A Decade Developed in a Dark Room: Make it New Celebrates Ten Years of Freshness

In an underground music scene, throwing events is no small order of business. It involves a venue, lots of accommodating and patient people who work at said venue, money, and people on Facebook who won’t rake you over the coals for shoving event invites down their throats all the time. Get roped into making it a weekly event, and watch the stakes skyrocket. It’s a lot of thankless work, which is why it’s rare for most repeating events in any dance scene to surpass more than a year or two.

While many successful parties are thrown by tight-knit crews of veterans with long-lasting friendships, other times you’ve got people who come together with entirely different backgrounds…and somehow manage to still make it all work. Make it New is an example of the latter. With this night you have the likes of a “purveyor of agoraphobic stoner bedroom techno” from Worcester, a 20+ year local veteran with a ridiculous vinyl collection supposedly from Three Way, Tennessee, a DJ prefers to keep it all in the box using just a laptop who will lead you to believe he’s from Baltimore, a guy who’s currently scoring points with glowing write-ups from Resident Advisor and FACT Mag, another dude who used to book entirely rock and indie bands, and finally the visionary and jack-of-all-trades who hails from Kansas of all places. And that’s just the ones currently involved with the night, not the alumni who have either moved on (or away) since Make it New’s 2004 inception.

A gang of quirky personas who play as hard as they work 

While each of these dudes may have different personalities, musical tastes, and degrees of “veteran” status here in Boston, their involvement has been part and parcel to our local backbone. The guys I’m hinting at (respectively) are Coralcola, Alan Manzi, Baltimoroder, John Barera and promoters Alex Maniantis and David Day. All six of them prefer to stay out of the spotlight at their night, letting the darkness of their venue (The Middlesex Lounge) push them into the background while the music takes the spotlight. And patrons don’t seem to be complaining.

Even camera flashes are quite rare in the darkness that is the Middlesex 

But what is it that has kept these guys going, when there were surely enough tempting opportunities to just say “fuck it” and throw in the towel? “Club support has been pretty crucial”, started David Day when I recently spoke with him and Alex Maniantis over email about the longevity and success of the night. “When turnout was light or a DJ was cranky in MiN’s early years, JB and Nate from the Middlesex had our back and believed in the night. Club support goes a long way in maintaining a night over such a period of time. When I get on the mic and say “tip your bartenders” I mean it. They work hard keeping our crowd happy.”

Keepin’ the patrons happy ain’t always easy 

Maniantis was equally as enthusiastic to give the Middlesex staff the hat tip they obviously deserve: “It’s really a big family. JB (in the beginning) and Nate really understood what we were going for. As well as their security team (Dave and Primus); those dudes know what’s up and I cant thank them enough for being so damn cool and keeping it positive.”

Following that, Maniantis echoed my sentiments above about Make it New’s overall aesthetic: “MiN is about being NO frills”, he stated matter-of-factly. “We don’t rely on gimmicks. We don’t do bottle service. We keep the lights off in the room and about the music. Period.”

Eats Everything doesn’t even get bottle service at Make it New. But free donut service, on the other hand… 

Make it New was faced with plenty of obstacles in their fledgling days. In 2004, “EDM” was only an acronym for “Enterprise Data Modeling”, something I doubt required any knowledge of Serato or Traktor. Hell most were using Final Scratch back then. The economy was in better shape, but dark clouds still loomed over the post 9/11 landscape. Many veterans were starting families and moving on, while the energetic kids who were supposed to replace them were off in other venues indulging in indie rock and emo. “Luckily our crowd in those early days consisted of post-graduates and Doctoral candidates (from nearby educational institutions), so we were sort of shielded from brutal economic times”, stated Day.

Both Wall Street and Electric Avenue, two entirely different levels on the economic food chain, suffered quite a few shake-ups in 2008. When the real estate bubble burst that year, investors frantically sold their stocks, while DJ’s who lost their day jobs frantically sold their vinyl collections too. The overall musical landscape made a dramatic shift towards electro house and dubstep. Many weekly events were wiped completely out of existence because of these seismic shifts, but luckily Make it New didn’t skip a beat. 

But how was that accomplished…was it due to consistency, or a complete re-invention?

