Secret Thirteen Mix 063 - Emptyset

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Emptyset at Umbra, Lithuania

Photo by Laima Stasiulionytė

“Secret Thirteen Mix 063” is a precisely crafted dynamic musical selection that connects 25 constructive records released between 1996 and 2013 on influential labels such as Raster-Noton, Modern Love, Stroboscopic Artefacts and Pan. Carefully mixed works by skilled artists such as Alva Noto, Mika Vainio, Ilpo Väisänen, Andy Stott, Ugandan Methods and other talents form a progressively shifting complex soundscape. The compilation consists personal creations by its authors too and shows their sound flexibility, modernity and individuality.

The authors of the mix are Paul Purgas and James Ginzburg (director of the Multiverse studios), a Bristol based electronic music duo, widely known as Emptyset. Since 2005 when project was established, Emptyset has released numerous of critically acclaimed records on labels such as Raster-Noton, Subtext, CLR and others. Their innovative analogue production can be characterized as liberal, contemporary and phenomenal. By exploring the depths of bass, architectural rhythmics, repetitive minimalistic glitch and noises, Emptyset creates absolute sound art that thrills and inspires even the die-hard music critics. It is a conceptual and original collision among techno, noise and experimental musical styles. It is important to mention that Emptyset recordings are always accompanied with abstract and solid visual art. This fact strenghtens their identity with a unique graphic expression and transcendent motion. Emptyset actively tours across the globe, they have presented live performances at such notable festivals and places as Sonic Acts XIV, Mutek, Berghain, Boiler Room and Sounding Space.

“Secret Thirteen Mix 063” is a dimensional and continuous mix that amazes with its refined diversity, authenticity and crystal quality. The large part of the selection is arranged from the recently released material and a few classic tracks like “I9” by Jeff Mills or “Red Light Down” by Vainio, Väisänen and Alan Vega astonishing project. It is also interesting to hear “Arss”, a new piece by Roll The Dice and Fever Ray producer Peder Mannerfelt that was released on Paul Purgas imprint We Can Elude Control, also “Trawsfynydd” from the fresh Emptyset record “Material”. The ideological and emotional development of the mix is excellent. It gradually transforms from the cinematic ambiance to the earnestly constructed rhythmics. It creates a rich, literary type of narrative with all its thrilling convulsions. The mixing is accurate, smooth and mellow. By wisely connecting two or three tracks at one time Emptyset achieves effective new formations. The basis of the mix stands on the striking low bass strokes, diverse rhythmic matrix and incredible effect modulations in each work. The truth is that Emptyset intuitively knows how to intrigue, maintain attention and impress. The whole selected sound mirrors Emptyset creations and their definitely future-thinking and open-minded view to the music.

“Secret Thirteen Mix 063” is like a mathematical Francis Picabia’s abstract art painting “Junelle” where odd geometric figures create a hauntingly puzzling image. Sharp lines, delicate colour tones and the whole schematic background reflect intelligence, progress and imagination of the inquisitive observer. Finally Emptyset mix stands as a well written fictional instruction how to open a passage to one's higher level of perception.


01. Thomas Köner - Untitled "album Nunatak Gongamur" [Barooni, 1990]
02. Violetshaped - The Lord Won't Forget (Roly Porter Remix) [Violet Poison, 2012]
03. Paul Jebanasam - Rites II [Subtext, 2013]
04. Emptyset - Trawsfynydd Nuclear Power Station - Snowdonia, Wales 17.12.12 [Subtext, 2013]
05. Peder Mannerfelt - Arss [We Can Elude Control, 2012]
06. Andy Stott - Expecting [Modern Love, 2012]
07. Demdike Stare - Misappropriation [Modern Love, 2013]
08. Ilpo Väisänen - Autioitu 1 [Mego, 2001]
09. Signal - Rawema [Raster-Noton, 2007]
10. Emptyset - Awake [Caravan Recordings, 2009]
11. Alva Noto feat. Anne-James Chaton - Uni Acronym [Raster-Noton, 2011]
12. Powell - Oh No New York [The Death Of Rave, 2013]
13. Sleeparchive - MRI Scanner [Sleeparchive, 2007]
14. Helm - Arcane Matters [Pan, 2012]
15. Emptyset - Collapse [Raster-Noton, 2012]
16. Diamond Version - Sense of Urgency [Mute, 2013]
17. Ugandan Methods - A Cold Retreat [Boomkat Editions, 2012]
18. Shadow - Where There Is Only Light [Avian, 2012]
19. Metasplice - Thermite Jack [Morphine Records, 2012]
20. Diamond Version - Turn On Tomorrow [Mute, 2013]
21. Jeff Mills - I9 [Axis, 1996]
22. Mika Vainio - Barbarians [Raster-Noton, 2009]
23. Kangding Ray - Oise [Stroboscopic Artefacts, 2012]
24. Vainio / Väisänen / Vega - Red Light Down [Blast First, 1998]
25. Laurie Spiegel - Drums [Unseen Worlds, 2012]

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About Author

Justinas Mikulskis

Justinas Mikulskis, a.k.a S13, is a DJ, curator, promoter, journalist, and the mastermind behind the acclaimed experimental music and art journal Secret Thirteen. continue reading