The weather outside is scorching and BFTT has sorted our summer with one very naughty Tech House Summer playlist.
As a mixing wizard, YCO and Mutualism boss, and regular voice on NTS and Leeds' Sable Radio, making playlists is second-nature for BFTT. He's delivered and then some with this particular playlist of bangers which has been "curated and sequenced for your enjoyment," with BFTT explaining that the collection of tracks will guide you from "getting the sun cream on and heading out, setting up camp and peak sunburn hours to watching the sunset on a Tech House Summer night."
As an important footnote he adds: “'Tech House Summer' refers to a feeling / context that transcends genre”, so expect sounds beyond wafty four-four inside.
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Based in Manchester, BFTT has not only be working away at this playlist, but also spent four years perfecting his debut album 'Redefines' on TT. A merge of samples and memories, the LP unites a spectrum of his emotions and nostalgia that is to be interpreted as an 'audio diary' rather than simply an album. Clips from YouTube, videos on his phone and much more fill this record with Easter egg delights.
You can check out a Q&A with BFTT and listen to the Tech House Summer anthems playlist below.
You've recently released your debut album 'Redefines' — to a pretty rapturous response from everyone in the scene — how are you feeling about the reaction so far?
Feeling super happy with the response so far, I was real anxious to see it out there with some of the music being so old (to me). But I'm very proud of what we arrived at as a final product and feel like the care and attention I put in is paying off - which is great news!
Can you tell us a bit about the process of making 'Redefines' ? You've mentioned you've been working on this release for four years, is it cathartic to have it out there in the open now after spending so long creating it?
Yes, extremely cathartic to let go, it’s almost like a whole sound palette of the past four years that I can now drop and move on from which is very freeing!
In terms of the process, it’s mainly centred around samples off my phone, YouTube and tracks that are hyper personalised. For example, there’s a tap dripping sound in ‘Disp’ that doesn’t really have any significance to anyone apart from me knowing where and when it was recorded — really interesting to hear what it conjures up for other people and what they think the sound sources are.
Do you remember the first time you felt connected with electronic music? Can you tell us about some of your early musical experiences?
But I guess my first true love would be when I moved to Uni in Leeds and got into club music. Initially I was very into big room heavy techno and jungle. I had one particularly memorable night at Leeds’ West Indian Centre for SubDub with Remarc, Doc Scott and Source Direct doing up room two. Did not leave the dancefloor once.
I also owe a lot to Come Thru (now ‘Season’) and friends in Leeds for opening my ears to wider sounds later down the line like PC music, dancehall, grime, Jersey Club and bassline. Every single Come Thru was a huge inspiration for me in those days. Equally meeting aya, the Mutualism cru and starting to go out in Manchester was another huge turning point!
You're based in Manchester right now right? How does living/working/creating there inspire your sound?
Yep, I moved here in early 2021 after coming over most weekends between 2017-2019. I’ve had so many moments here where I’m totally convinced I’m at the best night on Earth. I just feel like I really found my people and my place here and there’s so many good friends around me who are super inspiring and doing their thing.
Reckon Manchester is the best place on earth to be making dance music right now?
Absolutely! But also feel like New York City is pouring out some of the best dance music right now as always. There’s a real nice lil connection and exchange between the two cities right now that’s super cute and inspiring.
You're part of some pretty solid party crews as far as Mutualism and YCO label alongside aya go — how important is it to surround yourself with other creatives who are working towards a common goal?
I strongly believe that a community/collective is so much more interesting than the individual. It’s the opposite of what is popular and focused on in the press but the idea of ‘individual genius’ is really just super unrealistic and kind of problematic as well. Also, going on holiday with all ur mates and playing music is way more fun than on your own, right?
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How do you approach DJ sets and mixes? What do you want audiences to take away from something you've created?
Pretty differently! I usually don’t plan too much for a DJ set unless I know the venue and city well as I want to always be focussing on the room and the crowd and reacting to a situation. When it comes to mixes I usually plan it out pretty rigorously, although I am trying to let go a little more recently.
Can you tell us a bit about this playlist?
Intended for use on JBLs in a sunny park with pals, a couple of cans, a lil 99 flake, shades fully on, BBQ smokin', lying on each other’s chests having a sweet as time.
Specifically curated and sequenced for your enjoyment: from getting the sun cream on and heading out, setting up camp and peak sunburn hours to watching the sun set on a Tech House Summer night.
*disclaimer: not all music in this playlist is necessarily Tech House. “Tech House Summer” refers to a feeling / context that transcends genre. BFTT is not liable for any sunburn or spilt G&T’s whilst listening Tech House Summer Anthems.
Listen to the playlist below and check out BFTT's debut album ‘Redefines’ here.
Becky Buckle is Mixmag's Digital Intern, follow her on Twitter