Nicolas Bougaïeff is a name new to EARMILK but one that is quickly ascending in the world of techno avant-garde. With a style rooted in 90s rave music, contemporary classical and electro-acoustics, Bougaïeff's musical style belies the use of unconventional structures with disarming simplicity—his amalgamation of brutal distortion, playful melodies and textures suggesting off-kilter fantasy.
With a PhD on minimal techno at the University of Huddersfield, the Berlin-based artist was the one who designed the controllers for Richie Hawtin's Plastikman Live tour, and co-founded Liine, the company behind the landmark music app Lemur used by astronaut Alexander Gerst on the International Space Station in a live jam with Kraftwerk. With a list of incredible accomplishments, Bougaïeff is definitely one to watch for.
For a proper introduction, we're delighted to share an exclusive mix he's created for EARMILK. "This mix is about steady inertia with a sprinkle of uplifting vibes shining through the dark energy," the Montreal-born DJ and producer shares. "I made it almost entirely from new releases and new favourites from friends and producers that inspire me." Listen below for a techno masterpiece that's sure to transport you to the depths of Berlin.
Marcel Fengler – Knavish
Kosei Fukuda – Kouya (Tobias. Remix)
main(void) – CUES005A
Kodem – Vault Lines (Truncate Remix) (Bougaïeff Edit)
Ben Gibson – Orbital Decay
MATRiXXMAN, Riccardo Limiti – Inferno (Bougaïeff Edit)
Architectural – Cubismo 83
Gotshell – Second Today
Nicolas Bougaïeff – Rip Tie Cut Toy Man
Cleric – Restore
Lewis Fautzi – Ernst
Keith Carnal – Obesity
Sebastian Kramer – Refrak
Extrakt – K001_D
Hunter/Game – Sub Zero
Stef Mendesidis – Senzo
Fragmentor – Fire the Fire
Amotik – Barah
Modig – Pikes
Nur Jaber – Beyond Borders
Marcel Fengler – Knavish
Indeed, the mix is a true work of new sounds, innovative in its composition and transitions—an exciting foray into the the depths of the Berlin underground scene. "Recently I've been producing remixes," Bougaïeff shares when asked about his recent ventures. "I did one for Nicole Moudaber, Noir, an artist on Kompakt, and a very exciting new artist called Lindred who I signed to my label Denkfabrik. There's a few more collaborations and remixes that I just started but it's too early to announce those quite yet, I'm very excited though about these new musical landscapes. Also coming up very soon is a record I made with Daniel Miller called "Populist"—tracks from that 12" have already started popping up in some mixes."
Additionally, the live audio-visual project with Itaru Yasuda has been going well for the artist. "We've been reviewing footage from our last performance at Fabric London and it's looking really great," he shares. "Working with NovaMute has been really amazing! The whole team is so positive and cheerful, every single step of the process is really fun and at the end of the day I think the records and the shows reflect that spirit of enthusiasm and collaboration. And there seems to be no limit to presenting challenging or avant-garde ideas, so for me and the experiences I want to create for the audience it's really a perfect match."
Bougaïeff has also released a new four-track EP entitled On The Grid via NovaMute. The EP is the final instalment in a series of EPs inspired by Greg Egan's sci-fi novel Permutation City (1994); In Egan's far-future world, mankind has the option to upload their consciousness onto computers. On The Grid is focused on the evolution of a character that makes radical alterations to his identity by sculpting his own memories. Bougaïeff delivers four club friendly tracks inspired by this transformation as the character observes, confronts, rejects and finally escapes the dystopian scenario.
Buy On The Grid here.