esiding on the fringes of postmodern electronica is Jace Clayton, recording turntable deconstructionism as DJ /rupture and avant-breakcore as Nettle. Both projects combine the seemingly disparate genres of Near-East folk music with the breakbeat twists and turns of contemporary IDM. Born in Boston, but a longtime resident of Madrid, Clayton pushes music to the very extremes of form and content, with pervasive themes of postcolonialism never far out of reach.
Clayton has found acclaim under his DJ /rupture moniker, which takes 2002's bootleg mashup craze to unexplored realms of creativity and depth. Instead of simple pop song fusion, DJ /rupture's triple-turntable experiments explore the common ground of dub, hip hop, breakbeat, dancehall, and Middle Eastern folk music. The resulting musical stews illuminate revelatory links between the dispersed musical genres of representative of insurgent culture, unified under the banner of the breakbeat. His deconstruction goes into the finished product itself, as /rupture reveals all his source material in the tracklisting of his mixes: the artist is decentered and demystified, merely a conduit of expression. His knack for inventive juxtapositions caught the attention of Tigerbeat6, which re-released Gold Teeth Thief and Minesweeper Suite to wider distribution than Clayton's own Madrid-based Soot label (home to up-and-comer DJ Mutamassik).
As Nettle, Clayton collaborated with visual artist DD to create disconcerting soundscapes where scraping percussion meets bits and pieces of traditional music of the Near East. The results range from textured and nuanced abstract break meditations to full on club burners propelled by manipulated tablas, sitars, and vocal samples. The attention to detail is astounding; the listener can explore this uncharted terrain forever (indeed, Nettle's full-length, Build A Fort Set That On Fire didn't leave my Discman for weeks. Nettle's vision is perfectly complementary to that of his /rupture project, and Nettle is featured extensively in the /rupture mixes.
With his wit and populist break aesthetic, Clayton has found allies with beat-junkie celebrities Kid606 and DJ Scud. However, his inventive approaches and singular style know no peer. He is currently touring the world, has recently performed live on John Peel's radio show, and will make his American tour debut in July. Definitely one to watch.
Current members: Jace Clayton
Style: Turntablism, Breakcore, IDM
Labels Appeared On: Soot, Tigerbeat6, Violent Turd, The Agriculture
Gold Teeth Thief (as DJ /rupture) (Violent Turd - 2002)
Minesweeper Suite (as DJ /rupture) (Tigerbeat6 - 2002)
Build A Fort Set That On Fire (as Nettle) (The Agriculture - 2002)
Starting Point: Gold Teeth Thief (available on mp3 here)
Essential: Minesweeper Suite
By: Gavin Mueller
Published on: 2003-09-01