Special Broadcast: Mystec FM Volume 3

Due to the fact that we are a week away from Christmas and I’ve just started remembering all the things I have still to do, I’ve given Friday Night Tune a holiday this week to make room for the last volume of Mystec FM. In a break with tradition I’m offering up both sides of the tape – AT THE SAME BLOOMING TIME! – as a special Yule tide treat to you all. FNT tune will probably be back next week with my tune of the year – if I can actually think of one.

For those of you who have listened to, or downloaded, these tapes, I hope you enjoyed them. For some of us they were an important reminder of a formative time in our appreciation of electronic music, an era when influences and tastes were still being formed. For those of you who there either as part of the Glasgow scene or in a larger, more general sense, I hope you have enjoyed the music for what it is.

This is the last of the tapes. I’ll have a look through some bags and see what we come up with. Probably not much. I have a vague feeling there is one more Mystec FM recording hidden but I do not have even the faintest idea where. Volume three rounds us of with DJ Oral up first on side A followed by, actually I’m not sure who, on the B. It’s possibly Goodhand, but it might also be this mysterious Joe Nick mentions at the start. Deep techno, breakbeat and lots of acid. Class stuff. As with the other tapes, this would have been recorded in 1997. Sound quality is a little bit crackly but still pretty good for it’s age. I’ve cut the last five minutes of Side B because I think someone stopped recording at that point and remembered to start again just as the next show was beginning. It’s a bit messy. Probably my fault. Here are the links. Enjoy. And remember kids: Acid house is for life, not just for Christmas!

Side A:

Side B:

Special Broadcast: DJ Brainstorm – Puffin’ and Pantin’ Side B

Here’s the second part of the Puffin’ and Pantin’ tape for your listening pleasure. For my money this one is even better than the first. It’s somehow darker and harder, and in its own way it epitomises the ethos of ‘dirty, nasty beats’ which informed so much of what Mystec tried to do, as well as being the thread, the common factor, which has pretty much drawn together all the house music I have loved over the years.

Just as the Club 69 tape – along with a couple of others – I put up a few weeks ago helped to define what I still, now, think of as quality techno, Puffin’ and Pantin’ helped me do the same thing with house music. The main difference between the two is that when I first heard the Club 69 one I already had a lot of techno under my belt so the general effect was a gentle nudging in a certain direction; I might not have known what a lot of the tunes were at the time (and I still don’t, in fact), but I was already very familiar with the music in a wider sense. Much the same is true for other tapes I had. Derrick May’s ‘Live at the Technodrome’, which is of a similar age to this one, contained a lot of music I knew to a greater or lesser extent, but what knocked me for six was the mixing. I don’t think I had ever heard someone do anything like that before. It was a revelation. Even now it takes my breath away.

When I first heard Puffin’ and Pantin’, though, I was pretty new to it all, house music especially. Even though I had heard more than a little acid house by that point, and a lot of techno (particularly from Detroit) what was lacking was some sort of context. Puffin’ and Pantin’ provided this in spades. I can’t claim that there was a road to Damascus style conversion there and then because the truth is it took me a little while to get what was going on. We always tend to put house and techno together, believing them to be two sides of the same coin when, in fact, this isn’t necessarily the case. This was house music of a sort I had never really been exposed to before. It seemed darker than the techno I had been listening to, darker and far more upfront about what it was. It seemed to swirl instead of stomp, and it took great delight in the raw physicality of the music. Eventually something in my head clicked and that was that. Even now, when I hear new house music, Puffin’ and Pantin’ is the yardstick I use to measure my response.

Anyway, here’s the mix. There isn’t a lot more to come from my archives I’m afraid. I have a single volume of Mystec FM to go, but I’ll maybe save that one for the holidays. Here’s Puffin’ and Pantin’ Side B. I hope you enjoy it.

Special Broadcast: DJ Brainstorm – Puffin’ and Pantin’ Side A

Alright now, here is a real, proper treat. My collection of mix tapes is pretty small these days. I’ve lost far more than I have now to a combination of natural wastage (overplayed tapes wrapping themselves unsalvageably through the mechanisms of cheap-assed Walkmans being the most typical form of death), of loss, of – in a couple of occasions – theft. Once or twice they died in more dramatic circumstances; I had an absolute corker of a Richie Hawtin tape that died in a car crash for example.

Of those I have left – a combination of those bought in record stores back in the day, taped off the radio or, like this one, handed on across many people from the source – Puffin’ and Pantin’, alongside the Club 69/Rubadub tape I put up a few weeks ago, one of the real, genuine treasures. I’ll talk more about why it’s so special to me when I put the B-side up in the near future (probably next week or one after. With so few left I have this need to ration them out), so in the meantime I’ll limit myself to the few facts I know about it.

