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by Don Crispy

Ari-Up & Mark Moore
Two counterculture veterans reinvent themselves for the ’00s


Ari-Up

SuperDeluxe, the hip watering hole in Roppongi created by well-known expat architectural firm Klein Dytham, along with the Namaiki Design team, is ramping up its calendar with a number of all-night parties blending live performances with DJ sets.

Among them is Sexy Assassins, an event that will start off with a concert by a post-punk icon before segueing into a DJ set by one of house music’s more mercurial figures. The producers of the event, who recently arrived from the US, say they hope to mix up an older crowd who experienced ’80s post-punk in real time with younger club kids more in tune with DJs.

A rebel soul and influence on artists from Björk to Elastica, Ari-Up got her first guitar lesson from late Clash great Joe Strummer. At 14, she formed the Slits, whose debut album Cut was one of the first to integrate punk and reggae, and whose brilliant cover of “Heard it Through the Grapevine” created a sound that was punk in spirit but also informed by diverse influences.

After a second album, the Slits split. Ari-Up went on to form avant-funk punkers Rip Rig + Panic, and then, along with the UK’s On U Sound label head Adrian Sherwood, the experimental reggae collective New Age Steppers, on whose three albums her voices graced the finest cuts.
Jamaica resident Ari-Up has been back in the limelight in recent years, with new material accompanied by re-releases of the Slits and the New Age Steppers (by Japan’s Beat Records). A fresh album, Dread more dan Dead, is slated for release by JVC later this year.

Mark Moore

At SuperDeluxe, Ari-Up, with her band the True Warriors backing, will perform songs by the Slits and New Age Steppers as well as new songs from the forthcoming album.
Mark Moore, meanwhile, is one of the godfathers of the new electro dance music and club culture. One of the UK’s first supporters of house music and Detroit techno, he held residencies at the legendary Mud club and seminal acid house venue Shoom.

After spending the ’90s manning the decks at superclubs like Ministry of Sound, Moore decided to take a break from the musically restrictive bigger venues to spin at smaller places whose eclectic music policies, he felt, were “better for the soul.” He’s since created a blend of nu electro, trippy disco and electroclash at UK clubs like Nag Nag Nag and Fabric. Moore also has his own night at London’s Madame JoJo’s, the notorious Electrogogo, and a fresh track out this month on his new label, Umami Records.

Spinning alongside Moore will be DJ Narcissist from electro event Vanity, which is helping French club La Fabrique in Shibuya celebrate its third anniversary this month. The event will feature Vanity regulars Romance For Cash (Vanity founder Paul James), Duck Rock, and a special live performance from UK/Thailand-based trio Futon. Including the drummer from Suede as well as Japanese and Thai members, Futon are known for doing electro originals as well as covers of songs such as Iggy Pop’s “I Wanna Be Your Dog.”

Sexy Assassin@SuperDeluxe, Apr 22. Vanity presents La Fabrique Third Anniversary Party@La Fabrique, Apr 28. See club listings for details.

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