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Get Familiar: Gang of Ducks

In the rapidly evolving world of electronic music, it's all but impossible to keep track of every new artist, label, party, and genre. At the same time, certain names will inevitably pop up again and again at the XLR8R office, some of which we've only given passing mention to on the site. In an effort to get our readers up to speed with some of the things—both new and old—that we've been digging lately, we recently launched a new feature series called 'Get Familiar,' which aims to shine a spotlight on subjects we think are worthy of a little more attention.

Italy's Gang Of Ducks is difficult to pin down in pretty much all regards. More of a loose artistic collective with a record-releasing arm than a straightforward label, the group revels in anonymity (its emails are signed as simply being from "one of the ducks"), has no firm geographical base, and decorates its release covers with mysterious, hand-drawn symbols. Read more » 

Pachanga, Pantha du Prince, and a Japanese Drone Dance: 10 Reasons We Loved MUTEK.MX 2014

XLR8R goes to a lot of festivals throughout the year, and although we enjoy the majority of them, there's no denying that a select few get us a little more excited than the rest. For instance, MUTEK in Montreal is an event we've been attending—and generally loving—for as long as we can remember, but it's only in the past few years that the festival's Mexican arm, MUTEK.MX, has invited us to come down and check out its spin on things. Read more » 

Get Familiar: K15

In the rapidly evolving world of electronic music, it's all but impossible to keep track of every new artist, label, party, and genre. At the same time, certain names will inevitably pop up again and again at the XLR8R office, some of which we've only given passing mention to on the site. In an effort to get our readers up to speed with some of the things—both new and old—that we've been digging lately, we recently launched a new feature series called 'Get Familiar,' which aims to shine a spotlight on subjects we think are worthy of a little more attention.

London producer K15 (a.k.a. Kieron Ifill) has created one of the best closing tracks in recent memory. "Yellow" and its bittersweet piano wrapped up Funkineven's XLR8R podcast back in June, the Apron boss has also played the track on BBC1, and now, it's set to drop in early November as part of the five-track Insecurities EP, a double 12" on Kyle Hall's Wild Oats label. Granted, Hall has been supporting Ifill's tracks for a while now, even sending the producer video of crowds reacting to the EP's pensive, pad-heavy titular cut. Read more » 

Real Talk: Hieroglyphic Being on His Unorthodox DJ Style, Muscle Mirroring, and Why the Whole Thing Is a Big Cosmic Joke

'Real Talk' is a series of artist-penned essays that appears on XLR8R from time to time, and our latest missive comes from Hieroglyphic Being (a.k.a. Jamal Moss), who we asked to comment on some of the controversy that's sprung up in recent months surrounding his unique approach to DJing. Fresh off the release of his The Seer of Cosmic Visions collection via Planet Mu, Moss graciously agreed to tackle the issue, and also used the opportunity to talk about some of his history and influences and how they've come to shape his current artistic outlook.

XLR8R has asked me to write an essay "In Defense of My DJ Style," noting there has been some commotion lately about my "unorthodox" DJ Style. Read more » 

Getting Down, Biking Around, and Reveling in the Final Days of Trouw: Reflections on ADE 2014

Last week, XLR8R once again headed to The Netherlands to partake in the annual Amsterdam Dance Event, better known simply as ADE. This was our fourth year in attendance, and at this point, it's difficult to explain just how big ADE has become. Unlike many of the events and festivals that XLR8R covers, ADE is not some niche event targeting a specific fragment of the electronic sphere. The Amsterdam Dance Event is a behemoth, an industry conference with a huge focus on the business of electronic music, which is why its daytime schedule offers up an extensive array of panels, workshops, lectures, and product demonstrations. (Meetings are also an essential piece of the puzzle, particularly for those looking to make deals and/or network.) Luckily for those in attendance, ADE also can be relied upon to present a wide variety of parties (something to the tune of 20 to 40 per night), a handful of which feature some pretty incredible line-ups. Over the course of five days and (very long) nights, we did our best to hit as many of these parties as possible, and jotted down a few notes along the way. Now that the festivities have come to a close, we wanted to share a few of our reflections after what proved to be a very intense week in Amsterdam. Read more » 

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