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2010 in review

# Podcasts, DJ Mixes & Compilations

2010 In Review  # Podcasts, DJ Mixes & Compilations

The DJ mix market appears to have been dead for years, but it’s still alive and from time to time it coughs up some great pieces of work. However, the widely and freely available podcast has taken over: it’s easier, without the burden of paying license fees, and distribution is faster. This list consists of the best 20 freely downloadable podcasts, followed by the 20 best DJ mixes available in webshops and, finally, the 20 most interesting compilations of 2010.Top 20 Podcasts20. Roska: Sónar Mix19. Oneohtrix Point Never: FACT Mix 162 download / listen download / listen18. The Black Dog: Drifting Ambient Mix May 201017. Surgeon: Wax Treatment Podcast #009 download / listen download / listen16. Whiz Kalifa: “Kush And Orange Juice”15. DJ Stingray: RA Podcast 190 download / listen download / listen14. Blackest Ever Black: Scripts For The Pageant Mix13. Pilooski: XLR8R Podcast 150 download / listen download / listen12. K**O: Espanish Boogie Vol. 211. Girl Talk: “All Day” download / listen download / listen10. Girl Unit: Numbers Podcast #379. Mike Paradinas Footwork / Juke Mix download / listen download / listen 8. Theophilus London: “I Want You Mixtape”7. Space Dimension Controller: RA Podcast 231 download / listen download / listen6. Veronica Vasicka: FACT mix 194 download / listen

5. John Roberts: LWE Podcast 59 download / listen

His album “Glass Eights” confirmed what we already suspected: John Roberts is one of the best house producers of the new millennium. And as if that weren’t enough, he’s also a huge DJ. His podcast for Little White Earbuds is great proof of that. It contains glorious house, American to be exact, mostly from Chicago. Roberts mixes deep tunes with acid and tougher stuff, great classics with lesser known tracks, the odd self-made cut and then finishes with the Italo-glam classic “Fear Goes On (And On)” by Decadance. Pure gold. Franc Sayol

4. Magnetic Man: Essential Mix download / listen

With this mix, the first dubstep supergroup defined the coordinates of their own music and, above all, their explosive live shows. An abundance of festival bass lines, plastic voices and melodies for all ages, their Essential Mix is pure wobbly epicness for large spaces. Full of their own tracks and dubplates, this set shows what three synchronised laptops can do to provoke demolition. After this, you’ll need some air, have no doubt. FS

3. Major Lazer & La Roux: “Lazerproof” download / listen

Both Major Lazer and La Roux made their debuts in 2009 with overwhelming success, so joining together for a mix was a guarantee of glory. Previously, Diplo and Switch’s “bmore-dancehall-electro-ragga” had nothing to do with La Roux’s 80s synth-pop. But there’s Mr. Pentz, the King Midas of dance music, synthesising dancehall, dubstep, crunk and pop, making it slot into a perfect fit, and adding in gems; thus offering up one of the sets that helped us get through the (Spanish) summer heatwave the most. Mónica Franco

2. Jackmaster: Numbers 2010 download / listenThe mix section of the Numbers website has been smoking all year, in part because of the contributions of Jackmaster. The Scotsman, apart from co-leading the label of the year, hasn’t stopped making mixes and giving them away for free via different digital platforms. Our favourite has been this “Numbers 2010” mix because of its excellent selection of past, present and future dance music, but we would like to take the opportunity to recommend the Numbers boss’ other contributions, such as the “Jackmaster Nostalgia Vol. I” for Fabric and “Twek-A-Holic 2”, available on the label’s website. MF

1. Autechre 12 Hour Radio Broadcast download / listen

With this huge set the duo promoted their new album “Oversteps”, celebrated their 20th anniversary as a group and made their hordes of fans get up and give them a standing ovation for this heroic fact, while at the same time trying to document every single song in this set: 176 tracks going from the most primitive house, the most aggressive rap and the sturdiest IDM, to personal tracks by Booth and Brown. The greatest asset of this set is also its biggest problem: who’s got twelve hours of spare time and the stomach to digest all of that in one go? MF

