J.Phlip has become a staple of the Dirtybird crew, putting out great records and spinning live sets on vinyl like few do in the business. With a large record collection to work with, we asked her for some of her current favorites. She has a slew of records from the past two years, but also some classics like DJ Deeon and DJ Funk “Shake It.” Read on for her picks and commentary on why she loves these so much. She will be at Dirtybird Campout from October 4-6.
1. Locked Club - “Panagoi” (2018) Discogs
I haven’t been inspired by a fresh new dance music sound on this level since Boddikaʼs mind blowing drum work, raw as fuck sound. This wave of music happening has given me massive spark. Thank god. Its electro, rave, & punk if you have to put words on a sound that works. It’s future. I don’t need it to be called anything at all. Just use my ears.
Locked Club is one of my favorite producers right now, but this network leads to many dope artists. I’ve maybe never heard electro produced quite like this, filled to the brink with sound - all the time / no space between. It makes an aggressive wall of sound - but authentic - not just trying to battle in the stupid loudness wars BS. It’s way cooler. So much nonstop shit happening it should sound a total mess. Pushing further always crazy ideas like…. Mongolian throat singing? Listen for when the guy mumbles - its super silly - you almost don’t hear it if you don’t pay attention. All this happening and still it keeps always an underlying groove!? Genius. Distorted yeah…. But it’s mixed down so PHAT. The mastering and vinyl presses couldn’t sound better. It truly is a record that sounds better when you hear it on the vinyl. Sorry I’m not always a snob but for this record I am.
And you can talk about it and pick it apart but all I know is it makes my body want to go bananas ape shit - I feel it so hard. PS they sold out the records on the pre-sale, so you got to be on it!
2. DJ Deeon & DJ Funk - “Shake It” (1999) Discogs
This version of “Shake What Ya Momma Gave Ya” that DJ Funk released and I guess collaborated on - is just a little bit different than the original, which was produced by DJ Deeon alone. Main difference in this version is these couple moments where it suddenly goes – “BOOM!!! JUST SWITCHED IT UP ON YA YOOOO!!!!!!!!” And they drop in some classic sounding drum breaks and a vocal bit that isn’t in the original either.
I dig forever and ever and ever to find these gems for my sets that aren’t available on digital. This one also was not found in any mixes or anywhere just to stream and listen. I’m over here spending all these hours to find this, and does anyone even notice that it’s different than the original?????? Doubtful.
But that’s why I’m insane. My biggest roadblock is always me digging vinyl. Even worse, is digging into ghetto house, which gets extra confusing. So many versions of these songs - sampling each other over and over. It’s a damn miracle that I was able to eventually locate all the other songs on this vinyl - somewhere, someway, available to the world – except for: “Shake It" with DJ Funk on the track. So I just bought it in the hopes to get lucky and find it to be something rare.
Funny that this has become the #1 song that I get asked to “please ID!” since its been in my sets last 6 months. Original Chicago Ghetto House - top song of all time - has reached an era where everyone doesn’t know it anymore?? Weird. I’m really happy they ask me! It sounds nothing like the top charting banging tech shit right now, but they love it. It is the influence for so much dance music since, including Dirtybird. People who weren’t born early enough to experience it back then, should be getting the chance to dance to this music! It should never die!
3. U.R. - “Kill My Radio Station” (2017) Discogs
Mad Mike Banks. On the vocals here - top notch lyrics. Hahahaha really not much can beat this.
“We gonna kill the radio station, That does our hood no good, we’re gonna kill the radio station, we took all we could, we’re gonna tie up the DJs, and drag them out back, set they ass in a corner, cover they heads in a sack, kill my radio station, before it kills me, kill my radio station, and set the hood free”
Best idea. I want in. I have ideas too. Plotting pranks on the DJ gimmicks & fakes. Probably healthier to ignore them, unfortunately I see and feel the real effects they are having on dance music culture - considering I’m dedicated - 15 something years now so I’m married to it - life & work. I want to tie them up and put their head in a sack, especially the DJs who act like they are GOD - with so many followers. EDM is like an organized religion making a crusade. Ewww scary. I’ve got plans. I’ll have my jess resistance before I’m done. And maybe Underground Resistance will have my back. Can only wish.
