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FOCUS: Day of the Dead: Function


Friday, November 1, 2019




Doors 8:00 PM
Flash Nightclub

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FUNCTION:


Hailing from New York, he was seduced by techno when Jeff Mills held

residency (as well as his own first) at Limelight in the early 90s.

Producing from the mid-90s onward, he released his first 12"s on

Damon Wild's Synewave and his own Infrastructure imprint. A chance

meeting in 1996 brought him together with Regis (Karl O'Connor). The

two worked as Portion Reform, releasing uncompromising music on

Downwards, making him the only non-Birmingham producer to appear

on the label. He later moved to Berlin in 2007, still working with Regis,

and now Silent Servant (Juan Mendez), putting his focus on Sandwell

District. Since, the label come collective, skyrocketed into cult status -

decentralizing the artist ego, blurring the lines between the artist, label

and dj; re-arranging the DNA of modern dance music.


Initially releasing records under their own identities, as the label's

success grew, it came to be seen increasingly as a collective entity,

releasing tracks and albums anonymously partly in revolt against the

increasingly celebrity-oriented DJ culture of the time, culminating in its

2010 collective album Feed Forward. Their sound has been highly

influential across the following generation of techno musicians, and has

informed a major shift in world techno. By the time the label

announced its "glorious death" in 2012 (continuing only as a performing

act) the American Billboard magazine would write that "Sandwell

District's influence on underground techno can hardly be overstated."

The move to Berlin proved successful, bringing both Function and

Sandwell District to enigmatic status. Headlining festivals worldwide, his

sets at Labyrinth, Japan from 2009-2011 became things of legend;

Sandwell closing Sonar's main stage in 2010 proved their impact, with

regular Time Warp, Awakenings and Dekmantel appearances (to name a

few), combined with frequent club appearances at Berghain, Berlin;

Fabric, London; and The Bunker, New York, and other key techno

clubs/parties around the world, Sumner's status as one of techno's

most important figures became evident.


After disbanding in 2013, their final transmission being; Fabric 69:

Sandwell District, Sumner was invited to join the Ostgut family,

releasing his debut album, the critically acclaimed, Incubation on

Ostgut Ton, and becoming a Berghain resident. In 2015 he contributed

to the notable Berghain mix series releasing, Berghain 07 - Function;

the game-changing series which left behind the mix CD format, making

the mix available as a free .WAV download and Soundcloud stream

alongside two EPs with eight exclusive tracks by various artists.

The album Incubation landed on Ostgut Ton in 2013 and was a heavy

impacting reminder of Function's single-handed talents, solidifying his

status as a solo artist. The album flows very fluidly and is meticulously

detailed with a futurist and foreboding sci-fi feeling throughout. The LP

circles in hypnotic loops with unsettling tones luring you into the

darkest corners of your mind. From the day of release, Incubation is

rightfully considered as a landmark in techno's ever growing history.

In addition, in 2014, he collaborated with Vatican Shadow on Hospital

Productions, releasing Games Have Rules, a beautiful full length

ambient affair. Feeling the need for a platform to explore developing

new artists and an outlet for solo material, he then decided to relaunch

the 9 years dormant, Infrastructure New York, in 2015 - releasing a

string of beautifully crafted 12"s and albums, developing a camp of new

exclusive artists; Campbell Irvine, Post Scriptum, Mariano DC and

Function/Inland, as well as involving techno classics such as Steve

Bicknell and Altern8's Mark Archer (Trackman). Going on to release the

quadruple pack vinyl/CD label compilation; Infrastructure - Facticity, in

2016.


In 2017, Function established a new residency, being the only

international resident at Bassiani, in Tbilisi, Georgia. He also celebrated

nearly 25 years as a recording artist, releasing a retrospective

compilation for the newly formed Ostgut Ton off-shoot; A-Ton.

Alongside an already eventful year, Function engaged in a new project

which would form the techno supergroup LSD in collaboration with

Luke Slater and Steve Bicknell that they would described as "lysergic

machine music". The trio debuted on Ostgut Ton with a 3 track EP titled

"Process", too much acclaim, in conjunction with mesmerising

performances at both ADE and Berghain which led to them playing

headline shows ever since. A lot more music by LSD is soon surfacing as

well.


Then, 2019 will see Function re-inventing himself once again: releasing

a fresh batch of newly orchestrated productions and roaring with energy to get back on the road playing shows. As always,

Function keeps on shifting to the next gear and will no doubt be turning

a lot of heads in the years to come.