Secret Thirteen Mix 170 - OAKE

OAKE of Downwards music podcast

Photo by Charles Andreo/Mood.Berlin.

A skillfully crafted 2 hour mix by OAKE of Downwards, balancing between the depths of dark cinematic ambient and psyche-penetrating techno music (listen/download now)

OAKE is a duo of musicians from Berlin consisting of Eric Goldstein and Bathseba Zippora. OAKE’s sound is a combination of hulking beauty, haunting ethereal soundscapes, urban bleakness and dark romanticism. Musically it is difficult to pin down, but their heavyweight melodicism and precise rhythmics hint at the cold sharpness of techno with a touch of harsh industrial aesthetics or even the slow-paced gloominess of doom metal. OAKE’s expressionist theatrical stance and dramaticism serve as a counter-statement for occasionally emotionless electronic music, which often lacks poeticism and passion. Their sound shapes a separate world where the surrounding fears and tensions of modern life merge with the introspective journeys and artistic minds of two individuals. Their last album, “Auferstehung”, released on Downwards records, is an excellent illustration of these points - a unique sonic narrative showcasing their creative potential.

Secret Thirteen mix 170 is a mammoth two-hour selection, which connects various forms of dark electronica and incorporates such diverse genres as dark ambient, heavy techno or gritty noise, but never abandons the monolithic rhythmic spine. All throughout its lengthy span the mixtape does not lose the grip and maintains a consistent, yet always evolving and shifting dynamic, tension, unexpected culminations and climaxes. The murky experimentalism of Jar Moff stands next to the futuristic dystopian sonics of Stephanie Sykes and later explodes with raw deconstructed and industrialised techno outbursts from Akkord and Morgano. There are also some excursions into the sonics of bass with Senking’s slowly crawling “Serpent” or the wild piece by Shackleton, as well as the totally insane and electrified rhythmic attacks by such underground stalwarts as Szeb or JoyB. However, this musical narrative also contains some poetic ambient floatings with the inclusions of excellent nocturnal wanderings by Ancestral Voices, the noir pulses of Cio D’or and the minimal/synth wave of Eastern Renaissance. The second part of the mix is a solid and uncompromising techno attack always operating on a high level and leaving no time for rest.

Leo Leuppi’s abstract painting “Series” could be an interesting visual interpretation of OAKE’s mix. For instance, Leuppi was instinctively merging opposing art movements such as constructivism, concrete art and surrealism, and through this process he created his own undogmatic style of constructive art with surrealistic twists. It seems OAKE was in the same path as Leuppi when they were constructing their musical collage, because they find a brilliant balance between a mysteriously futurist atmosphere, straightforward beats, and between harsh industrial strokes and hypnagogic patterns of differently cut melodies. In the end, this mix creates a feeling of being within the presence of a constructive type of nature where organic and artificial sound coexists in harmony.


Six Six Seconds
Jar Moff - On How to Lubricate Capitals Effect [Self-Released, 2014]
Eastern Renaissance - Yucca [Gratone, 2015]
Stephanie Sykes - Black Simulation [Vent, 2015]
Mogano - Sycomore [Aboretu, 2015]
Shift Work - Abandoned Hands (DVA Damas Remix) [Houndstooth, 2015]
Ancestral Voices - La Purga [Samurai Horo, 2015]
Stärker – Ashen [Unreleased, 2015]
Black Rain & Shapednoise - Autonomous Lethality [Cosmo Rhytmatic, 2015]
Akkord- Megalith [Houndstooth, 2015]
AnD - Non Sky Signal Noise (Justin K Broadrick Remix) [Electric Deluxe, 2015]
Senking - Serpent [Raster Noton, 2015]
Shackleton - Moon Over Josef's Burial [Perlon, 2009]
Positive Centre - The Circled Rib [Our Circular Sound, 2014]
OAKE - Drittes Buch (Mønic Remix) [Unreleased, 2014]
Cio D'Or - Now And Then [Semantica, 2015]
Grebenstein - AbsenceEP01 [Unreleased, 2015]
Squaric - IM 41012 1 [Subsist, 2015]
Alhek - Blume00 [Cirque Du Minimaliste, 2015]
Sigma Zigurat – Ganglion (R&R Remix) [Geométrika FM, 2015]
Szeb - Cenobita [Subsist, 2015]
JoyB – PGB (Adversario Remix) [Geométrika FM, 2015]
Liss C – Rooftop [LCR, 2015]
Verset Zero - Dolus [Subsist, 2015]
Killawatt - Excessive Hyperbole (Mønic Remix) [Osiris Music UK, 2015]
Zosima – Embryo (OAKE Excludere Remix) [Noiztank, 2016]
Chevel - Loop #42 (Minor Science Remix) [Stroboscopic Artefacts, 2015]
Der Amethyst - Nacht [Subsist, 2015]
Kyle Geiger - Jupiter (Hydrogen Edit) [Droid, 2015]
JoyB - Graces Secret is a Horse [LCR Wax, 2015]
Tommy Four Seven - Third [47, 2015]
Bas Mooy - Hawk [47, 2015]
SNTS - Theory Of Loneliness [SNTS, 2015]
Ascion - Carnival [3TH, 2015]
AnD - Galactic Motion Comp (Black Rain Remix) [Electric Deluxe, 2015]
Jose Pouj - Regeneration [Injected Poison, 2015]
Ancestral Voices - Sleepless Night, First Light [Samurai Horo, 2015]
Artik - Decomposition [LCR, 2015]
Trømmel - Transicin [NXT, 2015]
Ancestral Voices - Selva [Samurai Horo, 2015]
Kujo & Hydrangea - Le Silence de deux étrangers [LPC, 2015]
Monochrome - Siren [LPC, 2015]
Circular Ruins - Sudden [Portals Editions, 2015]
Insiden - Le puits et le pendule [In Paradisum, 2014]
NON - Soundtrack 2 [Not On Label, 1979]
NON - And If Thou Will, Remember [Mute, 1987]
Nurse With Wound - Umbrella Link [United Dairies, 1980]

About Author

Paulius Ilevicius is a Secret Thirteen journalist, editor and occasional DJ focusing on more dreamy and melancholic soundscapes. Born in post-industrial town of Pavevezys, currently he lives and works in Vilnius, Lithuania.

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