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Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2008

Techno-tronics: Maetrik makes his Milwaukee mark

Plus: Funky house gets a new-schooling

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  Cuban producer Maetrik will be passing around plenty of "Space Chronic" this coming weekend.

  The latest EP on Claude VonStroke's new Mothership Music label has the backing of one of the Bay area's most exciting techno and tech-house producers. Maetrik's Aug. 22 Space Chronicrecord release party at San Francisco's seminal party palace, The Endup, solidified his dark, seductive sound as a primal force on one of electronic music's hottest scenes.

  Now a resident of Dallas, Texas, Maetrik's rise within dance music's underground dates back to 1993, when music musings on a party of technic 1200s soon gave way to deeper experimentation on cheap synthesizers and drum machines. In melding influences of techno and electro, Maetrik soon emerged as a live PA master, extending his creative reach beyond straight track selection.

  In producing under the monikers of Triebstoff, Morris Audio, Tic Tac Toe and Big Chief, Maetrik has managed to give techno a modern edge without losing dance floor credibility. The primal energy backed by his live PA sets is an innovative force on what can easily become a stagnant music scene.

  This weekend's Aug. 29 show is part of the monthly Projekt showcase at Six Degrees (518 N. Water St.). Since its inception in February 2008, Projekt has grown to become one of the successful and musically diverse electronic music nights in Milwaukee. Event organizers Jessica Fenner (Fortune), Justin Grall (Screendoor), Brad Valerine (Dela) and Nate York (Sir Fice) are moving forward with the current tide of the electronic music scene in bringing techno, tech house and minimal-heavy artists.

  "We feel this type of music is so significant to the rounding of Milwaukee's EDM scene that artists like this are important to expose here," says Projekt co-organizer Valerine. "We've been fortunate to gain quite a few nods from the national and, in some cases, international techno community over the last eight months for what we're doing here in the Mil."

  Inhale deeply on Friday, Aug. 29 at Six Degrees. With an opening showcase by Projekt residents Dela, Fortune, Screendoor and Sir Fice. Music 10 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. No cover charge.

  (New) Schooled: It's back-to-school time for several Midwest, new-school house players, including Kansas City, Mo.'s Pat Nice.

  Funky house gets the reverb with a return appearance by Nice and a slew of jack-tastic pranksters, including Chicago's John Mork (of The Sound Republic and Spatula City Records fame), sometimes partner-in-crime Chris Grant (Chicago) and Milwaukee's own Mr. Timms and Geewiz.

  The crew kicks it old school for a session of chunky funk and plenty of sample-heavy shenanigans. Hit the floor early for the kind of feverous dancing that will demand a trip to detention.

  We can only hope. Friday, Sept. 5 at Three (722 N. Milwaukee St.). Music 10 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. Cover charge: $5.