Animaux | UK

Callahan – Callous EP

Nov
30

As we race, headlong through November into the ever shortening nights of December, it’s hard to remember the sun soaked and beat drenched parties of the summer. It’s a time to look inwards, to the warehouses and basements where the onset of winter is nothing more than an opportunity for a good stomp.

Callahan

So it’s with perfect timing then that Callahan returns to DEXT with his second offering on the label – Callous EP . Kicking right off with a warped, haunting synth and a raucous bassline, the title track Callous makes no attempt to ease you in softly. The pace of the kicks and the dystopian tones of the synth are a blissful assault on the senses, which leaves your foot tapping absent-mindedly.

Bringing you back down to a more familiar – well – planet, the second track OB, really hits home Callahan’s ability to mastermind a four to the floor techno groover. Rolling drums and an infectious pace come together, fists will pump for sure to this one.

Chipping in on remix duty is another DEXT ally, Lo Shea with his scintillating 4am Strobe Tunnel Remix of Callous. The remix’s title alone, paints a pretty clear picture of Lo Shea’s intentions on this one. Vicious kicks, masterful hooks and dark yet playful synths hiss through a brilliantly industrial techno roller.

Stripping everything right down to basics, Callahan hasn’t worked from a particularly varied pallet for the final track Memorex. Yet, defined by a cacophony of 808 kicks and a hypnotising three-note hook, he really condenses everything into a formidable and potent peak time stormer.

Give DEXT a follow HERE and buy the release HERE.

Animaux: Au Feu

Oct
07

Vous êtes tous des Animaux.

Very very excited (and nervous!) to announce that our next instalment will take place at the historic York’s FIRE STATION! This has been a dream since we saw the For Sale sign above the door for the fire engines. After gruelling negotiations with York’s council and the police, we were finally able to format an event that would make everyone happy.

We are investing heavily into the sound and light aspects of this, in order to truly transform the venue into something you will remember for a while – how many parties at a fire station have you been to? Add on great DJs, art pieces as well as visuals, a cheap bar and a place for those that want to chill and sit, a dance floor for those who don’t and you’ve got yourself an Animaux: Au Feu!

We are running the night in partnership with Blank Canvas, a Skippko.org project to find new and interesting venues in derelict buildings so that artists can practice, have workshops and galleries. Their motto is ‘To advance the education of the public in creative and visual arts and crafts and the techniques and practice thereof’ which we cannot support enough, thus are dedicating all of the profits towards their development. To accomplish this, we are collecting a tiny fee on the door (you are encouraged to donate more!) as well as a few donation boxes across the venue. We wouldn’t be able to do this without their support, so please give back – support the local art!

Cannot wait until you see what we have in store (or FIRE STATION)!

Event on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/events/298470707202068/

Until Friday,
– Animaux Team

Review: Farr Festival 2016

Jul
26

Farr festival, now in its eighth year, has grown considerably since its beginnings as a small party for friends. With a very affordable ticket price and many big names on the bill, a visit to Bygrave Woods this year was a must. I headed down with 5000 other dance music fans to check it out.

Thursday evening was a fairly quiet affair, with only three smaller stages open and music finishing at eleven. Nebraska played an enjoyable live set followed by Detroit Swindle who treated us to ‘Edit Channel XXX’ by JV, the early finish was a little disappointing but understandable for a Thursday.

Image Credit: Michael Njunge for Here & Now

Friday gave us a chance to check out the site in its entirety. Upon entering the arena you find food stalls and attractions (no sign of the dodgems that were advertised on social media) in a field just outside the woods. The woods are where Farr really comes to life. Five stages are dotted around the woodland and real attention has been put into the ramshackle decorations, it really is a wonderful setting for a festival.

Having got our bearings we headed over to the Hidden Palace for a varied set of chilled house such as Pepe Bradock’s ‘Deep Burnt’ along with some funkier stuff from Funkineven. Towards the end of his set he took to the the mic saying, “This is one of the best festivals I’ve played this year so far.” The crowd seemed to agree.

Image Credit: Michael Njunge for Here & Now

Having left to go to the bar I was told the stage was at capacity, this seemed odd to me as I had just been in there and there was plenty of room. After standing around for ten minutes, I found that the place was practically empty. I’m all for safety but this seemed to be overkill and was slightly ruining the atmosphere at the Hidden Palace.

The festival really got going with the brilliant decision for Joy Orbison, Ben UFO and Midland to play a 6-hour back-to-back set at the terrace. It was a great combination of styles and although I had intended to spend more time at other stages I just kept getting drawn back to them. I did drag myself away to see Move D, however, about an hour in, a power cut brought his set to an abrupt halt.

Upon returning to the terrace for the last few hours of the three-way b2b we did notice a serious lowering of volume levels. Fortunately tracks such as Four Tet’s Kool FM edit of ‘God Made Me Phunky’, Boddikas ‘Mercy VIP’ and Bizzare inc.’s 1992 hit ‘I’m Gonna Get You’ kept energy levels high. Hunee closed out the evening at The Shack, playing one of the wide-ranging sets he has become well known for, dropping Kiki Gyan ‘Disco Dancer’ a personal favourite of mine. With a great light show bouncing off the tree canopy above The Shack has a lovely feel to it and Hunee’s selection made for a quality conclusion to day one.

