by Don Crispy
Expat djs get into the Athens groove as motor city mixer
Claude Young and some mp3js drop in on Shibuya
Cutting his teeth helping Detroit dance
music icon Jeff Mills on his radio show in the early '90s,
Claude Young had by the end of the decade made a name for productions
that united Mills's minimalist leanings with the more
melodic side of Motor City techno.
Young debuted with his One Complete Revolution EP on his Utensil
label, and then went on to record for a string of imprints that
began to introduce him to an international audience. One of
these was Andrew Weatherall's Emissions Audio Output
Recordings, for whom he recorded as Being.
In the mid '90s, Young nailed down several high-profile
remixes, including tracks by Inner City and Innerzone Orchestra
(Carl Craig). His first full-length, the '96 DJ Kicks
compilation, highlighted his DJing skills, which bring hip-hop
turntablism effects like scratching to techno.
Young's debut artist album, Soft Thru, appeared on the
Dutch Elypsia Records label in '97, winning critical
acclaim for its fine balance of the minimal with the melodic.
At the end of the decade, he was commissioned along with Japan's
Takkyu Ishino and others to create music for the Sony game,
Ghost in the Shell. He has also issued tracks for Tresor and
Virgin as well as his own Deta Recordings imprint.
After a one-year absence, Young will be in Shibuya for back-to-back
weekends. His first appearance is to play the intimate club
Module, as part of the regular Absolute events hosted by emerging
Japanese techno DJ Dr Shingo, while the second is at the larger
Womb, alongside dance music icon Ken Ishii for an installment
of a future music event entitled Neutrino...
On a different note, a French expatriate associated with the
French-Japanese Institute of Tokyo, Cyril Coppini, is hosting
a party that looks at music of the Mediterranean, much of it
little known in Japan.
Timed to coincide with the Athens Olympics, Mediterranean Vacances
will highlight music from the south of France, North Africa,
Turkey, Greece and Spain. In addition to Coppini himself, DJ
Edison Mineki of the popular Brasilismo event will be behind
the decks, with a performance by belly dancer Luna set to spice
up the evening at Aoyama's Mandala, a tasteful venue
not usually known for nightlife events...
Finally, in a twist on the usual vinyl-dominated DJ events,
Canadian expat and dance music writer Reid Pollock and partner
Eirei Takemoto are hosting an event in which punters each get
to play songs off their iPods or other MP3 players.
Kind of an MP3 sound clash, noWax has been gathering pace since
its launch by Charlie Gower and Raj Panjwani in London last
year, with regular nights in Manchester, Liverpool, Cardiff,
and now Tokyo, where Pollock and Takemoto have taken on the
Pollock says he's already signed up 20-odd budding "MP3Js"
but that there's still room for more, and that all styles
of music are welcome. Those interested should contact Pollock
or simply show up at the Ruby Room on Saturday night.
Absolute feat: Claude Young@Module,
8/20, 10pm, ¥3,000. Tel: 03-3464-8432.
Neutrino@Womb, 8/27, 11pm, ¥3,500. Tel: 03-5459-3939.
Mediterranean Vacances@Mandala, 8/21, 11:30pm, ¥3,000.
Info: Cyril Coppini 090-3667-6300.
noWax@The Ruby Room, 8/14, 10:30pm, ¥1,500. Tel: 03-3780-3022.
credit: Cyril Coppini