root that mountain down.

anbb – I Wish I Was A Mole In The Ground

Here, two Germans cover a traditional American folk song I first on heard on Jace/Rupture‘s Special Gunpowder – which was released 6 years ago! It’s about time we revisit. Who wants another album from Rupture? Start a petition! Anyway, I have been listening to (Carsten Nicolai’s) Alva Noto‘s minimalist electronic sounds/records for over 6 years, but for some reason never gave Blixa Bergeld (nor his famous band Einstürzende Neubauten) much chance, though I heard Rupture playing something at WFMU and talking about KOLLAPSing New Buildings – but honestly, I don’t know what they even sound like. Alva Noto and Blixa Bergeld have a full length album titled Mimikry out now, and I haven’t heard that yet either. This track/cover vers is from an EP titled Ret Marut Handshake, which contains some terrific beats and bits and sounds from Alva Noto with Blixa Bergeld’s voice boldly floating on top.


[Erick Rincon (center), his sister, and DJ Sheeqo Beat, photo by John Francis Peters for The Fader]

I will elaborate on this later — right now I’m working with Sonido Martines on an organic farm in south Netherlands — but in the meantime, go get The Fader’s Fall Issue, which contains my feature on Tribal Guarachero, researched over the course of a few weeks in Monterrey/Mexico, with excellent photos by the intrepid John Francis Peters. John just upped the images on his website (although you’ll need to get the magazine to see the spread in its full-color, full-size glory).

Also: everybody who reads this should go visit Mexico, you will fall in love with the country as it is continually mind-blowing! And: we’ve got high-quality exclusive content related to my #3Ball MTY essay coming up soon on Fader blog, so preparate… (& you heard Erick Rincon’s tribal guarachero remix of a Scandinavian folk tune, right?)


[Crowd outside ArcoIris in downtown Monterrey, Mexico. Photo by John Francis Peters for The Fader]

I’m in a S. American time warp. Everything in Rio happens slow, filtered through the humidity. No one is in a rush. Everyone wears sandals. Last night I finally made it to a baile funk. I showed up around 3 to Favela do Vidigal- in the South Zone of the city, with my friend Gabi who is researching technology + production and distribution in the Funk scene.

I felt the bass when we got out of our cab- but we still needed a five minute moto taxi up the hill, past anti-police roadblocks, to the party.  The soundsystem stretched across the entirety of a T intersection- blacklights hung everywhere and the subs were mounted at head level- ensuring that chest-rattling bass could be felt even in the way back of the crowd. The blacklights accentuated the whites and neon yellows of the futbol apparel that men were rocking. Even with the hazy compressed sodium street lights- everything was glowing- it felt like a cavernous club interior. Armed men walked casually through the crowd, navigating crews of dancers bouncing to the floor and back to commands that translate to “drop it on my dick and fuck.”

What startled me most  wasn’t seeing all of the tropes of baile sensationalism before me- ASS, GUNS, BASS!- but how much it reminded me of my favorite parties anywhere. Dancers who loved dancing, cute gay boys twerking it like pros, poppers battling near the speakers, footwerkers taking off their sandals and braving the cobblestone to go double time on already frenetic beats, and music that was ethereal and present, infused with all the sweet/sweat synthsations of my favorite RnB coupled with a low end urgency that has kept with funk since the latin freestyle and miami bass days. The DJ was a middle aged man in a dark grey tee and a brown zip up hoodie, he didnt sing or dance along, just looked out on the crowd with a knowing look of stoic contentment, this is his work, and he is absolutely killing it- at one point, from behind the platform that hes standing on alone about 30 yards back from the system-  i glanced up at t his acer netbook and only saw Winamp running. There are no monitors, no headphones. I was already too drunk to need anything from the bars that served endless variations on fresh squeezed juices, liquor and redbull. I danced until it started to pour, the dj put a backpack on top of his laptop, a weathered tarp covered the speakers, the music kept going, but we decided to walk down the hill. Half way down the power cut out, everything went dark.

I’m still trying to get my head around the music- because it sounded different then most of the funk I had heard before. Vaguely: more European club music then 2-Live -Crew. It reminded me of NguzuNguzu- whose production I adore primarily because I have absolutely know idea what to do with it. It’s almost always too Ravey for me to want to play it out- but at the same time there is  something seditious and dark beneath all the glistening synths-  and that darkness and space is what keeps drawing me back. I honestly think they could of wrecked this party last night. The first track of theirs I  heard was Kingdom’s remix of Hate 2 Wait- which to this day is one of my favorites to drop when its time for a radical new direction in my sets. Dutty Artz extended family Khalif Mihaji Leif just killed a voicing of the original instrumental that wraps up to perfection with some Linzy-esque crooning. When homeboy graduates from college I give it two years tops until he’s a household name for 20 somethings worldwide.


NguzuNguzu  have a new E.P. dropping on Silverback records early October – they did up a promo mix for it- that you can grab over at Scattermusic– (i would  re-up it for u- but my internet run real slow down here)

This was originally posted at

Check out a little viral video I just made for the song Funny Cats off my album Flowers.  It’s got a bunch of LOLcats images and funny cat videos from YouTube cut to my song.

There were two inspirations for this video.  1) I actually like these stupid cat videos on the internet and feel like the effervescent silliness of them fits the song well 2) they get 40 Million hits on YouTube.  So the idea here is to see if combining my song with this kind of viral content can make it get more hits and more importantly reach people who aren’t blog-reading, social-networking music nerds but instead regular people who watch funny cat videos on YouTube.  I’ll let you know how it works.

