#54 - Andrea Parker
When Andrea Parker steps up to the plate you know there is going to be no compromise. As boss of Touchin’ Bass and aperture her vision of electro and electronic music comes together in one unique aesthetic. A landscape where Stockhausen, Drexciya, Coil, Daphne Oram and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, Schooly D, Aphex Twin, Delia Derbyshire, Autechre, Adidas and Booty Bass collide. Her mix in the EPM Podcast series slices open the underbelly of contemporary avant-garde electronic production and lays its festering carcass in the middle of the dancefloor. From the aforementioned Drexciya to North Manc Bends, Russell Haswell and Regis to Christian Vogel, Einoma to Monolake and Surgeon to Coil, Parker’s initial love of film and cinematic soundscapes connects the flow of her music as much as any beat or break. Perhaps the New York Metro summed up her style best: "Andrea Parker...she may be a lady but she ain't dainty - picking hard, solid bass-heavy beats to slam you with. She doesn't traffic in the happy-as-a-robot variety of electro, some of her choices are darker than what most people have come to associate with electro, and sometimes it literally feels like she's taking you for a ride down the street like a Mafioso, holding your head out of the side of a car just inches away from the pavement! She will certainly sort the men out from the boys." And with the new EPM podcast mix, Miss Parker certainly does that.
After the positive response to the recent Touchin' Bass compilation 'Present Tense', Andrea has also joined forces with Native Instruments' world renowned 'Traktor' DJ software to bring you 'Present Tense - Traktor Remix Sets'. This release makes seven of the eleven tracks from Present Tense available in their fullest and purest form – the artists' original stems – allowing you to completely remix or rework each track in Traktor to create original remixes of your own using high quality, mastered samples from some of Touchin Bass' best and most creative talents.
EPM Podcast 54 – Andrea Parker tracklist
1. Altered:Carbon - Imposter – Altered:Carbon
2. Drexciya - Intersteller Crime Report – Underground Resistance
3. Einoma - Hringlogun - Vertical Form
4. Wasteland - Industrial injury - Transparent
5. Superlauncher – Strontium - Unoiki
6. North Manc Beds – Strak - Skam
7. Silent Servant & Luis Farfan – La Negra Luna – Stroboscopic Artefacts
8. Concrete fence (Regis & Haswell) – Industrial disease - Pan
9. Sky Tucker – BAKTRAC - The Record Camp label
10. Jeff Pils – Part 71 – digital-gadget
11. Christian Vogel – Deepwater - Shitkatapult
12. Plaster – Quasar - Stroboscopic Artefacts
13. NHK – Entire Set – Raster-Noton
14. emptyset – Isokon – Future Days
15. Dopplereffekt – Tetrahymena – Leisure System
16. Sagat –Intruder - Satellite
17. Surgeon – Bad Hands Break – Dynamic Tension Records
18. James Ruskin – Cabin Fever - Stroboscopic Artefacts
19. Pulsinger – Strong Desire – Plug Research
20. Dynamo – Voraus 1- DIN
21. The Unit vs Scarlatron – Solid State – scsi-av
22. Wladimir M – Evil – Eevolute
23. Dr Evil – Ritual – Touchin’ Bass
24. Bc:[Monolake] -The Battle of Tetris – Headphone Dust
25. SHXCXCHCXSH – RSRRCTN - Avian
26. IL.Ek.Tro – Charcuterie – Modern Love
27. Fastgraph - ../../ - Klakson
28. Aphex Twin – Curve - Falling Free (Aphex Twin Remix) - Warp
29. Quinoline Yellow – PlotReturn - Skam
30. Bogger – Schleicher – Touchin’ Bass
31. Einoma – Beltral Square – Vertical Form
32. Autechre – KrYlon - Warp
33. Coil – Finite Bees – Threshold House
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Q&A with Andrea Parker
1. Please give us a quick run through the music in the mix. What inspired you to choose these tracks?
I always find it really difficult to put a podcast together because I don't really feel that I exist in a single genre. There are so many different sides to my musical tastes, from electronic pioneers, hip hop, electro, techno, industrial, drone, experimental electronica, IDM etc. but I wanted to do this mix more like the kind of set that I would play out, the kind of set that I'd put together if I was playing somewhere like Berlin... which is probably why I always clear the dancefloor! I think people tend to find me too experimental. Or maybe just too mental! At the end of the day I will never be called a crowd or people pleaser, I always play what I want and I like to try and educate people. I get annoyed with DJs dropping all the classic tunes they already know will work. I don't just want to give people what they want to hear, I want to give them something different, something a bit edgier and push the boundaries. There's new music out there. Different music. New artists. You might have to listen to a lot of a shit to find it but it's there and needs to be heard. Obviously I wanted to include some of the artists that are on Touchin' Bass, so there are artists on the podcast that are on the Present Tense comp and have done the Traktor remix sets, but the others are just artists that I really love listening to, alongside autechre, Einoma and Drexcia that I've been playing out for years and labels like SCSI-AV, Skam and Stroboscopic Artifacts that I've got a lot of respect for.
2. You now also run aperture records (home to artists like Oberman Knocks) alongside Touchin' Bass. Whats the ethos behind the label?
