Aniara Recordings has gained acclaim around the world for it’s deep catalogue of hypnotic house and minimal electronic releases over the past decade. Now two of its co-founders, Fabian Bruhn and Nils Krogh (AKA Arkajo), are branching out with a brand new side project and label under the moniker Bodyculture. The Sweden based producers and DJs aim to curate sounds “tailor-made for dance floor delirium” and their first release does not disappoint.On the A side, Bodyculture presents a whoozy combination of all of the essential elements of a killer house track. With minimal keyboard samples shaping around the conga driven drums, a mesmerizing bassline injects a soulful flavor into the tune. Those familiar with the work of Genius of Time and other Aniara staples will take note of the usual components, but this track also features a more hard hitting rhythm, opting for cutting vocal samples and breaks to infuse the track with energy rather than the typical minimal layering of previous releases.
On the other side the duo maintains the conga-breaks mix on the drums but opts for a deeper, fatter bassline to move the dancefloor. On a club system this track truly finds its final form, pumping the bass with crispy hi hats accenting the vocal chops. The rising synth pads on the break down are perfect for creating the delirium the duo hopes to create on the dancefloor. Top notch, deep minimal house to get the body moving.
We had an opportunity to chat with Fabian and Niles ahead of the release to discuss the origins of the new project and what we can expect from them in the future.
Where did the idea of starting Body Culture come about?
Nils: We shared a residency in one of Gothenburg’s hidden treasures at the time, Fee Fi Fo Fum. For two years it was the place to be if you wanted to dance to house music or have a bowl of Tantanmen. We helped to restore a pair of original Altec A7 speakers and used our own old home built Aniara bass horn speakers with a Bozak AR4 mixer. We invited the likes of Mount Liberation Unlimited, Johanna Knutsson, Darwin and Dorisburg and it was crammed every weekend until we were evicted. During this time we played a lot of illegal warehouse parties and we established the sound we wanted to pursue when we played together. This turned into Body Culture. From the start it was really focused on dj’ing, but it wasn’t a big leap from there to jamming in the studio making these dynamic retro futuristic house groovers.
What kind of releases can we expect on the label moving forward?
Fun, groovy, jacking and dynamic house music, but with the emphasis on fun.
What was the most important piece of gear used for making Body Culture?
Three things: Tr-909, Roland Jv-1080 and a pair of congas.
Can we expect a live Body Culture set soon?
The focus of this project was always on playing dj-sets, so we will keep doing that, but you never know what will happen in the future.
How has working on Body Culture been different from other collaborations in the past?
Nils: For me it’s been really interesting to work in the studio with Fabian. He’s a great dj and he has such an understanding for arranging tracks. Then of course any time one gets to make banging house music and play the congas is a good time.
How do you guys balance sequencing and live performance during creation?
A lot stems from jamming so there’s definitely some live playing in there. Especially in the percussions/keys department. But there’s also sampling and sequencing in there for sure.
What was your favourite moment from your residency together?
Fabian: Getting to throw down together on a proper sound system with an intimate vibe like that is just the best! The look between you when one of you pulls out that extra special record that is perfect for that very moment, all in tune, everyone locked into the groove and completely letting loose. I recall Nils dropping this one at the end of one of our sessions there:
Favourite guilty pleasure track to bring to every dj set?
Mood II Swing -- 8 Ways To Knock DownA Wall, although the only thing guilty about this one is the number of times we’ve played it. Wild and pure, eternal house groove!
Interview by Nicholas.