Artists Visiting Boston Gain Year-End Acclaim

As we wrap up 2016, we were psyched to see some of our guests rack up the GRAMMYs, even an Oscar or two, but then came the year-end lists, and, suffice it to say, our squad made a lot of waves, starting with The Black Madonna, who was awarded Mixmag’s DJ of the Year.

…if dance music, and society in general, is far from a utopia, to be at the front of a Black Madonna gig is to be transported somewhere far better. Buried among the sweaty, jubilant mass – there’s lots of girls, but guys too – it’s impossible not to feel The Black Madonna loving each and every one of us right back.


When the Resident Advisor polling was complete, we had to get out the whiteboard: 94, 92, 90, 87, 84, 77, 69, 67, 60, 59, 52, 51, 50, 48, 46, 32, 30, 23, 21, 19, 10, 9, 8, 2… 24 out of 100 had come through our neck of the woods.

Previous #CambMA guests also racked up tracks of the year nominations in Avalon Emerson, Floorplan (aka Robert Hood and his daughter Lyric), Project Pablo, and Midland.


Over the years, much of the focus in the new music world has fallen on the “Live” act, and here we’ve also been able to pivot towards giving you that live experience. Of the Top 40, we’re psyched to have had a hand in 10, including #2 (Recondite) and the continually chart-topping #1 KiNK:

Not to be overlooked, Vice’s Thump channel named Beautiful Swimmers–who only played here a few weeks ago–as their “DJs of the year.”

As the B2B becomes an increasingly commodified trope in club culture—utilized broadly to pad out festival lineups with as many names as possible—Beautiful Swimmers also showcase the transformative power collaborative selectors can have when they get it right.

Also:

Also:

Which of our Together and Make It New guests (and former residents?) will win the awards next year?

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Polina’s Top 5 DJ Sets of 2015

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Whether you know it or not, Polina is crucial to our operations. As Director of Hospitality for Together Boston (and year-round at #MakeItNew), she meets and greets many different artists from around the world. More importantly, she’s the Director of Marketing and Communications for the school and lab, keeping up with the latest in digital trends to propagate our mission: to extend technology to musicians everywhere.

It so happens she’s a huge fan of drum and bass, broken beats, and raw techno. So, without further adieu, here are her top 5 DJ mixes of 2015.

1: Om Unit

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Stylistically I hope to have brought the more etheric side of my work to the forefront for this selection, making it, I hope a good repeated listen. I think the best mixes take their time and fill a space around other tasks rather than demanding your entire concentration for an hour or more.

2: Loxy

Cylon: Podcast005 Pt1 Applied Sciences Division

3: Martyn

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Panda Bear – Surfer’s Hymn (Actress Primitive Patterns Extended Mix)
Point G – Too va Oo
Rhythm II Rhythm – Mellow Magic
Trevino – ?
Paul Johnson – Feel my MF Bass
Ricardo Villalobos – Lugom-ix
Pacific blue – industry pt 2
Doms & Deykers – Fonts for the People
Gesloten Cirkel – feat Liette
Nitzer Ebb – Join in the Chant instr
Rhythmus Gunther – Pronto
DJ Richard – Benzos
RAC – Neo Rio

4: Daniel Avery

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5: Roman Flügel

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Connect with us on MixCloud, SoundCloud, YouTube, and LinkedIn. Let’s have an amazing 2016!

DANIEL AVERY: TAKE THIS TRIP

DANIEL AVERY: TAKE THIS TRIP

When Daniel Avery first started DJing in the early 00s in his home town of Bournemouth, he regularly cleared the floor. On purpose. His sets featured a lot of on-trend (for the time) post- punk. If that didn’t work he’d reach for ‘March Of The Pigs’ by Nine Inch Nails, or something from thrash metal band Slayer’s 1986 album ‘Reign In Blood’.

On dictating what music people should like: 

“I don’t believe in dictating what music people should like, but sometimes a dancefloor needs cleansing,”

“Maybe, but what you have to understand is that Bournemouth is one of the top hen and stag destinations in the UK,”

“The clubs are full of people asking the DJ to play funky house. They don’t care about music.”

On the impact of ‘Drone Logic’:

His 2013 debut album, ‘Drone Logic’ – one of the outstanding electronic releases of the last two years, –was brilliantly out of step with the rest of dance music. It reminded us that being ‘weird’ and ‘odd’ (the two words that cropped up most often in reviews) can be a very good thing. See the title track, a pulsing techno groove overlaid with white noise drones that, at times, were almost painfully loud.

“I like intensity in music.”

On the bond between crowd and DJ: 

“DJing is a communal thing,” he explains. “It’s not the DJ playing music to a crowd. It’s the night as a whole. The DJ feeds off the energy of the crowd. That’s why it’s so exciting. The best nights are where the crowd trusts you and you trust the crowd.”

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On artistic control: 

“I can’t relinquish control of any part of it. I organised all the remixes on ‘New Energy’ myself. I have to have the final say on the Divided Love night. I have a big hand in the artwork. I co-direct my videos. Not because I want to be a tyrant; It’s all part of one thing for me.”

“I’m very particular about who I get to do remixes, so I trust them enough because I admire and respect what they do so much, so I’m fine with it,” he says. “But I couldn’t just give them to anyone. I’ve been asked to do remix competitions a few times, where anyone can have a go at remixing one of your tracks, but I just couldn’t do that.”

“It’s not because I don’t want to be seen with these guys,”

“It’s just that I think the night as a whole is really important.”

On losing yourself in the music: 

“I like waves of noise. It’s that feeling of being lost inside sound. Almost literally. Like when you’re in a club and you feel like you can’t move. I’ve never wanted to make anything ‘pleasant’ or easy listening,”

On Erol Alkan: 

“Erol doesn’t do anything by halves, that’s the biggest compliment I can pay to anyone. He cares so much about every aspect of a release, of a DJ set. I’ve never seen any other DJ, when they arrive at a club, ask, ‘Can I speak to the lighting guy? Can I speak to the sound man?’ He tries to ensure everything is 100 per cent perfect.”

On his success: 

“Any success I’ve had has built slowly,” he says. “It’s definitely not been an over-night thing. The gigs I’m headlining now are clubs that I played the bottom of the bill five years ago. My taste has gone down different avenues, but fundamentally I haven’t changed anything I do in that time.”

“I want people to have a good night, but I have to like it too.”

For more info on this interview, click here for the full the Mixmag blogpost.

Make sure not to miss out on our Make it New show on May 7th with Daniel Avery! Click here for more info.

Daniel Avery gets remixed by Matthew Dear

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Photo by Steve Gullick

Matthew Dear’s “club oriented alias” Audion has released a remix of U.K. producer Daniel Avery’s “Need Electric.” From our main man Philip Sherburne:

The new remix finds the two musicians in full-on mind-meld mode. Whereas Audion’s “Sky” already sounded like a tribute to Avery’s raving-at-the-edge-of-the-world sense of drama, the original of “Need Electric” delved deep into the creepy, tweaked-out minimalism that has always been Audion’s M.O. So it stands to reason that Audion’s remix would only be, well, creepier and tweakier, full of pitched-down voices and the kind of slow-motion squeal and buzz-bomb howl that has been Audion’s trademark since 2006’s “Mouth to Mouth.” It’s ominous and gargantuan and somehow strangely quiet all at once, moving across the dance floor like the eye of the storm.

Read more and give both the original track and the remix a listen over at Spin, and keep your fingers corssed for a Daniel Avery Boston performance soon.

Want to learn to crush a club like Dan and Matt? We’re located in the heart of Cambridge, just steps from the MBTA Red Line.