Everyone knows Kevin Saunderson, Derrick May, Juan Atkins, and Jeff Mills were among the first wave of producers to write Detroit’s ongoing soundtrack to the beat of a Roland drum machine in the 1980s. Which gave way to the second wave in the early 90s: Moodymann, Robert Hood, Theo Parrish and Kenny Larkin. Of all the names I just mentioned, Larkin sadly tends to be the least-mentioned in everyday conversation with techno aficionados. But don’t let that undermine either his extensive back catalogue or flawless DJ skills.
Larkin is critically lauded for not trying to musically duplicate his predecessors, unlike many less successful producers both in and outside of Detroit. Since the release of his 20-year-old debut album Azimuth Larkin continuously finds unique ways to transcribe a dystopian city in an advanced state of decline to wax. With a specific knack for the album format, Larkin isn’t afraid to toy with tempos, time signatures, or unconventional structures that would stump even the most seasoned of DJ’s. He has a deep portfolio of releases on Warp, R&S, Plus 8, and Planet E, meaning Larkin’s legacy is equally as commendable as his counterparts I mentioned prior.
Kenny Larkin is coming to Boston this Friday, courtesy of the CSC gang. Off the strength of their sold-out NYE show (even without a headliner!), these guys return back to the Middle East Upstairs to put the spotlight on a Detroit legend. Residents Matt McNeill and CS open, and as always I’ve got a ticket giveaway for this one.
You know the drill. “Like” Beantown Boogiedown and CSC (they FINALLY have a proper page) on Facebook, and leave your name and email in the comments section below. I draw a winner at 12pm this coming Friday. Good luck!
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