Focusing on quality allowed them to persevere even in the tough years 

“Well for us, consistency has been key”, said Day when discussing that turbulent period. “The night isn’t beholden to any one genre, just newness. The consistency is constant reinvention. As Brian Eno famously said, “repetition is a form of change”.” Maniantis had quite a bit to add to this as well: “It’s definitely not about booking a certain genre for us. The only consistency we strove for was to keep the room moving and energy positive. We do that by carefully selecting the guests we bring to the night. We’ve had DJ’s like Matthew Dear come in and knew from the get go it was going to be good because he’s a storyteller and a positive guy.” 

Max Cooper in autograph-signing mode, 2012 

It can be argued the overall economy and electronic music scene are better in 2014 than 2008, but only when asking Day and Maniantis about the changes they’ve seen locally in the past decade do their strides locally really start to come into focus. “International artists are finally recognizing that Cambridge and Boston are great towns for parties.” exclaimed Maniantis. “Years ago these headliners were few and far between, but geographically we’ve since turned out to be a great stopover city. We may not have a ton of venues but the energy and enthusiasm at the parties in this city make the underground really thrive.”

While things change, other things remain the same as well. Maniantis went on to exclaim the media coverage Make it New has consistently gotten from the beginning. This includes the Boston Music Awards, where they have been nominated for the “Best Dance Night” award this year. Day also gave many of Boston’s veterans the head nod: “People like Bob Diesel, Bruno, Lenore, KC Hallett, and Pat Fontes set the stage for us; they’re all continuing to play out and stay relevant to this day. And Alan Manzi and Baltimoroder as well; the day they hang up their headphones it will be a sea change. I don’t see that happening anytime soon though.”

Bicep’s first Boston appearance, 2013 

Even with ten years on the resume, a packed venue almost every single week, and world-class headliners (including the likes of Breach, Roman Flugel, Martyn, and of course Tiga who will be playing the “official” anniversary show), Make it New still encounters obstacles from time to time. One of the hottest topics in Cambridge has to be gentrification. Corporate entities are buying up property all along Mass Ave, with independent boutiques and bars forced to shutter in favor of Starbucks, Walgreens, and Dunkin Donuts. Even MIT’s recent expansions have hit close to home, as they’ve been buying and demolishing property surrounding every side of the Middlesex Lounge. I was keen on asking Day and Maniantis their thoughts on gentrification, and how it may affect the night in the long term.

Someone remind Ben UFO not to look at the construction cranes outside the window 

“Well for one I personally got priced out of Cambridge, so even as the founder I now live far away”, stated Day. “The crowds seem a little better off and maybe even a little better looking, but aesthetically, they have joined us in our journey. At one of our residents nights a party bus rolled through and we were all concerned they’d want to hear top 40 from the 90s or whatever. The birthday boy comes up to the booth and says: “I have a request…I want you to play as deep as possible—deep house and techno all night long.” And we all looked at each other and said: “We can do that!”

Looking further down the timeline reveals some other ideas Day and Maniantis have had brewing in case someone decides to turn the Middlesex’s entire block into a research lab or Wal-Mart. “The dream is for Alex to get his hands on a club and book it all week long,” said Day. “Alex is a strict professional and the industry knows it at this point. He has the clout and ability to make a club rock all week. Middlesex is dope, it’s like a giant wooden speakerbox, but nothing lasts forever. Someday, one day, Alex will get his own club. It’s fate.”

Soul Clap taking control of the wheels at the Middlesex, 2011 

With both the hindsight to observe where Make it New humbly started, as well as the foresight to see where they may boldly be heading, it’s great to watch them become part of a very select group of promoters managing to keep a party going for a decade. While I wish Day and Maniantis all the best, I wanted to close by asking both of them to reflect on their favorite DJ performances there, both from headliners as well as locals.

“Oh daddy, that’s a tough one,” started Day as he conjured up the early years before Maniantis was involved. “In my era, the Wighnomy Brothers’ U.S. debut was a stand-out. We screened my movie Speaking in Code earlier that night so they got to see it. Then they blew the lid off the place. Barack Obama was recently elected and I remember them playing the entirely of his acceptance speech over the course of the last thirty minutes, riding the beat. It was special.”

