199: Fracture & Desert Sound Colony

  • This event has been rescheduled to 28 January 2022 Fracture: Fracture is a connoisseur of fine cuisine and hot sauces. When he’s not in the kitchen, he can be found running the Astrophonica label and releasing on pioneering British dance music labels such as Metalheadz and Exit Records. As for the music Fracture makes, it isn’t easily categorisable. You can hear his blend of traditional aesthetics and new sounds in the 2012 underground smash ‘Get Busy’, for dBridge’s Exit Records, his 2013 low slung remix of Digital & Spirit’s ‘Phantom Force’, the hands-in-the-air thrills of 2014’s award winning crossover ‘Loving Touch’ and 2015’s collaboration with Manchester’s Chimpo on Metalheadz. 2016’s Hype Tracks EP on Exit Records – including a collaboration with Teklife’s Spinn & Taso – and 2017’s full on anthem ‘Cold & Rain’ only furthered the blend with huge specialist support on BBC Radio 1 & 1 Xtra. Fracture has also been sighted in the studio alongside likeminded contemporaries including Bristol’s Sam Binga, fellow veteran Kid Drama, and in 2016 with an array of Exit artists and guest vocalists as part of the Richie Brains supergroup. From stripped back rhythmic workouts to sweaty dancehall riddims via emotive compositions and catchy sample flips, Fracture’s music has a little of everything. Fresh from it’s ‘DJ Mag Breakthrough Label’ nomination, Fracture’s own imprint ‘Astrophonica’ also embraces this open-minded ethic. Focused on releasing music across a spectrum of tempos, it has been home to Dawn Day Night, Machinedrum, Om Unit, and Fracture’s collaboration with Sam Binga and Rider Shafique. It’s also given a platform to new talents, including the dub-wise sensibilities of Paris’ Moresounds, the junglistic chops of Sully and the unmistakable and unique live instrumentation of Tehbis & Touchy Subject. 2017’s ‘Gradients’ saw Fracture curate the label’s first various artists compilation with appearances from Astrophonica regulars, newcomers and heavy hitting guests including dBridge, Stray and a collaboration with Teklife’s DJ Earl. ‘Gradients’ encapsulates and solidifies the sound which Fracture has pushed through Astrophonica since its conception and this curating mentality has seen him provide mixes for BBC R1, Solid Steel, XLR8R and Fact and start his own live mix series ‘Broadcast’. Astrophonica is a home for daring artists, who share the same flair for rhythm and space, disposition for risk-taking and thirst for the new that keep Fracture moving forward. Desert Sound Colony: Desert Sound Colony is a DJ, producer and label boss who plays, makes and releases music focussed firmly on the dance floor. Well, that's the simplest way of describing what Liam Wachs does. If you're familiar with his outstanding releases on Holding Hands, his much-loved label, or you've caught him playing at leading clubs and festivals like Panorama Bar, Love International, fabric or Dimensions, you'll know that it runs much deeper than that. An enduring love for house, garage, breakbeat, techno and electro are all vital parts of the fresh, modern DSC sound. If you're not familiar yet, that's OK, let's get you up to speed. A great place to start is with his standout tracks: check out Aunt Wendy’s Wedding In Wales, Fast Life, or Taking It Out For A Rip. Not bad, eh? Then move onto Holding Hands. With the label, Liam has assembled an artist collective who also aim to write forward-facing music that guarantees a good time. Breaka, Adam Pits, Baby Rollen and Guava have all released killer material on Holding Hands, and there'll be ample opportunity to catch the crew playing together as they increase the frequency of their raucous label showcases. If you live in London, you may also like to come to one of the Holding Hands charity parties that happen quarterly to raise money for the label's own Future Music Foundation. It'll be helping new producers who need a hand up with buying software and hardware to get started in their career. The endorsements of what Liam is doing have been widespread and pleasing. He's become a key artist on Nick Höppner's Touch From A Distance label, has released with imprints like Futureboogie Recordings, Snap Crackle & Pop and Me Me Me, and has EPs coming up for Moxie's On Loop and Scenic Route, an exciting new label out of South London. And what do Midland, Raresh, Lena Willikens and Andrew Weatherall have in common? They've all been playing DSC tunes (and that's just the beginning of a pretty long list). All that we've talked about so far is something of a second chapter for Desert Sound Colony. The project began back in 2014 with a lovely run of melancholic house music, informed by '60s psychedelia and his pastoral surroundings in the British countryside, for Francis Harris's Scissor And Thread label. Back then, DSC wrote music and toured as a three-piece band. But ultimately the lure of mind-bending, transcendent dance floor experiences proved too great for Liam not to return to. Book him for your next club show or festival and you'll get plenty of these.
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      3 months ago
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