Known for his role as one-half of Footprintz along with Ewan Pearson, and a spate of dance floor collabs with Guy Gerber, Tiga, Felix Da Housecat and Jamie Principle, enigmatic Canadian-born DJ/producer Clarian North will tick a box on his professional bucket list with the release of his debut album, Television Days (Balance Music), on February 23.
The 10-track full-length adventure is awash with glistening, synth-driven dance-pop and compelling vocals that build on the blueprint that was pioneered in the ’80s. (In fact, “Under the Gun” could be the best song New Order never made.) Conceptually, it’s a concept LP tracing the adventures of Kevin Jones, a destitute TV scriptwriter living in West Hollywood who’s obsessed with Carl Sagan’s 1980 PBS show Cosmos (“Dedicated to Sagan”) and believes he’s being contacted by ancient astronauts.
Shtick aside, Clarian’s album is elegant, righteously quirky and tinged with a wee dollop of melancholy. The result is a thoughtful album that soothes the mind, body and soul.
Before the album’s release, we connected Clarian and asked him to share his five tracks of the moment.
1. Charlotte De Witte – Motion
I’m a fan. This one has been battle tested in many places, cases, faces, traces, and seems to come with an internal compass which resets the flow of the room into a trance, ready to help take the journey into more interesting territories. It’s quite excellent.
2. Batu – Nosema
It’s a high-quality production that’s not to be trifled with. The dynamics and clarity of Batu’s tracks always stand out on a solid sound system with the best and yet remain craftily minimal and elegant throughout.
3. Kosk – Keep Trying
This EP is so good. It feels like I’m one of the flying bubble dudes doing the robot dance in the movie fantastic planet or something. Play it in the early hours for magic morning acid effect.
4. Akasha System – Tertiary
Beautifully made tracks like these at a beach party sunset is the kind of Balearia I crave deep in my battered bones, especially during the colder months of Berlin and Montreal.
5. HKE – No Sleep
Sounds like a tragic and dark gothic distant beautiful dream. This album is amazing. Get your hands and your mind on it and it can really transform the atmosphere around.