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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Unlooped Music Series Hosts Cross-Genre Collaborations

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The new monthly music series Unlooped was born of a feverish conversation between two Milwaukee electronic music enthusiasts, Radio Milwaukee’s Tarik Moody and John Goelzer (aka BTS.WRKNG), a DJ for WMSE and half of the electronic duo Signaldrift. The two shared their thoughts about the local electronic scene, agreeing that its talent is often isolated from one another.

“In Milwaukee, you have a house scene, a drum ’n’ bass scene and this developing dubstep scene, but they’re all on their own,” Moody says.

The pair conceived an event that would help change that.

“We wanted to try and get artists from all these scenes together, so we came up with an idea for an electronic night, but with a twist,” Moody says. “We decided that each month we’d pick a DJ and a producer and find somebody from an outside genre for them to do a collaboration with. The focus is on electronic music, but we wanted to bring in artists from other circles. On my end, I was inspired by what the Red Bull Music Academy does every year. They pick 60 artists from around the world—rappers, DJs, producers, singers—and fly them out to a different city for two weeks to have them collaborate and record.”

Moody and Goelzer debuted Unlooped last month at bSide (235 S. Second St.) with a collaborative set between Nicholas Sanborn (of Decibully and Made of Oak), DJ Rory Sazama and jazz-pop singer Jeanna Salzer. A song from that session, an ambient cover of the Nina Simone standard “Wild Is the Wind,” is posted to Moody’s website for the series, unlooped.net. He plans on posting entire sets from future events.

Unlooped continues this month with a featured collaboration between producer Dave Olson, of the Milwaukee hip-hop group The Figureheads, The Championship singer-songwriter Allen Cote and Video Jockey Brye, of The Black Hoodies. J-Slim will perform a multimedia set of music and videos, and Goelzer, Moody, Adam Carr and DJ Romke will spin sets.

Planned performers in future months include luminaries from Milwaukee’s reggae, hip-hop and experimental scenes, and in the long term the organizers are looking beyond the city, hoping to grow the event to include regional and national headliners.

“It’s a chance to hear something different, but it’s also kind of a party,” Moody says of Unlooped. “So we like to end the night with a high-energy dance party, whether it’s house, electronic, drum ’n’ bass or whatever. We’re hoping the event grows into something special that people will want to be a part of and build on.”

Unlooped begins at 10 p.m. the last Friday of each month at bSide.

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