15 May 2005


Yay!! A genuine unknown bedroom DJ comes forward, humbly offers me one of his mixes - and it sounds great! Emoticon aka Ben Thomson is a 19-year old student at Leeds Uni. (although he's actually from London) and has only been DJing for a couple of years.

I'll let Ben explain the rest for himself:

"After seeing that you're open to newer drum and bass after checking the mix that you put on your site a few Sundays ago, I thought I'd try my hand at doing one myself. This is coming from a slightly different angle - glitchier and slightly more minimal at the start, ending up darker but a bit more traditional. The first tune isn't d'n'b, but I really like it and thought it'd mix well with "Twitchy Droid Leg", so here it is..."

Download Emoticon's "Snap Crackle & Pop" Mix (dead link)


1. Static - Three Nicotine cigarettes (City Centre Offices)
2. Sileni - Twitchy Droid Leg (Offshore)
3. Polar - Mind of a Killer [remix] (Certificate 18)
4. oS - 808 (Cymbalism)
5. Deep Blue - Immersion (31 Records)
6. Mav - The Tubes (Offshore)
7. Breakage - Spiritualism (Breakin)
8. Seba - Inside Your Mind (Secret Operations)
9. Cartridge - Light Cycles (Freak)

Personally, I think Ben's come up with a nicely-paced selection of interesting tunes that develops well over it 35 minute length. The opening non-d'n'b track from German IDM artist Static sends me hurtling back to mid-90s'intelligent' melodicism before the journey into tricky electro-fried abstraction begins in earnest. Some of these cuts put me in mind of Four Hero around the time of their Jacob's Optical Stairway period, combining crisp drum programming with luxurious synth-textures and sweeping, almost Detroitish strings. Then around the 20 minute mark, the mix locks into a harder breakbeat direction (care of Breakage) and takes-off on a mighty adrenalin rush. Music for the mind, body and soul! Makes me wonder what else I'm missing in the d'n'b scene. The lad's done good, and I wish him well for the future. Being a student, I'm sure he could use the odd paying-gig, so if anyone wants to hire him, here's his e-mail address. You'll probably also bump into Emoticon if you're a regular at the Subvert Central forum or Inperspective's Technicality night. Rrrrespec'...