to sound equally at home on Tresor as he is Planet Mu. Also the head of his own label, Scandinavia Records, he continues to display an insatiable urge for creativity as he approaches two decades in the game.
On Hyp 182 we are treated to old, new and unreleased Landstrumm material, tracks from side projects, cuts from peers and heroes, whilst he jumps on his Elektron at several intervals for some solder-hot improvised hardware madness. Nothing but the good stuff for people who like their dance music dark, depraved and dripping with sweat.
Set to line up alongside fellow innovators Luke Vibert, Ital Tek and Remarc at Fabric this Saturday in room 2, we were lucky enough to get a mix from Neil this Monday – with the results every bit as abrasive as you would expect. Stream the mix and read about 7 of his highlights from the session below.
1. Dave Tarrida – ‘Sonic Pow’ (Mindcut)
Dave is an old salt from the Sativa club days and a label mate on Tresor records. I think this one of the best proper heavy techno tracks i have heard over the last few years. Sounds absolutely devastating in a club. Highly recommended.
2. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Trade My Ass For Drugs’ (Killekill Records)
I don’t actually trade my ass for drugs but it did make a good ep title. I wanted the track to be a fusion of uk acid house and synth wave and I think the track does this quite well. Unashamedly aimed at the club dancefloor the vocal comes from an interview with a male S&M prostitute in San Francisco who is forced to trade to feed his crystal method habit. Cheery stuff. You can hardly hear the kick on normal speakers but on a good system its a real low bum punch. Radio one even played it when J. Phlip from Dirty Bird in San Francisco was guesting one Friday night. Believe.
3. Final Exposure – ‘Vortex’ (Plus 8)
An old classic rave track from 1991 by the New York wrestling team partnership of Joey Beltram and Mundo Muzique. This track is slightly less known than many others from that period but has stood the test of time better than most I think. It sounds and feels like the spirit of rave chaos from back then. Joey has many classic tracks under his belt and his work is well documented. Mundo is also an incredibly important figure to the roots of rave and somewhat underrated and under exposed. I think its fair to say without his contribution to techno you wouldn’t have the famous ‘hoover’ sound from Mentasm and the darkness that exists in early heavy techno. A pivotal figure for the roots of rave through his production styles and heavy sounds demonstrated on those classic early R & S releases. Check ‘acid pandemonium’ and any else from work that exists, unfortunately of which, there isn’t too much . But hey quality generally comes in small packages. Id like to chat to Mundo sometime if the opportunity ever came up but I never ran into him during my time in New York. Respect to Mundo Muzique.
4. Modini – ‘Rick James’
Modini is a new project by myself and Alan Parley (Hostage) also from Edinburgh. Our first ep is about to drop on Glasgow’s Dixon avenue Basement Jams very soon called Turk. The second is coming on Trus’ Me’s ‘ Prime Number’ imprint from Manchester and has a 115pm New Beat influenced banger called ‘attack warning’ on it amongst some other gems. Its just really good fun and easy making tracks with Alan plus we always treat ourselves to a long hearty lunch nibbling a kilo of cheese or a thick soup. Our ever expanding pool of tracks knows no bounds or fear of where we tread. Nae rules. Expect more from Modini over 2014 and 2015 as we both progress into becoming real adults.
5. Landstrumm & Youngman – ‘Cannon’ (Snork Ent.)
Ah the imp that goes by the name of Bill Youngman. Another long time collaborator we cooked up these tracks when he was over once summer in Edinburgh visiting. Clean, crisp and acrid in flavour, its dark room Berlin kind of stuff. Im just back from the ‘UnderTheBridge’ event in Giessen, Germany that was the launch party for this record on Snork Enterrpises. Quite literally, an illegal event under a motorway bridge the rave attracted more than double the numbers they were expecting at 600+ but sadly the German Polizei also got wind of it and by 2.15 it was shut down. Good fun whilst it lasted though and they even had a proper bar.I even got to wear my Tropertarn jacket.
6. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Tension in New York’ (Tresor)
Inspired by one of my early forays into New York this was the lead track on my ‘Bedrooms and Cities LP’ on Tresor records in 1997. That album sold 12,000 copies or more if I remember rightly.…..Anyway this track was really me playing back in my head a rhythm from a ‘Latin Rascals’ electro mix which I heard in a friend called Carlos Tera’s car one day driving on the Brooklyn Queens Expressway… The ‘Latin Rascals’ used loads of tape editing in their mixes in those pre-digital days which gave it a lovely feel. When I say electro i mean proper NYC electro, the right kind. Tension In New York was recently remastered and re-released on Jerome Hill’s Don’t label and has breathed new life into an old friend. Its all DMX drum machine and Sp-1200 this track with the bass and bleep sampled from my Jupiter 6. I was trying to mix Kevin ‘Reese’ Saunderson style bass feel with early 80’s New York electro and free-style. The DMX wasn’t and still isn’t considered a techno machine compared to the omni-present Tr-909 but it does cut though and punch when you use it.
7. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Mr Weird Loves Candfloss’ (Dragon Under Lp on Sneaker Social Club)
Mr Weird is a gabber loving, papery-masked character with a tweed cap who escaped from a visiting Waltzer ride and whose digestion system requires only Candyfloss. So what you going to say about that then? Like it? Then listen to my recent ‘Dragon Under’ LP that was released at the end of 2013 on Sneaker Social Club. records.
01. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Night Train’ (Killekill)
02. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Gameshope’ (Rawax)
03. Neil Landstrumm – ‘EZ’ (Rawax)
04. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Touch My Swiss Cheese’ (Rawax)
05. some live monomachine bollocks
06. Modini – ‘Rick James’s Mutha’ (unreleased)
07. Neil Landstrumm – ‘All of It’ (unreleased)
08. Modini- ‘Cisco’ (unreleased)
09. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Trade My Ass For Drugs’ – Killekill
10. Neil Landstrumm- ‘Septic Thumb’ (Sneaker Social Club)
11. few more bits of live Elektron patterns
12. Modini – ‘Untitled’ (unreleased)
13. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Desert Sun’ (unreleased)
14. More live garage patterns and bollocks
15. Gutts – ‘Giza’ (Horror Boogie Records)
16. R & S sounding live darkness from deep inside the machines…..
17. Final Exposure – ‘Vortex’ (Plus 8)
18. Dave Tarrida – ‘Sonic Pow’ (Mindcut)
19. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Quiet Running’
20. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Mr Weird Loves Candyfloss’ (Sneaker Social)
21. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Brutality’ (Don’t Records)
22. More live bollocks patterns
23. Modini – ‘The elusive No 10’ (unreleased)
24. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Ring Binder’ (Peacefrog)
25. Neil Landstrumm – ‘Tension in New York’ (Tresor)
26. Neil Landstrumm & Bill Youngman – ‘Cannon’ (Snork Enterprises)