If you look back over the last four or five years within dance music, few duos stand out as much as Bicep. In fact, few electronic acts have seen an upward trajectory as steep as the pair from Belfast.
Matt McBriar and Andy Ferguson started out with a blog called Feel My Bicep back in 2008 and thus begun their journey to the top. The website acted as home for tracks that the two former school friends were into and formed a basis to build upon.
Back then, is was a more hedonistic mix of Italo house and disco, coupled with glitzy electro and under-appreciated gems. Mixes, tracks and parties had the spotlight shone on them while the two released a steady slew of their own productions.
From then on, they've been on the tip of everyone's tongues. Huge edits that have had the dance music community clambering to get their hands on them and have dominated dancefloors worldwide. Take their 'Never Let You Go' edit and remix of 808 State's 'In Yer Face' for instance, two cuts that have gone down in the Bicep hall of fame.
Releases via Aus like 'Just' (our track of the year in 2015) further propelled the two and typified the year in music. By this point the pair were on an unstoppable roll.
This year, Bicep dropped their long-awaited, heavily-anticipated self-titled debut album via Ninja Tune and it felt right that they finally graced our cover for the first time. Two of the hardest working people around, we're thrilled that they've finally hit the dizzy heights they've been striving to reach for so long.
The Belfast duo have turned fierce passion for great music into DJ stardom and now an incredible live act and debut album. Here the power pair take us through the tracks they've selected for their amazing cover mix.
Listen to the mix below and read Bicep's track-by-track underneath.
1. Raica ‘Makmba’
“Awesome beatless track that was originally roughly 80bpm. It’s always amazing when you pitch tracks up by 50 per cent and they work perfectly in key with something way faster!”
2. Supreems ‘Close Your Eyes (And Feel)’
“A fantastic cut from one of our favourite up-and-coming producers. Deep and vibey with great melodies and vocals”
3. DG Sound Project ‘Xabrax’ (Percussor mix)
“Beautiful deepness from ’92 that’s also pretty fun”
4. Dillon ‘A Matter Of Time’ (Monokle remix)
“We played this one on Rinse a few years ago and totally forgot about it until doing this mix – it just popped into our head as we were preparing and fitted well. Love the dusty crunchy drums”
5. Kaytronik ‘I Say’
“Raw, heavy MPC jam from Karizma under his Kaytronik alias”
6. Jill Scott ‘Love Of A Rainy Day’ (Bicep edit)
“We used to play this loads but always felt it needed a little bit of extra punch, so we did a quick edit for this mix, adding some new drums and changing the layout a little. This is how most of our edits come about – when we want to place a track in a mix or show but they maybe don’t quite fit”
7. Chip E ‘No Reason’ (Bicep edit)
“Fond memories of playing the original on Barcelona beach 13 years ago with old-skool friends. It was kind of our Sónar anthem! Here we’ve just readjusted the layout to tease the vocal in a bit more and play on the acid vibe”
8. Bushwacka! ‘Chorus’
“Shouts to Call Super for the heads up on this one! Amazing, raw, emotive house track”
9. Digital Justice ‘No Profit’ (Bicep edit)
“Love the beatless original – we’ve really just added some 909 and SH101 bass to make it work in our sets. We originally made this for our Warehouse Project set last year”
10. 2000 And One ‘Geometric Nature’
One of 2000 And One’s first releases back in 1992. Fantastic, emotive, Detroit-inspired techno”