Jacques Greene, certainly a crowd favorite, 2013 

David proceeded to discuss his favorite performance in recent years: “Once Alex became involved and MMMMAVEN was launched, I feel the first appearance of Jacques Greene stands out the most. He played a wildly-diverse set, from dancehall to hip-hop and house and more. It represented a big change for the night and a very good turning point. I vividly remember how much I wanted every night to be like that, it was very sexy. Also, Make it News during the Together Festival every year are always special…Andres in 2013 was incredible.”

Alex also agreed with David on the Wighnomy Brothers and Jacques Greene’s sets alongside Daniel Avery’s one during Together week 2014.

Volvox, 2012 

As far as local DJ’s go? “Mike Swells”, exclaimed Alex. “It was a special treat to have Mike back last month.” David went on to shout out the performances former resident DJ Volvox used to play there before moving to Brooklyn. “She was crucial in a lot of ways to the night—from creating the flyers and logos, to coming into her own as a DJ. I’m not surprised she’s become a big deal in Brooklyn. Her aesthetic and dedication to the craft is unique in many ways…a badass, straight up.”

With that said, Make it New celebrates a decade of grooving in the dark this Thursday at the Middlesex (512 Mass Ave). Tiga is returning following his still-talked-about set from The Sinclair last year, so it would be in your best interest to get there early. Come by to toast these guys for ten years of hard work keeping the underground scene thriving!



Ticket Giveaway! Beats Antique Creature Carnival Tour, Wallingford CT, 10.24

Producers are always quick to throw the word “fusion” around when it comes to rocking a variety of different styles, but only Beats Antique can do it while donning a steampunk mindset…and the costumes to match. Mixing strains of traditional middle eastern and Arabic music alongside modern breakbeats, bass, and bootyshakin’, Beats Antique have forged their own style that nobody even dares to imitate. And they touch down at the Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford, CT this Friday.

Supporting these guys on tour are psychedelic veterans Shpongle and downtempo don Emancipator. Both outfits fit the overall aesthetic that Beats Antique endorses, so you can expect them build steady momentum earlier in the night without attempting to upstage the headliners. Bay area vocalist Lafa Taylor will also be on hand to open things up as well, getting the party started proper.


Thanks to Steez Promo, we are giving away a pair of tickets to this show. All you need to do is “like” Steez Promo and Beantown Boogiedown on Facebook, and leave your name and email in the comments section below. I draw the winner at 12pm on Thursday October 23rd. Good luck! 

Facebook event invite | Purchase tickets here


On the Boogiedownload: Mix 086 by The Wig (House)

For most DJ’s, the biggest problem they face at gigs is having to deal with nonstop requests from basic b!tchez only there to get their Drake fix on. But when you’re Rich Chwastiak aka “The Wig”, your biggest problem is simply all these girls wanting to touch your hair when on the decks! An awful debacle to have to deal with I’m sure. 

Click here to read more and check out the podcast!


Cool Free Stuff: Casey Tucker-Affirmative Action (Simonchino's Break Spirit Mix) (House)

Love Notes From Brooklyn is the newest in the recent wave of independent house and techno labels focusing primarily on vinyl releases. A spin-off from The Love Revolution, which has pressed a variety of soulful cuts by 2 Bit Crew, Montel and Joey Kay to wax, Love Notes From Brooklyn boasts a similar aesthetic as its big brother. The label’s debut release comes out in late November and there is a free track to help promote it: Simonchino’s Break Spirit remix of Casey Tucker’s “Affirmative Action”.  

Both the original version and Simonchino’s remixes (included on the full release) breathe some fresh air into the warehouse sounds of Detroit and Chicago circa 1985. The Break Spirit remix is short and sweet, a stripped-down, arpeggiated interpretation perfect for starting or ending a set…or party for that matter. Download it below, pre-order here, and follow Love Notes From Brooklyn’s Soundcloud to stay on top of upcoming releases!


Backyard: New Name, New Approach: Techncn Readies New EP For 3AM Devices

San Francisco label 3AM devices continues to bring together talent on both coasts of the lower 48. Both from New England where boss Andy Kershaw is originally from as well as the Bay Area where he currently resides. Following a productive year of releases paying homage to, of all things, Subway sandwiches, new jack swing, and the Hardkiss Brothers, their newest release comes to us from Techncn. The second installment from him for 3AM, Techncn’s Down/Traipse two-tracker officially debuts later this week.

