Volume VI // 26.07.20
At Dance Wax we always unearth the best old records and new releases. We constantly speak to artists in order to get an exclusive lowdown on what they are listening to as well as their recent movements. Nothing formal, just an insight into what your favourite producers are jamming to. Rules are simple, we ask our guest for their current five favourite records.
Volume VI: Guest Wax hosts...
Eric Cloutier is a Detroit born, Berlin-based producer and underground selector who has honed his musical prowess over the last two decades, transcending between a genre of techno that can be described as warm, dubby and hypnotic. To further reiterate and describe the addictive soundtrack that follows Cloutier, one could describe his records as dark but warming, whilst his selections are always original and captivating. Over the years, Cloutier has set out a task to find the most mind bending records possible whilst mixing them seamlessly together to deliver a meticulous mix wherever he plays. Being regarded as one of the most on-point selectors out there, Cloutier uses his incredible taste and technical ability to sequence a narrative during his sets and no matter what style he goes for, the American artist oozes class. Perhaps a quintessential ‘Eric Cloutier track’ is one that is low-slung, deep, trippy yet supremely funky.
It is interesting to note that Cloutier deems himself a vinyl purist, or in his own words a “record digging psychopath”. Not that Cloutier only plays vinyl, but the very fact he always brings at least fifty records to each set justifies his class as an original mixer. He believes people should dig deeper for their sounds to create something unique for themselves rather than following the crowd. Essentially, Cloutier’s standards are representative of the pre-social media craze and arguably the adage of letting music speak for itself, similar to many DJ’s of his generation. In his early days, Cloutier came out of the 90’s rave scene in Detroit and migrated East to New York. During his 20’s, he became a resident at the infamous nightclub known as The Bunker where he began to refine his innate style of body oriented music. Whilst still playing there at least twice a year, Cloutier has since moved to Berlin to immerse himself within the most prominent techno scene in the world. Even though Cloutier had years of experience under his belt when arriving in Berlin, he still had to prove his worth with commitment and hard work. Now you can find him behind the decks at the most niche alcoves as well as the world’s best and biggest clubs due to his unequivocal, dexterous musical prowess.
Growing up, Cloutier was heavily influenced by Richie Hawtin’s sounds of the late 90’s as well as techno legends Jeff Mills, Steve Bicknell and Mark Broom. For his own soundtrack, the American artist often sees himself switching between differing musical moods, which range all the way from deep and dubby house to more intense, face-melting techno. In terms of production, the Detroit-born artist has delivered some rather mesmerizing tracks on his very own imprint Palinoia. The label has become the home for Cloutier’s undertakings and has overseen releases such as the Heurisitc and Apeirophobia EP’s. If you have not yet checked out the namesake song Heurisitc, you will not be disappointed. More recently, Cloutier has showcased his slick, dubby sounds on Palinoia LTD 001, a two track EP with highly regarded techno maestro Donato Dozzy. With plans for an eagerly awaited album, Cloutier is constantly making a name for himself in some way or another. Whether it be a record, remix or livestream, this man can do no wrong.
Top Five Wax Takeover w/ Eric Cloutier
1. C12 - Social Distancing
"A new compilation series from one of the most underrated clubs in Europe, C12. This whole record is just divine. I’m a big fan of the Lunar Convoy and my dude A.Brehme’s submissions here."
C12 is a multidisciplinary nightclub and platform that is run by the Deep House collective, located in the heart of Brussels. They aim to create a safe place where freedom, diversity, creativity and alternative culture are protected from the restrictive and normative outside world. Launched in 2018, the project includes concerts, art installations, live productions, club nights and exhibitions. In order to support the local Brussels and Belgian dance music scene, C12 have announced its new label with ten music compilations dubbed Social Distancing. Each edition consists of a collection of several tracks, released every two weeks. Compilations are also curated by female artists promoting platform ‘Psst Mile’ and culture collective ‘Benediction’. For their first release Social Distancing 1.1, the record contains five sublime techno orientated entries, full of hypnotic and edgy sounds. Look out for the next nine releases which shift towards electro, breakbeat and experimental.
A1. A.Brehme - Cordial
A2. Lunar Convoy - Distance
B1. Altinbas - Unit 1
B2. Neila - Luteal Phase
[Released: 15.04.20 on C12]
2. Adam Pits - International Wafter
"Now this is some ninja genius hi-fi house music if I’ve ever heard some. What a killer!!"
Adam Pits has been on a huge upsurge recently having studied classical music at university, with these formative years later manifesting in the unique and wonderful sounds we now know him for. It was only in 2018 when Pits truly found his feet, debuting on Desert Sound Colony’s straight club-centred label Holding Hands. For his EP Socket Power/Balance Beam, Pits unleashed a markedly unheard style of club sensibility that resulted in global acclaim. Taking influences from the Berlin-based label Ilian Tape, Pits’ productions tend to be whacky and full of colour whilst maintaining a heavy drive. He creates music that is relevant to him at that specific time and adapts to different moods which is evident when comparing his Holding Hands release with his V.A Compilation track. For his most recent release, Pits has worked alongside London-based record label Coastal Haze, offering up four club weapons including two peak time whompers and two ethereal burners. International Wafter has already gained support from the likes of Ciel and Call Super, a must listen.
