It’s been busy times for the ever so productive Eric Prydz and alongside his more prominent artist persona as Eric Prydz, Eric has also made a custom of appearing under various aliases. As frequent visitors at Berghaim know it is not seldom that Eric will perform there under any of his more experimental or hardcore techno pseudonyms. The latest of this sub-brands of his persona has been dubbed Tonja Holma. Over the last two decades he’s released everything from industrial techno to progressive house under his many aliases that include Pryda and Cirez D, and and Sheridan. He’s managed to successfully traverse the delicate line between dance music’s commercial and underground scenes, making No.1 hits like ‘Call On Me’ plus seminal club anthems like ‘Pjanoo’, alongside his debut and record-breaking 2016 LP, ‘OPUS’.
After a quick listening Tonja Holma is moving Eric’s musical ambitions more into straightforward electronica, and not so much into the more streamlined techno genre. The new track Trippleton delivers a catchy electro loop that evolves with more and more beats as the track progresses – slick and sober. So after been teasing the forthcoming release last week, Eric Prydz has now dropped the four-track EP under his new Tonja Holma alias.
The self-titled EP is the first time Prydz has produced an official release under the moniker. ‘Spanish Delight’ and ‘Trippleton’ are the only tracks previously heard produced under this alias before today. Both tracks appeared exclusively on his Essential Mixes for BBC Radio 1. Prydz’s smart, funk-driven ‘Tonja’ EP is the sophomore release on his new music imprint Pryda Presents, following a stunning label debut from the notable newcomer, Cristoph. “Yes, that’s the new one. We’ve just signed Cristoph — he’s a UK-based producer from Newcastle, and I think he’s absolutely amazing. I’m really into his sound right now. He’s been doing so much good music lately and we’re super-excited and proud to have him onboard. It feels like it’s a bit of a new chapter for me and for the label, which is fun!”
Apart from releasing new material and running three labels — Mouseville, Pryda and new addition Pryda Presents — he’s now also taken on his first-ever Ibiza residency in 2017 at high-spec night-spot, Hi Ibiza. In a recent interview Eric was asked about the Ibiza venture.
You’re already well-known for your show EPIC — have you translated any of that into the show at Hi Ibiza?
“It’s a completely different template. We had to rethink everything because at the end of the day it’s a nightclub, it’s not an arena ready to accommodate 15,000 people. Hi is such a fantastic place to work within — I guess in some ways it is a mini club-version of bits of the EPIC concerts. I’m playing much longer sets at the moment, I’m playing three or three-and-a-half hours each time. I just really want people to feel like they’re stepping into a different world — the world of Eric Prydz.”
Next up is an equal treat – Ellen Allien is back with a new remix project as a spin off from Nost.
Following the triumphant release of Ellen Allien’s seventh studio album ‘Nost’, BPitch Control proudly unveil the second wave of remixes from the LP. Bringing together four more underground heroes to reinterpret Ellen’s original works, this new batch of music is diverse and brings a whole new dimension to the album project. This time around Truncate, Gerd Janson, FaltyDL and Kyoka are the cohorts who have been brought in to inject their style into three tracks from ‘Nost’.
Truncate is renowned for his remix work, hired by some of the most respected labels in the business to put his own deadly twist on a variety of productions. The LA-based powerhouse is also adept at creating his own solo cuts, carving out a sterling rep across the industry for his deep take on techno. Gerd Janson is the man who always seems to have a smile on his face, his enjoyment of music is reflected in his killer DJ sets and stellar releases. Asowner of Running BackRecords he is also responsible for A&Ring impeccable music – a man of exquisite tastes he is a welcome addition to the ‘Nost’ remix team.
FaltyDL comes at music with a soulful intent, bringing sultry vibes and authentic eclecticism to his work. There’s emotion, mystery and inventiveness with each new creation from this accomplished Ninja Tune affiliate.
Last up, Kyoka the Japanese experimental producer whose spine-tingling compositions suck you into their sparse vortex and keep you locked in. Her innate talent makes her one of the most exciting artists in her field and it’s a pleasure to have her on board. The remixes part II kicks off with Truncate’s version of ‘Innocence’, a stripped back, fidgeting interpretation that operates at a high BPM with plenty of low end.
Don’t miss out on Stereoklang’s recent interview with Kyoka: https://stereoklang.se/kyoka-interview-improvisation-provide-me-with-the-unexpected-a-thrill/
Truncate lets the beats roll out, gradually adding new elements to enhance the potency of the percussion, meanwhile the original vocal floats in and out of the background adding an air of mystery. Next up is Gerd Janson’s take on ‘Call Me’, summoning breaks and dirty synth stabs from the early nineties it’s a rambunctious affair which completely deconstructs the original. This is one conjures up images of a sweat-fuelled warehouse rave with strobes lighting up a packed dancefloor.
Gerd’s all-out rave remix is counterposed with FaltyDL’s contemplative reconstruction of ‘Erdmond’ which works from a two-step beat, with a deep meditative atmosphere. The overall feel is that of early dubstep, the kind of measured,sub bass powered music that was prevalent in the UK circa 2005.
Lastly, Kyoka demonstrates her prowess with a luscious, twisted incarnation of ‘Call Me’. The vocals are warped and indecipherable, the bass is menacing and the beats woozy and lethargic. A special end to a very special EP that showcases the breadth of techno and its influences, while paying homage to Ellen’s stunning album.
On the album Nost: Ellen Allien is back with an alchemy and magic-inspired new video for “Mind Journey”. The track is taken from her seventh solo album Nost, released earlier this year on her own imprint BPitch Control. It sees Allien team up again with long-standing creative collaborator Kieran Behan and an all-female cast and crew that worked actively on the visual aspects of the video. Pallid lighting and disorienting editing effects give the video a trippy, albeit playful feel. Ellen describes the track as exploring the sensations of “a body journey — feeling the water on your skin while dancing.”
Finally here’s a little bonus for all you experimentalists out there Koichi Shimizu.
The difference is wildly spreading in thin red lines of flight, swerving clinamen forming groaning roots of sounds, shaking the soil deep down below, sparking clicking beams of ionizing fireflies. Tangled growth of warping vines are trailing fickle melodies and repetitions through the undergrowth, gently thrusting trunks roar globular clusters into super-sonic implosion. A trailing flute wafts a seducing melody infrathin – the 1st track “Oriens” is an interstellar jungle book, setting the tone and style carrying over to the 2nd track “Rumble” but on changed stages.
A ronin behemoth rumbling through the barren veldt. A stoic march, rattling zaps of energetic noise swashing out of its portruding harness. All across the sky flashing darts of lightning bleeps brighten serene choirs of melting ozone layers, the atmosphere swells as space slowly folds vast a conical super-structure of iridescent metal shimmering heat pulsating waves of gaseous sough and astral projection:
A soft screaming comes across the sky. It has happened before, but there is nothing to compare it to now.
Holotone is the new Berlin-based label, conceived by Daniele Antezza (aka Inner8), half of the influential duo Dadub andcofounder of the Artefacts Mastering Studio.