Mouka ~ I Love Substance

With the launch of the new site we thought we’d pull out something extremely awesome to help celebrate. Mouka was nice enough to re-record his entire set that he put together for our last event at Highlander bar. Armed with his newly acquired APC40 it was usual Mouka style yet with a slightly more in-depth and technical feel. Goes without saying that the man, as per-usual, had the whole place absolutely bumping. Anyway, this is the set in its entirety available for you to download for free, distribute and crank on your home stereos!

This is a perfect example of what you can expect to hear Mouka playing at our upcoming 2nd Birthday event. No doubt the man will have a fresh arsenal of many more out-of-this-world mash-ups to deliver.

He’s been nice enough to write up a run down of the mix as a whole. It gives a really in-depth look into the intricate workings of the set. Read on!

I really enjoy playing at Substance parties, and this one was no exception. The party crew are loads of fun and the people just love having a good time. I titled this mix I <3 Substance for that reason.
What I’ve tried to do below is describe a few concepts, processes and effects for this mix. I used my faithful Macbook, Ableton Live and an APC40 to perform this mix 100% live. I also use a cavalcade of effects from various softwares.
I start this mix off with a bang, then bring it down before building to a big finish. There are influences from hip hop, rock, pop, trance, motown, house, metal, 60s, cheese and my childhood.

1. Fugees_LennyKravitz_MarcAurel 2:43
The Disney-like strings in this mash comes from The Platters (Enchanted), a song I heard on Breaking Bad (season 2). The concept behind this mash is about cohesion of lyrics and themes. You can run and fly, but the Fugees will get you. Sometimes you just cant run or fly fast enough.

2. MarcAurel Interlude 0:55
These interludes are small markers when I am changing the tempo, eq-ing, effecting or just going nuts on the APC.

3. TheKnack_Santogold_Beats 1:14
I really like the ‘ma ma ma’ from the Knack tune, and it’s the part that really gets stuck in your head, so I thought I’d give it a crack with Santogold. The bass lines really compliment one another, and it gives me a good feeling to listen to it.

4. MIA_TheEagles_TheOrb_Beats 3:46
I am a massive fan of the Eagles, and have listened to Hotel California at many points in my life. The riff is so recognisable and I got lucky with discovering The Orb remix. A couple effects I use in this mash cut off the vocals. There is not much cohesion between the vocals, but I think the tune has a good flow.

5. SwizzBeats_JanisJoplin_RoughCutt_Beats 2:02
For this mash I grabbed a small synth & siren sound form the part of a hip hop tune (0:02, 0:39 etc), and used its beats to sit underneath. The heavy guitar (0:43, 1:40) is actually a Rouch Cutt metal mix of the Joplin original, so the keys work together. It was a rough intro and outro mix, but sometimes a mash just has to drop without any solid mixing.

6. ColdWarKids_DeeJayEMaxx_Beats 1:43
This mash is about theme cohesion…being a junky, and being hung out (or strung out).

7. BillConti_NIN_Beats 1:51
I looped the Cold War Kids (0:07), and let the rest of the Bill Conti tune do its work. Then I looped the Bill Conti tune (0:30), to let the NIN tune come in underneath. I remember hearing closer when I was 14 years old and thought it was the best tune around. Who wouldn’t want to fuck like an animal?

8. Ramones_ArchitectureInHelsinki_JohnMiles 1:48
Originally I had no beats underneath, and just had Architecture in Helsinki (‘bom’) but it sounded empty. Piooski does great re-edits of tunes, and the edit he’s done of the Miles tune makes it easier to add in dance music. The beats are big and gives a bit more oomf to the tune.

9. JohnMiles_Pilooski Interlude 0:47
A small disco interlude, so I can arrange more tunes, and fiddle with tempo. There are some small effects used to spice it up a bit. The next tune is being mixed in underneath.

10. ASkillzKrafty_EcstacyPassion&Pain_FNM 2:19
Hip hop and trance rarely go together, and this mash slips in and out of key. I used the Faith No More guitar riff to distract form that.

11. BobMarley_SnoopDog_Beats 1:57
This mash is about two stoners enjoying a duet. The Marley tune gets used a lot in mash and hip hop, and it was just a matter of finding another acapella that matched its tempo. The middle beats-break-down (1:11) was used because the keys clashed, so I just looped a few beats until the Marley tune drops again.

12. GrandmasterFlash Interlude 1:09
Sometimes tunes don’t need to be touched. They’re good enough on their own. This is one such tune. I try and add one or two in each mash-mix I do.

