Chloé Lula: The ‘Wednesday Alternative’ Mix
Brooklyn-based Chloé Lula appreciates the rawness and weirdness in music; something she translates into her exploits as a DJ, which sees her combing the far-reaching corners of industrial, EBM, techno and wave.
As well as her own musical pursuits, she has a hand in keeping the cogs turning behind the scenes at several labels, including both her own Detour imprint launched in 2012 and the inimitable aufnahme + wiedergabe, for whom she spent time working as label manager back in Berlin.
This year will see the release of several EPs worth of material she's been sitting on for a while, one being a debut on the aforementioned German label she has close ties with, and another a split EP alongside fellow producer and best pal Ireen Amnes.
We invited Chloé to take control of this week's Wednesday Alternative Mix, a moody and nostalgia-inducing mix of the raw, rumbling electronics that form the backbone of her DJ sets…
Please introduce yourself… Who are you, where are you and what are you?
I’m a DJ and music producer currently living in Brooklyn (via Berlin, but I'm originally from San Francisco). I’m also a journalist; I’m finishing up my master’s degree in art and cultural criticism, which is what brought me to New York!
What does your music sound like? Can you draw what you think it sounds like for us (an image from the old internet is acceptable)?
I’ve been in a particularly nostalgic mood since self-isolating from the Coronavirus, but to me, this mix sounds like a picture I once took at Griessmuehle before opening the outdoor stage: the river Spree to my right, open space, a clear sky, and staff members getting ready for a full day before the ravers trickle in.
Where was the mix recorded?
This was recorded in quarantine on the south Jersey Shore, overlooking the bay.
What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?
On the sofa surrounded by plants, sunlight and lots of coffee.
What should we be wearing?
A baggy t-shirt and boxers (my new uniform).
What would be your dream setting to record a mix: Location/system/format?
I’d love to record a mix with a setup that’s a little more “proper” than mine is: eight-inch Focal monitors (or similar), a curved computer monitor, lots of effects pedals and a huge mixer that I could use to layer different tracks and instruments.
Which track in the mix is your current favourite?
I’m obsessed with 鬼压床 on Fuxing Tapes. A friend of mine turned me onto this label; they don’t have a lot out, but everything I’ve listened to of theirs is incredibly sick.
What’s your favourite recorded mix of all time?
That’s almost an impossible question to answer, but the first mix that pops to mind is one that my friend Peter Wiley (Pascäal) made a couple of years ago for Rinse FM. It’s so beautiful and still moves me to listen to.
If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?
Probably Erika. I love her sound and eclectic, psychedelic taste—same with everyone else from Interdimensional Transmissions, for that matter.
What was your first DJ set up at home and what is it now?
I cringe to think about this, but my first “setup” was this off-brand two-channel controller by Mixage that I used with my laptop running Traktor (actually, before that I just mixed everything on my laptop with my trackpad!). Now I have two XDJ 700s, two Technics 1000s, an Allen & Heath Xone 92 and two five-inch JBL monitors.
What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?
I always put a lot of thought into my closing tracks. I think they give you a chance to play something a little different that might not “fit” in the middle of the mix (like something super cheesy!).
What were the first and last records you bought?
I think the first record I ever bought was a collection of Joy Division demos that I found at a record store in Pittsburgh called Mind Cure. I’ve been so poor in grad school that I’ve nearly stopped buying records, but I think the last one I bought was Mother by Jensen Interceptor.
If this mix was an edible thing, what would it taste like?
Modelo from a can.
If it was an animal what would it be?
A praying mantis.
One record in your collection that is impossible to mix into anything?
Subspecies by Beta Librae. I’m dying to play “Problem Solving Program” in a set but it’s so much faster than most of the stuff I play that I’ve never been able to make it work.
Upcoming in the world of…
After a lot of time spent sitting on tracks, I have a few releases coming up—a six-track EP on aufnahme + wiedergabe, a split EP with one of my best friends, Ireen Amnes, and a track on a digital compilation on the Brooklyn label Blankstairs. I’m hoping to start working on a new live set to play around once the current situation calms down as well. More to come!
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