edIT Takes IDM to the Dancefloor

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Edward “edIT” Ma has a couple different explanations for what his new album, Certified Air Raid Material (Alpha Pup), is really about: “The name is derived from the idea that I’m dropping bombs on the dancefloor with every track,” he offers. “Since this music is a physical audio experience, it is best experienced in a club with a killer soundsystem, and a club ain’t hoppin’ without a good crowd… This album is really dancefloor music for the people to rock out to.”

Version two gets a little more technical: “The beats are really raw,” he says of his instrumental workouts and collaborations with Busdriver, TTC, and The Grouch. “The album is presented in a format that caters to DJs to essentially rip the CD and play it in Serato,” he adds.

edIT may be a new name on the scene, but Ma is no greenhorn. Originally known as Conartist, Ma has thrived on the DJ circuit for much of the past decade. He was a resident at the gone-but-not-forgotten junglist/hip-hop haven Konkrete Jungle, hosted shows on Dublab Radio, and produced beats for Busdriver’s Temporary Forever and Sole’s Uck Rt. Switching his name to edIT, he made his debut album, Crying Over Pros for No Reason, for Planet Mu in 2004. It was, in edIT’s words, “an attempt to make an electronic/hip-hop album, but in a really mellow vein. It’s all just shoegazer indie-rock elements mixed with hip-hop beats and electronic/glitch-hop sounds.”

Crying Over Pros for No Reason might be an anomaly in his catalog, so for a truer edIT experience, check out his free online mix commissioned for Hefty Records’ 10th anniversary last year, where he spliced sounds from Slicker and Telefon Tel Aviv with the familiar rhymes of E-40 and Mike Jones. Or you could just listen closely to the TV–Ma, who works for advertising agency Face the Music, has composed TV-commercial soundtracks for Mercedes-Benz and Burger King.

edIT may be precariously positioned at the crossroads between esoteric strains of dance music and catchy club beats, but he’s got back-up from the Glitch Mob. The DJ crew–formed with Ma’s friends Josh “Ooah” Mayer, Justin Boreta, and Matthew “Kraddy” Kratz–is known for rocking large, populist festivals (including Burning Man, Nocturnal Wonderland, and Pop Montreal) with their live tag-team sets, which blend crunk, hyphy, nu-breaks, and glitch together in unexpected combinations. The outfit has recently launched its own label, Glitch Mob Unlimited, to further their experiments in musical cross-pollination. “The main thing that people can get from it,” says edIT, “is that it’s just dope dance music.”