3rd of January, 2020
This is techno set I played on my 24th birthday for about 10-15 people on Twitch, the online streaming platform. I was, and remain, very proud of it. As of this writing it's easily the best set I have ever performed. I also wrote a small piece about how I think about DJ mixes as a medium for RateYourMusic on the 6th, though really the only reason I wrote this was because writing a review of something sounds out an alert to all of ones followers on RateYourMusic, and I wanted for them all to see that I had made this. I still like the text though.
This is my own mix, the first released solely by me under my own name and the first I ever played for a live audience. I played this to between 10-15 people on Twitch at midnight on my birthday. Rather than have this review simply function as a way of pinging all my friends and followers and directing them to this release page, I do have something to say about the medium of the DJ mix and to say it on my own work, which is as much an espousing of my ideas about the form as could ever be found, seems appropriate.
I think the beauty of a mix comes from the tension between the sound continuum and the individual moment. For my style at least, a mix should feel as though one could get lost in it, without the melodrama of ostentatious forearm flexes on the part of the DJ, but also not feel totally homogeneous, which would relegate the mix to background noise that leaves no impression at all. I think the trick to keeping the form at its best is to use creative transitions and interesting track pairings to prolong the excitement of difference, creating a continuous crescendo. The two most RYM-core DJ mixes on this site, Live at the Liquid Room, Tokyo and Live at Deep in the Flowers, Dallas, both do this very well, which I think is why they are irresistibly, obviously fantastic. I am not in the least bit embarrassed that I call these two my favourite mixes, as though that suggests I have not done enough digging. Everyone feels the effect of these pieces, and universality in this form is especially important because the DJ, as a curator of parties, is uniquely tasked as an artist with giving the audience exactly what they want.
My overtly nerdy approach in trying to identify the first principles of the form and then working upwards from there hopefully has resulted here in something that begins to approach the kind of rapture this medium is capable of inducing.