Influential DJ/Producer Andrew Weatherall Dead at 56

Prolific and highly influential UK DJ/producer Andrew Weatherall has died, according to a statement from a representative.

“We are deeply sorry to announce that Andrew Weatherall, the noted DJ and musician passed away in the early hours of this morning, Monday 17th February 2020, at Whipps Cross Hospital, London. The cause of death was a pulmonary embolism. He was being treated in hospital but unfortunately the blood clot reached his heart. His death was swift and peaceful.

“His family and friends are profoundly saddened by his death and are taking time to gather their thoughts. Further announcements regarding funeral arrangements will be made in due course by Andrew’s press officer, James Parrish.”

This is a breaking story. We will post updates when we learn more about Weatherall’s passing.

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Premiere: Al Kent – Disco Demands Six Mini Mix

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Glasgow-based DJ/producer Ewan Kelly, known more widely by his Al Kent alias, just released the sixth installment of his Disco Demands series. As with previous efforts, the Million Dollar Disco label boss displays his passion for unearthing rare dance floor nuggets from the ’70s and ’80s, sprinkling them with remastering magic and serving them up for like-minded modern-day cratediggers.

We’re thrilled to world premiere an exclusive mini mix of Disco Demands Part Six (BBE) – out now on CD, vinyl and digital formats – that’ll give you a taste of the back-to-the-future sound Kelly has perfected. He had this to say about his new release:

“This album, like most projects I’m involved in, was a real labor of love – I think it was first pitched about three years ago. But the business side of these things is becoming more complex, especially with the more obscure music these type of albums showcase. However, we got there in the end and I’m more than happy with the album and the feedback it’s getting.

“All the tracks are aimed squarely at the dance-floor and I’ve played them all on my travels, so I know they work! But it’s also a great album to simply enjoy at home, especially with the luxurious packaging. I have to thank BBE for being crazy enough to allow me to do these extravagant things!”

Hit the play button below and get ready to boogie.

Track list

  1. Ava Cherry – You Never Loved Me
  2. King Sporty – Fire Keep On Burning
  3. Jo Bisso – I Wanna Love
  4. Philip & Lloyd – Keep On Moving’
  5. Southroad Connection – You Like It We Love It
  6. J D Hall – Wonder Woman
  7. Grupo Macho – San Salvador
  8. Tangerue – Doin’ Your Own Thing

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Gene Farris 5 Tracks of the Moment

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Chicago house music luminary Gene Farris has been delivering positive dance floor vibes since the ’90s. During his storied career, the Windy City-based DJ/producer has released a cavalcade of floor fillers on choice imprints (Cajual/Relief Records, Defected, Dirtybird, Visionquest, Lapsus Music and Suara) and has been the visionary behind Farris Wheel Recordings.

Farris’ “Back In the Day” is featured on This Is Toolroom 2020, a high-octane collection of shiny new Toolroom’s tracks mixed by Martin Ikin.

The 21-track compendium also features the likes of Mark Knight, Amine Edge & DANCE, GW Harrison and Raumakustik.

We connected with the globetrotting Farris and asked him to select his five tracks of the moment. Continue Reading

Kris Menace Returns On His Own Terms After Five-Year Mental Health Break

Kris Menace Christoph Hoeffel

From 2005 to 2013 DJ/producer/musician Christoph Hoeffel, better known as Kris Menace, was on a prolific creative streak. He released a mind-boggling eight full-length albums and dozens of singles, collaborated with artists including Robert Owens, Romanthony, Xavier Naidoo, The Presets, Miss Kittin, Alan Braxe, Rex the Dog, Felix Da Housecat, DJ Pierre and remixed a spate of top-notch artists such as LCD Soundsystem, Depeche Mode, Metronomy, Röyksopp, Underworld, Moby, Paul Weller, Kylie Minogue and Lana Del Rey.

While the work was satisfying, a relentless schedule began to chip away at his well-being. As he went from project to project, Hoeffel eventually found himself depressed and at a crossroads.

Feeling that he couldn’t continue to work at the pace he had become used to for nearly a decade, Hoeffel decided to hit the pause button in 2014 on a burgeoning music career. He quit producing music altogether in order to heal himself.

After a five-year break from music, Hoeffel has returned true to form with “Rome,” a soulful, uplifting pop-focused collaboration with Gwylo & Millé, released in January via Famouz Records.

We connected with Hoeffel via email to discuss his hiatus, healing process and why the time was right to return to music.

Welcome back. You were quite prolific for many years. How did you know it was time to take a break? How were you feeling at the time?
Kris Menace: I had a lot of self-doubts and pressure. I worked too much. All the traveling at the time, not being home, many labels and production works and all the other stuff I did was just too much for one person. Though I did archive what I was working for, I wasn’t feeling it anymore.

“The pressure to always deliver can cause serious harm. And yes, I’m still fighting with my demons.”

Many people suffering from mental health issues don’t know how to get help. How did you approach getting better?
I basically changed many things. I stopped taking on work and started to digitally detox. Then I started working and building things with my hands. To be honest, I started something completely different that helped me to take distances. I tried medicine, but most of them had the reversed effect on me. So I think that for the digital generation with all those bought likes, views on the one hand and rude commentaries and hate speech on the other hand, the pressure to always deliver can cause serious harm. And yes, I’m still fighting with my demons.

Did you work on music during your hiatus? What did you do to nurture yourself?
Not really. I started to play piano again and wrote some piano sheets, but I wasn’t proactively producing music. A good friend of mine is the reason I started again. He was not accepting my decision that I stopped making music. He is responsible for the new release.

How did you meet Millé and Gwylo, and how did “Rome” come together?
Mille, Gwylo and myself met through our managements. Gwylo and Mille wrote and recorded the soulful vocals while I was responsible for the instrumental and production. I’m so happy with the song as it has a very special and unique feel.

After everything you’ve been through, you’ve made an impressive return. What’s next for you in 2020 and beyond?
I’m already working on the next single, but nothing more, without any expectation.

image by Thommy Mardo

No paywalls, free to all. Help us remain 100% independent and unbiased. Please give to Big Shot by making a secure one-time donation to help us continue covering DJ culture and electronic music like we’ve done since 2003.