Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Scratch It!

Having provided a platform for collaboration between Finnish VJs the Vixen VJs and myself, DJ Uraki Riddim, for the first Transplant Session we decided to go for a similar music and visual combination for Session # 2. Instead of a typical VJ and DJ set-up however, we took influence from an era of hip-hop that produced movements of not only music but dance, art and fashion. Our second session explored the history of the 'Scratch' and intended to reinterpret it's raw essence in a new format. Scratching in a musical sense, is the expression and manipulation of records to make new sounds and rhythms. It is an aspect of turntabilsm, performance DJing, and one of hip-hop's art forms. Other hip-hop art forms include break dancing, street art and MCing. Regular jam sessions brought these four art forms together and it is in this spirit that designer, artist and my work colleague Jan Brauer and I came together to create the 'Scratch' themed night that included an exclusive showing of Doug Pray's excellent documentary film 'Scratch' and first public showcase of Jan Brauer utilizing his scratch board technique live while I spun some classic and new hip-hop, electronica and dub beats.

Hailing originally from near Leipzig and following a working period in New York, Brauer moved to Dale I Sunnfjord on the west coast of Norway to work with Ralston&Bau design studio and Trasnplant's innovation and design center. For the duration of his stay he has attentively developed a unique scratch board technique to further communicate his deep, twisted and occasionally wicked humorous illustrative style. You can check out some images of the stunning final scratch board piece from this night and some of his other work's here. Brauer is also part of a mobile, playful and provocative graphic collective named Gono Gono and you can check out some of their works here.
Photo: Jan Brauer at work during Transplant Sessions #2 by Leon Vaarheim.

Monday, May 18, 2009


I was in Bergen a few weeks ago for The Fix party at USF Verftet, created by the people behind Ekkofest as part of Bergenfest. It was a strong line-up (featuring acts like Flying Lotus and Gang Gang Dance) for such a compact event and I was impressed enough by the party to write an article for Resident Advisor magazine.

Bergen is quite a small sized city compared to similar central European destinations but, it makes up for this with a core of cultural and nightlife activity from the heart of the city. While the venue for The Fix was a little away from the center, toward the end of the port, the walk was only about 15 minutes long from the main buss station. The actual venue, USF Verftet, is a former Sardine factory and provided an interesting array of cavernous passageways to mostly low ceiling rooms. Other places worth checking out in Bergen include Cafe Opera where you can enjoy a coffee while people watching during the day and get down to some of the cities finest djs every Friday and Saturday. I'll be back to Bergen soon, where I hope to find out a lot more about the city, it's people and it's artsy goings on. Until then I'd recommend booking a trip for September's Ekkofest which, promises to bring an exciting batch of electronic acts to a charming, cute and compact city.
Photo: Gang Gang Dance at The Fix by Asle.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Fix - Resident Advisor article

I just got an article about The Fix party in Bergen published on Resident Advisor. You can read the review and leave any comments here. Resident Advisor have a couple of interesting parties coming up during Sonar week (June 18th - 21st) in Barcelona including acts like micro house pioneer Akufen alongside recent RA podcast contributers Thomas Brinkmann and Jus-Ed. The first part of the party is an invite only pool party but, things will heat up and open up regarding the door policy in the evening when RA takeover the newly refurbished Boulevard Culture Club, formerly Fellini. As well as some great parties it will be a great week for new music from the past year and an exciting look into the future so expect some exotic photos of long nights, short days and words about what went down pronto.

Monday, May 4, 2009


"Everything is fluid. Styles change, materials change but, people don't"
Paula Scher, designer and Pentagram director