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  • Interview: HYOXXI

    Interview: HYOXXI

    21.05.27 / 1037 view

    Hyojin Lee / HYOXXI @hyoxxi 

    [한국어 인터뷰 읽기]

    More than a year has passed since the Pandemic Declared in March 2020. We'd like to know if there has been any change in your daily routine and your work.

    I wrapped up my online clothing store running career that I'd been doing for the past five, six years from an early age. Unfortunately, I was also in a slump, and there were many incidents. I could say the COVID-19 Pandemic took a lot from me, but it also made me retrospect on many things. I considered this given time as the very beginning of my 30s(*Korean age) that would solidify me. Turning thirty, I realized I'd known so little about myself. A little late, I've got to know I had to put myself first. I had so many things I wanted to do and knew I would survive without the job I had. I felt I should prioritize my happiness ahead of all. 

    After closing the online store, I've been having a break, meeting people from different fields. Through these connections, I could realize what I've liked so far and get new inspirations. We're planning on some fun projects to work on together. Once in a while, I also spend some time alone at home and handcraft things. Some days ago, I went down to Han river with some friends I hadn't seen for so long, and we flew kites. I felt so happy on the day. It seemed the moment of joy and delight was not so far away. It's not about having a special event at an exceptional venue, but who you are with, I believe.

    We are still in the middle of the pandemic era. Please share your next plan with us.

    I could expand my thoughts recently. I'm much freer than when I was running the clothing shop, so I can delve further into the fields I'm into. Isn't the impact of media getting bigger and broader? In this given reality, I aim to do what I can do, something original. I'm thinking of organizing a team like a label as gathering talented friends working in different fields. The crew would cover videography, styling, photography, music and production. My grand dream is to do our best in showing what we've got, build our career and get offers from various clients. 

    My friends have distinctive styles, and they are really cool. Constantly looking for connections between their work and what I like, I could learn new instruments and unveil whole new worlds. Once I got to know they concern about how to make money out of what they do, there came an idea that we could put ourselves together as in gathering talents. For now, we try out fun projects. I then can take the role of making a profit out of them using my business running background. 

    On your recent Instagram feed, we saw some drawings of a characterized version of you. Are they sort of your project?

    Doesn't it look just like me? I've always been interested in branding myself. I suppose anyone who's into anime would have imagined turning into a virtual character oneself. To make that come true, I created the first Hyoxxi character with kembetwa, who I'm working with. The character copied how my hair looked and what t-shirt I wore at the time. We had some chats like, "What about adding some horns? I really like those stuff," and built up its universe and story. Come to think of it, aren't there tons of fashion 'otaku' out in the scene? I'm also a huge fan of different sub-culture genres. Many related goods make me think, 'Who can even wear this?' Through Hyoxxi character, I wish to develop them into fashionable pieces. I also consider making some Kakao/Line emoticons and stickers. 

    This is my attempt to figure out what elements of myself can transform into content or market value. I don't want anything grand from the beginning. I'll take time, starting with small things I can do right now. I consider the fraction of myself framed on my Instagram account as my 'virtual self.' If any other platform comes out, I'll create another 'virtual self,' again and again. Looking for intersections of fast-changing society and what I do and myself, I hope to manage the role of art director in the end.

    I often feel there are many people frustrated and concerned, 'Is it the right way? Am I doing it right?' I am one of them. And I suppose the pandemics aggravate it. I wish people can get away with this mess and keep their unique sensibilities. In my case, I started my former career with a pure passion for fashion. I loved the clothes so much, and stying was a joy. It got weathered away in time, and I felt my heart got smaller. Still, meeting up with certain friends, being around them, I feel my heart grows back bigger. I remember all those faces stayed by my side when I was having a hard time. To appreciate their support, I want to become healthier and hold good energy. That's my another goal. To become a good person, to show my better self to my loved ones.

    Interview, Photos by Xione Qin
    Translate by Sorim Byeon

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  • Interview: Acidwork

    Interview: Acidwork

    21.05.22 / 806 view

    Acidwork @acidwork , DJ/Producer, Record Store Manager

    [한글 인터뷰 읽기]

    More than a year has passed since the Pandemic Declared in March 2020. We'd like to know if there has been any change in your daily routine and your work.

    Ever since the record shop 'MOSAIC' opened mid last year, I've spent most of my time working there. On my days off, I work on music. My schedule's pretty much tight in pandemics as before. It's still the same that I work on music here and there whenever I have time. Recently, I've been organizing and revising old tracks I made. When any idea comes up in my mind, I sketch (a track) a little and mix it around regardless of style or genre...
    It's frustrating any business or gathering got restricted after ten at night, but it doesn't affect my lifestyle much.

    Oh, it's a shame that I can't fly anywhere, though. Before pandemics, I used to visit friends overseas for some days every quarter and learn new things. I've been missing out on that. Isn't there a big difference between checking out stuff on social media and getting the actual firsthand experience? I realized I did learn a lot through those exposures. 

    What do you do at Mosaic?

    When we get new records, I check them out and organize them into sections. A record shop doesn't change much, to be honest. Records mean 'record' as it is, and we find and bring 'the arrangements of record' (vinyl records). I believe the trend cannot immediately change us. We have a little coffee bar at Mosaic, so I prepare coffee and cafe menu, too. But it's not like we're trying to say, 'we even do this at the shop.' We are a RECORD SHOP. Records mean the most to us, other than anything else. We put our best effort into record curation with extra care, so it puts me down a little when people often regard them as interior objects. Although, I consider we're getting there. For the younger generation in their 20s or 30s, vinyl culture might be something unknown. It'd be hard to get into in the first place unless they have special interests. MP3 files or streaming service would sound more familiar to them. Still, I feel there are more crowd getting into vinyl these days. It might come across as fresh to the younger ones, who does everything digitally. I'll give them some time and see how they embrace it eventually.

    We are still in the middle of the pandemic era. Please share your next plan with us.

    Things never turn out as I expect, so my plan changes up to how it goes. I have some things I want to do, and all I've got to do is give myself some time, think and adjust my goals in the process. There's nothing specific. I just need to work on stuff consistently. I'm preparing to release some tracks I've made so far. 

    Oh, it's been almost a year since Mosaic opened. I might have a break to visit my family in Gapyeong around our one year anniversary. We're still thinking about putting up an event on the day, but above all, we'd prioritize bringing quality records first.

    🕋 Host Tee - SHOP NOW
    🌐 K-Internatiiional Tee 2CG - SHOP NOW

    Interview, Photos by Xione Qin
    Translate by Sorim Byeon

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  • Interview: Mariana

    Interview: Mariana

    21.05.17 / 1108 view

    Mariana @satangelista , Tattooist

    [한글 인터뷰 읽기]

    More than a year has passed since the Pandemic Declared in March 2020. We'd like to know if there has been any change in your daily routine and your work.

    Well, since originally I came here to study, in May 2019, I was continuing to do so even when the pandemic started. I began to work as a tattooist when last summer I moved to my current house, which I also use as a studio. Moving to my own place and living all by myself for the first time made a pretty big difference in my mental state and physical as well. Living alone made me enjoy and appreciate simple things: cooking for myself, exercising daily, being able to invite friends over.