Well the strapline is 'a label which combines all things experimental. Breaking from convention. Based around concepts and soundscapes...' aperture was started to showcase the more experimental side of music, the darker, less accessible side. I was being sent a lot of demos that weren't right for Touchin' Bass and felt like these artists needed a home where they could grow and have the freedom to do stuff that they wouldn't necessarily get away with on bigger labels. I've been fortunate to have a lot of artists that have done remixes for less well known artists which is great, because it helps get them out there. I've had artists like Mira Calix and Mark Clifford and remixes from Freeform, Luke Vibert, Plaid, majestic12 and now autechre have just done a 17min remix of an Oberman Knocks track which is great for him and for the label as we are both long term followers. I've got some interesting releases lined up for the future including Broken Bone and Dalglish, so I look forward to unleashing those on an unsuspecting public!
3. Touchin Bass is still going strong, with the recent ‘Present Tense’ compilation highlighting a bunch of strong new material and artists. What are your plans for the label this year?
Yeah, I've been really pleased with how the re-launch has been received. I've taken a fresh approach and have had a great response to the releases from Quinoline Yellow and Plaster. ‘Present Tense’ shows that there are still artists out there, still doing it and making wicked music for this scene. Electro has always been an undercurrent, it will never be at the forefront but it's always down there, bubbling away in the depths of the underground, which is what I've always loved about it. I like to keep people on their toes and put out the odd release that no one really expects (like when I dropped the Otto Von Schirach 12" or the Secret Frequency Crew!) and I've got a great release out next month from a new outfit called MKFN. I'm also working with a few other artists that I'm really excited about, so there's a lot more to come!
4. What were your first experiences of dance music?
To be honest the last 25 years are a bit of a blur but I'm sure I remember dancing around to George Kranz – ‘Trommeltanz’ in 83! I used to do a lot of driving around motorways late at night with my first ever mobile phone (which was the size of a brick and ironically enough called a technophone!) looking for illegal raves. It was at that time that I got my first press! My sister and I were photographed climbing over a fence trying to get into an illegal rave under the headline "Are these victims of the acid underworld?". I think the smiley face on the back of my hot pants gave it away!?
5. It’s been sometime since we’ve seen an Andrea Parker artist album. Can we expect something soon?
Are you trying to get an exclusive?! I've wanted to do a follow up to ‘Kiss My Arp’ pretty much since I wrote it, but things keep getting in the way! Whether it's DJing, running the labels, climbing mountains, breaking five ribs, a shoulder or having a collapsed lung (twice!) I've not really been able to have a sustained period in the studio. But I'm happy to say that I've got a new studio in my loft and am working away on some new material so it's finally happening, hopefully before I break something else or they take me away in a straight jacket! I did release a concept album with Daz Quayle on aperture last year called ‘Private Dreams and Public Nightmares’, which re-worked and re-interpreted original, unheard sounds from the Daphne Oram archives (founder of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop) but unfortunately it seemed to get a bit lost or maybe the public just didn't understand it…!?
6. Amongst your influences you also list the explorer Ernest Shackleton. Do you have a thirst for adventure?
Most of the time I just have a thirst! I've always loved climbing, being as far removed from what I'd call 'normal life' as possible. Obviously my normal life revolves around music; studios, clubs, decks and annoying punters! I feel like I need to balance that out and get away from it all. ! When you're climbing in a remote mountain range, above the clouds, you feel the space, you get a perspective. There's an element of the extreme to it as well - I don't think I can do things by halves! I've climbed mountains in Arizona in 40 degree heat and volcanoes in Ecuador in 40 below! I summited the five highest volcanoes there including Cotopaxi and Chimborazo (which, to be honest, I actually found easier than making 2,000 people in a club dance to weird music!) and am proud to say that I have stood at the top of Chimborazo, 20,500ft above sea level and at the furthest point from the centre of the earth. I also have a great love of glaciers, ice and crampons! Wahay!
7. If you could create a new soundtrack to any film, what film would it be and why?
‘THX 1138’ because its well minimal and white. And I like the outfits. Or maybe ‘One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest’. I could make it really dark, uncomfortable and difficult to watch!
8. Plaid v Autechre. Tag-team Mexican wrestling. Who would win?
I don’t know about that but I’m pretty sure I could give them both a run for their money, especially after a couple of bottles of red wine when I turn into a rottweiler!
9. Who would play you in ‘Andrea Parker’ the movie?
Tilda Swinton, because she could give it the full Ice Queen treatment and I like the weird necklines she wears, or maybe Kathy Burke, mainly for the swearing and abuse and so it wouldn't be taken too seriously!
10. Which 10 records throughout your DJ career have remained in your box the longest?
Wahay! That's a bit personal isn't it?!
autechre - (tri repetea) Eutow - Warp
69- Desire - Infonet
Drexciya - Bubble Metropolis - UR
Al-Naafiysh - Hashim - Cutting Records
Phoenecia - Odd Job - Schematic
UR - Message to the Majors - UR
AFX - Isopropanol - R&S
Wladimir M - Evil- Eevo lute
Ultramagnetic MC's - Poppa Large
Einoma - Milli Tonverka - Vertical Form