Talking Classics… with Spencer Parker »
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I’ve been following Spencer Parker for some time now. From early production forays on the likes of Tsuba and Saved to more recent endeavours on his own Work Them label and of course, his long standing relationship with Radio Slave’s Rekids, he’s a DJ/ producer who never takes the obvious road. The Boiler Room generation might well yearn for safe-as-houses DJ sets and predictable selections, but Parker is an individual who positively refuses to entertain such notions. (Incidentally, his Boiler Room set in Berlin is fucking awesome… as is any set that makes Gino Soccio’s ‘Remember’ it’s high point!).  But as far as Spencer Parker is concerned, DJing is all about diversity, passion and above all, having fun. From camp-as-you-like Italo to brooding, Berghain-style techno to dusty deep house, you just never know what’s around the corner when he gets behind the decks. Few better DJs to talk classics with then. Parker didn’t let the team down either, chatting every bit as enthusiastically as we figured he might, as we touched on everything from killer disco (Divine, Imagination, Mr Flagio) all the way through to wobbly bits by Audion and peak-time techno via Trevino. Enjoy!  

Divine – Native Love (“O” Records) (1982)

Loooooooooooooove Divine! The documentary that came out a few years back was really great and worth checking if you haven’t seen it. A true pioneer on so many different levels. I like this track but “Shoot Your Shot” will always be my go to Divine record and i’ve enjoyed playing it in a discotheque on many occasions! Love this whole era of tracks/production/vocals…and lewks!

Imagination – Illusion (MCA) (1982) 

Another all time favourite track of mine! There is NEVER a bad time to hear this record! Big fan of Imagination, loved many tracks of theirs, be it  their hits or their Nightdubbing album. The one track I am totally in love with from them is their “Changes” track – the remix of which (i think) was the first (uncredited) remix by some bloke called Larry Levan! Seek it out!

Sexual Harassment – I Need A Freak (Montage) (1983) 

This vaguely rings a bell to me…. I’m into this track and love these kinda records that are a cross between 80’s electro, super early west coast hip hop and maybe a little bit of freestyle too. 

Mr Flagio – Take A Chance (ZYX) (1983)

Looooooove this record and have been known to play it when the opportunity presents itself. This track will always conjure up memories of dancing in the sunshine to the incredible Mr Ties, in the garden of Homopatik, here in Berlin. 

Elbee Bad – The New Age Of Faith (Nu Groove) (1989) 

Massive respect to Elbee Bad, always.

Audion – Mouth to Mouth (Spectral Sound) (2006)

Ooooooooooooft ! An all time favourite record of mine. This track will be forever held in my memory and that memory is hearing Radio Slave play it in Panorama Bar a loooong time before I heard anyone else get into it. This record + that place + the time being around 10pm on a Sunday night… well…. The production is obviously insane but, to me, whats so, so important is THE IDEA. I see so many producers posting pics on their Instagram of expensive modular systems, or other producers proudly proclaiming that the tracks were all made on analogue gear and sure, that can play a part in a track…. but… the idea is ALL! You can have all the equipment in the world, but if you don’t have a good idea, it means nothing. This track is a perfect example of a great (and fucking bonkers) idea, executed perfectly. Ok, now i want a Hemingway…

Jay Daniel – I Have No Name (Sound Signature) (2013)

I didn’t know this particular track but was aware of Jay Daniel as an artist. A simple, Detroit beatdown type record, to my ears, and a pretty cool one at that. I’m always an admirer of artists that can create these type of groove based tracks, that at once sound super simple but are incredibly hard to produce, and the racks of your local record store are full of people that have tried, and failed…. This is the sort of track that sounds phenomenal in a Theo Parrish set because of how he plays it and where he places it in his set, and sounds totally out of place in the set of a bloke in a wacky shirt on a festival stage who refers to himself as “a selector” and insists he simply cannot perform unless he has a rotary mixer… 

DJ Sotofett – Trans-Jungle-Ride (Wania) (2014)

I don’t always understand what the brothers Fett do…. But I’m glad they’re out here doing it! This is a fun roller of a track and I like the production a lot. I’m also a big fan of Dj Fettburger, had a lot of fun DJing with him on the same bill a couple times and was super proud to have him remix one of my tracks a little while back – Fett Brothers Forever!

Trevino – Eclipse (Klockworks) (2015)

This track is phenomenally well made and I know it brought a lot of joy to a lot of people. RIP to an extremely talented producer. 

The True Underground Sound Of Rome – Sonic Crystals (Original Mix) (Vibraphone) (2016)

I’d never heard this record before but thought it was ok… not really something I would play but I can see that it’s very well made. Big Italian vibes on this one! (obviously- lol!)

Check out Spencer Parker on Soundcloud here and check his Bandcamp page here

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