Structure 031 comes courtesy of DJ Ashlyn and Martina (Marty).
I caught up with the NYC based DJs (well I sent them an email) and asked them exceedingly mundane questions, to which they somehow gave interesting answers to. Stream their splendid mix and read our q&a below.
Thank you so much for recording the mix, really appreciate it! For the uninitiated out there, introduce yourself?
Martina: I’m Martina (Marty). Thanks so much for having us both!
Ashlyn: Thank you for having us! I’m Ashlyn, I live in Ridgewood, Queens by way of British Columbia.
Tell us a little about the mix. What are the main influences on your production?
Martina: Ashlyn and I have been bonding over our reciprocal interest in more downtempo, female-fronted 90s trip-hop stuff. The last track in this mix is one we both remember listening to while driving with our moms. We elaborated on that, and the mix turned out to be as melodic and flowery as it is anxious and moody.
Ashlyn: This mix was really about my friendship with Martina and our connection to a sound, trip hop, sing songy, trance like tunes we both love. We initially bonded over our love of Danielle Brisebois and it all went uphill from there.
What was the last record you bought? And, where is your favourite spot to go record shopping?
Martina: Last week I bought an Alicia Meyers record that has a lot of her unknown soul and gospel songs. My favorite record store in NYC is A1, I think it’s everyone’s!!
Ashlyn: Beta Librae’s Sanguine Bond. I love A1 of course, it’s home to me and has guided to many life altering discoveries. 2 Bridges Music Arts is a tranquil space with incredible new selections. It’s nice to be able to sit and stare out the window while I listen.
What is your earliest memory of the club?
Ashlyn: It is not that great unfortunately. In BC around the time I was able to be in a club spaces were highly regulated, few and far between, and the clubs that existed felt tense. It was upsetting because one could sense that people really needed more space to be, rather than these highly policed alcohol centric- essentially -provincial buildings masked as music sharing spaces with no thought given to inclusivity.
Martina: I was maybe 15 or 16, definitely too young to enter, and my friend was playing a cellar in the East Village. I carried her speakers and hid my face behind them as she was loading in, and then stayed until the sun was rising. I have a really clear recollection of this night, and sometimes have deja-vu moments from it.
Tell us a little about Working Women?
Martina: They are a breath of fresh air… I remain in awe of their fluid communication as a group, and thankful for the openness and supportive nature they each bring as individuals <3
Ashlyn: Working Women are some of my best friends who I am honored to play music alongside! Nicely, Voices, Nina. Together we explore what it all means!…Sharing music, being ‘good’ dj’s, technical knowledge, most importantly what it means to make space and give back to music and community as it gives so much to us.
What was the last book you read? And, does literature influence your music at all?
Martina: I just finished Anna Kavan’s Ice, which is an incredibly unsettling, dreamy, cryptic, even hallucinatory novel. The characters are nameless and the events are regularly interrupted by delusions. I never really thought about it, but I think it definitely informed what I’d been listening to.
Ashlyn: Totally! Reading and writing have always been of equal importance to my music practice and certainly referentially. I am positive that without those combined elements I wouldn’t feel comfortable sharing music or doing anything I do. I last read The Chandelier by Clarice Lispector who has a meandering and plotless quality to her prose that I find to be calming and somewhat related to themes of this mix. The main character, Virginia, has a sensitivity to nature that almost anthropomorphizes surroundings like as though stones have sympathy and the breeze acknowledges her. She walks through the world elusively kind of humming.
I’ve become really obsessed with film scores recently! Whats your favourite film score/soundtrack at the minute?
Martina: I’m really into Tangerine Dream’s score for William Friedkin’s Sorcerer.
Ashlyn: Smog by Franco Rossi and Hackers also the Love Jones soundtrack is always going to remain in my heart.
And finally, what plans do you have for the rest of 2018?
Ashlyn: 2018 has been so positive already! I am heading to Europe with Working Women for tour in August which is a dream come true. I hope to continue playing music, finally share my own, pursue my graduate program in International Migration Studies, and carry on enjoying life immensely with people I love.
Martina: I just planted the seeds for a new monthly performance series to start, which will create a stage for visual artists and musicians who may not typically identify as ‘performers’, and see how they might interpret their go-to form through a new medium. I’d also like to escape into nature and chill out for at least two weeks this year.
* The gorgeous photos in the artwork and feature were taken by Ben Taylor.