Image Credit: Michael Njunge for Here & Now

On Saturday having enjoyed sets from Maurice Fulton and Young Marco I would have loved to catch Gilles Peterson but due to the hidden palace being at capacity I was unable to. At ten we headed to The Shack for an excellent performance from Palms Trax dropping ‘Music Sounds Better With You’, which went down a storm. He then mixed that into ‘Women Beat Their Men’ by Submission it was a great transition and a standout moment of the weekend.

I was completely blown away by Helena Hauff who played two hours of relentless hard-hitting acid techno that went to show why she has become such a sought after booking these days. Again as the night wore on volume levels at all the stages were a real problem, I had to get really close to the speakers in order to avoid music bleeding in from other stages. As some of the stages are quite close together it may make more sense to reduce the number of stages and keep them further apart to avoid this.

For the final hours, I moved between Optimo and Mike Dunn and finally settling on John Talabot for the closing moments. Towards the end of his set he dropped Midland’s ‘Final Credits’ this was the fourth time I had heard that track over the course of the weekend. Finally bringing the festival to a close with ‘Everybody Dance’ was a nice touch and went down well with those of us still dancing.

Image Credit: Michael Njunge for Here & Now

Farr festival is great value with an intimate feel, however, more food stalls in the campsite would help sooth morning hunger and volume levels can be a little frustrating. These problems aside, the small number of attendees, delightful setting and well-curated line-up mean Farr is certainly one to keep on your radar.

Preview: The Animaux Guide to Boomtown 2016

Jul
21

Believe it or not, mid-summer has come and gone and August is looming, which can mean only one thing… the return of Boomtown. This year we’ve put together our very own guide to one of the most immersive and vibrant festivals on the UK calendar. Check it.

For more information and tickets visit http://www.boomtownfair.co.uk/

Preview: Farr Festival 2016

May
26

On the 14th July, Farr Festival makes a greatly anticipated return to Bygrave Woods in Hertfordshire. The festival has always prided itself on being located just 40 minutes from London, and its handy location has proved popular with the fans it has amassed over its 7 years in the running. Although by no means a landmark UK festival, Farr has popped up on the radar of electronic music fans from across the country and really made a name for itself. The line-up for 2016 is stellar and makes Farr an unmissable festival this summer.

The likes of John Talabot, Palms Trax and Jungle all appear in the woods this July. Palms Trax’s recent appearance in York was one of the best bookings of the year for this historic city and so seeing the German producer play again at Farr would be an experience not to be wasted. Hunee also appears at Farr after his brief but memorable stint in Fibbers this year. Festival organisers have cannily booked pop outfit Jungle to give a light touch to the otherwise more underground scene of Farr’s line up.

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Review: Neana – NSWL020

Mar
11

Neana is no new kid to dance music, the youngster has been producing with his notorious crew for a couple of years and despite being a young kid in many people’s eyes, the lad has delivered as a DJ, producer and as a personality.

In November 2015 a documentary was released on him and his crew ‘Gang Fatale’ made up of big names like Trap Door and Ra Ra. Neana discuss their rise to prominence in dance music, the rise of tribe-tech and overall the viewer is astonished by how much a group of teens have achieved in such a short space of time. He started producing at 14 in Kendall in the lake district and eventually developed to create monster tunes like “Yeezus 2” “Hotel Vobez” and “42 Dunjunz”. He mentions how slowly time passes in his isolated village but he’s grateful for his rural upbringing as it influenced his early work radically. Neana recently released NSWL020, his second release on the London label Night Slugs who have signed people such as L-Vis 1990, Bok Bok and Jam City.

NSWL020 is a two-track EP with Neana’s own Nightshade and his remix of Bok Bok’s less well-known tune Foxtrot. Nightshade opens up as a relatively lo-fi and subtle tune with some really nice guitar sampling with some atmospheric texturing. The cover, a few deck chairs on a port by the sea is a great image which nicely symbolizes the vibes of the release, two tracks heavily influenced by central European techno and house with certain holiday-esque Italian or Spanish tones. The tune then at around 1:30 plunges into an absolutely filthy bass line. With a typically fast pace time signature and a tribal-esque bass line, this is nothing out of the ordinary for a Night Slugs release.

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After listening to Neana’s insane boiler room set god knows how many times, I realize this would not be out-of-place in one of his typically hard-hitting sets. This tune does lack the poppy, R&B and sometimes satirical sampling that we are used to hearing from Neana. The occasional Kanye line such as “STRAIGHT OUT THE SALON” or Three Six Mafia’s dirty vocal sample is chucked into his sets but this release has reduced tribe-tech to its roots: atmospheric, dark and almost atlantic backing with hard-hitting basslines and gorgeous snares. Neana’s Foxtrot remix deserves equally as much praise, it packs the bassey punch that Foxtrot so proudly delivers and in my opinion improves the original drums as well as having more interesting production. Overall a really impressive take on the genre from Neana and as the 12” sold out in a couple of days in late February I look forward to hearing more of him in the scene.

I’ve played Nightshade at a small block party and on a big sound system it sounds absolutely incredible, I prefer Nightshade due to its more creative sampling and original sound however for a remix Foxtrot is a highly impressive tune. Foxtrot was featured as a Boiler Room debut which came to my surprise, however after seeing Shamos’s tune “Ode to Lynch” and Commodo’s remix of Hi5Ghost’s “Nook Shot” I felt Boiler Room would deliver the goods for 2016, the year of the bleep. Neana has definitely made a name for himself over the past few months and this release has proved his competence as a producer which I am happy to see. Let’s hope Night Slugs deliver the goods on their next release, no doubt it will be a banger.