Next page: Top 20 DJ MixesTop 20 DJ Mixes20. A-Trak: “Infinity+1” (Thrive)19. Seth Troxler: “Boogybytes Vol. 5” (Bpitch Control)18. Kode9: “DJ Kicks” (!k7)17. Kismet: “Rinse:12” (Rinse Recordings) 16. Surgeon: “Fabric 53” (Fabric)15. Michael Mayer: “Immer 3” (Kompakt) 14. Andy Votel: “Vintage voltage” (Twisted Nerve)13. dBridge & Instra:mental present Autonomic: “Fabriclive 50” (Fabric)12. Apparat: “DJ Kicks” (!k7)11. Scuba: “Sub:Stance Mixed By Scuba” (Ostgut Ton) 10. The Juan MacLean: “DJ Kicks” (!k7)9. Thomas Hammann & Gerd Janson: “Live At Robert Johnson” 8. Matthew Hawtin: “Once Again, Again” (Plus 8)7. King Cannibal: “The Way Of The Ninja” (Ninja Tune)6. Martyn: “Fabric 50” (Fabric)5. Demdike Stare: “Osmosis” / “Industrial Desert” (Demdike Stare)The Manchester twosome are unequalled in their mastery of electronic wizardry and hauntological matter. When diving into “Osmosis” or its successor “Industrial Desert”, it’s impossible not to think we’re surrounded by intangible entities, spirits and black-clad elves. Ambient obscurantism, noise anxiety and, all in all, electronic music that is so close to the black arts it reaches deep inside you and pushes your buttons. If you’re a voodoo aficionado, this should be your favourite mix CD. MF

4. Deadbeat: “Radio Rothko” (The Agriculture)With “Radio Rothko”, Deadbeat wanted to pledge their loyalty to techno-dub, giving an overview of their favourite pieces from the early days of the genre to the present, paying tribute to the big names but also mentioning other artists who have drawn the outlines of this style that has hardly changed over the last 20 years, but that’s had a big influence on the better part of new generations of music makers. “Radio Rothko”, with a perfect and imperceptible technique, is like the Russian doll that holds smaller versions of itself inside, in an exercise of brilliant coherence. A history lesson in the form of a DJ set. MF

3. Ewan Pearson: “We Are Proud Of Our Choices” (Kompakt)In his first set for Kompakt, Ewan Pearson focuses on the most elastic, soft, poppy and atmospheric side of techno and house with Afro-Germanic roots –the invisible Berlin-Detroit-Jamaica-Chicago connection. And he does it the way he knows best: coupling the tracks with simple mixes and displaying impeccable selection. For him, there are no genres, only tempos. Whether it be emo-house with chimes, spatial breakbeat or cosmic retro electro-acid, Ewan rarely gets it wrong, and, as the title indicates, he’s always proud of the choices he makes. FS

2. Optimo (Espacio): “Fabric 52” (Fabric) This contribution by Optimo (Espacio) for Fabric is the final, definitive testament of a way of understanding nightlife where the first commandment consists of equally appreciating the primitive and the modern. In eighty minutes, over a decade of activity is reviewed, revisiting that one and the two decades before it. The mix is, just like each and every one of the nights of the same name that they hosted, a journey though the very wide musical universe of JD Twitch and JG Wilkes. FS

1. James Holden: “DJ Kicks” (!k7) When James Holden gets behind the mixing desk, the concept of “playing records” becomes rather small. Using the CDJs as if they were instruments, he constructs a sound that is personal and unmistakable. Whether it be in a club or on record, his sets are always a revelation. His contribution to the “DJ-Kicks” series is no exception. It’s a new demonstration of his enormous talent as a selector, the mix sounds like motorik and kosmische, extra-terrestrial psychedelica and techno dislocated in space and time. But most of all, it sounds like Holden. FS

