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Five Minutes at EM15: Pinch Discusses Collaboration, His Musical Evolution, and America's Misunderstanding of Dubstep

In purely musical terms, MUTEK has been most closely associated with techno and the more experimental end of the electronic spectrum during its 15-year run, but its palette has undoubtedly widened a bit over the past few years. That trend continued with last week's EM15 festivities, which welcomed a rather diverse array of electronic acts to Montreal. Our complete festival rundown can be found here, but we also took the time to speak with some of our favorite artists on the bill. One of them was UK dubstep stalwart Pinch (a.k.a. Rob Ellis); a few years ago, he might not have made sense on a MUTEK line-up, but the evolution of both the festival and his own musical proclivities allowed the two to happily meet in the middle. We discussed this with Ellis, and also got him talking about dubstep—and America's misunderstanding of it—his two labels, his penchant for collaboration, and his upcoming mix CD with fellow UK producer Mumdance. Read more » 

Five Minutes at Primavera Sound: John Talabot Talks Disco, Barcelona, and the Joy of Running a Record Label

During the course of Barcelona's Primavera Sound festival, John Talabot was at the helm of a showcase for his fast-growing Hivern Discs label, which presented a nine-hour stretch of DJ and live sets from the imprint's inner circle that ultimately stood as one of the weekend's highlights. (Our full review can be read here). Following his early set in the Bowers & Wilkins + Boiler Room tent on the festival's closing night, we caught up with the Barcelona DJ/producer to chat for a few minutes about his disco-heavy set, his plans for the Hivern Discs label, and what it's like to have an event like Primavera in his hometown. Read more » 

Hi-Five: Mark Barrott Digs into His Archives and Shares Some of His Favorite Balearic Gems

Earlier this week, Mark Barrott released a new full-length, Sketches from an Island. Recorded in his adopted home of Ibiza—the British producer previously resided in Punta del Este, Uruguay, where he founded his International Feel label—the album compiles tracks from two previous Sketches from an Island EPs, both of which were limited-edition, vinyl-only offerings. Barrott's music channels the relaxed, sunny spirit of classic Balearic sounds, yet his tracks can't be boiled to a single genre tag. Simply put, Balearic is something that ultimately boils down to a vibe, and Barrott has proven himself to be something of an expert. As such, we figured that he would be an excellent candidate for our Hi-Five series, and coaxed him into sharing a few of his favorite cuts. Read more » 

Five Minutes at EM15: Richie Hawtin Talks MUTEK, ENTER., and Canadian Techno

Last week, XLR8R made its annual trek to Montreal for MUTEK, which this year teamed up with the organizers from Elektra to deliver a six-day festival called EM15. Our official review detailed the week's high points, but during our down time, we also took the opportunity to speak with a couple of the festival's artists. As it turned out, our first conversation was with Canadian techno veteran Richie Hawtin, who actually performed twice during his time at EM15. Our conversation was brief, but we still managed to touch upon Hawtin's history with MUTEK, the challenge of bringing his ENTER. club night to a festival environment, and why he thinks that Canada has proven to be such a fertile place for techno. Read more » 

Five Minutes at Primavera Sound: Fort Romeau Talks Barcelona, Robert Johnson, and His Plans for an LP

Over the weekend, XLR8R made the trip to Barcelona for Primavera Sound, an indie-leaning festival which had nonetheless compiled an impressive roster of electronic talents for the 2014 edition of the annual event—most of which who took to the decks attached to a custom sound system specially put together for Primavera by British speaker designers Bowers & Wilkins. (Our full review of the festival can be read here.) On the festival's opening night, budding London DJ/producer Fort Romeau laid down an exceptional set in the Bowers & Wilkins + Boiler Room tent, but before then, we convinced the Ghostly affiliate to sit down for a quick chat, during which he discussed why it pays to take risks as a DJ, his recent EP for the live at Robert Johnson label, and the complications he's currently facing in crafting his debut LP. Read more » 

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