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Podcast 289: DJ Qu

DJ Qu is not a flashy artist. Though the New Jersey native is essentially a house-music lifer—he detailed his early days as a house dancer in our Bubblin' Up feature a couple of years back—he continues to quietly go about his business, DJing around the globe and releasing a steady stream of quality deep house, mostly via his own Strength Music imprint. Gymnastics, his first and only full-length, dropped back in 2011, and although 2012 saw a handful of new records from Qu, we nonetheless found ourselves wondering where his creative head was at these days, which is why we invited him to put together an exclusive mix for the XLR8R podcast series. Read more » 

Podcast 288: Mark E

Mark E is remarkably consistent artist, one of those guys who quietly releases at least a few records each year; they may never be flashy or over the top, but they're always full of solid tunes. Given that, it's easy to overlook his catalog, even after nearly a decade of releases and a discography that contains efforts for top-notch labels like Spectral Sound, Running Back, and Golf Channel, not to mention the numerous outings on his own Merc imprint. As if all of his solo activity wasn't enough, last year saw the launch of his Project E collaboration with keyboardist Nat Woodcock, which most recently yielded the Kinks EP. Clearly, Mark E is a busy man, so when an opportunity arose for him to put together an exclusive mix for the XLR8R podcast series, we were quick to jump on it. Read more » 

Podcast 287: Bobby Champs

Like many members of the UK's current crop of up-and-coming producers, Bobby Champs has a style that's hard to pin down. Falling somewhere between house, techno, and the increasingly nebulous terrain of bass music, his tunes are frequently marked by their propulsive drive and chunky low end. After making a splash in 2012 with releases such as Moonlight, Drag Queen, and the Steve Martin EP, the young, Brighton-based beatmaker recently kicked off his 2013 with a four-track effort for the excellently curated West Norwood Cassette Library imprint. Arguably Champs' finest release to date, the record indicates that he's poised to do big things in the months and years ahead, which is why we've enlisted him to put together a mix for the XLR8R podcast series. Read more » 

Podcast 286: Nautiluss

Over the past year, XLR8R's love affair with all things Nautiluss (a.k.a. Graham Bertie) has been plainly visible to anyone paying even a modicum of attention to our coverage. After all, we gave his αlpha and Habitat EPs glowing reviews—the latter eventually nabbed the #15 slot on our list of the Best Releases of 2012—and we also labeled the Toronto-based producer as one of the year's Best New Artists. Now, the same week that Nautiluss is slated to perform at the XLR8R-sponsored Icee Hot SXSW Showcase, we've invited him to put together the latest installment of our weekly podcast series. Read more » 

Podcast 285: Versalife

Boris Bunnik is a man of many talents, and perhaps more notably, many names. Over the past several years, the Dutch producer has turned out a steady stream of quality music while operating under a number of monikers, including Conforce, Hexagon, and Versalife, amongst others. While all of his projects vary somewhat, Bunnik can always be counted upon to mine vintage electro for inspiration, a trend that continues on his first Versalife full-length, Vantage Point, which drops this week via Clone West Coast Series. Given the occasion, we invited Bunnik to put together an exclusive mix for the XLR8R podcast series. Read more » 

Podcast 284: Locked Groove

Although it certainly wasn't our intention, it appears that XLR8R is currently in the midst of a week-long celebration of all things Locked Groove. Just yesterday, we tabbed his excellent new EP, Heritage, as an XLR8R pick, and followed that up by posting an exclusive stream of the whole record. As if that wasn't enough, the Belgian producer, born Tim Van de Meutter, has now put together a new mix for our podcast series. Read more » 

Podcast 283: Benjamin Damage

Over the past few years, Welsh producer Benjamin Damage (a.k.a. Benjamin O'Shea) has been involved in a lot of quality music, yet it seems like he hasn't quite received his proper due, most likely because he's best known for producing in tandem with others. Back in 2010, he teamed up with Venom on "Deeper," the inaugural release from Doc Daneeka's Ten Thousand Yen label. And although that particular partnership didn't continue, Damage did find a kindred spirit in Daneeka, with whom he produced the stellar "Creeper" b/w "Infamous" single in 2011. At the behest of Modeselektor, the pair then relocated to Berlin and turned out a full-length debut, They!Live, which thrust the two producers properly into the spotlight. (Shortly thereafter, the duo also put together an excellent XLR8R podcast.) Now, more than a year after the release of They!Live, Benjamin Damage is fully stepping out on his own, following last year's "Swarm" b/w "Headache" single with a solo full-length, Heliosphere. The album drops later this week, so we figured it would also be a good time for Damage to go it alone on the DJ front and put together a mix for our podcast series. Read more » 

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