Originally known as Deph and a veteran to our podcast series on BBD, Techncn’s name change came about as part of his desire to re-evaluate his production style. “There’s a lot of other Dephs out there and I needed something more my own”, Techncn said when originally asked about the switch. “It was time (for me) to dive head first into production and focus everything I’ve got on it…and to stand out I was going to need a fresh start.”

With both a clean slate and fresh start, “Down” and “Traipse” each showcase a refined and sophisticated angle of Techncn’s production prowess. “Down” is based on a fundamental and straightforward hook that remains with the listener even as it builds, breaks down, and navigates through unpredictable terrain. “Traipse” adds a bit more swing; it’s an accessible dose of Berlin-influenced techno with just the right touch of overdrive. It’s not abrasive, yet complements a long after-hours set perfectly. 

You can check the sound clips for both these tracks above; as well as Techncn’s Soundcloud and website (which he just launched last week). Beatport release October 23rd (link coming soon).


Let's Boogie! Upcoming Boston Events For October 2014

Upcoming Events 

Ali Berger @ 49 Social :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Ani Quinn @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Flying Lotus @ Paradise :: Brighton MA :: 10.17.14
Claptone & Bedouin @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Deep & Soulful (Tao & Voltran) @ Candibar :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Unity (Francesco Spagna & Cruzz) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Liquid Stranger & Space Jesus @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.17.14
Pico Picante (Oxycontinental & RIobamba) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Footwork 001 (n0ms, Moduloktopus, Homewrecker, Sojobo & Camino Disco) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.17.14
Rise Afterhours (Alan Manzi, Baltimoroder, Coralcola, John Barera & Manny Underground) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 10.17.14
Papadosio @ Paradise :: Brighton MA :: 10.18.14
CSC (Anna Lunoe) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
Claude Von Stroke @ Prime :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
Asho, Nico & Alex Villa @ Candibar :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
DJ Costa’s House Party @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
Be Nice & Nedresh @ Brass Union :: Somerville MA :: 10.18.14
JSTJR, Choppa Dunks & ABSRDST @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.18.14
Sin-O-Matic Steampunk Party (Shivar & Devil’s Advocate) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
Dusk till Done (Patrick Barry, Jeff Farr, Daniel Santos & Ryan Royce) @ 49 Social :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
Rise Afterhours (Sam Paganini, Highest Point, Jim Guerrero & Esteban Franco) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 10.18.14
Rabbit Revolution: Rise & Shine Day Party @ Half Door :: Quincy MA :: 10.19.14
Jump Shot (Moe Dee & Dusty Digital) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.19.14
Vinyl Fantasy Record Swap & Dance Party @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.19.14 (7pm-2am)
Red Castle (Old Wave, Anubis Pop & Jonathan Donaldson) @ Zuzu :: Cambridge MA :: 10.20.14
PARTYNEXTDOOR @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.21.14
Creature Carnival Tour (Beats Antique, Shpongle & Emancipator) @ House of Blues :: Boston MA :: 10.21.14
BHMM (Sydney Blu & Jaminic) @ Venu :: Boston MA :: 10.23.14
Elements (D.Surge & Ammon EP) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.23.14
The Instagram Party (DJ Amero & Ras Beans) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.23.14
Make it New 10-Year Anniversary (Tiga) @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.23.14
S-Man @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 10.24.14
Bamboora @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.24.14
Dirt Monkey & Jantsen @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.24.14
Social Studies (Roy Dank) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.24.14
PACHANGA! Halloween Party @ Naga :: Cambridge MA :: 10.24.14
Throwback Sessions (DJ Slipwax) @ 49 Social :: Boston MA :: 10.24.14
Introduction to Ableton Live @ MMMMAVEN HQ :: Cambridge MA :: 10.24.14 (7-8pm)
Bootie Boston (Spencer4Hire, McFly & Tom Boates Everybody) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.24.14
Electric Masquerade: Dance Party, Art Show, Boutique & Fundraiser @ Great Scott :: Allston MA :: 10.24.14
Fractaltribe Presents Timesphere (Zentrix, Progress, Ondrase & Mike Swells) @ TBD :: Boston MA :: 10.24.14
JesseJess @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.25.14
Digitalism & Baltimoroder @ The Sinclair :: Cambridge MA :: 10.25.14
Fresh Produce (Grandmaster Flash, Knife & Tommee) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.25.14
Soulacybin, Heiss & Exin @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.26.14
Jump Shot (DJ Matthew Griffin) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.26.14
Mind Spray (Fran P, Mr. Fritz & GVSBEATBOX) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.27.14
Carnage @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.28.14
Bounce Bus feat. Will Sparks, Joel Fletcher & Timmy Trumpet @ Whiskey Saigon :: Boston MA :: 10.28.14
Loco Dice & Wil Trahan @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 10.29.14
SBTRKT, Goldlink & Coralcola @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.29.14
MMMMAVEN Graduation Party @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 10.29.14
Deep Field (Will Mayo & Andrew Gallagher) @ ZuZu :: Cambridge MA :: 10.29.14
Keys N Krates @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.30.14
Make it New (Breach) @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.30.14
Shy-Tech, Sun Rad, Of the Sun & Radio Scotvoid @ ZuZu :: Cambridge MA :: 10.30.14
All Good (Thaddeus Jeffries, PFranchize & Eastman) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.30.14
Kryder & Wil Trahan @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 10.31.14
Goldfish @ the Sinclair :: Cambridge MA :: 10.31.14
#HLLWN (DIPLOW, DJ SNVKE, CVSHMERE CVT & MORE) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.31.14
PBR Presents Goosebumps (Brek.One, Bianca Oblivion & Caserta) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.31.14
#Activate Halloween 2014 Superbanger (Mike Bose & Jay K) @ Commonwealth Restaurant :: Quincy MA :: 10.31.14
Halloween Extravaganza (Jaminic, Nick Minieri, Lux Groove & Cost Carma) @ 49 Social :: Boston MA :: 10.31.14
Rise Afterhours (REVOLVR, Eric Deadpool, Kia Mazzi, REDgreenBLUE, Deezy & Embee) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 10.31.14

