Name Booka Shade
Also known as Walter Merziger and Arno Kammermeier. Occupation Ever-increasingly fashionable Frankfurt electro- house duo, who wrap a measure of typically Teutonic electronic austerity in an often glossy disco- house sheen. They've got all their bases covered, in other words. Oh, and they also run the Get Physical label.
Where did they come from? From playing in a school band together, which eventually morphed into Planet Claire. Unfeasibly, this band — who had a little German success in the early 903 — were a synth-pop outfit whose influences included Erasure and Tears For Fears. The pair missed the ﬁrst explosion of techno in ‘88, but towards the mid-90$ had begun to go to raves and draw influence from the dance scene. Their earliest releases as Booka Shade were unreconstructed trance and progressive floorfillers, although they did appear on respected labels like R&S, Touch and Sven Vath’s Harthouse.
Where have they ended up? Despite grinding out a low-key career for the best part of a decade, it wasn't until they decided to unite with MANDY (Patrick Bodmer and Philipp Jung) and DJ T (Thomas Koch) to create Get Physical in 2002 that Booka Shade came into their own. Over their three subsequent albums Memento, Movements and this month's The Sun and the Neon Light - and particularly the single “Body Language', with MANDY - they've perfected a glossy but finely-tuned set of minimal house which is revered by the Ibiza crowd. They're also premier league remixers, having worked on tracks by Hot Chip, The Knife. Tiga and Tiefschwarz.
Any other business? Get Physical protege Williams will be playing the official aftershow for the Shade's Glasgow set, at the Sub Club's Subculture on Saturday 24 May. (David Pollock) I Booka Shade play Muzika and Stereotype '3 Bank Holiday Special at the Uquid Room, Edinburgh, Sun 25 May. They also play an early evening set at the Arches, Glasgow, Sat 24 May.
38 THE LIST 22 May—5 Jun 2008
PREVIEW DRUM 8. BASS STREET KNOWLEDGE Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh, Sat 24 May
Exactly how do you follow Manga? The much-loved night was perhaps the prime mover in establishing the Scottish drum & bass scene and has left a solid legacy on the world of clubbing. DJ Kid, the promoter behind new night Street Knowledge, thinks he knows how to better it.
So what sets Street Knowledge apart from its forbearer? ‘Firstly, there are no residents; Manga was heavily based around the residents,’ explains Kid. ‘Plus, the Cab’s got three different rooms so we can have different styles of music on.’ The night takes advantage of the extra space with a dubstep special in the second room while showcasing new D&B DJ talent in the luxurious Speakeasy.
Street Knowledge packs a mighty punch with opening night headliners in the shape of Fabio and Nicky Blackmarket. ‘With it being a new chapter in Scottish drum & bass I just thought “right, who’s not played for a while?” So I looked for two DJs with completely different styles,’ says Kid. ‘Nicky is one of the nicest people on the scene and he’s such an amazing party DJ, he’s what you would call a “crowd pleaser”. So I thought, well, Fabio, you know he’s going to give that wee bit more smoothness to the music.’ Kid also promises to bring up to Scotland all those big names that somehow never got a shot at Manga.
With plans afoot for a London leg it looks like Street Knowledge might be the next step in the evolution of drum & bass, not just in Scotland but across the UK. (Henry Northmore)
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Fri 23 May conceits that have questioned the beiindaries of the genre.
Supermayer is a concept band. formed apparently at the behest of a mysterious figure referred to as ‘Superbrain'. Portraying themselves as charmingly camp intergalactic superheroes. Supermayer describe their music as: ‘sexy. deep. dark and dangerous. sometimes a bit iolly.’ They are refreshineg unashamed to reference diverse musical influences. ‘We listen to a very WldC‘ range of genres.‘ they explain. ‘Think of us as musical sponges: they play. we suck. Our recent fav0urites include Van Dyke Parks. Vampire Weekend. Neil Diamond. Donald Byrd and the deeper side of FranCOIS de Roubmx.‘ There is an amusingly goofy humility to Supermayer's approach, but they have every confidence in their live show. ‘We're redeﬁning the concept of multimedia. People wrll say. “We never thought humanity c0uld do this".' (Colin McKean)
Michael Mayer and Aksel Schaufler have both achieved more over the past decade than most producers and DJs will in their entire career. Mayer‘s Kompakt Records has become one of the world's most respected techno labels. and his 2003 Fabric 73 mix is widely considered to be one of the finest instalments in the seminal series. Schaufler. as Superpitcher, has been producing propulswe. throbbing classics like ‘Mushroom’ and his remix of The Quarks' 'I Walk' that have appeared on many notable compilations including Mayer's aforementioned Fabric set and Optimo's How to Kill the DJ Part 2.
Mayer and Schaufler released their first collaborative works as Supermayer late last year. Challenging the po-faced austerity that characterises much contemporary techno
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