DJ /RUPTURE, with KNIFEHANDCHOP, SINCERE TRADE, CISC, CRYO, DJ BENTODEAL at Sneaky Dee's (431 College), Friday (November 3). $5. www.mathhooker.com Rating: NNNNN
When I mention to DJ /Rupture (aka Jace Clayton) that the Wikipedia entry on him describes him as a breakcore producer, he responds with a confused chuckle.
He put out his Gold Teeth Thief mixtape in 2001 and blew minds around the world with his frenetic, three-turntable mix of hiphop, drum 'n' bass, folk music from around the world, dancehall, pop and noisy experimental music.
At the time it was next to impossible to place it neatly alongside larger trends.
"It's funny - I don't really produce breakcore, and when I DJ I work in a lot of different types of music. Sometimes breakcore is one of those elements, and sometimes it's not," explains Clayton from New York, where he's living again after spending the last five years in Barcelona. "I guess it's kind of like adding some curry spices to a meal - all of a sudden the whole meal is curry."
A better point of reference might be Montreal producer Ghislain Poirier, who also weaves elements from the avant-garde side of electronic music into a framework rooted in hiphop and stacked with references to the history of music - the idiosyncratic and personal rubbing up against the accessible and universal.
"Ghislain and I are kind of like brothers sonically. When I heard his album three years ago, immediately I felt what he was doing. He's making urban beat music, credible hiphop-related forms, but really bringing his own sound into it, as well as looking outward to other music... It's like very personal club hiphop."
The two are also both dedicated crate diggers and share a love of contemporary urban music from around the world. Brazilian funk carioca rubs up against French hiphop, cut with Puerto Rican reggaeton; obscure Baltimore club gets mashed up with UK grime and dubstep.
Across the world they're joined by other music obsessives, to a point where it's not unreasonable to describe it as this generation's world beat. However, while Clayton acknowledges the parallel, he's wisely conscious of how tacky cultural appropriation can be, and the murky line between borrowing and stealing.
"I'm certainly aware of the whole cultural tourism thing, and I strenuously try to avoid that in my music and mixes and my whole way of dealing with people. There's always going to be tourism - people are, like, 'Yeah, funk carioca is cool,' and then play two hours of music in a language they don't understand and have never even experienced first hand, which is kind of problematic and weird, and what I try to stay away from."