In the past, our series The Director's Cut has focused on the most recent albums from each installment's guest. It's always been our intention to not just focus on the latest and greatest but to also reflect back on the albums that helped shape our musical tastes and knowledge. With that, we welcome a true artistic talent whose sound is hard to nail down but instantly recognizable: Dusty Kid.
In 2009, he released his seminal album, 'A Raver's Diary', a masterful 12-piece ode to techno, progressive, and everything in between. Now, 11 years later, A Raver's Diary will be seeing a re-release, with a remix album to accompany it. Tracks like Here Comes The Techno, Klin, and America will be pressed to vinyl for the first time, and below, Dusty Kid walks us through the inspiration for each track on the album.
How to listen: There are a couple of ways to proceed. First, you can listen to the whole album, which you will find below, and then read the notes. Or, read the notes as you listen to each track. This will completely change your perspective on the whole release itself and bring you closer to the artist and their work.
Words by Dusty Kid
Here Comes The Techno
As the album opener, I wanted to launch the listener straight onto the dancefloor, and to do this rave energy was required (hence the title). In the period I was producing this, I was very addicted to those old Plus 8 records from Richie and all his monikers. The repetitive loop was the central part of it and quite out of trend in 2009, a big build-up with a rolling 909 snare!!
The Underground Persistence
This track originally had a melody and a different structure, but it was crashing too much with the opening. Since the rave had just started, I realised it was better to increase the energy and the hypnotism, so I took off the melodic part and I played with a delay on the MS-10 to get that atonal sound.
This one came out in an afternoon or so. It’s all about Chopin’s no.1 Valzer. I played the central part with the DX7 until I reached those leftfield plucky sounds, put some reverb on it and the fat bass I got from the Ms10. At first, I really felt it was a bit cheesy and commercial, but I didn’t care as I really liked the result. When I threw it in at a party though that weekend everybody went nuts
To lower the energy a little bit I needed some melody as the track was supposed to follow Cowboys (but in the end I switched them). I still wanted energy but with a mellow feeling, a big view on the sunset before the dusk of Cowboys.
This is definitely one of my fav tracks and represents for me a perfect romantic scenario on a housey beat and that lil ’70’s psychedelic feeling. It is completely inspired by a guy I was dating in that period, who I then left in the last track, ‘Nemur’. I found it so summery and melancholic, and even if it was previously released, I needed to include it in the album with its original longer edit because it’s a key part of the rave trip. It really pushes my inner sound out.
I remember I was resident in an open-air café/ club – where people weren’t permitted to dance – downtown in Cagliari for the whole 2006 summer. Two years later I had the chance to play there again and the same day I started working on it I tested it. I perfectly recall a friend of mine who was drinking next to me and I told her “hey listen to this I am working on it tell me what you think” and the moment the bass kicked in all the place started screaming and dancing like hell. She was literally shocked, and so was I! A totally unexpected reaction. Years later somebody showed me a video on Youtube that was taken that night right and I saw the whole scene again, it was very nice and surreal
I always loved Bach until the moment I got to study it, where that love eventually became hate. Maybe I was 17 when I was already far away from the classical experience of my childhood when I again discovered the pleasure of listening to his works. I wanted to make an homage to him by using his name as notes (B-A-C-H, he composed the art of fugue basing one of the main themes on these notes). That track is still somewhere in who knows which hard disk and never got finished. But in the same period, I made a remix for DJ Hell who didn’t like it, so I modified the melody to fit somehow the BACH idea and the track came together nice and easily.
Back to the party feeling; I found this bass sample which sounded so rough and techno that I just had to put a kick and a clap on it. Instantly it was rave magic!
America has a long story; it is also strongly connected to the guy I was talking about for ‘Cowboys’ and you can tell so because it has a romantic side. An adventure trip and dreamy trance are what my vision of an ideal rave should have. A moment when people fly guided by that melody that they remember the day after, and for years to come! I don’t know how, but a shorter version was uploaded on YouTube way before the track was released – and way before YouTube became a bit colossus. I remember playing it in Ukraine one day and people behaved as though it was their favourite record, apparently, they all knew it and I was so surprised.
The trance had to lift into something even more dreamy before collapsing into the flashback. The feeling that every raver knows: days after the party you, different scenes always come back to you and you sort of relive the party again. Sometimes, these feelings are so strong and clear that you can even remember the smell, then suddenly you come back to your normal life and you feel like you can’t wait until it’s weekend to rave again.
Nemur (Walls Of Guitars)
This is inspired by the way back from the rave, the day after. It’s so nice hearing people singing the song when I play this. I never ever imagined something like that. Woah, people singing my romantic song in a club! The 9th/11th guitar riff I asked my brother to play. It resumes all the good remembering you take with you from a party when you meet someone remarkable, in just three chords. The guy who whistles at the end of the track is hilarious. He is a close friend to the guy that is part of the album story. One day I was partying at a friend’s place and at some point, I asked everyone “hey, is anybody good whistling? I need to finish a track and I’m struggling to do it on my own”- I barely knew him back then, but he offered himself up to do it. I asked him to whistle something to me and he did it with his teeth instead of using the mouth – perfect for the atmosphere I was looking for. So, we went straight to my studio to record it and eventually became friends, he now lives in Australia.
Pre-order A Raver's Diary here.