Past Events

CRVFTSMEN presents NoMerci @ Naga :: Cambridge MA :: 10.1.14
Project Mixx (Randal Smarth) @ 6B Lounge :: Boston MA :: 10.1.14
Legacy (Static, Kuro & Addambombb) @ Zuzu :: Cambridge MA :: 10.1.14
Re:Set (Joyce Muniz & Randy Deshaies) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambrdidge MA :: 10.1.14
Wobble Wednesday (Cosmal & Ali Laz, Green Love, Symmetrix & More Precious Dust) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.1.14
DVBBS @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.2.14
Elements (Fig & EHT) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.2.14
Make it New (Mike Swells) @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.2.14
Jon Regul & Slipwax Bday Bash @ Middle East Upstairs :: Cambridge MA :: 10.2.14
Dubco (Colin Domigan, Common Notion & Bartolone) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.2.14
Michael Menert, Eliot Lipp, Supervision & Paul Basic @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.2.14
Boris & Wil Trahan @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 10.3.14
Vicetone & Elephante @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.3.14
PVRPLE (Dave Luxe) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.3.14
Costa’s House Party @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.3.14
DJ Braun Dapper @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.3.14
Casual Friday (Frank White) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.3.14
Freshh Fridays (Johnson & Johnson) @ O Sushi :: Cambridge MA :: 10.3.14
TOKiMONSTA & Made in Heights @ TT the Bears :: Cambridge MA :: 10.3.14
Throwback Sessions (DJ Leah V) @ 49 Temple Place :: Boston MA :: 10.3.14
Ableton Live Meetup @ MMMMAVEN HQ :: Cambridge MA :: 10.3.14 (7-8:30pm)
Acoustica Electronica (Rick Laplante & the WIG) @ Oberon :: Cambridge MA :: 10.3.14
Little People, Yppah, Heiss, Winston Watts & Mike Carot @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.3.14
Rise Afterhours (Bass Kleph, Knowledge, B3RAO & Michael Murica) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 10.3.14
Binary (Pete Bones, Convoi, Mikey Maags, Jordan Breau & House Cat) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.3.14
Profenna @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.4.14
DJ Kon @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.4.14
Boombox @ Paradise Rock Club :: Boston MA :: 10.4.14
Tao, B3RAO & Deejay Ai @ Prime :: Boston MA :: 10.4.14
Heroes (YELLE) @ TT the Bears :: Cambridge MA :: 10.4.14
Triple Platinum (Frank White) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.4.14
Soulelujah! (DJ Platurn) @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.4.14
RUFUS DU SOL, Hermitude & J.Zamora @ Great Scott :: Allston MA :: 10.4.14
Uhuru Afrika (Djeff Afrozila & Ade Alafia) @ Milky Way :: Jamaica Plain MA :: 10.4.14
Blend (Mark Farina, Daniel V, Reel Drama, JSB & Bookum) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 10.4.14
Sounds of the Underground (Datacet, Beta Ghosts & Don Fochi) @ Cantab Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.4.14
Big Freedia & Begbick @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.5.14
Jump Shot (Bob Diesel & Jaminic) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.5.14
Hercules & Love Affair, Kon & Charles Mazzola  @ Sinclair :: Cambridge MA :: 10.5.14
JP Rocks and Rolls Art and Record Fair @ Spontaneous Celebrations :: Jamaica Plain MA :: 10.5.14
Jack Beats @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.6.14