    Overall, I enjoy staying at home, I made it comfortable for myself to be here. But the problem starts when you want to go out. In my case, I met the most precious people that I know at the clubs, while being out and socializing almost every day of every week before the pandemic. One of my tattoo clients shared a concern with me recently: she just turned 19 and was very excited to experience fun and freedom of night life, but is unable to do so. And it might also never be like it was before, so the experience for the current young generation might not be the same.

    We suffer from a big loss in not being able to visit clubs or parties.

    Some people think that going to the club is limited to just getting drunk and dancing, but it’s a lot more than that. There’s people that share their work with the crowd - DJs, there’s a possibility to meet someone who you might end up working with in a creative field, or simply having fun is the best. Now people have to constantly think about wearing a mask, social distancing, curfew and a likelihood of a party being shut down by the police. All of this makes it harder to relax and enjoy the moment and even add more stress when you actually came to release it.

    It’s upsetting to see how the people that I know, whose work is tightly connected to the work with the crowd and party venues suffer from the virus’s consequences. Places and people that gave me that much joy and opportunities are having a lot of hardships these days. Accepting the current circumstances is a first stage. Human beings in general don’t just accept things and sit still. And I am surrounded with creatives who just can’t simply accept it. The next stage is adjusting to what we have now and do something about it, move one. Trying to come up with the rules for having fun safely and thinking about the future in a bigger picture. And they are doing it well. Hope for a better future is always important, but actually doing something about it is priceless. Human should help a human in times of distress.

    Before the pandemic, It was common to come across each other in clubs for us.  How are you spending your weekend these days?

    Actually, before the pandemic, every weekend I had a feeling that somehow I was obligated to go out. That I will 100% miss something important if I don’t. Maybe that is because this type of socializing gave me so many things that I never experienced before. Genuine fun. My friend once told me that some friendships that were made in the club don't make sense outside of it. So now you can see who is actually there for you and makes an effort to stay connected even though the ways of meeting got difficult. I want to make an effort myself as well. I like to have my friends over at my place, cook for them and just talk and be there for each other.

    Because of more time for myself I’m starting to understand what I need better. I’m enjoying yoga, exercising daily, there’s more time for hobbies and exploring new things. When I first came here it was natural for me to crave to go out and see everything, now there’s no rush. I feel a bit more at peace with myself.

    We wonder if you're aiming to eventually become a tattooist, or if there are other things you want to do.

    I’m still young and there’s a lot to explore and maybe find a new passion. For now I’m happy to introduce myself as a Tattooist. I also do modeling jobs sometimes but a bit shy about that… Maybe confidence comes more with experience. The nightlife scene influenced me into learning DJing and that’s what I’m also doing these days. Seems like a lot of fun to be on the giving side of the party as well so I wish to try it. Having a lot of support from friends from a music field is a blessing as well. Maybe in a year I would be into fishing or knitting, who knows. That’s the fun of learning new things.

    We are still in the middle of the pandemic era. Please share your next plan with us.

    Soon I would need to go back to my home country for a short time and I want to take this time to reflect on my time spent in Korea. Maybe changing the surroundings would bring new ideas about what I surely want to do in the future. But I think that for sure I would be able to heal and relax a bit. Also some friends have interest in a Russian underground music scene and if there would be a possibility to connect them together that would be great.

    I don’t have one big plan for life. But before I was making really detailed plans for a long time, but now, seeing how unpredictable life could be, I’m sticking to enjoying the small things and trying to achieve small goals. The perfect example is the fact that I was originally supposed to study here only for 2 semesters and then go back to Russia. You never know for sure what can happen. I know very little about what I can do and what my abilities are. People my age here don’t limit themselves to sticking to one thing only and constantly strive to better themselves which is very inspiring. 
    One of my small goals is to finally learn how to ride a bicycle and have a little trip outside of Seoul. The weather is perfect for it these days. I want to reconnect with nature, go for hikes, go to less industrialized places. But the biggest treasure for me is people. I can see how much their attention and being around helps me and I want to give the same energy but twice as strong. I want to create a zine for my next anniversary of living here dedicated to the memories I have with the people around me. It might be fun to make, coming back and re-living truly fun times. Also I really enjoy to curate and combine different things of my taste in one place and maybe in the future I would be able to open a space like my favorite ‘Cosmos Wholesale’. I guess that could be one of my first big-ish plans. 

    Anyways, let’s hope for the best. Because the best is yet to come. There’s always tomorrow, next week. next month or a year. The time is yours. It can only be better.

    Interview, Photos by Xione Qin
    Translate by Chanoi Yoon

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  • Interview: Jongho Kim

    Interview: Jongho Kim

    21.05.13 / 1039 view

    Jongho Kim @13adtaste_ , Skater / Silkscreen Printmaker

    [한글 인터뷰 읽기]

    More than a year has passed since the Pandemic Declared in March 2020. We'd like to know if there has been any change in your daily routine and your work.

    There's been not much to do other than working. It's not possible to go out at night, so I just hang with friends during the day and skateboard. That's pretty much it. I feel I can do more self-contemplation, though. It's been two years since I moved to Seoul from Busan. Thanks to COVID, I barely made new friends. There used to be some parties, skateboarding meetups and all, but... When I was in Busan, I worked as a founding member at a club called output. The absence of parties have more impact on this scene than you may expect, as in taking away chances to build new connections along with the tunes and gatherings. 

    Since I moved to Seoul, I got into home furnishing. I'm always on Karrot market(a second-hand marketplace app). I'm more of a buyer. One time, I spent ages trying to find this teak furniture. I also got a desk, couch, table, bedside table, lamp and... I'm satisfied with all of them. I collect CDs, so I newly bought this second-hand audio deck at a reasonable price through Karrot. I've been using it on the weekends, listening to music.

    You work at a silkscreen printing house printing for our clothes. Is there any story behind getting a job there?

    It's been slightly over a year since I started working here. It was right after COVID broke. My boss said it used to be way busier and had a lot more clients before then. For now, some of the clients are gone, and there's less work. Back in Busan, I used to run my brand. I had to discontinue it for some reasons. I kept on drawing, though. Considering my product production background, I thought of working at a silkscreen printing place. I supposed, once I build some skills, I can open my own print house. That'll be my regular income; then, I can possibly present my clothing line on the side. Besides, I like this job. It's fun and suits me so well. I've been broadening my graphic design skills through learning how to make silkscreen plates and methods of using inks in different situations.

    We are still in the middle of the pandemic era. Please share your next plan with us.

    I'm preparing for my brand independently. I'll put up my website in May and launch some minimal items with silkscreen printed graphics. I want to create parodies of old Skate Punk album covers. I'll go for silkscreen printing because I prefer the feel of CMYK printing to digital textile print(DTP). It may turn out to be my pastime thing, like creating some prints to hang on a wall. But I'll try not to have much stress. I won't worry about the sales. I'd already registered my business name as 'BAD LAD,' inspired by a movie called 'BAD TASTE' that I watched back in high school. Apart from t-shirts, the merchandise range might cover coasters, cushions and screen mesh lamps. It's still in the thought process.

