The day I made this mix, I woke up in a really shitty mood for no good reason. Too many late nights? Too many chemicals? Too many carbs? Who knows. I was at a weird crossroads between bored/sad/pissed off and even more annoyed having to get all the speakers and levels and things set-up properly to record. Once I actually got into the music, all that evaporated and everything I was feeling just sort of came out in the music, reminding me of why I do this in the first place.
Even though I barely smoke weed anymore, the whole experience and vibe really reminded me of a weed trip, especially getting insanely focused and going in and out of these different shades of darkness. For a lot of reasons–the weed connection, the obvious influence of jungle on a lot of these records, the g-funk sound of the opening tracks–doing this mix also took me back to being 15 again and growing up in L.A. I’ve always liked really aggressive music (jungle, punk, gabber) and also really emotive sad music (goth, shoegaze)–maybe these are emotions its hard for me to express, so I’m happy I’ve got music to do it for me.
Typically when I play with Trouble & Bass it’s all heavy bass bangers, so it was nice to lay down a few other things I’m feeling (still not too mellow tho…). I debated re-recording this mix over again to correct all the fuck-ups but I was worried I might lose the essence of the time when I made it. Maybe in the age of Traktor and Ableton, it’s nice to hear some imperfections to remind you that a person was there doing the mix (or, for some of you, maybe not!) Anyway, this is really reflective of a mixtape I would make for myself or a friend–no worrying about it banging in the club, no perfectionism, just let things roll like I’ve got my own little pirate radio station.
01. Rustie & Joker – Play Doh: Don’t really like this term wonky, especially cos this shit is totally danceable. This track reminds me of g-funk and hydraulics and also Clipse “Grindin.” Tried to mix that in initially but it was overkill.
02. 2000F & J Kamata – You Don’t Know What Love Is: More L.A. g-funk. Cruise that shit on Crenshaw!! I wish Snoop Dogg was singing over this instead of rapping over “Eastern Dub.” People either love this song or hate it. I hated it at first and now I am so ’bout it ’bout it. Usually this kind of track would go at the end or last 2/3 of a mix but screw it, let’s get mellow and sexy up front. Crashed the mix a little here cos I got too excited.
03. Pinch & P Dutty – War Dub: Wow…Just killed your grown and sexy vibe with some war dubs. Good weed trip gone dark with all these techstep drum & bass noises.
04. Bar 9 – Murda Sound (Cluekid Remix): This track is cracking out with the feedbacking stabs. Sorry speakers! I really like the old-school jungle vibe here: laser sounds, police sirens, classic ragga samples. Serious. This reminds me of being 15 stoned in my bedroom playing Marvellous Cain records.
05. Roska – Our Father: One from the new direction of UK funky house. Ruffneck church choir vibes sending chills down the back of my neck, with some tropical voodoo beats underneath. I really love the title too. Speaks to my weird Catholic side (supposedly I was a nun in a past life).
06. Loudmouth – Suck Out!!!: So simple, so effective. Slap! Smash!
07. Tempa T: Next Hype: I am obsessed with this song right now. I think this is probably the natural successor to Jammer’s “Murkle Man.” Some nonsense Muppet carjack rap. Tempa T is about to vamp all the shit from your fridge and your CD rack, and you “won’t get none of your CDs back.” So hard, yet I crack up every time I hear that line about the CDs.
08. Mark One – Fight: Still punching imaginary enemies. Oh shit, more darkness. We beat everyone up now let’s run away while videogame grime plays in our headphones.
09. Maniac – Star in the Making Remix: Grime producers really know about string samples and drama. More furious anger right about now. The music cuts out for a second as I get too excited and hit the crossfader.
10. Wiley – Gangsterz: Along with “Bow E3,” one of my favorite Wiley tracks. I’ve been obsessed with London since I was like 13 and it still gives me a thrill listening to him namecheck all this British stuff: Sidewinder, HMV. Wish I knew what “zampers” meant.
11. Spyro – Rhythm & Gash: I could listen to this loop forever. I am sad and I want to kick someone’s ass at the same time, and I think this pretty much expresses that.
12. Zomby – Rumours & Revolutions: A smoky, spooky cut from one of my favorite producers at the moment. He really captures the goth dubstep mood I find myself in on a pretty regular basis.
13. Digital Mystikz – Anti-War Dub: The world is a dark, dark place, but here comes this inspiring dub cut for us to nod along to while we chant down Babylon.
14. LD – Woodblock: A moment of triumph in the drums here with this trancey Hyperdub number. This one has really grown on me and now I have to play it all the time.
15. Cardopusher – Double Dragon Dub: When I used to get high in high school, I used to always see animated movies and videogames full of forest animals running and screaming in my head. This track kind of reminds me of that. But I like how it goes from real hectic to this really dubby chilled out breakdown.
16. Math Head feat. Sylvia – Come To Me: I held this mix way too long but what can I say… I was wrapped up in the moment. I wish I made this track. Friends Math Head and Sylvia from Kudu on a spooky dubstep tip traveling through portals to pyramids and having cosmic tantric sex in the middle of the cosmos. My third eye is glowing.
17. Synkro – Hold Tight: Plenty of adjusting and readjusting to get this one in. More old-school samples. You can hear me teasing in La Roux for a second but decided to wait on that to bring you…
18. Plastician – Japan: Don’t think I ever put this mix with “Japan” and Lil’ Wayne anywhere and thought I needed to. Plastician nails that sad longing feeling with some kung fu movie/Wu-Tang shit and it goes so good with this Lil’ Wayne track. Some backspins yield satanic vocals and whooshing sounds. Full head-nod.
19. Lil’ Wayne – I Feel Like Dying: I’ve done this mix with “Japan” at the end of DJ sets twice but it’s got to be the right crowd. It’s such a good mix but I don’t want everyone on drugs to actually get bummed out. Lil’ Wayne really nails what it feels like to be shattered here. End of a long weekend and my cone is toasted.
20. La Roux – Going In For the Kill (Skream Remix): Definitely the track of 2009 so far (make sure you check the triumphant minute of drum & bass at the end). Botched the mix a bit; mental mess. By the time the track drops, I’m crying and standing in the middle of the room singing at the top of my lungs. Music is my life, and this is my version of church.