Avalon Emerson Track IDs And Dissects Her DJing At Printworks

When I uploaded my set from playing Printworks in London in April, I didn’t include a tracklist. I play a ton of my own edits, unreleased music from friends and personal digs. I knew the latter category would eventually be excavated with the help of Shazaam and the hivemind flat-map search of IoMG—but when Electronic Beats asked me to revisit this recording five months and 56,000 SoundCloud listens later, I found that the tracklists reported on MixesDB and other outlets weren’t entirely correct or complete. So let’s spot-check some personal bright spots and what I was thinking around them.

00:00: The Magnetic Fields, “I Shatter” (Merge 1999)

At the time I recorded this, I had been starting a few sets with “I Shatter” by The Magnetic Fields. I have a completist obsession with all things Stephin Merritt. I love the way his alien baritone cuts through and how it’s not outwardly rhythmic. So when I brought in the claps of the intro to my Bwana remix, the introduction of that beat logic had a bigger effect.

31:00: Shamir, “On The Regular” x An-i, “Gutz” (Cititrax 2014)

So. Many. People. Have asked me about Shamir “On The Regular” mixed with An-i’s “Gutz”. Back in 2014 XL asked me to do a remix for this new artist, Shamir. I ended up doing two that never actually ended up seeing the light of day—so it goes with remixes sometimes. Anyway, it left me with the vocal stem, which I experimented playing on top of other things. “Gutz” won the experiment for me. The reason people have misidentified it as my “Bought The Cow” remix is because I played a version of one of my actual remixes one time on NTS, so the tracklisting is there. But what you hear in this Printworks set is not something I’m calling a remix; it’s just me DJing.

34:00: Air Max ’97 x Oklou, “Like Rainbow Horse Running Through Misty Brain (Dis Fig Bootie edit)” (Not On Label 2016)

After that, continuing the cartoonishly hard distortion wall, I brought in the Dis Fig and Air Max ’97 edit of Oklou’s “Defeat”, which is called “Like Rainbow Horse Running Through Misty Brain”. I’m deeply obsessed with this melody. I think the ingeniously saccharine brightness is a beautiful contrast with the drums on the previous track from An-i.

41:30: Bleaker’s Cowboy Bebop OST “The Egg and I” Edit x Björk, “Unravel” x Pilotwings, “Congo Libre”

After a robotically straight departure from previously referenced gnarliness with “Lost Love” by Ever Vivid, I took a moment to drop the tempo about 20 beats per minute by using a conga loop from an edit Bleaker made of a cut from the Cowboy Bebop original sound track that I piggybacked with a loop of Björk’s voice from the intro of her song “Unravel”. I kept in time with the Bleaker edit while cueing up the Pilotwings’ “Congo Libre” and tried to hold everything else back when she was singing her chorus, partly because I think it sounds good—but mostly out of respect. When she finished and “Unravel” moved to its outro, I dropped in the intro tambourine break of the Pilotwings’ song. And then I could use Unravel’s organ outro with that to bring up the tempo about 15 or so beats per minute again.

51:00: Unreleased

I love playing with massively different tempo changes. It keeps things interesting to not just be stuck in one heartbeat analog. So I changed the tempo after a euphoric moment with one of my favorite unreleased songs from a friend around the 51 minute mark, which I think is so beautiful that it deserves to be played in full.

56:40: Korallreven, “Sa Sa Samoa (Elite Gymnastics Remix)”

I used the sugary outro with the synth stab intro of Elite Gymnastics’ remix of Korallreven’s “Sa Sa Samoa”, which has given me goosebumps for however many years it’s been out and I first heard it. But it’s also about 150 beats per minute, so you have to basically drop in and just go with a jungly hardcore moment.

61:00: Photek, “Complex” (Photek 1995)

I followed the Korallreven track with this classic, Photek’s “Complex”. It’s airy enough to gradually slow down and serve as a bridge into Objekt’s “Needle & Thread”. When I first walked into Printworks that day I heard someone else playing it in the main room. Sometimes songs as great as “Needle & Thread” get played twice in a night.

This was such a fun set. I felt like I could go anywhere I wanted and the crowd would stick with me. This was one of the gigs that really confirmed my decision about a year earlier to quit my day job and make music and DJing my full-time darling. Eternal gratitude crystals to all who dance and listen <3

Avalon Emerson will headline our Telekom Electronic Beats Clubnight at Galerie Kurzweil in Darmstadt on September 30. Find more information here and enter our contest for a chance to win tickets here

Read more: Galerie Kurzweil is a beautiful venue reviving Darmstadt’s clubbing golden era