    What is skateboarding to you? How has it influenced you?

    I started it just for fun. Now that I look back at it, it has affected me a lot in graphic design works and goods making. Once you're into it, isn't it normal to keep watching related videos on and on and on? Overseas skateboarding clips and skateboard culture-derived works inspire me. I started skateboarding in my 12th grade, and... I'm still a poser (laugh).

    Interview, Photos by Xione Qin
    Translate by Sorim Byeon

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  • Interview: Sangmin Jang

    Interview: Sangmin Jang

    21.05.06 / 895 view

    Sangmin Jang @jang_sangmin_ , Designer / Brand Director

    [한국어 인터뷰 읽기]

    More than a year has passed since the Pandemic Declared in March 2020. We'd like to know if there has been any change in your daily routine and your work.

     I am running a female clothing brand media (82) and pouch bag brand heymisstata at the same time as my own business. Due to the characteristics of the tasks, I had to keep putting myself to the dynamics of a new trend. Then, I could be inspired by various people I met in the club or the party and by the very interaction with them. But recently that became harsh. I kept worrying about how do I fight to keep in touch with what's a trend, and also about business difficulties. 

    Last year, I had scheduled nearly 4~5 events like pop-up sales hosting abroad or meeting with buyers but all of them were canceled because of the COVID-19. Sales of pouch sharply went down as people don't wear makeup these days. I have gone through a tough time. Before this happened, I prioritized making something that I want to make but lately, more often than not, I am thinking about what do people need. Recently, I see many prints of landscapes like the sea or sky, then I am thinking to myself maybe people need refresh and healing(laugh). Then, I prepared brighter color sets of items for this season.

    We've heard that you started to learn how to Kung Fu. We'd like to know your new thing. 

    I am a kind of active person but after the pandemic, there was not much physical exercise to do. Then, I started Kung Fu, which was the thing I always wanted to learn, and I really recommend it to you. I practice absorbing Chi, like air or energy, and it makes me calm and helps me a lot mentally. The movement is quite slow but I have to concentrate to use my muscle so that help making endurance. It has a huge effect on me. 

    I have a boyfriend who is a painter living in Japan and we haven't met each other for a long time. We have been trying something that we can do at this moment. We just made a book together and the contents is something I have been told him that I wanted to do together when we meet and he painted that. And I recently published a book named 'Face Time Love' that covers people who are in a long-distance relationship in the pandemic. Now my boyfriend sends me a design for nail art once a week and I polish my nails with it. I also want to publish that as a book. Thanks to his efforts, now I am quite a good nail artist (laugh). 

    We are still in the middle of the pandemic era. Please share your next plan with us.

    I am planning 'Making Pajamas Project' with my boyfriend. I can deal with fabric so I made some pillows and bedclothes as something I can do right now. Still, we are in the pandemic but I think everybody just started to move in their own ways. I will open popup stores in two spots in Tokyo this may. It will be holding as a sale on commission for the first time for me and I am a little bit worried about it. But I still have to move forward and I am doing this. 

    Some economic difficulties came for this but I also came to feel space in my mind. It turned into being alone for a long time then I could do research more. I feel I have to learn more. Rather, now I feel less pressure than in the past when I had to work hard. I think this is the time for growth.

    What is that piece of paper on the wall?

    I had gone crazy about the Mafia Party Game with my friends. We had gathered once a month to play Mafia game. Mafia game in Japan is way complicated and detailed than in here Korea. They use the mobile app and name tags to play. We played it all night long while extremely concentrating our attention on it. Then, I made T-shirts for the game but my friends don't know about that yet. A ban for gathering made us apart till now. I hope the day we play the game again will come soon.

    Interview, Photos by Xione Qin

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  • Interview: Wreck

    Interview: Wreck

    21.04.27 / 976 view

    Wreck @wreckpack, Illustrator / Skater

    [한국어 인터뷰 읽기]

    More than a year has passed since the Pandemic Declared in March 2020. We'd like to know if there has been any change in your daily routine and your work.

    Well, to be honest, I don't think my life has changed much. I am not really an outdoor person at the beginning. I have skateboarded for about 11 years and started painting again 4-5 months ago. I could only do painting at home since then, but I don’t have much to complain about this. One inconvenience is that I can't go on a trip abroad, yet it is okay because I can still interact and collaborate with friends abroad through Instagram DM. But sometimes when I want to go to club, I do miss loud music and my friends.

    When we saw your drawings for the first time, we thought you might be a Hardcore Junglist. 

    I actually don’t know a lot about Rave music. I am also not a big fan of upbeat songs, going like “da-da-da-da.” Well, one day, I ran across a rave flyer, and the drawing on it was so cool. I was like “What is this?” so I came to look for such drawings and found that those are called Rave Flyer and Rave Art from the 1990s. After that, I frequently look for websites that have archives of these graphics.  

    We fell in love with your 'Deadly Hands Zine' at first glance and immediately asked you to make graphics for us. It's amazing that it was only 4-5 months ago that you started working in earnest.  

    I majored in animation but haven’t drawn for about 11 years. It was so boring after going into college after years of practice for the entrance exam of art college. I suddenly fell in love with skateboarding after graduating from college when I was twenty-four, so all I did was skating at that time. I sometimes made some graphics needed for my brand 'Dead Man Calling(DMC)' but rarely drew a complete picture with pen and pencil. Then, it occurred to me that I feel I cannot skate forever since I am aging. It’s physical. I thought like ‘I should make a breakthrough that I can still do even when I get old.’ That made me focus on drawing very hard for about 4-5 months since last year. 

    When I was preparing for the art college entrance exam, the composition of a human body in my painting had to be perfectly drawn and the perspective had to be all in sync. I was taught like that. I think this drawing habit lasted for me for a long time until I was in college. That made me lose confidence in my drawings. After I started drawing again, however, pictures came out easily since I expressed things just in a way I liked. It felt like I just needed my hands to portray an already drawn painting in my head. That was exactly 4-5 months ago when I grabbed a pencil again. Before that, I only used computers to make DMC clothes.

    While we are still living in the Pandemic era, we want to hear what is your plan for the near future.

    Just to talk about my wishes from now on, I would like to continue drawing and collaborating with friends abroad, just like now. I also want to show a lot of different sides in my DMC works. I was really into skateboarding and skateboard was one of my favorites when I started DMC, so it was natural to tell people about my brand as a skateboard brand. A lot of people know it as a skate brand, but I am going to throw away that title. I want to go further and deal with many cultures that I like, graffiti and tattoos, also including skateboards. I would be collaborating with diverse people who would go well with or be related to my creations and try creating different clothes too.

    So, now you also listen to Rave music?

    I have listened to it once. There is such a feeling, you know, like loose and naughty when you look at Rave artworks just as in my drawings. So, I got curious and tried it once. But I couldn’t really listen to it (laugh). It definitely is the music that cannot take during being sober

    Interview, Photos by Xione Qin

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    21.01.08 / 1015 view

    Before we start could you please introduce yourself briefly?

    So my name is Matt aka Matrix3k, I'm based in Warsaw, Poland and I DJ :) 

    At first, we found out about you through your other job-Modeling. Last summer we happened to meet you in Seoul and even though it was a short time, we felt you were deeply into underground dance music. Could you tell us how you got into vinyl collecting and DJing?

