Winnipeg has a substantial history of dj culture for a city of its size. One of the problems with it though is that, at times, it’s a little segregated with a number of different niches battling it out to reach a somewhat limited audience. That audience seemingly gets younger and younger (as geezers like me get older) and it chases the neon flash of a diluted “EDM.” That’s not intentionally meant to sound elitist but there are certainly a number of us who think this and we’re looking for nights out with much more substance.
That substance can be found in a relatively new monthly called SANCTUARY.
The organizers of this monthly have been around, djing, going to shows, and throwing parties for nearly two decades. They describe the night as a more intimate experience than your average club night with some of Winnipeg’s veteran and up-and-coming djs playing dub, broken beat, house, and techno.
The lineup for this month has some truly great talent, notably JOE SILVA, one of the house and techno pioneers in Winnipeg. As a solo artist and as half of TONEPUSHERS, he’s released material on Thoughtless, 7 Stars Music, Balanced Records, and a whack load of other labels.
We’re going to be treated to a set from Samo, who’s been behind the lens quite a bit lately and hasn’t played publicly for a minute. He’s one of the doods behind the now defunct Voules Random blog but keeping on top of things, sending me tunes to check out every now and then. The night will finish with a set from JUSTIN KACE, who’s also one of the aforementioned organizers behind the monthly. His grip on the atmospherics of techno should take us to new heights.
I’m also honoured to be on the bill this month and I’m looking forward to a deep dive into some house music. There will likely be a heavy dose of material from OFF RECORDINGS as well as some other jems from NURVOUS.
When I think of dj culture in Winnipeg, JOE SILVA is always at the top of the list. Joe’s been djing and producing in our small city for a long minute and is one of the pioneers of our deep and varied dj culture here. His live sets are incredible, in addition to twiddling way too many knobs to count, he also pounds on electronic drums.
Joe is also half of TONEPUSHERS (the other half being ALI KHAN) who are getting some massive hype for their rich and brooding productions.
I just got back from getting diapers. For real. If you’re thinking the life a music blogger is all shimmer and shine, having some drinks from time to time. No. Not if you have kids. I barely get out and when I do I’m playing. I feel bad that I can’t support what’s happening, which is why I’m really hoping things work out this Friday, April 19, so I can make it to their 12th anniversary party. Facebook event listing
BALANCED RECORODS and the crew of people behind it are some of the forefathers dj culture in Winnipeg. Kasm, founder and label manager, recorded an epic mix of Balanced records spanning 12 years of releass. The mix comes in at just under 2 hours long and runs the gamut of styles to fully represent what they do, which is a lot. This mix starts out deep and dubby and goes almost everywhere. There’s various forms of bass music, house, techno, more dub…
Before the mix, you have to know that the people behind this iconic Winnipeg imprint are some of the most solid doods, with deep, deep, deep roots in dj culture. They’re prairie pioneers with easily the best label name, of any sort.
For their release on Jungle Cakes, ED SOLO teamed up with the maestro of all things funky, STICKYBUDS for a two-track EP for a blunt celebration of weed culture. Of course it comes out on 4/20.
First up “Smoke The Weed” combines super phat rolling basslines, ragga style stabs and atmospherics, and a wicked steppy break. The two join forces again for the second track, Joker Smoker, which is a sublime slice of funky, jazzy business. It’s all there, stompin’ beats, ragga/dub elements, big chunky bass, incredibly catchy horns and “Joker Smoker” vocals on the hook and they come together beautifully to produce an absolute winner of a tune all round.
Not one to rest on his previous laurels and successes (such as the recent after party for Ghosts On Tape and featured guest spots on Coco.fm and Modulate FM), fellow Manaloguer JOHN NORMAN is back at it again with a couple of new and soon to be released tracks on 7 STARS MUSIC and UNT! labels.
First up is John’s remix of “Paralende”. The vibraphone/marimba melody pulled from the original mix by DAIMOND ROCKS and the down to business groove make for some tasty tech house. I am a big believer that a proper remix should pay homage to the original by remaining recognizable while adding the character and soul of the remixer, and this track embodies that philosophy nicely.
“Bass Brood”, from MIGUEL HERRNANDEZ‘s new EP soon out on UNT!, is decidedly more minimal (is that an oxymoron?). It is dark, gritty and sinister. This is typical of the sound you’d expect a room full of sweaty people dancing to at 3am in some dingy, nondescript warehouse. And I’m pretty confident John would prefer it that way. The vocals samples remind me of a train station announcement in a nightmare I once had. Make no mistake; this is Techno.
You can get “Bass Brood” right now and “Paralende” on April 4th from all the usual suspects.