Author: Jack Dolan

House Vs Techno: What Is The Real Difference?

Now this may seem like a really stupid question. Most people definitely think they know the answer. When you push them for specific criteria, however, it all gets a little fuzzy. It seems that how we decide whether a track is techno or house depends largely on a kind of sixth sense which is hard articulate. Perhaps back in the eighties in Chicago and Detroit, making the distinction was slightly easier but in 2016 it seems the vast majority of club-orientated dance music could quite arguably be both. Of course a wise response would be ‘does it really matter?’ As long ... Read more

What Is The Underground?

Describing music as “underground” can mean a whole bunch of different things dependent on the context. Often in music circles it can be a stamp of approval, pointing to the fact that, whatever sound it is, comes from a genuine place of creativity not tainted by commercialism. On the flip side, in more commercially minded circles the “underground” label can point to something half-arsed and ill-conceived, unable to communicate with humanity at large. So what is the true definition of underground? Can it be pinned down at all in an age where everything is available at the click of a ... Read more

Trainspotting 2: A New Soundtrack

Danny Boyle’s movies are well known for their heavy reliance on soundtrack. In interviews on the subject he has referred to the songs he uses as though they themselves were characters in his films. Many of his greatest cinematic moments hinge around an iconic piece of music. Whether it be taking something familiar and subverting it’s context (see Bill Withers’ Lovely Day in 127 Hours) or hitting the audience with something relatively recent and securing it as a classic. Boyle is not afraid of making bold choices and that’s why his soundtracks are so popular in an age when most ... Read more

Life After Fabric

Is it time for London to move on? If so, what is the best path to move forward? In the wake of the iconic club’s closure, how best can London’s nightlife begin moving forward.  In the past few months the London music community has gone through the first four stages of grief over the closing of Fabric. At this stage the fact that the decision was reactionary as well as completely counter to progress is well documented, with even London’s mayor speaking out about the decision. However, it now seems that the city may have become stuck in the fourth stage; depression, ... Read more

Boiler Room Breakdowns: Skream B2B Disclosure

It’s been awhile since our last Boiler Room Breakdown, so we thought we’d return with a classic. It’s been over three years now, since that fateful night when Skream and Disclosure joined forces in a poorly lit hotel suite but many YouTubers still love to revisit the moment over and over and over again. Aron Sohilait for one; “2016 and still listening” whilst Pat Sty comments; “it’s 2016……. still a legendary set.” But what is it that gives this particular Boiler Room session such replay value? The mix itself, whilst far from technically perfect, is a wild selection of musical ... Read more

Boiler Room Breakdowns: Kaytranada’s Divine Comedy

After the success of Solomun’s Shakespearean tragedy (and the amount of fun we had writing it), we started wondering what we could tackle next, and Kaytranada’s Montreal session came up almost immediately. Sure it doesn’t have anywhere near the views that Solomun’s video does and it’s less than half the length but it is packed with content. It also doesn’t have the tragic story line.. See also: Boiler Room Breakdowns – Solomun Tulum Kaytranada’s Boiler Room, in many ways, is a comedy, a Divine Comedy, full of eccentric characters and unlikely events. If we ever doubted it was the one to ... Read more

Report: DGTL Festival 2016

Looking across the lineup for DGTL festival, it’s tricky to know quite what to expect. If one thing is clear; no expense has been spared. Even half way down the list, you’re looking at names that would normally be headliners in their own right. If you’re looking for a heavy weigh-in of DJs for your hard earned euros, then DGTL festival is the one but that’s assuming you get as excited about Gold Panda as you do about Adriatique.  When you arrive at the site you’re first struck by the sheer size of it. Six prefabricated stages are spread around ... Read more

10 Moments When House Invaded The Pop Charts

House music is everywhere in pop today but it wasn’t always this way, in the early nineties the only dance music on the radio would be the Macarena or something by the Venga Boys; completely removed from the thriving underground at the time. Towards the end of the decade though, there was a brief sweet spot where more understated, funk and soul-influenced house (largely coming out of France) became in vogue and reached the pop charts. It was a short lived moment; soon the millennium arrived and these artists either became mega mainstream DJs (see Daft Punk) or disappeared into ... Read more