    So I got introduced to DJ by my dear friend Ashlynn, whom I met in Seoul about two years ago. She brought a little Dj controller with her,  and I got "hooked". The first time I went crate digging was in a famous rush hour store in Amsterdam. The whole process of looking thru hundreds of 12'', listening to them and being exposed to so many artists, sounds and styles in such a short span of time was really magical to me. 

    We're curious about the atmosphere of Warsaw's underground dance music scene before and after the covid-19 pandemic. Also please tell us about your label "ORBITRAXX" based in Warsaw. 

    Warsaw is a really special place for me, I think it's a bit underrated in European scene. We have a fair amount of really good clubs/parties that have a really underground vibe, and it's because Poland was a part of soviet block until 1989, so naturally Poland was slowly adjusting to the western culture, so the clubbing scene is not as mainstream as it is for instance in Berlin or Amsterdam. The best example of an underground party is ORBITRAXX which is a party collective that I am a part of, this is probably as raw, oldschool and underground as it can get in Warsaw. Most events are happening in disused places all around Warsaw, and you can hear there mostly old school techno and trance. But during coronavirus pandemic the clubbing scene is almost non existent, there used to be some parties during the summer, for example second ORBITRAXX event, few parties in my favorite club, Jasna 1 and few open airs, but we hit second lockdown so almost every club is closed now.

    Considering your job, you must have visited many countries/cities so far. Which city is the best for your crate digging? What's your digging routine? Any good tips?  

    Well I would love to say Warsaw but unfortunately we only have one good vinyl store, and the techno section is rather small, so at the moment i think i would have to choose between Tokyo or Seoul. The amount of cool vinyl stores in Seoul is impressive, and they're located in the same area so it's super convenient. And regarding my digging routine, I don't think i have one, most of the times i just go to the crate that has techno/electro/ghetto in it and just go thru it, when something catches my eye, for example label that i know, artist or just artwork or name i take it and listen to it. ¯(ツ)/¯ 

    Could you tell us more about this mix? 

    In this mix i wanted to have really high energy, and play it as i would play it in a club. With the selection I was trying to go with some newer tracks and also some old, unknown gems that I personally love! 

    Are there any new plans or resolutions you want to share with us for 2021?

    Well I can't be too certain about 2021 because of the whole corona situation, but i am working on my first LP, but i can't say more about it now haha.

    MATRIX3K's Facebook Link:

    Translation by Closet Yi

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    20.10.17 / 1053 view

    You performed an astonishing set last year in Seoul at the Boiler Room event. We were also there, and enjoyed your set the whole time. How did you feel during your play and after? 

    Ah thank you so much, it means the world to hear that! I loved every bit of it - Seoul is one of my favourite cities and the enthusiasm and open-mindedness of the crowd really put me in a lovely, free mental space of playfulness and enjoyment. The crew that hosted the party was the nicest, and after playing we hung out for a bit with the other DJs too, who all played incredible sets. Someone in the backstage had my album too and asked me to sign, which was a very cute moment that made me feel a real warmth in my heart.  

    Are there any memorable episodes that you would like to share from your last experience in Seoul? 

    So many - but i think my favourite was eating army soup with Closet Yi for lunch one day. That soup is my religion I swear - I think about it once a week at least. And I talk about it to my friends in Lisbon almost as often. All the meals were highlights to be honest - we also did BBQ twice which was... unforgettable. It was lovely hanging out with Closet and Bowlcut at SCR and playing a set there, I got a stuffed Pikachu as a present from Bowlcut and it lives in my room with me now.  It was dope also to sign Mignon's fannypack and get him to sign the t-shirt I was wearing. Shopping for cute things at line friends with Closet and Naone was also a super fun time, we laughed a lot.

    It was very unique that you played a wide variety of music that night, from Techno to almost HipHop. What kind of music did you dig through this time in our INTL mixtape?

    Yes! It really felt right to zig zag a lot and take ravers for an emotional ride with me that night, what a feeling. This time I played stuff with imaginative percussive parts, strong synth lines that feel intriguing in terms of sound design, some ecstatic arpeggios too - but it's still in my opinion quite a sunny mix. I included some music off the new Naive compilation - Maria Amor, Gag Reflex and Russell E.L. Butler - and other old and new tracks that speak to me, by Jasmine Infiniti, Azu Tiwaline, Truss and more.

    Then where do you think your artistic roots come from?

    I think I was kinda lucky to find the artist in me, maybe life sent me that way by means of starting to hate school and the 'system' and the idea of getting a job and working 9-5 until I retire. But to be honest ever since I was a kid I was obsessed with music, writing and drawing, later with photography too... I think I'm prone to experimenting and having fun with things, not taking life too seriously - and that's a great breeding ground for art. Putting music out into the world feels really exciting and necessary to me - Naive started out as a means to do that independently and pick and choose according to a necessarily ever-changing sonic vision with the common thread of friendship and spontaneity - all the releases are by people i've come to make friends with and whose music touched me and excited me. 

    You're also well known not only as a DJ, but also as the founder of label 'Naive'. You must have been busy enough to focus on the tour side for the past few years, so it made us curious what is your motivation for releasing other artists' works to the world?

    Putting music out into the world feels really exciting and necessary to me - Naive started out as a means to do that independently and pick and choose according to a necessarily ever-changing sonic vision with the common thread of friendship and spontaneity - all the releases are by people i've come to make friends with and whose music touched me and excited me. 

    Are there any releases from Naive that you would particularly introduce to your  fans?

    Perhaps the latest compilation is a good place to start - 100% of all sales will be donated to anti-racist causes forever and it showcases almost all artists that have released on naive and naivety so far. The music in it is really important to me, it includes some of my favourite cuts of recent times. Other than that, both naive and naivety's releases are all tied as my favourites - i couldn't pick one if I tried I think!

    Lastly, since we're spending a lot more time indoors, is there any fresh music or movement in the scene that you've discovered lately that you would like to share with us?

    I'm constantly flabbergasted at music coming from Brazil - I copped this comp from Tormenta, a label from São Paulo, recently and it features really great stuff. White Prata is one of my fav artists and her track in this release is banging. Vasquez is another favourite from São Paulo. Here in Lisbon i'm constantly in awe of the output from the Troublemaker Records artists, can't put my finger on it genre-wise which is a perfect feeling. Danykas from Lisbon has recently put an EP called 'Dina de Brava' which is flawless - her and Satélite make really exciting tracks.

    Translation by Closet Yi

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  • THE-INTL.LIVE : 2020. 4. 18-19. Sat-Sun. PM 2:00-6:00(KST)

    THE-INTL.LIVE : 2020. 4. 18-19. Sat-Sun. PM 2:00-6:00(KST)

    20.06.05 / 711 view

    The Internatiiional is on Mixlr

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  • THE-INTL.MIX 4. Naone

    THE-INTL.MIX 4. Naone

    20.05.27 / 1481 view

    Your recently moved from Seoul to Amsterdam a couple of months ago. How have you been doing lately?