A1. International Wafter
A2. Push Around
B1. Motion Sensor
[Released: 03.04.20 on Coastal Haze]
3. Ntel - The Dilution Effect
"This thing just spanks it. Four heaters from a new label and the producer also known as Ex-Terrestrial, whom I absolutely fucking love."
Across their respective discographies, Canadian artists Priori and Ex-Terrestrial have each created a body of dance music that taps into the most vibrant forms of IDM, illbient, techno and house. Priori is known for being an avid collaborator who has a knack for textural sounds and technical proficiencies that bring a uniquely hypnotic sound to dancefloors, informed by his passion for science fiction. His Ntel partner in crime, Ex-Terrestrial is the moniker of musician Adam Feingold who explores the deeper realms of music, touching on euphoria or ambient trance, balearic house, UK techno, and even 80s minimalism. Together, the duo have immersed themselves in greyscale techno, which has led to their debut record Dilution Effect released on their new sub-label, Garmo. Four tracks of dark techno with scaly bass sounds, hailing from Resin, whilst the traditional sounds of the pair can be heard within the acid/ trance influenced Melt. This track is a fan favourite and contains a whole host of whaling divas, muttering vocals and a 303 line that won't be stopped.
A2. Swarm (Scanner Mix)
[Released: 06.04.20 on Garmo]
4. Shoal - Laogan
"Properly deep and tripping techno jams here. All four tracks are fantastic and the whole thing is easily playable in one set; they're that varied and unique."
Aiming for the body and mind, without musical boundaries and inspired by nature and organic resonance. This is what Shoal aims for, whether djing or performing an ambient live set it is all about finding the right sounds and atmospheric textures that resonate with the listeners and the environment. For their fifth release, Prague-based record label Harmony Rec. invited the vibrant Dutch artist, Shoal, to present his four deep cuts which are groovy, layered with undertones and memorizing sequences. His approach to production is shown on the A-side with two minimal tracks. The Isotoop resident provides sounds of dub inspired techno, kicking off with the mindfully spacious urgency of the namesake Laogan. The second track, Between Thoughts, is perhaps the most delicate track on the EP and contains lush atmospheric pads layered with subtle chords and gentle congas. A beautiful warm up track. On the flip, the other two productions are orientated to contemporary dark and smooth techno, highlighted by the deep acidified heights of Kron. A layered piece containing subtle transformations sitting alongside a meticulously tendered groove.
A2. Between Thoughts
[Released: 03.04.20 on Harmony Rec.]
5. INTe*ra - Aqueduct
"Acting Press is easily one of the best labels around and this supergroup of C3Dee, Hashman Deejay and PLO Man is absolutely ridiculously good. Must own for everyone."
The most recent Acting Press release was a double 12-inch from INTe*ra. In typical Acting Press style, there isn’t a huge amount of information surrounding the new release, but what we do know is that the record has been created by two of the label’s founders, PLO Man and C3D-E, in collaboration with Moodhut affiliate Hashman Deejay. The EP Aqueduct contains a series of epic, warm ambient wrapped, early 90s leaning techno trips. The trio begin in an epic fashion with the spaced-out, far-sighted dub techno fusion of 697, before brilliantly wrapping huggable, ultra deep chords around a rugged techno beat on 463. Paying tribute to the Detroit techno ‘Glory Years’ in 548, the record makes way for a retro-futurist techno groove under the name 653. A killer EP.
[Released: 31.07.20 on Acting Press]
HOR Belrin is a hugely popular independent music platform that provides a regular filmed music broadcast for diverse electronic music. Focussing mainly on techno, the channel showcases the best talent the scene has to offer. Eric Cloutier was invited on just over a month ago, providing a beautifully trippy techno set.
Eric Cloutier recently released a two track EP with Donato Dozzy, containing effortless minimal techno. Cloutier's side contains a reverberating sound design which is intertwined with a jagged rip current of EBM infected bass and gurn-stroking pads. A must have for any minimalist fan.
Recently, Eric Cloutier has finished a pretty bonkers remix of False Bipolar's track D105. This was for the record label Sungate, which focusses on diverse and contemporary electronic music. Checkout the impressive acid remix in the above video or purchase it here on Beatport.
Ransome Note Mix
Ransome Note is an online music, arts and culture magazine. For their regular mix section, they invited Eric Cloutier to lay down some tunes for an hour. Full of wonky broken beats, stepping brain melters and dubbed out IDM goodness, go have a listen!