- Fifteen years later and Surgeon finally releases his first official mix, the rudely titled ‘This Is For You Shits.’ It doesn’t disappoint. A satisfyingly eclectic blend of nostalgia for records past and brazen aesthetic nihilism, the mix is as bleeding-edge as it is throwback, somehow managing to reference everything from classic Warp-style IDM to dubstep to industrial strength tech-house to squalling noise rock – and pulling it off.
The mix begins on an ominous note with a smattering of deep bass hits and resonant chords courtesy of Scorn’s ‘Doors’ before quickly moving through a selection of tracks taken from the archives of the likes of Autechre, Aphex Twin and Surgeon’s own British Murder Boys project. The cuts simply rage forward in a relentless surge – a giant middle finger, if you will, in the collective face of the minimal and deep house producers that have overwhelmed the techno scene. No, this isn’t going to be about build-ups and subtle developments; instead This Is For You Shits is all about good ol’ fashioned banging beats and total sonic destruction. If you want to dance, great. If you don’t, bugger off.
An hour-long mix consisting of 31 tracks, the overall effect is of a careening tank truck: Dizzying breaks crash atop one another and clouds of short-circuited synth buzz drift across the hostile stereofield as unsettling voices slip through the cracks (most notably the snippet taken from the experimental noise group Whitehouse’s “Dumping The Fucking Rubbish,” which, quite frankly, makes me feel downright uncomfortable). Technically speaking, the mix is nearly flawless, with tight transitions binding the disparate tracklist into a singular mass of heaving rhythm and bass.
Stitched together in Ableton Live, ‘This is...’ treats its source material in a manner more Hawtin-esque than one might expect. Surgeon cuts up loops and samples at will, flitting from one track to the next and back again, all the while keeping the flow engaging and in constant forward motion. Of course, the impeccable track selection doesn’t hurt either – the mix boasts classic cuts from the heyday of Warp, a healthy dose from Surgeon’s Counterbalance catalog, as well as a choice assortment of picks including Monolake, Vex’d and Eight Frozen Modules.
With blatant disregard for techno’s latest micro-trends and a tracklist that seems too far-out to function, Surgeon has crafted a mix that was well worth the wait. Sure to please old school techno heads and green-around-the-gills fans of leftfield sounds alike, ‘This Is For You Shits’ is a walking tour of some of techno’s more sonically challenging realms.
01. (intro) from tape archive
02. Scorn - Doors
03. DBit - Kero mix
04. Autechre - Laughing Quarter
05. British Murder Boys - Splinter
06. Aphex Twin - Vordhosbn
07. Paul Damage - Passing By
08. The Bug - Killer
09. Squarepusher - Red Hot Car
10. British Murder Boys - Anti Inferno
11. Throbbing Gristle - Persuasion (Motor remix)
12. Tony Rohr + Paul Birken - Lofishizzy
13. Cane - Fall
14. British Murder Boys
15. Aphex Twin - Ventolin
16. Scorn - Sleep When Home
17. Archae + Grovskopa - Elements (unreleased)
18. British Murder Boys - Father Loves Us
19. Curve - Falling Free - Aphex Twin Remix
20. Eight Frozen Modules - Datacasting
21. Brothomstates - Rktic
22. Monolake - Invisible
23. British Murder Boys - Don't Give Way To Fear
24. Whitehouse – Dumping the Fucking Rubbish
25. Autechre - Second Bad Vilbel
26. Vex'd - Canyon
27. Scorn - Snow Hill
28. Surgeon - Klonk (part2)
29. British Murder Boys - Don't Give Way To Fear
30. Monolake - Linear
31. Eight Frozen Modules - A Low Bite Riddim