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Dazed Mix: Anastasia Kristensen
Dazed Mix: Anastasia KristensenAnimation using original photography by Morten Bentzon

Dazed Mix: Anastasia Kristensen

The Copenhagen-based Russian techno DJ and producer puts together an unpredictable summer selection

Anastasia Kristensen only released her debut EP, Ascetic, in March, but the DJ and producer has already established a reputation as one of the electronic music scene’s most popular new artists. Raised in Moscow but based in Copenhagen, Kristensen earned her DJing chops both as a resident of the Scandinavian city’s Culture Box venue, and at gigs around Europe, where she was known for her unpredictable sets. This led to the huge number of international bookings that Kristensen now plays, taking her to places as far from home as Hanoi and Bogotá. As a producer, she’d already made killer remixes for the likes of Daniel Avery and Special Request before she fused techno, electro, IDM, bleep’n’bass, and warehouse rave on Ascetic, which was released through Arcola, the recently revived Warp Records sublabel. Her latest remix, a take on Locked Groove’s “Out Of Orbit”, lands on the Sunset Service Remixes EP via Hotflush this Friday.

For our latest Dazed Mix, Anastasia Kristensen puts together a summer selection inspired by recent gigs across Asia and the US’s West Coast.

Hi, Anastasia! What are you up to and where are you writing this from?

Anastasia Kristensen: Hi! I am writing this on an early fresh morning in Edinburgh at my boyfriend’s place! I played in Ibiza and Madrid this weekend – both gigs were a lot of fun. 

Tell us about this mix!

Anastasia Kristensen: This selection reflects the impression and adventures shaped up while recently touring in Asia for a month – everywhere from Japan, Korea, Vietnam, to Hong Kong, just to mention a few – and then going almost straight after that to west Californian deserts. There was a lot to absorb! There are rich, warm synths; 70s and 80s motives like Martin Dupont, Jan Hammer, and Ursula 1000; Soviet cartoon soundtracks; and much more. All the tracks and songs have some sort of emotional undertone to them. It serves as a perfect unwind on a summer evening like these days.

Earlier this year, you released your debut EP, Ascetic, through Arcola. Did anything surprise you about the response to that?

Anastasia Kristensen: I was super excited to release my first full EP on Arcola, but didn't want to have too high expectations and hope, because things can go either way when releasing new music. Of course, it was great and very reaffirming to see people enjoy it and buy the record. Everyone, from industry professionals to record collectors, found something in there for themselves, so I’m very happy with the way it was received.

Have you been trying out any new techniques in your music recently?

Anastasia Kristensen: I always do – but you'll just have to listen to my new music coming out!

What’s the best gig you’ve played recently?

Anastasia Kristensen: That’s a difficult one, as all gigs have something really beautiful to them, I think. Recently, I particularly enjoyed playing at Awakenings, as people were so supportive, and even came with cheerful banners. I love that, and it makes you feel super welcome. I’m lucky to have such great experiences on the road.

Have you travelled anywhere new and unexpected this summer?

Anastasia Kristensen: I’d say Bogota in Colombia in the spring for Baum festival. Such a special city, although the altitude is a bit challenging sometimes. I would love to see more of Colombia.

Do you see yourself as more of a studio person or a live person?

Anastasia Kristensen: I see myself as a performing DJ first. The energy that can be created with the audience is very important to me, and I strive to obtain it everywhere I go to play, yet production is another crucial process I like to return to constantly.

What was the last show you binge-watched?

Anastasia Kristensen: I recently fell into this YouTube black hole/blogging universe, and somehow once spent the entire evening watching loads of episodes about people trying to adapt their lives in Japan! Very fascinating.

What film do you think your music would be the best soundtrack for?

Anastasia Kristensen: It would probably be some fun sci-fi thriller, with loads of irony and satire. 

What DJs and producers are you excited by right now that you want to shout out?

Anastasia Kristensen: There’s really a lot of people out there that excite me right now: Billie Jo, Milo Spykers, Telfort, VTSS – and many more. I also have recently remixed Locked Groove, and I like his original work a lot too!

What are you working on at the moment?

Anastasia Kristensen: In between travelling, my routine is pretty stable. I’m finishing up another exciting remix, and I’m always digging for more tunes for gigs.