Boot & Tax – The Ransom Note Mix


This week's Ransom Note Mix comes courtesy of Boot & Tax (aka Italian duo Cristian Croce of The Barking Dogs and Claudio Brioschi, also known as Brioski).

The self-effacing duo dropped the ridiculously good Acido EP on Optimo Trax – the offshoot label of JD Twitch’s Optimo Music – at the end of 2013 and they've not looked back. They followed this with another release on OT last year, have just laid down a new one on Remain's label Meant and are now working on their debut album for Optimo Trax, set for release later this year.

With their great passion for analogue synths and experimentation, it was with some jubilation when this dropped through the door earlier this week, having been told it probably wasn't going to happen. 

They're also so busy on tour that unfortunately they didn't quite have time to answer our questions to go with the mix so, rather than letting these questions go to waste, we sent them to our Ciaran instead and he had a go. We're truly sorry for his answers, maybe you'll understand what we have to put up with on a daily basis…

For starters tho, the rather fine mix is below. Veering from abstract electronics to Chicago via the medium of the breakbeat on into afro and head downs techno… you and I, let's go:

Please introduce yourself…
Who are you: 

Who who, who who. Sorry… I’m Ciaran, R$N’s general know-nothing when it comes to electronic music. Somehow I’ve ended up pretty much running Ransom Note single-handedly into the ground. AND I’D DO IT AGAIN TOO!

Where are you: 

In the Ransom Note office, looking out the window at some kick-ass diggers.

What are you: 

10% guitar-fiend, 20% journalist-ish, 30% a nervous wreck and 40% tea.

Talk us through the mix. Your love of the break beat is on display here in full flow. 

What’s a break beat? Oh this isn’t going to go well…

Tell us about your musical upbringing. 

I grew up in an Indiana town. Had a good-lookin' mama who never was around. But I grew up tall and I grew up right with them Indiana boys on them Indiana nights.

What was the first electronic record you heard and how did it make you feel?

For years I thought this would be the greatest song of all time;

Releases on Meant, Optimo Trax… not a bad few debut labels eh?! 

Yes, those are labels that I have heard of.

Where was the mix recorded?

Probably Boot & Tax’s studio. Or in a pair of dungarees, both equally likely.

What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?

The same setting that’s ideal for most things – sitting alone in the dark with a bottle of gin. The sweet life.

What should we be wearing?

What would be your dream setting to record a mix: Location/system/format?

Massive studio, expensive equipment and someone explaining how to record and what a mix is.

Which track in the mix is your current favourite?

I haven’t listened to it, I’m going to guess that The Boys Are Back In Town by Thin Lizzy is in there.

What’s your favourite mix of all time?

Pancake mix.

If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?

I’d love to go B2B with Daniel Avery – he can play all the records and I’ll just spend the whole night trying to make him smile. I’ve seen him smile before, honest.

What was your first DJ set up at home and what is it now?

I have a walkman, does that count?

What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?

Start, I usually don’t get more than a couple of tracks into a mix in the office before chucking some headphones on and listening to a self-help book.

What were the first and last records you bought?

The Smurfs Go Pop – there’s a cracking cross-over with Mr Blobby on there. Last would be Catfish and the Bottlemen’s album, absolutely top-notch. Both true answers.

If this mix was an edible thing, what would it taste like?

Shards of vinyl. It’s still technically edible as it is, right?

If it was an animal what would it be?

A mink. I figure that’s close enough to a mix.

One record in your collection that is impossible to mix into anything…

I’ve got an old Leo Sayer record that Wil gave me that I’ve never put near to a turntable. I assume it’s unmixable.

Does your mother know that you're out?

Yes, she’s a bit of a tiger mother. She always knows where I am, it’s terrifying.

How many prongs should a fork have? Why do 3-pronged forks feel so wrong?

4, obviously. What a ridiculous question, what idiot wrote this? 3 prongs are all fine and dandy for a trident but by losing that pivotal second inner-prong you lose all stability and you might as well be using a spoon

Upcoming in the world of Boot and Tax?

I don’t know, I figure both boots and taxes will be around for some time yet and there’s not too much they can do to surprise us at this point.

Anything else we need to discuss?

Can I have a raise?

Listen to the Meant release here:

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