    Long time no see! I came to Amsterdam early this year as a working holiday. I'm currently working part time and also doing music works as well. I used to go to parties every week until the lockdown broke, but now I'm staying inside like everybody else. The good part is that I have a full set up studio in my space so I can focus on more music, and dig through more tunes in the night time. Also I'm trying to proceed my DJ career by doing more mix set and live streams time to time.

    Actually we wanted to start with a more ice breaking question to warm up. What did you have for dinner today? Maybe breakfast as well?

    I'm definitely doing more cooking these days. This evening I made Korean Ddukbokki and marinated fried chicken for my roommate who haven't tried any Korean dish before! I strictly followed the Baek-Jongwon recipe, which is highly recommended for you guys. The marinated fried chicken was so good. It made me a little homesick. For breakfast I had a bitter black coffee..

    You started your career as a dj in Seoul, but moved to Netherlands. How does this effect your DJing skills and music style?

    There isn't any difference in the taste of sound that I like. I'm deeply into 90s and early 00s cosmic trance and techno, which makes it really lucky for me to be in Amsterdam because they have a lot of record shops that are well curated in those styles. So many 90s Dutch Techno records too. It's good to be somewhere physically close to what I love, and I think it is definitely giving me positive energy. (I'm finally becoming a real nerd!) On top of that, this quarantine made me start listening to more trip-hop and downtempos rather than dance music stuff.

    How is the Dutch scene handling this club-shutdown situation so far? We're curious about the city's vibe.

    Majority of the musicians are trying to work on more production, and DJs are broadcasting different kinds of podcast, radio, and facebook live streams. On the other hand some people just locked themselves inside. Most of the summer festivals are postponed to next year and the clubs are all closed at the moment so we're expecting everything to be recovered around next year. My friends told me that the summer events are the best here, so everyone's really sad about missing all of them this year. Poor me..

    Then let me ask you the other way around. Is there anything you found interesting about the Korean art scene between the last few months while you were there?

    My C'est Qui partner in crime Closet Yi's release stands out very well looking from here. (Congrats girl!) Also I really enjoyed the Honey Badger Records compilation album 'HBRTRX Vol.3'. Each track has it's uniqueness, but at the same time it felt like all the tracks are heading towards a consistent theme. All the artists are pretty young, yet with a professional attitude, and there's a lot of buddies in the crew(JNS the boss, Soju buddy Mignon, sister Closet Yi, and last but not least Sojeso) so I love to hear their music and support them!

    Tell us about your THE-INTL.MIX. Is there any track that you want to mention specifically?

    This mixtape is a collection through my favourite 90s to early 00s trance tracks. I gave a lot of variation in the tempo this time. It's fun to try these things because you're not playing at a club, so you can give lots of variation to the structure of your mix set. There are a couple of tracks I want to introduce (in time sequence): Zero One - Trust (Analogue Mix): a 90s downtempo trance tune I listen to often thesedays, Closet Yi - Basalt (玄武岩): good balance between the rough basslines and tickling percussion, S.O.N.S & Naone - Separate Ways.: My favourite track from my EP release with S.O.N.S. I get really emotional when I listen to it.

    Congratulations on your first collaboration EP release with S.O.N.S! Could you explain us how you two started working together?

    S.O.N.S is one of my close DJ friends who used to live in the same neighborhood (Shout out to Bogwangdong!). We worked on the EP from late 2018 to summer of 2019. The collaboration got serious after I bought the TB-303 from one of his friends. The track 'Separate Ways' for instance was finished in his studio together after I wrote the bassline with the TB-303. I can't show all of his gadgets, but he has a serious collection. I deeply respect S.O.N.S as a friend and musician, and I've been always into his sounds, so it was an amazing experience for me to work with him this time. It was so exciting to design the emotional trance sounds that I've always dreamed of.

    Translation by Closet Yi


    Tuu - House of the Waters zerO One - Trust (analogue mix) Source Experience - Synaesthesia Closet Yi - Basalt (玄武岩) CJ Bolland - Mantra ? ? Dance 2 Trance - We Came in Peace Vulva - Kellogg’s Corn Circles Call Super and Parris- Chiselers Rush Paddy Free - Lali Photek - KJZ A Positive Life - The Calling Asura - They Will Come Naone & S.O.N.S - Separate Ways Bochum Welt - Extra Life

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    20.02.10 / 13196 view

    [한국어 인터뷰 읽기]

    Who is Dj Romy Mats? Could you introduce yourself briefly?

    I'm based in Tokyo. Since 2017, I’ve been working as a party organiser and promoter at my resident party called 'Kaitai Shinsho (解体新書)'. As a DJ, I usually play hypnotic / psychedelic techno, bass music from UK, speedy electro and breaks, broken and noisy EBM, african and middle eastern inspired sound, and more experimental or leftfield stuff etc. I think it's my style to mix these music eclectically. Of course I sometimes play house and disco stuff, but I don't have much opportunities these days. Putting that aside, despite my short career and young age, I’ve had a lot of opportunities to play in great parties like DJ Nobu's 'Future Terror', 'Rural Festival', Boiler Room Party in Tokyo, and the main floor of Contact Tokyo etc. So I’m enjoying the moment now, growing up based on these various experiences.

    You've been organising the party 'Kaitai Shinsho(解体新書)', which comes from the Japanese surgery book under the same name. How did you come up with this title?

    The actual 'Kaitai Shinsho(解体新書)' was published by a medical scientist named Genpaku Sugita, who majored in western studies, in 1774, and it was the first English to Japanese translated book about western medicine. Briefly, this book was created by translating various medical books written by German, Dutch, French and other doctors in European countries into Japanese and reconstructing the important parts. Personally, I think the origin of this book is similar to that of the electronic / dance music scene in Japan. The scene of Japan has such a strong identity and history, but I believe that this is a result of actively incorporating and interpreting various electronic music from around the world. In fact, even though it’s a small part of the scene, I’m constantly looking for new electronic music from around the world for my own mix sets and working hard to introduce wonderful international producers / DJs to Japan. I felt that this situation is very similar to the activities of Genpaku Sugita; his publication of Kaitai Shinsho as a result of his work. That's the main reason why, but actually I didn't thought like this from the beginning. When I started the party 3 years ago, I discussed a lot about the titles with VJ Camel (aka Akio Oda) who is my organising partner. At that time, we were thinking of a title that would have a strong impact and would not be buried in many parties, and after talking with each other, we came to the conclusion that a title using kanji would fit both conditions. After that, we kept on listing idioms in kanji as candidates, but when 'Kaitai Shinsho(解体新書)' came up, we thought it's strong enough and the meaning also came to my mind, so we chose it as the title.

    How would you evaluate the goals and accomplishments of running the party brand by yourself for the past 3 years?

    I definitely have a sense of accomplishment. Because we have continued our efforts to maintain our uniqueness along with the party build up, we were able to receive positive feedback constantly. At the 3rd anniversary party at Contact Tokyo, I had a toast with VJ Camel right after the party started, and we said to each other that we would have never imagined three years ago that we could have our anniversary party at such a huge venue. But now, I think the present is a legitimate place considering our efforts so far. And on the other hand, I think the reason 'Kaitai Shinsho' exists today is because there were so many people who have been supporting us, and also great local artists who played a lot of times in our party such as Mars89, Saskiatokyo, Albino Sound, k_yam and HELKTRAM etc, plus, people who came to the party. This is by no means humble, it’s an obvious facts. I can’t thank them enough. And then, I think there is still a long long long way to go. I just keep trying something new.

