We're excited to have Basic Soul Unit back on our shores with a new live show for this Saturday's DMZ. Read on to find out more about his set up and what to expect at DMZ001: Darker Than Wax x Midnight Shift x Zouk.
Could you describe us your live set set up?
It's a mix of Ableton and Hardware. I run the software with a Launchpad, a BCR2000 and combine that with a X0XB0X and 707 drum machine.
Why did you decide to transition to doing one from a DJ set?
Opportunity knocked. I had a few requests for live shows and decided to take the opportunity to try it out. It was something I wanted to try anyway, i.e. to be able to express my music live on a dance floor. I still love DJing though of course.
Do you find it easier or harder?
I definitely find it harder (maybe partly because I’m new at it). It's much more intense because you’re “on” 100% of the time during the live show. With Djing, the pace is a bit more stretched out. You’re mixing, looking through records and programming but you have some time to enjoy and dance to the music as well.
What are some tips you have for playing a live set?
Give a lot of thought about what set up you are comfortable with and that represents your music best. There’s no right or wrong approach, the more comfortable you are with it the more you will enjoy doing it.
Would you collaborate with others and who might they be?
Admittedly I’m not a great collaborator, I take a long time to get melodies and ideas going and I kinda like to do my own thing. But I did hit the studio with my friend Jacob Korn a couple times and it was fun (as well as a great learning experience)!
We heard some great reviews of your set at Movement 2012, could you tell us how it was for you?
It was one of my highlights this year for sure (it was a DJ set). Keith Worthy (Aesthetic Audio) and Michael Zucker (Balance) invited me to play along side Steven Tang, Luke Hess, Fred P (Trinidadian Deep & Chez Damier were supposed to play too but could not make it). On top of that, a lot of friends from all over North America and even internationally showed up, so it was like one big family. That made me very comfortable behind the decks (well CDJs in this case) and I was able to do my thing.
This is not your first time in Singapore, what are you looking forward to do?
It will be my first time playing in Zouk (at Velvet Underground). It’s such a legendary place, so I am looking forward very much to that. Of course, I plan to try lots of food too. Singapore is one of my favourite places for food! Lastly just looking forward to hanging out with my good friends there including you guys :)
What can we expect from your set at Velvet Underground?
Some dirty warm electronic soul, funk and of course acid!
What do you think is the best part of what you do?
Meeting like-minded people doing their thing. Finding our commonalities and differences. Connecting with them through music, when a gig is good, it's really magical.
And the worst?
Fatigue, I’m not as young as I used to be! Travel inconveniences and troubles. Every DJ has their own travel nightmare stories.
How do you start working on a track and when do you know its finished?
I usually just get on the gear or software and just mess around. I rarely have concrete ideas in my mind beforehand. They usually come out of experimenting.
How do you stay away from music trends?
It’s hard not to be influenced at all by what you hear out there. I listen to a lot of different music though, so it keeps my mind open to different ideas.
Favourite song that gets you up?
Anything by Leroy Burgess will usually do the trick.
Song you will play to close a set.
Always depends on the situation and the crowd. I usually like to end the night on a deeper or soulful noted so maybe something from Stevie Wonder or Larry Heard. In Detroit, I ended with “Player” by Slum Village.
A first-ever tripartite collaboration between Darker Than Wax, Midnight Shift and Zouk
Basic Soul Unit (LIVE set debut, Canada)
Versatile/Mule/Mathematics/New Kanada/Dolly/Still Music/Ostgut Ton
Funk Bast*rd & Kaye (Cosa Nostra, Darker Than Wax)
Avneesh (VJ set)
RSVP to http://bit.ly/dmz001form01 for complimentary entry before 11pm. LIMITED guestlist available.
Members, you know the drill, head to http://www.mnshift.com/index.php/events for details.
Calling occupants of interplanetary craft.
For the first time ever, Darker Than Wax, Midnight Shift and Zouk come together for a night on board the nightcraft known as DMZ.
Darker Than Wax – the label brainchild of local duo Funk Bast*rd and Kaye, otherwise known as Cosa Nostra, is a statement on the pervasiveness of black music and its motion into the future. A concentration that took more than 10 years in the making.Beyond wax. Beyond black. Darker Than Wax.
Darker Than Wax is joined by Midnight Shift, Singapore’s first official afterhours party organisation and music record label bringing together emerging and established artists in production and performance on one global stage.
Last but not least, music institution Zouk hosts this night of music brimming beneath the surface, showcasing artists with musical prowess and form as they take you on a journey like no other before.
To guest the inaugural DMZ is Torontonian hero Basic Soul Unit aka Stuart Li, who arrives with his arsenal of gear for a debut live set traversing the dubby, moody and organic spectrum of house and techno. Basic Soul Unit guests as an artist under both the Darker than Wax and Midnight Shift imprints, with original tracks soon to be released on both labels.
Closer to home, resident trooper Jeremy Boon joins label heads Funk Bast*rd and Kaye as they play on with intergalactic funk into the good, good night.
Access The Demilitarized Zone. An exclusive tripartite party between Darker Than Wax, Midnight Shift and Zouk.
Basic Soul Unit
Darker Than Wax