Click here to buy the album on iTunes

Dutty Artz will release Lamin Fofana‘s debut EP What Elijah Said on September 21. Lamin has been steadily working on beats for the past few years, and he’s about to make a public birth.

When we asked him to describe the music, Lamin sent us this sentence: “Yet, he would refer to the Mother Plane, a mysterious space ship with superior beings, giant black gods or something like that, that patrolled the universe, keeping an eye on the devil and ready to rescue Black Muslims from Armageddon.” Sounds like sci-fi, but turns out it’s from the New York Times 1975 obituary (!) for Nation of Islam founder Elijah Muhammad.

Everything is not what it seems, and this music’s mark of greatness is the way it so effortlessly calls for repeat listens.

What Elijah Said EP:

01 Happy 2010 // Dark Days Are Coming
02 “I will admonish you and give you absolution”
03 What Elijah Said // Eye on the Devil
04 Dance In Yr Blood

Artwork: Boy holding fluorescent bulb,  photo by Brendan Bannon, Dandora Dumpsite, Nairobi. 8/29/2006.   Hundreds of trash pickers scavenge the dump for food, plastic, glass, and metal. Areas of the dump smolder from a slow burn of plastics and detritus just under the surface. Local activist have attempted to close the site due to pollution concerns.


Lamin Fofana  was born in the West African country of Guinea. When the political situation got bumpy, he moved to Freetown, Sierra Leone, where his routine involved listening to Goodie Mob and Organized Konfusion as well as attending Quranic schools/mosques. In 1997 Lamin’s family had to flee worsening conditions in Sierra Leone – losing friends, belongings, documents, a home. They spent several days crossing roads and bridges destroyed by rebels to prevent people from escaping. At the end of the year, Fofana found a new home in Harlem, New York, where he lives today.


A friend of mine and fellow Dubspot instructor DJ Shiftee just did this video for Native Instruments. It’s him chopping the fuck out of Dead Prez’s ‘Bigger Than Hiphop’ and a dubstep tune by Caspa called ‘Dub Warz’ (which by the way sounds like a blatant ripoff of Mondie’s ‘Straight Riddim’ grime tune, to me).

The performance is crazy. He’s using Traktor and Maschine from NI to chop and re-trigger the audio using cue-points. He did this to a tune of mine ‘Manhattan Timeslip’ from my album Flowers in the mix he did for the Dubspot Podcast, below, and it absolutely blew my mind. Listen to the original, and then check it out on his mix, it’s near the beginning.  Listen to what he did re-triggering the tones from the intro.  Mad.


Dubspot Radio Podcast: Ep 3 DJ Shiftee by Dubspot

Finally, he explains it all in this video.


I’ve just spent 3 weeks in Puerto Rico with a holy shit cast of characters. I haven’t been down to the island in almost five years because of the general apathy that’s become commonplace en mi islita, but the timing was right and I think Puerto Rico may finally be ready for change.

Within days of my arrival I found myself in the midst of some of the top dawgs of the reggaeton and electronic music scenes and I wanna take a few to hip ya’ll to whats gwarnin out there. Its way too much for one post so I’ve broken it up into three that will air this week.

First off, shouts out to Toy Selectah who was also in town to work on some tracks for Calle 13 and Argentine reggae artist Fidel Nadal. At Toy’s invitation, I found myself at Visitante’s home recording studio where C13 have been working on their new album.  Hand’s down, what the boys have built is the most beautifully decorated and acoustically engineered studio I’ve ever stepped foot in. Cherry oak walls engraved with logos from their various releases, persian rugs, top notch gear, blah blah blah. I got to hear what Toy was contributing and what is coming down the pipe is explosive. Visitante their producer, Ismael their drummer and Mark, the dread in the video who doubles his duty as guitarist in the video and the carpenter who’s been building the studio, are all hella cool peoples and you should definitely peep this new single Calma Pueblo which has been riling up the religious censors.

Yo soy el que quiere que coman, aunque no tengan hambre – Residente-Calle 13


I’m the one that wants you all to eat, even if you’re not hungry

I feel like with that line alone Rene’, better known as Residente, summarizes one of the most disenfranchising aspects about life on the island and the reason that his band is so popular. It’s what my friend Yari calls The 100×35 Mentality. There is a serious apathy plaguing the island when it comes to embracing change. New is completely disregarded until its cool and there are very few artists (or members of the general populace) that break norms there. C13 has consistently pushed the envelope. As do we..

Toy Selectah and I played together to a capacity crowd of 550 party people, on a monday night. The resident DJ has been building the night for 4 years and leans toward hip-hop and dancehall. I played about 45 minutes of dancehall cumbia mashups, crunk cumbia refixes, panamanian plena and hip hop in spanish. I’m happy to announce that it was received fairly well received by most of the audience, the bartenders and even by the resident DJ (*you’ll never kill a top 40 hip hop crowd with all new underground sounds, but do dare yourself to try).

The part of the audience that comes to dance liked it more than the guys that were there to drink and pose off but I’d definitely say it was the first time for almost anyone in the room to hear this stuff and something went right because I had alot of hits on FB the following day as a result.

At the end of the night, we had an honest conversation with the DJ about having built something that could change island. He could be the one to introduce a world of new latin sounds to the island, to which he replied… that’s really not my thing. And therein lies the problem on the island. They need more leaders like c13 to set trends and propel them forward. The people are getting tired of la misma mierda. The strike at the University of Puerto Rico en April was a perfect example that the people want things to be done differently. They are willing to stand up for change.  What they need is a movement, and in my next post I’ll tell you more about how I’m getting that ball rolling.