    However, even before you started djing or promoting you've been working as a journalist as the chief editor of 'Higher Frequency' magazine. How did electronic music(or dance music) become involved into your life this much?

    I'm not a producer at all, but I know electronic music has changed my life definitely. And what hasn't changed since I started listening electronic music as a teenager, is that this kind of music is always exciting and always makes me feel fresh. I used to dig and listen to alternative rock and indie rock a lot when I was a teenager, but I gradually started to feel that there was no big difference between any of the new albums coming out, so I really got into electronic music from then. And when I started to feel that electronic music is creeping up on indie rock increasingly year after year, I began to think that electronic music might be the undifferentiated frontier of all present music including pop, rock, and rap. That point of view hasn't changed even now. My current motivation of life (or of all general activities) is the expectation that something new will start to happen from electronic music.

    We also heard the news that you performed in many different countries in Asia(Bangkok, Hanoi, Taipei, Seoul, etc.). What is the core of your motivation that makes you keep going on in all these activities?

    No matter which city I’m playing, it's totally different from playing in Tokyo (the atmosphere of the floor and dancers, the sound, my mind), so it's always a lot of fun. The best gig for me was at Safe Room, Bangkok in November and at B1, Taipei in August. Of course, it's not only about my gigs, it's also very interesting to see local DJs, and to communicate with DJs, promoters, customers to learn more about each scenes. There are many things that I don't know until I visit the city, so my current motivation is to get some new experience. In 2020, I’m going to start an exchange program between Asia cities and Tokyo. so I would be happy if I could know more about various wonderful parts of Asian dance music scenes, and increase our possibilities.

    Could you explain about the mix set? Who would you like to recommend this mix to listen to?

    This is a live recording at Contact Tokyo from last year July. I think the first half was strange and difficult to grasp the beat, but in the second half, it became intense techno but hypnotic. I find this mix has a pretty aggressive configuration so I hope the listeners look up this mix set whenever they want to uplift their feelings.

    Translation by Closet Yi


    Parrish Smith - L'Importance De Doute

    Sleep D - Shark Tempo

    Struction - Seel

    Locked Groove - Eden feat. Stella (Prequel Tapes Remix)

    Rhyw - Biggest Bully

    Szare - Sink Hole

    Call Super - The Mess

    Kr!z - Salvation

    Oliver Rosemann - Intermediate World

    Yogg - Close Enough

    Schiari - A Far Vision

    Nobusawa - Raspberry

    Peter Van Hoesen - Second Hologram Rose

    Objekt - Runaway

    PTU - Over

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  • THE INTL. 2 Year Anniversary: NTS Live from Seoul

    THE INTL. 2 Year Anniversary: NTS Live from Seoul

    19.07.19 / 1155 view

    NTS broadcasts live from our 2 year anniversary pop-up at Heights. in Seoul. Photos by 40jin

    Closet Yi is a DJ, producer and one half of the lady duo C'est Qui.

    Selections courtesy of local selector and producer, Seiryun.

    Co-Owner of Clique Records and running both Daehan Electronics and Braindance Records. Whilst usually going across genres, this mix is rather straight forward with some dubbed out minimal techno to more colourful cuts. Tracks that make you wanna stay out late.

    Seoul based, Seesea plays a type of hardcore, bass and techno music called comprised of techno, acid, Korean trot, gabber, mental, makina, donk and speedcore. This mix includes ADM (Acid Dance Macha) which sounds like a highway driving all over the world.

    Joreng the rice cake is a Berlin-based Korean sound artist melding ambient and sound collage genres with techno, trance, IDM, and drum & bass.

    DJ Bowlcut is a South Korean DJ / Producer whose love for music saw him develop from an award-winning turntablist to one of Seoul’s most prominent champions of energetic house, euphoric breakbeats, dubby leftfield techno and forward-thinking bass music. His live set is heavily inspired by 90s turntablism with many samples and found sounds. This set sees him play a live mix of self-productions in the style of DIY house, techno, breakbeats and ambient music.

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  • THE-INTL.MIX 2. N.O.S. (aka Nitrous Oxide Systems)

    THE-INTL.MIX 2. N.O.S. (aka Nitrous Oxide Systems)

    19.06.25 / 2294 view

    [한국어 인터뷰 읽기] Could you briefly introduce yourselves?

    N.O.S.(aka Nitrous Oxide Systems) Founding members: Frankie $, KAZUHO, Kenchan, k_yam. N.O.S. burst onto the Tokyo house scene in March 2018 on a turbocharged trajectory to somewhere new. N.O.S. comprises 4 members: producer/DJs: Frankie $, KAZUHO and K_yam and visual director Kenchan. Although based in Tokyo, N.O.S. outlook is borderless, looking to tie together various strands of future music throughout and beyond Japan. N.O.S. is not just tracks and a clothing line; N.O.S. is also a platform and a party that will continue to hold the torch for the true underground ravier side of the house scene that emerged around 2013 across Europe, America, and Australia. So far N.O.S. has brought Denis Sulta, Randomer, DJ Seinfeld, Baltra, Shall Not Fade Crew, D. Tiffany, Asquith, Fede Lng, Deejay Astral, DJ Bowlcut, Miley Serious and Seoul Community Radio Crew to Japan and its members have been supporting a variety of other events and international artists across Tokyo's dancefloors.

    Inside the rich underground dance music scene in Japan with such a long history, it's very impressive to see fresh movements from relatively new crews like you guys. People can see your names in local line ups often, and we've seen your parties going big with international bookings as well. Recently N.O.S. did several shows in Contra Seoul and Pistil under the title of their brand name too. It seems like you guys are setting up a new paradigm in the scene now, do you feel the change as well?

    N.O.S. has been active for just over a year but I think we have managed to achieve more than we originally imagined in this short time span. Including domestic and international shows we have organized around 8 parties. We don't feel there is that much meaning in simply booking overseas artists and running parties though, so we were sure to make progress on the label and have put out four releases from core members.

    With organizing parties, we put a lot of thought into the lineups, the tour arrangement, one-off t-shirt collaborations and the artwork and visuals on the day. I think people appreciate that we make an effort to cover all these angles and we have managed to develop our brand gradually with each party and release.

    In terms of playing Korea, we feel that the growing Korean club scene is very important for us and for this part of the world. It has been a great honour and massively inspirational for us to work with a large number of Korean DJs, especially those around the Contra and Pistil scenes, including DJ Bowlcut, Shins, C'est Qui, JNS, Airbear, Jesse You, Seohyun, and Kino Kino. We feel these DJs have an abundance of originality and share a similar musical vision, and it has been energizing to see them in action firsthand. Through the relationships and friendships we have developed playing and organizing in Korea we were able to be a part of wildly successful 'Rave Age 2 Tokyo' party organized by The Internatiiional, as well as collaborating with Seoul Community Radio to live stream one of our events from Circus. We want to continue such collaborations and continue pushing the envelope in both Seoul and Tokyo.