J.WAIL DELTAnine, Torch, Bake Joynton & Uncle Bob @ Wonderbar :: Boston MA :: 10.6.14
Ab-Soul, BAS, EarthGang @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.7.14
MMMMAVEN Project Graduation Party @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.7.14
Gallery (Young Marco) @ Location TBA :: Boston MA :: 10.8.14
Re:Set (Audio Architects, Smeed & Suspence) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.8.14
PACE (Tripletrain, Tone Ra, Kidd Drunkadelic & Graphs) @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.8.14
Wobble Wednesdays (Bluetech, Living Light, Heiss & Art of Martin Bridge) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.8.14
Decade (Paul Foley) @ ZuZu :: Cambridge MA :: 10.9.14
Porter Robinson @ House of Blues :: Boston MA :: 10.9.14
Elements (Om Unit) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.9.14
The Zookeepers, Real P, Nexus & Ramzi Noble @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.9.14
Make it New (Roman Flugel & South London Ordinance) @ Cambridge MA :: 10.9.14
Crush Boston (DJ Vadim, Fort Knox Five, Lotusound, Zachcityy & GhasT) @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.9.14
DJ Snake @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 10.10.14
Bamboora @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.10.14
Frank White @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.10.14
Throwback Sessions (DJ Pensive) @ 49 Social :: Boston MA :: 10.10.14
Orchard Lounge & Jimkata @ Brighton Music Hall :: Allston MA :: 10.10.14
Soul Clap Record Fair @ MMMMAVEN HQ :: Cambridge MA :: 10.10.14 (4-8pm)
Bassic (The Bug feat Manga, Damian Silva, Scotch1 & Moldy) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.10.14
Rise Afterhours (Technasia, scroll, Alex Russo & The Mad Mauritian) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 10.10.14
Jesse Jess @ the Estate :: Boston MA :: 10.11.14
Stafford Brothers @ Prime :: Boston MA :: 10.11.14
Caserta @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 10.11.14
Rise Afterhours (Tom Stephan & Ryan Ruel) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 10.11.14
Bruno vs. Oshee, Shadow Kings vs. T.C.C. @ Paris St. Gallery :: Everett MA :: 10.11.14
Soulelujah (NY Night Train’s Soul Clap & Dance-off) @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 10.11.14
BUKU, Dark City Agent & Light BLue Laboratory @ Brighton Music Hall :: Allston MA :: 10.11.14
Fool’s Gold Label Takeover (Sammy Bananas, Party Supplies & General Motor) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.11.14
Gorgon City @ Brighton Music Hall :: Allston MA :: 10.12.14
heRobust & Grabbitz @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.12.14
Rave of Thrones feat. Hodor @ Prime :: Boston MA :: 10.12.14
H.O.M.E. (Miznot & Dana) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 10.12.14
Jump Shot (Saucy Lady & DJ Tone) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.12.14
Sunday Night Hookup (Brenden Wesley, Alan Manzi & Randy Deshaies) @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 10.12.14
Javelin @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 10.13.14
F*A*S*C*I*N*A*T*I*O*N (Colby Drasher) @ Jaques World Famous Cabert :: Boston MA :: 10.13.14
Apollonia @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 10.15.14
Citizen Cope @ House of Blues :: Boston MA :: 10.15.14
DJ Evil Dee, 7L & Knife @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 10.16.14
Elements (Cirrus) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 10.16.14