4. L.F.T. - “Visitors” (2019) Discogs
Off the DJ politics whew. Lets just enjoy this fantastic song. Beautiful machines speaking a language of voltage conversations. I love hearing them freestyle back and forth in their robot voices - do you hear it? It’s like an emcee battle of the circuits happening in this song! Flowing with rhythms - but similar to the vocal styles of earliest sounds of electro - the robots delivery comes out straight deadpan. I picture everyone out in the streets dancing - circles of b-boy battles, poppin' n lockin'…808 drum machines keeping the beats going. Maybe the Bronx but its year 3030… intergalactic robots that once were Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash, & George Clinton control the vibe… but wait… here comes Detroit to the party…. Cybotron! Glass breaking. Its ELECTRIC this ELECTRO!
5. Luke Vibert - “Isocket” (2019) Discogs
Luke is always crushing it, but lately he’s on this tip of just jamming on his gear, leaving the music as it is and going to the moon or wherever it ended up taking things. No perfecting build ups or drops. Just cool sounds with classic drums - good rhythms - and modulations that make big fun out of a weird jam session. I love doing this kind of stuff in the studio. But I don’t know where to stop jamming. And then I want to pick out all the perfect parts and re-arrange for thought out song structure. It becomes more of a mess. Sometimes simple and effective dance tracks that have something that makes them stand out and stick in your brain later on over the next days and aren't boring can can be the most difficult to make. At least for me - who makes 5 songs one. In the meantime, I just got this vinyl and this song sounds really fun for some Dirtybird Campout crowd.
6. Jensen Interceptor & Assembler Code - “Natural Control” (2018) Discogs
Jensen Interceptor has gone from one of my favorite producers for many years to also my favorite DJ I’ve heard in a long time. Unfortunately not had a chance to hear him live, but his recent mix on the Lobster Theramin podcast #091 took me by huge surprise. I thought he was mostly a straight up electro guy. He drops some crazy all over the place genres in that mix. I didn’t see any of it coming either. Love that. Damn. How refreshing to hear a DJ play way outside the box… the best. He dropped this rapper chick from Texas right in the middle of the set and it somehow worked. Near the end it even goes into dnb. He’s definitely a hero now.
7. DJ Unrefined - “The Network” (2017) Discogs
No idea really who the heck is DJ Unrefined - but I have bought every single record- no matter if it’s vinyl or digital. He’s rock solid. He’s one of the rare producers that consistently write four-on-the-floor only - that I like every record. It’s good because I like 4/4 and I will always play a mix of 4/4 and breakbeat. I find that to be most exciting - not being constrained to any kick drum patters. Lately music with a breakbeat tends to catch my attention the most. Italojohnson was my “go-to” vinyls for 4/4 that I always LOVED to DJ pretty much every song. I owe their entire catalog on vinyl. I’ve spent loads of hours ripping their songs. They put all of the songs out on Bandcamp as digital a few months ago. So it’s not like straight up rare gold for my sets anymore. Too bad.
08. Boddika - “Acid Jackson” (2012) Discogs
Boddika is the ultimate number one producer for me. His tracks are all classics in my eyes. “Acid Jackson” in particular is one of my favorites and hasn’t left my DJ bag for years. I don’t understand how his drum programming is so amazing - he’s phenomenal.
9. Locked Club & Rign - “Shadow Ghost Kurwa” (2019) Discogs
I cant make words for these guys music - it gave me a feeling like – these aren’t just some dope tracks, this is a movement of a sound & I want to be a part of it in any fucking way if I can. Just when I thought I was damn lost, I dropped into a bubble of a crap load of dance music that sounds like a new era. My heart said - “yo girl you ainʼt leaving yet.” These guys have ventured outside the box of everyone else. They invented brand new grooves! I didn’t think it was possible! Sometimes they go places I just cant follow musically, but that’s ok, they are taking risks! And I’m so fucking not bored anymore because of it.
10. Magic Sachs Ft. Doc - “Steam Heat” (2014) Discogs
When all else fails, we always have Gil. Sometimes, when I think the world must be coming to an end … I peep some Gil aka GMCfosho, and somehow the world is suddenly ok simply because this human exists. Its tuff to pinpoint: what is Gil anyway?? He’s certainly a one of a kind artist - he’s actually truly talented at music & everything. But he’s also just freakin’ hilarious - all the damn time. He’s from the Detroit area too. Geez could they get any more awesome people!?!?