    Could you explain more about the musical background being shared in each crew? Also what kind of inspirations do you get from each other & other artists?

    We listen to pretty much everything and are digging for new music day in day out. I think we have a wide variety of influences, but all of us feel an affinity towards and have a lot of respect for UK dance culture and everything that has stemmed from the lineage of hardcore jungle and rave music. Our actual output in terms of a label tends towards the more personal and has less of a dancefloor emphasis. In fact, a lot of the tracks have been written after something happened in the producers' personal life, rather than as an effort to make something that will work in the club.

    Is there a specific goal or belief that each crew has been following consistently since the beginning?

    From the start we wanted to make sure that whatever we did went beyond the simple concept of organizing a party - we all produce and have an interest in clothing as well so we thought that with a slight DIY vibe we would be able to make something interesting. I think we have been largely successful and have had a good reception on our releases, both in terms of music and clothing. I think we've been able to use these elements to effectively push what we are doing to a wider audience. Reaching this wider audience is our biggest objective. We don't want to limit ourselves just to Tokyo when thinking about our movements from here on in.

    N.O.S. played in the last 'Rave Age 2 Tokyo' night in Shibuya WWWb hosted by The Internatiiional along with Dj Nozaki, Licaxxx, CYK, Shins, and Airbear. Especially the set that N.O.S. and CYK played was presented more as a rival match between each other. How was the night?

    The night had really special energy - The Internatiiional T-shirts have been doing the rounds in Tokyo for a while now so I think there was a certain level of hype surrounding the event, and the lineup was super on point. The vibes on the day were fantastic with a great turnout and everyone smashed their sets. I don't think we payed too much attention to the 'versus' element as we're all really good friends and just ended up having fun - although it was exciting to see CYK play a much ravier set than normal, with Nari pulling out some jungle tunes towards the end. I think Moriura-san and The Internatiiional team did a fantastic job here and I definitely think there needs to be another round.

    Let's move on to the mix now. Could you explain about the selections, did you have a certain concept or musical standard arranging the mix?

    Frankie $: In English we have the phrase 'raving mad' - so I tried to select both tunes that fit the classic stricter early 90s definition of 'rave' or hardcore jungle music, but also some tracks from other genres (electro, techno) that feel like they are encouraging dancers to lose control. I went for a strict all-vinyl single-take mix (complete with imperfections) as I felt that 'rave' implies a certain level of roughness and rawness. I also made sure to intersperse old tracks with new tracks to show how old tropes have been recontextualized by new generations and also as a nod to the originators.

    Where can we see N.O.S. in the near future? Any upcoming events?

    We have largely been throwing parties at Vent and Circus. Coming into our second year we are planning to reduce the number of events in Tokyo to work more deeply on the label and clothing and also to free up some resources to push our residency at Contra.

    * On 29th June, N.O.S. is having a Party at Contra. Please see further details below.

    Lastly, can you tell us other interesting Japanese producers or crew names that you guys want to recommend for the people who are following N.O.S.?

    We're great friends with CYK and have massive respect for them as artists and promoters - their bookings are always on point and parties are always jumping. We also have to recommend Licaxxx; a great friend of ours but also a fantastic DJ. She has been making moves both at home and abroad and is a serious selector with a deep knowledge of dance music and the ability to mix effortlessly between analog and digital. Another fantastic DJ is Pocho in the House - a highly talented old-school house DJ who recently tore up Pistil with C'est qui, as well as the Akashic crew who have been organizing a wild outdoor party called Gorilla Fire at a new location each year. The b2b duo of Kai Yamashita and Tatsu and their party Yellow Card is just one more interesting party organized by friends of a similar age in Tokyo - there really is a lot going on.

    In terms of production, we would recommend
    RGL. He has released on the label Breaker Breaker - which has put out tracks from artists such as Ross From Friends - and is well known for his warm and delicate analog production. His synthwork is world class.

    N.O.S. presents Seoul-Tokyo Exchange Party #01 w/ Kino Kino(FEMME/KOR), Seohyun(Contra/KOR) 2019. 6. 29(Sat) 23:00 - Late @ Contra Seoul Entrance: 10,000KRW(Before 1am) / 20,000KRW(After 1am)


    Photos provided by N.O.S.
    Translation by Closet Yi



    Dave Charlesworth – The Energizer (1991) Unknown – Unknown (2012) Unknown – Unknown (1991) Dawl – Bad Trip (2019) Mr Serious – Nightmare (2017) Locked Club & RLGN – Osaka Madness (2018) Almaty – Gennaro (2018) Unknown – Unknown (2000) Locked Club – Svoboda (2018) Vladimir Dubyshkin – I Decided To Fly (2018) Tony Morales – 2 Much Booty In Tha Pants (2019) Unknown – Unknown (1997) Unknown – Unknown (1995) Tranceman 2000 – Bloodrave (2019)
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  • THE-INTL.MIX 1. Shins

    THE-INTL.MIX 1. Shins

    18.11.29 / 1888 view

    [한국어 인터뷰 읽기]
    Hi, Shins.
    It’s nice to see you here. Let us start from the question that we’ve always wanted to ask. How did you make your DJ Name?

    It’s a kind of stupid story. I’m very tall and have very big legs so my friends called me ‘Big shins’. Then when I was thinking of a DJ name, I had to think of one quickly. I thought ‘Big Shins’ sounded too childish so I decided to shorten it to ‘Shins.’

    How were your early days of DJing?

    I started DJing during my first summer living in Korea, so it was 2011. I played music mainly in Hongdae at venues like Exit bar or Freebird. Then I met Rou Set who used to play for ‘Multi’. Multi was the promotion company that came before Cakeshop and I played some of the Multi parties. When Cakeshop opened, they asked me to play at their club so I learned to play on CDJs and improved a lot. I ran 2 or 3 parties at Cakeshop for a while and even played at their opening night.

    You mainly play at Contra, Pistil, and Ain these days. Usually, what kind of music do you play?

    Those early times, I played UK bass, UK garage and all that kind of stuff. From starting like that, I moved into playing more house, techno, acid and breakbeat stuff which is much more enjoyable to me. Actually like anyone, my music taste has developed and also my DJing style has matured.

    Can you tell us how the change was?

    I like thinking about long mixes and playing for 2 or 3 hours. It’s more like one musical journey than playing many genres and mixing frequently. In the past, I just wanted to play bangers all through my sets. When you are a young DJ, you want to play the best song that makes everyone dance every time. However, it’s boring for a DJ to repeat that and also for an audience because you easily get tired physically. In the sense of making it like a journey, the energy takes people up but also brings them down so that they can stop dancing and drink or be relaxed. It sounds more grandiose than it is, but it’s kind of simple.

    You have seen the expansion and growth of the Korean music scene in recent years as an international one who plays in the local scene. We guess your perspective can be different from others.

