The R&S labelmates chat about their collaborative project ahead of their debut London show with Redshape & Objekt this Friday
There is little more exciting in modern electronic music than when two of the finest upcoming producers embark on a collaboration with the purpose of honing a new experimental sound. Circa 2011, two R&S stalwarts, the perfectly-matched Pariah and Blawan introduced a new guise, 'Karenn', having first surfaced remixing West Norwood Cassette Library back when. As a culmination of working together over the short years fusing deep, bass-heavy sounds darting between techno & house, the two will be performing a highly-anticipated three-hour set as their debut at the new London warehouse series, Beat Dimension.
To my ears, they sounded more like collaborations between myself & Jamie rather than a new sound in its own right. It wasn't until we started writing for the first 12" that a sound began to form that was separate from what we both do on our own
This Friday, the duo will be joined by Berlin's Objekt, and the mysterious masked Redshape flying over for a live set showcasing the heaviest of techno with dark, analogue sounds via his releases on R&S, Brainfeeder and Delsin. One of the most closely watched new producers of the moment, Objekt, on Hessle Audio will be filling in any gaps, known for his underground style which quickly earned him a cult following. Here we speak to Pariah and Blawan ahead of the night about what to expect and their work together so far...
Dazed Digital: Why do you work well as a collaborative duo? Was it an easy process and are the elements from each person distinguishable anymore?
Pariah: I can't say for sure why work well together but I reckon it's a mixture of getting on well with each other, having similar tastes and knowing what we want to do with the project. I think with the first couple of Karenn tracks that we did (the WNCL remix or 'Caretaker') it was easier to distinguish the individual elements that each one of us brought to the table. To my ears, they sounded more like collaborations between myself and Jamie rather than a new sound in its own right. It wasn't until we started writing for the first 12" that a sound began to form that was separate from what we both do on our own.
DD: What has been your favourite moment/memory from the working collaboration so far?
Pariah: Hard to tell, but for me it was probably the day we received the test presses for the first 12". We were both completely blown away by D&M's cut and mastering.
Blawan: Tough one as this is still a fairly new project, we got some exciting shows, new material, and a live set to work on so I'm sure there'll be loads of favourites to come.
DD: What can we expect from your DJ set together?
Blawan: No idea yet, neither of us plan DJ sets to be honest. We'll both bring some records and just see what happens. Energy levels should be high though!
DD: If in doubt, play ________?
Blawan: Every record you own.
DD: What's next for you both?
Pariah: We're just getting to the final stages of putting together SHEWORKS002 which is going to be 4-track EP from Sunil Sharpe. If all goes to plan then it will hopefully be in the shops at the beginning of April. I've also got a new Pariah EP coming out very soon on R&S, its been a while since I last released anything so I'm excited to get some new music out there.
Blawan: Looking forward to playing live if I'm honest. It's an analogue live set and I think it's gonna really let us play around with this project and give people a purer sense of we want to do.
Friday 2nd March: 10pm-6am; Beat Dimension: Karenn [Blawan & Pariah] (3-hr set), Redshape (Live), Objekt (3-hr set); Visuals by Rebel Overlay. Hackney Downs Studios, Downs Park Road, E5 8QJ. Tickets: £8/£10/£12.