My copy of Puffin’ and Pantin’ has been in my collection since the mid nineties, probably 94, 95 or so – pre-dating my move to Glasgow by a couple of years. The mix itself is courtesy of DJ Brainstorm, the main mover of Edinburgh’s legendary Pure alongside JD Twitch. I only ever made it to Pure at its Edinburgh home on one occasion, towards the end of its time (although I did get to a few of their big parties at the Barrowlands in Glasgow) so I’m probably not the best person to talk about it, but there is a pretty good write-up on the place, and what it all meant, right here.

As for the mix. Well, it’s just silly how good it still is. Sultry, deep and acidic, and a world away from so much of the safe, bland house that defines the scene these days, it bubbles with the dirty, nasty energy that the title defines. When I first heard it, so many of the tracks were exotic and mysterious. Nowadays I know many of them like the back of my hand. DHS, Ralphi Rosario, DJ Pierre and the Yeastie Girls all make their presence felt – ignore the momentary interlude during You Suck – Julie, you know what I’m talking about…

My copy of the tape is over 20 years old, and was God knows how many generations old when I got my hand on it. The mix itself was recorded pre-95 I think, and might even date from as far back as 92 or 93. The sound quality, therefore, is pretty much as you would expect. I have made no attempt to freshen it up. In its own way the quality and the tape hiss have become almost as important to me over the years as the music, part of the package, the fabric, and the memories. It’s a fairly quiet recording, so bang the volume of your favourite player up and let it rip.

Please enjoy it. It’s a monster. Oh yeah, one more thing to say. If you like the A side, wait until you hear other one….

Here’s the link:

Pattern Burst Special Broadcast: Mystec FM Volume 2 – Side 2

Here’s the B-side from Mystec FM volume 2 for your listening pleasures. It’s another hour of quality tunage taken from the run up to the actual club night, but this time it rolls in a slightly different way, eschewing a lot of the usual house for a deeper, more techno based vibe that broadens out into breakbeat, electro and the occasional ever so slightly trancey number. It’s a good reminder, even for those of us who were there, that Mystec was always a club that could confound expectations with the DJs frequently slipping something in under the radar that could subtlety and irrevocably alter the musical course of the night to devastating effect.

For myself, Mystec was the place that taught me a crazy amount about music. It was probably here that I first heard Aux 88 and Drexciya played back to back with what now seems a breathtakingly wide selection of early house tunes that I can’t remember hearing in too many other places, and it cemented the idea that the differences between house, electro, techno and a host of other genres were – and are – really only skin deep.

DJ Oral on mixing duties here. Shout outs and grade A nonsense from Nick and Craig.

For those who are still interested there is one more Mystec FM tape left in this run, plus that insane DJ Brainstorm one. After those I’ll try to get some other material up. There’s more stuff out there I’ll try to get my hands on. I’ve been away on a wee trip north over the last few days, and was hoping to find my copy of the long-lost Sacred Beatz tape but alas I reckon that one’s gone west. And that’s a real shame because it really was a special mix, one of the foundation lessons in our education of techno.

In the new year I’ll see about getting some freshly commissioned mixes up and running in a dual attempt to get my money’s worth out of my Soundcloud account, and boost my credibility. Who knows what’ll happen? Bugger all, probably, but it’ll be fun finding out.

Anyways, Here’s the link:

Pattern Burst Special Broadcast: Mystec FM Volume 2 – Side A

The second part of the Mystec FM files follows on from Wilba’s outstanding Rubadub Radio/Club 69 tape. This is a different beast in terms of style but some of the tunes are familiar from both. What can you say? A Glasgow classic is a Glasgow classic.

This tape dates from the beginning of March, 1997, and features Goodhand on the decks with added nonsense and shout outs courtesy of Nick. Once again, it’s a totally brilliant choice of tunes by the Mystec resident, running between classic house, techno, electro and more IDMy pieces, and gives another excellent example of what you could expect from the club.

This one was recorded on a C-120, rather than the usual 90 minute tapes, so it should be nearly the whole show (when you add in the B side). As usual, it’s presented as is, with no fancy editing going on. Not that it really needs any as the tape quality is suprisingly good.

As an interesting aside, this was taped on the evening Sub City and Radio One were doing some sort of weird student radio crossover thing. The upshot of this was that Mystec FM than night was announced by none other than the legendary John Peel with the words ‘and next up is Mystec FM….whatever that is…’ Alas, I missed hitting the record button in time, so that little nugget of music history is lost to posterity. It doesn’t matter, it’s still a great hour of tunage.

I’ve finally given Soundcloud some hard cash so I’ve got a shiny new Unlimited Pro account for the next few months. The immediate benefit is that downloads are re-enabled for the first part of the ’69 DJs’ tape. I’ve also put Mystec FM Vol 1 Side A back up. I had to take this down due to lack of space on the free account, but it’s been restored now. DJ Oral on the decks. More quality from the distant past.

Anyway, here’s the music.Expect the second part soon(ish) Enjoy.