The holiday season is upon us. For many of us that translates into a lot of spare time on our hands. Never a better time to dust the collection off and take it for a spin. In the spirit of New Year and new discoveries, here’s a list highlighting the wide range of sounds covered in 2016’s reissues. Quirky post-punk fun, drones that dive into the abyss, ethereal musical shrines and more – you’re sure to find something worthy of an addition to your collection.
For the second entry of our Mix Series, Josh Cheon pays tribute to the artists who lost their lives in the recent Oakland warehouse fire, spotlighting some of their music in a special mix.
Most of you will have heard of Josh Cheon. Head honcho of revered label Dark Entries and part of the Honey Soundsystem DJ squad, to say he’s busy is quite the understatement. In between gigs, Cheon still manages to hold on to a day job as a research associate in a biochemistry lab. Short of possibly having concocted a secret superpower potion at Blackburn Labs that he’d no doubt have put to good use, one has to wonder, just how does this master juggler do it all?
“I like to stay busy. I blame my mom, who held three jobs, raised three kids on her own and still found time for herself as well.” Cheon explains: “Working at the lab is breathing room for my mind (from music) and it’s an extremely flexible situation schedule-wise. I can run errands for Dark Entries during my lunch break or skip it altogether and take care of shipments instead. Honey Soundsystem gigs vary throughout the year, so some months I have three weekends of travel in a row and at other times only a weekend away.”
This week, in addition to taking time out of his busy schedule to put something together for our Mix Series, Cheon also takes a moment to remember the victims of the Ghost Ship warehouse fire that took place on December 2, 2016 in Oakland, California. For Cheon, a Bay Area resident, this was a tragedy that hit close to home. Not only were some of the deceased known personally to him, he was also actively involved with recent fundraising efforts held in their honor.
“The last 30 minutes of this mix were quickly assembled a few days after the tragic fire. It features music created by some of the 36 deceased artists.” Cheon adds: “These talented musicians were at the top of their game, reaching for new heights, using sounds to transport the listener to another space and time.”
Included in the last half-hour segment are songs by Barrett Clark (RMS, POLAR), Joseph Matlock aka Joey Casio (Uncanny Valley, Obsidian Blade), Brandon Chase Wittenauer aka Nex Iuguolo (Symbiotix Fungi), Travis Hough (Ghosts of Lightning), Ben Runnels & Denalda Nicole Renae (Introflirt), Cash Askew (Them Are Us Too), Chelsea Faith Dolan (Cherushii), Johnny Igaz (Nackt).
“A huge hole of creativity has been left by this sudden loss of life and it’s our job to keep the music of these fallen angels alive. RIP.”
Photo credits: Marinka Grondel