    It’s very strange to be a foreigner DJ living in Korea. I am very much a local DJ and just someone who supports local artists and touring artists. But many Koreans think of me as a foreign DJ so I don’t get approached as often. So I do sort of sit outside of the scene while being inside the scene. I’ve watched the scene grow but also shrink recently, going backwards a little bit. But what I have noticed is many more talented people coming out. Lots of producers, designers, singers, artists across many different media. While I think the clubbing scene is a little bit difficult right now, the creative scene is really vibrant. Being a sort of foreign DJ here means I am kind of just looking at it from outside all the time and have a slightly different perspective.

    As a British, does your background influence your playing? How did it go?

    100%. I am very much a British DJ. The music that has influenced me and the scene that I grew up in was of course British. Recently I’ve been exploring acid and breakbeat and it’s either from Britain or music which is directly influenced by the British genre itself. But of course, I am also influenced by the city I’ve lived in for the last 8 years. As you hear in the mix, there are two Korean tracks. Whereas England gives me a lot of influence and source materials, Korea is giving me a different way to DJ or perspective on it.

    Can you describe it more in detail?

    In Korea, the audience doesn’t come to the club with preconceived ideas of what songs they will hear. They often don’t have as much knowledge of the genres that are being played like the typical clubber in London. So it’s liberating to be able to play music to an audience just purely to make them dance and not to be worried by whether the music is ‘cool’ enough or ‘underground’ enough. It’s freeing and allows me to have more fun when I play.

    I lived in London and it has this long history of electronic music and modern clubbing so that the British can be serious about clubbing. For example, My cousin⏤a London boy⏤was going to a real acid house raves in the 80s. When they used to wear one white glove and have a whistle, everybody was taking ecstasy. He would tell me what it was like to be going to these clubs, warehouses, and illegal raves. He inspired me to go clubbing and I understand that most Koreans don’t have access to those kinds of stories and histories and that makes a big difference. But from a different perspective, it is freer in that way.

    Tell us about two local tracks in your mix.

    The first Korean track in the mix is a track called ‘Helter Skelter’ by Two Tone Shape. Two Tone Shape is made up of two incredible young producers here in Seoul. I wanted to include their music because they are live producers. They can do a live show and they are making real club music. Not enough Korean producers have been making club music. They make nice music but not for the club whereas Two Tone Shape are doing that. This is one of my favorite tracks of this year without a doubt. This song, in particular, can be played in any type of set, regardless of genre. They have 4 or 5 good tracks that they have already released. I highly recommend them.

    The second track is by one of my good friends V!SION who is a member of Circuit Seoul. Circuit Seoul also produce music which they can play live in clubs, and which DJs want to play in their sets. There are 3 members who are all great DJs separately and also a good crew together. All of them make ravey, acidy music inspired by British rave culture and music. I like V!SION’s track because it has a rough and retro sort of feel to it. I really enjoyed his track and other tracks he produced as well.

    You are always saying you want to support local artists and underground scene. Your project ‘Nodaji’ is all about that kind of supports.

    It’s only a little project. There is a small team of us. Myself, JNS, Apromani and a designer called Jaegal Sun. We want to support local artists. I am thinking what would help the scene here is to have more friendly interactions amongst creatives. I feel there are a lot of groups of people separated by geography, personality or feelings. There’s a lot of protection. ‘I don’t want to help you because I want to help myself’. So I think if the younger generation meets regularly at parties or events like our Nodaji Show or something else, they can hear other people playing music that they’ve made. They can play their music. Designers or clothing labels can exhibit their works. So that people have an artistic community. It sounds utopian but I think it’s nothing big. Just trying to foster some community spirit. So we are gonna record the Nodaji Show once a month on Youtube playing Korean music, produced in Korea. We’re going to do a party or event once a month in different locations around the city. Cafe Idaho, possibly The Edge, Willoughby in Sangsu or Hannam or any different areas but just to highlight different parts of music or creativity in Korea.

    Supporting DJs and creators means a lot for us. However, sometimes we feel that it is hard to maintain the energy and keep doing supporting while we do our profit-making jobs so that we are amazed by your work. Why do you keep supporting in this scene? What makes you keep doing that?

    I really want to see the Korean music scene developing. There’re so much energy and fun to be had here. And young Korean artists should be looking to travel outside of Korea. For too long it seems that we invite internationals to Korea all the time to show Koreans how good clubbing is. But Korean artists are also great so we need to send them other places, to show those places how good Korea’s clubbing scene is.

    With the goal of expanding the scene here and increasing awareness of it globally, we can make it more professional so creatives can make a living doing what they love. Then in turn, just makes the scene better and more fun in that way. I just like doing it. I am not going to be making money so I am might as well just try and have fun with it.

    We asked you to make a mix because we have enjoyed your work all the times. How was the process of making the very first mix of The Intl. Mix series?

    I was extremely happy and honored that you asked me to do it. It was coincidently right as I am playing a lot more acid, breakbeat, and sort of music which fits with your brand. At recent parties, I’ve played more of it. You asked me at the perfect time. I had recently played at Contra with Airbear. We talked about the party before we played back to back. We both agreed we wanted to play breakbeat, acid, and techno. So I made a big folder, did lots of digging through my old collections, found new music and looked for stuff. I had a huge folder of relevant materials. It was such a fun party to play. Then, you asked me to make the mix. It was really fun to make.

    You changed the name of mix from ‘Welcome to acid house’ to ‘Welcome to(breakbeat &) acid house’.

    Yes. Of course, your slogan is ‘Welcome to acid house’ which made you guys famous but I think the mix series doesn’t have to be about purely acid music. My mix is not only acid but all sorts of rave music. Mainly, it is a lot of house, techno, breakbeat, and acid. So the name was the bit of a joke.

    I had a lot of fun recording it. To me, listening and dancing to acid and breakbeat music is the most fun that you can have in a club. Because it is not super serious, not so aggressive, not challenging for people. It is hard to make people dance but I have had some of my best parties with this style of music. Whether I am DJ or at a party, it makes me want to dance. If you see me around, I don’t dance often. But If I am dancing, it is something that really got me.

    The samples in the mix are interesting. Would you explain why did you use those in the mix?

    The samples at the beginning and end of the mix are from a British TV documentary called <World in Action : A trip Around Acid House> from 1988. I wanted to try to show the hysteria around the acid house scene when it came out. None of the music I play is particularly old but it is influenced by the 80s, the original sound.

    If you listen all the way to the end, there’s my favorite sample. A young girl says that their parents were all taking drugs as mods and rockers but now they are parents so they ban their children from going to acid house raves because of the drugs. But the acid house wasn’t called acid house because of the drugs, it was called acid house because of a method of copying samples from other records called acid sampling, which is not about drugs at all.

    Yes, many people took drugs at acid raves. But it wasn’t called acid because of the drug ‘acid.’ People just went ‘Oh, it’s drugs thing?’ like they always do. I thought that was kind of funny. Korea has a big clubbing scene these days and all without drugs being prevalent. That’s surprising to some people. I kind of see a parallel between the kids who were told they can’t go clubbing to acid house and Koreans in a way. They just wanted to have fun and not be told what to do. People look at the Korean scene and how crazy the parties are, and they can’t believe that there aren’t drugs involved.

    Thank you so much, Shins. It was nice to have you.

    Photos by Sung Il Kim

    Translation by Chanwoong Yoon
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