Thursday Throwback! Liquid City-Feeling Free (Ambient Funk Mix) (1993)

Steven John Craden and Lee Rodriguez are a long-forgotten duo of house producers who had just about as many aliases as they did 12-inch singles during the early 90s. One of these aliases (amongst more than ten) was Liquid City. “Feeling Free” was the first of two EP’s that alter ego was stamped to, and managed to grab a test press copy of the 12” on a recent Discogs excursion.

“Feeling Free” had four different dramatically different remixes, tied together only by a vocal stab, a female chorus, and a chugging four-on-the-floor tempo. Everything else, including the melody, atmosphere, and overall vibe differ quite wildly. My favorite of the lot is the Ambient Funk mix, which morphs quite a bit as it unfolds. The nasal-sounding synth in the first part was quite common on many tribal and deep house tracks in those days. I remember quite fondly hearing those sorts of leads when listening to the radio when I wasn’t even old enough to stay up past 10pm. From there different sets of synths are unveiled, and the main vocal does not debut until the final moments…quite unconventional!


Craden and Rodriguez were quite active from ‘92-‘95 and released material on Strictly Rhythm, Next Plateau, Movin’ Records, Trax, Tribal America, and even had two tracks recently reissued on Dope Jams’ Slow to Speak imprint.


Cool Free Stuff: JSTJR-Killa Bass, plus Diplo and Friends Mix Debut

The force is strong in Boston when it comes to the legendary Fools Gold Imprint. Both Berklee alumni Wheez-ie and Durkin had significant releases on the clubhouse side of the label earlier this year. Following in their footsteps is JSTJR, with a track many of us have been anticipating for quite some time now. Instead of relying on his signature slow tempo for “Killa Bass”, he speeds things up heavily, resulting in an absolute banger which prompted even label boss A-Trak himself to tweet about how every DJ should be playing it. 

JSTJR also hit a major milestone this past weekend by having the chance to guest on BBC 1xtra’s Diplo and Friends show alongside Lido. With Diplo being one of the first heavy-hitters to discover and promote this guy thanks to his distinct sound, it’s only a matter of time before this dude ends up becoming the opener on Major Lazer’s next world tour…or at the very least the guy who gets to shoot fun-fetti into the crowd while hanging out with the twerk team!

If you’re in Boston this weekend be sure to catch JSTJR as he hosts another one of his JSTJR and Friends jams at the Middle East. This time around he’s bringing usual suspect Choppa Dunks alongside ABSRDST (who is now releasing tracks on Skrillex’s Nest digi-label). Check the event page on facebook for the downlow.


Cool Free Stuff: ETC!ETC!-High (Trap)

You know you’re a dope producer when you can make a song centered around ONE WORD actually sound good. Extra kudos for ETC!ETC! managing to pull that off without it even being a cuss word too. But seriously, the feels are strong with his latest freebie titled “High”, supported by its strong melody and epic buildups. Who said trap was dead?


Cool Free Stuff: Robokid-Ice Temple (Bass/Trap)

One of the freshest up-and-comers in Boston has to be Robokid. A good example of where he’s at sonically right now is “Ice Temple”, a free jam he posted just a few hours ago. With a tempo that jumps between 75 and 150bpm, Robokid keeps the listener engaged on Ice Temple by intertwining half and double-time rhythms alongside fragments of trap, jungle, and juke. And what everyone likes to call “emotional pads” these days tie the whole thing together.

Robokid’s getting support on both sides of the pond right now, including airplay on BBC 1xtra alongside local institutions such as MASS EDMC and the Lifted Contingency. His Soundcloud feed isn’t something to sleep on either…it’s constantly updated with new tuneage!