Mera Bhai: The ‘Shine A Light On’ Mix

Screenshot 2023-01-29 at 10.06.43

Along with his globetrotting upbringing, Karthik Poduval’s music is a byproduct of growing up as a 90s kid.

Particularly his most recent outing, ‘Evil Butter’, a single alongside vocalist and Lovescene member Private Joy.

It’s not only nostalgic 90s dance sounds that fuel his output though; under his Mera Bhai moniker he draws inspiration from his Indian heritage, and his love of disco, acid house, techno and breaks, striving to strike a balance between all the sonics that he loves.


As a multi-instrumentalist, he’s also known as one of the founding members of psych group Flamingods, and in more recent years since its inception during the pandemic, as part of the internal team at Daytimers, the UK-based collective championing South Asian underground talent.

Bringing it back to his release schedule, this year is already looking bright. March will see him follow up his debut EP, Futureproofing, which came out via Moshi Moshi a few years back, with Relax Into Yourself, the first outing on his newly minted Morning Raga Records.

Ahead of the EP release we asked him to step up for this week’s ‘Shine A Light On’ mix, which showcases his ability to match seemingly contrasting sounds and flavours. Best served as a warm up for your night out or ‘at dusk at a house party’, as Karthik advises, we’re taken from disco and classic house to UK Garage, techno and jungle with a lovely dose of reverb and delay from his pedals.

Please introduce yourself… Who are you, where are you and what are you

Hello! I’m Karthik aka Mera Bhai. I’m in my studio in South London at the minute, and I am a producer, DJ and multi-instrumentalist and a Keralan Cowboy.

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 think both my mixes and my music have a similar spirit where I’m trying to combine loads of things that you wouldn’t expect to (and shouldn’t) work, but do. Kinda like chilli powder on fresh pineapple.

It sounds like being in the rave in the Matrix, dressed like you’re in Shaft, making party pals with the most unlikely suspects.


Where was the mix recorded?
In my studio.

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

Dusk, at a house party somewhere hot and sunny. Things get a little rowdy as the mix goes on so I think it’s the best way to bring in the evening.

What should we be wearing?

A safari suit, baby blue or dusty pink would be my personal choice.

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

Location – House of Lords

System – Funktion 1, 2 x Technics 1210s, a Formula Sound FF4, a Memory man delay pedal and OBVIOUSLY a dub siren

Format – Vinyl, strictly jungle set (I could genuinely facilitate this so if you’re the right person reading this, let’s make it happen)

Which track in the mix is your current favourite?

My favourite track in this mix is probably Alphonse Mouzons Electric Band – Everybody Get Down. It’s such a funky banger. Or Loose Ends – Dial 999. Impossible for me to not sneak disco into a set.

What’s your favourite recorded mix of all time?

Hard one to say, there’s so many. I think Maybe Daft Punks ’97 Essential Mix if I had to pick one. That has aged insanely well. It could easily be any set from today. It’s got that French House sound I love but goes a bit harder as well.

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 DJ Harvey. He’s one of the few DJs who I’d be able to go from Techno to Disco to UKG to Jazz with and keep the vibe going.

I’d love to play an intimate club show with him all night long, think it would be amazing.

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

My first DJ set up was 2 1210s, a Vestax 2 channel mixer and playstation speakers! I bought them off a guy on gumtree in 2010 for £300 (along with his whole tech house wax collection). He was leaving the country and just really wanted them to go to a good home. He actually followed up with me a few times to make sure I was looking after them!

My current set up is 2 1210s, a Pioneer XDJRX2, and I have my SP555 as a send and occasionally chuck a reverb or delay pedal or so into the mix

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

The opening track is a statement of intent really – I think in a recorded mix the opening track is more important but live it’d have to be the closer as that’s generally what everyone remembers and leaves people wanting more.

What were the first and last records you bought?

I can’t remember the first actually.. Funnily enough one of the first records I bought was Disclosure Tenderly/flow when it first came out and they were pretty much unheard of, that things worth a couple of quid now I tell ya.

Last time I went record shopping I went to my good friend Andrew Ashong’s record fair in Brixton (on a Sunday), I bought five records – Gil Scott x Brian Jackson – 1980, Billy Cobham – A Funky Thide of Sings, Herb Alpert – Rise, Alice Coltrane x Santana – Illuminations; & Gary Toms Empire – Blow Your Whistle.

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

Super crispy masala dosa.

If it was an animal what would it be?

A chameleon

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

I have more of these than I can count.

Upcoming in the world of Mera Bhai…

I’ve got a new single coming out in a couple of weeks – another mega collab on that one, and my second EP is coming out in April. I also have a couple other very big things happening this year that I can’t quite discuss yet but keep your eyes and ears peeled.

Anything else we need to discuss?

Always up for talking about food

1. Ramses 3000 – Avida Dolla
2. Choli Ke Peeche (WOI House Edit)
3. IKOQWE – Falta Muito
4. Loose Ends – Dial 999
5. The Maghreban – Waiting (Special Request Remix)
6. Moscoman – Stormo Di Gabbiani
7. A Man Called Adam – Ammonite
8. Jessie Ware – Free Yourself (Eats Everything Remix)
9. Tokischa – Desacota Escolar (Guari Afro House Remix)
10. Erol Alkan – Automatic
11. PEDRO & Magugu – Too Much
12. Krithi – Ritual
13. Etat Major – Extra Musica (Uproot Andy Remix)
14. Deena Abdelwahed x Basile – Niacinamide
15. Alphonse Mouzons Electric Band – Everybody Get Down
16. Mera Bhai – Be This Way (Provhat Rahman Remix)
17. ATRIP – Patchouli
18. Chippy Nonstop & DJ Genderfluid – Deeper
19. King Monday – Felt Cute Might Delete Later
20. DD Goose – Sahrany
21. Chrissy – All These Dreams
22. Ilaiyaraaja – Amman Kovil (Siu Mata Edit)
23. Pessimist – MDZhB
24. Nihiloxica – Black Kaveera
25. DJ Paypal – One Star
26. Sully – Poison