This past week has been a bit of a challenge for me in one way or another but, as ever, music has kept me going through it all. I still have a pile of new material to get through as well as some rather interesting old releases including several albums of library music from the 1970s, a few more Sun Ra LPs for my ever expanding collection and a rather superb 20 disc box set of rare UK psychedelia and freakbeat tracks. But, despite all of this I have found myself turning back to the work of Miles Whittaker and Sean Canty time after time.
If it were possible to wear out mp3s like vinyl then I'm sure I'd have replaced my Demdike Stare albums at least a couple of times now, such is the frequency at which they are played. It's unlikely that there will be any new material with us this year after the completion of the Elemental series and their other activities so I began to wonder if they'd done any mixes to bolster my catalogue. After an hour of searching, I was surprised to learn that there are no fewer than seven mixes/podcasts which are all available for free in various places online and duly downloaded each of them.
As these sessions were all given away free, I decided to reference them in a single location to make their discovery and acquisition a little more straightforward. To my knowledge they have never been issued as official releases so hopefully I'm not contravening any copyright laws by sharing them here. If anyone connected with the production of these mixes thinks otherwise then please contact me directly and I will remove them immediately.
The six downloads presented here are as follows;
Moving Metals - Issued by Modern Love records in 2009
FACT Mix 151 - Issued by FACT magazine in 2010
Unsound Podcast - Issued by Unsound in 2010
XLR8R Podcast - Issued by XLR8R in 2011
Irrational Advice - Issued by Modern Love records in 2011
Needle Exchange Mix 053 - Issued by Self-Titled Daily magazine in 2011
PlayGround Mix 066 - Issued by PlayGround magazine in 2012
I won't provide my usual descriptions here as I think you have a good idea what you're getting into if you've continued reading this far. Suffice to say that each session is a combination of Demdike Stare tracks and textures mixed with a variety of source materials covering drone, electronics, jazz, progressive rock, library music and much more besides. It's a testament to Miles and Sean's skills as producers/arrangers that the finished pieces are every bit as good as their studio output and contain some extremely forward thinking music which, even as an aficionado of outré sounds had me reaching for my iPad frequently to look up tracks.
It's also worth mentioning that only a few of these sessions have a proper tracklist (which can be found under the 'Lyrics' tab) but this shouldn't be a barrier to your enjoyment. Also, artwork was either non existent or too small in size for my use (with the exception of Irrational Advice) so I decided to create my own using a generic template featuring the Demdike Stare skull logo.
I hope a few of these mixes are new to you too and that they serve to tide you over until the next official Demdike Stare emission is with us. If anyone knows of any other mixes/sessions/podcasts out there which are freely available then please let me know and I'll keep this page updated.