DFA Star Goes Miller-mal This Tuesday
Were back at Dim Mak Studios this week for performances by Justin Miller, Yacht, and Sneaky Sound System of DFA’s record label. DFA has long cast a shadow over New York’s underground disco scene, and tonight Hollywood got much needed look into their talents. Justin Miller has been tearing it up with the record label for some time now, but recently left to pursue his own interests and create his own label. The New York resident took the stage for an hour and forty minute set this past Tuesday.
Definitely taking a new direction with his music since the departure from DFA. Miller has cast aside the disco soaked mixing and taken on much more minimalistic attitude with the turntables. The set started out slow, although down tempo, his transistions were virtually flawless. Abundant in saturated bass lines, evolving slowly over very dark synths and decending pad. The rythms were so simple, yet meticulously calculated, and the drops form in blitzkriegs, with an almost gentle but heavy execution. What I love about Minimal Techno is that you think your in a place so for so long time until suddenly you realize your somewhere else completely. This crafted genre of calculated progression accents Justin’s expertise in turntablism perfectly. The mood of the mix had so much depth, but never lacked in intensity. Steady space travel indeed. Can you say “Miller-mal”?
Still, the track selection had a vintage flow. You could tell he worked with former colleagues James Murphy and Juan MacLean for some time. The years he’s spent on club floors were very present on stage Tuesday, even to one not familiar with his work. I suspected he couldn’t stray from his roots for too long and he finished the last thirty minutes of his set with a small array of disco floor fillers.
Despite the lacking disco nostalgia I had hoped for, I was pleasantly ambushed by his talent in the minimal niche. There were some undoubtedly dull moments in the set he laid down, but the potential in this direction is limitless, and I hope to see him persevere. I would not be surprised to see him succeed with this, and playing the streets of New York alongside Simian Mobile Disco someday.