Don't get it twisted: we love techno, the bassier the better. But we can probably all agree it can occasionally be guilty of taking itself a little too seriously. So it's always worth reminding ourselves that DJs like Mak & Pasteman exist, dedicated to their craft but by no means po-faced or pretentious. Their sets are often hardware-driven, adding drum machines, sequencers and the like to the traditional turntable set-up.
Beginning in 2011, the Yorkshire duo made their name tearing up raves in Leeds before eventually hitting the studio together to pool their talents and influences to create something in the mid-point between house, techno and bass music. Whatever it is, it's definitely the finest the undergound has to offer. With a new single, "Call 2 Me" / "Le Freak", out now on Redlight's Lobster Boy label (the B-side of which closes the mix), we thought it only right to invite them to contribute to our Complex Sessions.
Tell us a bit about your selections in this mix.
Mak: It's basically a short version of a DJ set, starting with some housier stuff and moving into some techno. We had a really nice set up courtesy of Become A DJ in Shepherds Bush. It's like mixing in a club in there with a full Pioneer rig and Technics 1210s set up and some huge ass monitors!
What was the one track you absolutely had to include?
Pasteman: I guess that would have to be "Submission" by Jimmy Edgar & Truncate. Individually, they inspire us incredibly so when this collaboration came around it's been in every set since and will be for some time to come.
Any tracks that narrowly missed the cut?
P: We'd have loved to have included the flip for "Le Freak", "Call To Me" but the mix just seemed to flow this way.
What's the first single or album you ever bought?
M: On vinyl it was DJ Nosebleed, "Cocaine"—hard as fuck Scottish bouncy techno. On cassette, before CDs, I got the Terminator soundtrack and some big dance comp for Christmas.
P: Mine was Mark Morrison's "Return Of The Mack" on cassette from Asda.
What do you want to see happen musically over the next 12 months?
M: We've both really enjoyed the transition musically into techno, the palate of sounds has reduced and the quality of the music has really increased. There's some great techno coming out and the nod to Dance Mania and Chiwax is something we're fully on-board with. We've been writing some tracks with DJ Haus that are just one drum machine, one synth and one sample. When you're limited to so few sounds you have to get really creative and that's exciting. We're both pretty excited by the direction of music right now; it's open and people seem to be receptive to what's going on.
What trend or scene absolutely needs to die right now?
P: You know what, as long as people are doing what they like, whether its cheesy or pretentious, that's what they do so let 'em do it. We do feel people spend too much time on their phones, if anything.
Stream and free-download below.
1. Junior Boys - "Like A Child" (Carl Craig Remix)
2. Dance System - "Safe Mode"
3. Alden Tyrell - "Wurk It"
4. Mak & Pasteman vs. DJ Haus - "Drive MF"
5. Mak & Pasteman - "T2000"
6. Jimmy Edgar - "Submission"
7. DJ Hyperactive - "25 Hours"
8. Mak & Pasteman vs. DJ Haus - "Bang It"
9. Robert Hood - "Form"
10. Floorplan - "Let's Ride"
11. Radio Slave - "Clone Wars" (Markus Suckut Remix)
12. Tale Of Us - "North Star"
13. Tia - "Planet E" (Dense & Pika Remix)
14. Mak & Pasteman - "Le Freak"