Next page: Top 20 CompilationsTop 20 Recopilaciones

20. Plastikman: “Kompilation” (Plastikprodukt)19. “Dark Matter: Multiverse, 2004-2009” (Tectonic) 18. E.M.A.K.: “A Synthetic History Of E.M.A.K. 1982-88” (Universal Sound)17. Rick Wilhite: “Vibes. New & Rare Music” (Rush Hour)16. “Black Hole. Californian Punk 1977-1980. Compiled By Jon Savage” (Domino)15. “Deutsche Elektronische Musik. Experimental German Rock And Electronic Musik 1972-83” (Soul Jazz)14. “Fünf” (Ostgut Ton)13. “Mandarinen Träume. Electronic Escapes From The Deutsche Demokratische Republik 1981-1989” (Permanent Vacation)12. Department Of Eagles: “Archives 2003-2006” (4AD)11. “Fuck Dance, Let's Art” (!k7) 10. “Shangaan Electro” (Honest Jon's)9. Orange Juice: “Coals To Newcastle” (Domino)8. “Night Slugs Allstars Volume 1” (Night Slugs)7. “Bangs & Works Vol. 1” (Planet Mu)6. Walter Gibbons: “Jungle Music. Mixed With Love: Essential & Unreleased Remixes 1976-1986” (Strut) 5. Bruce Haack: “Farad. The Electric Voice” (Stones Throw) In order to understand what’s included on “Farad. The Electric Voice”, you would have to get inside Peanut Butter Wolf’s head. As a child, he listened to the music of Bruce Haack, and this anthology, achieved tenaciously when it comes to finding original masters and records in good condition, is a tribute to a half-overlooked pioneer who deserves better than that. Apart from being one of the people who made the vocodor popular, his songs are rhythmic and vibrant, and sketch the birth of techno and house almost twenty years before it actually happened. We say pioneer, but that’s for lack of a better word. FS

4. “Future Bass” / “Riddim Box” (Soul Jazz)The value of Soul Jazz giving their particular vision of the genetics of music became clear once more this year, with two compilations that, together, bring the listener closer to almost half of the British underground music spectrum. On one hand, “Riddim Box” gives an overview, without excessive conventionality, of the intricacies of UK funky. On the other, “Future Bass” collects the productions of both newbies and vets in the creation of bass music in all its forms. As usual, the value lies in the condescendence with which Soul Jazz mark out the genres: they show you the pantone, and the definition of the genre has to be made by you. Didactic love of music and luscious artwork. MF

3. “The Minimal Wave Tapes Vol. 1” (Stones Throw) + “Cold Waves And Minimal Electronics Vol. 1” (Angular Recordings)A product of the 80s, the minimal synth movement had been almost invisible to our generation. Thanks to the digging work of Stones Throw (with the collaboration of Veronica Vasicka) and Angular we have been able to access these recordings made on old analogue tapes. And we thank them for that, because these two compilations contain a host of musical treasures. Synth-pop gems with industrial tendencies that freeze the soul and take you to worlds yet unknown. FS

2. “Matador At 21” (Matador)Very genuinely, the American label has been celebrating the 21st birthday instead of the 20thlike everyone else as a milestone of maturity. The mythical label used its passage into American adulthood as an excuse to release this box of treasures. Along with the commemorative booklet, five records collect in chronological order the cream of the label’s crop, and a sixth one offers a live concert from 1999. Beyond the intrinsic value a compilation of such an impressive roster acquires, “Matador At 21” paints a beautiful picture: that of independent music from the past two decades. MF

1. “Ninja Tune XX: 20 Years Of Beats & Pieces” (Ninja Tune) The past, present and future of Ninja Tune and its sub-labels can be found on this box of cosmologic proportions. Take a deep breath: 106 songs and remixes, most of them new and exclusive, 6 CDs (two of them exclusive for this release), 6 7” vinyls, a luxurious book, a poster, stickers, high quality packaging with a design by Openmind…it’s brutal. Nostalgia for the nineties, this one’s for you. FS

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