13. Jackson5_JoanJett_TheBangles_Beats 2:51
Thematically this mash doesn’t really work, but it serves the purpose of transitioning from hip hop to rock (next mash). When the Bangles drops (2:09) it doubles the tempo, but the half-time hip hop beats keep it grounded. I looped the Jackson5 tune to run underneath the Bangles.

14. DandyWarhols_NaughtyByNature_Beats 3:40
The drop in the Dandy tune (0:49) is huge for me and always gives me a massive buzz. The Naughty tune just sits underneath, and acts as a small chorus. I like it when a mash pulls your ears in two directions, like with both of these vocals when they sing together.

15. BlackEyedPeas_Jamiroqui_Beats 3:47
I mashed this tune some time ago, and I really don’t like it much. Truth be told, when I play it live I usually skip through it so it’s about 2 minutes shorter.

16. DJShadow_SmokeyRobinson_GwenStefani 4:04
This is probably my favourite tune on the whole mix. Shadow’s riff comes through so strong, and is tempered by the 60s vocals (Robinson), then brought into the 2000s with Gwen’s vocals. Again, when both vocals are together, your ears get pulled apart. When Shadow’s tune drops I am mashing buttons with furor (‘dirty, rotten, lewd etc’). This mash has 4 different songs and 10 audio clips used in it. Individual clips are in a drum machine within Live so I can punch them with speed.

17. KimCarne Interlude 0:55
A small interlude to mix out of the previous tune and change directions.

18. KimCarne_Was(notwas)_Freestylers 2:43
This mash is all about the drop. Was(not was) is looped to let the Freestylers do their work. I put a reverb on the Carne tune to bleed the three together.

19. Reel2Real_Herbet 3:42
I have used the base tune (Herbet) in various forms over the years. I love it because it’s a thumper, and almost any vocal goes well with it. The Reel2Reel was mashed with it to keep in the 80s/90s theme from the previous mash.

20. MJ_LadyGaga_DaftPunk 3:16
A second Jackson tune for this set. It’s easy to fall prey to using one artist too much in one set. When I recorded this it was around the time that Jackson died, so I thought it was ok. The Gaga tune is a bit of a thumper and I am building the set towards a big finish. The Daft Punk samples (0:32 onwards and 2:14) are dropped live as individual clips. There are some other beats & scratches dropped underneath which are also individual clips in a drum machine in Live.

21. BlackEyedPeas_EmpireOfTheSun 4:34
I just love both of these tunes. Cheesy, cheesy mash. I added some beats in the break down (1:15) to keep the flow. The next mash comes in underneath quite early (3:17).

22. UrthBoy_Black&WhiteBros Interlude 0:42
This is a cut mix, and an interlude that serves the purpose of shifting up to the next mash.

23. Black&WhiteBros_Eurythmics_Infinity_Urthboy 3:06
Infinity has done a brilliant breaks remix of the Eurythmics tune. I looped the Black&White vocals to continue underneath. When the mash drops (1:26), I looped the Eurythmics tune, dropped Urthboy piano riff, used a filter to fade out the Eurythmics tune, then bring it back in. Then I looped the final piano hit of Urthboy, but it gets washed out a bit. I bring in Urthboy again just for a small portion at the end to blend to the next mash tune.

24. Delirium_ACDC 4:06
Both of these tunes evoke strong emotions in me. It was tough to get them both in key and keep the flow, so it’s a bit longer than my other mash tunes. The vocals compete with each other at various points, but to my ear it kind of works. At 2:12 I have added some percussion to keep it rolling. I loop Delirium (2:54) and gently bleed it in and out.

25. PitchUp Interlude 0:15
I loop the outro of the Delirium and then pitch up the tempo (140 bpm) so the new mash tune can come in. The clicks are from the loop points and they change due to the tempo change.

26. Olive_LaRoux_Skream 3:35
From one trance tune to another (Olive). The quality of the Olive tune is a bit haggard (& grainy). Skream’s dubstep mix of La Roux’s tune is incredible because it does half-time, then drops into double time. I loop Olive for the main drop (1:58), then later I loop LaRoux (2:26) so that Olive can finish off the set.



2 Responses to “Mouka ~ I Love Substance”

  • I adore the closing of this set. Comes out of nowhere!! 🙂

  • Simon Murphy

    Great to get some insight into the makings of Mouka’s amazing mash-ups.

    Definately a crowd favourite, I am left gob-smacked with each and every set. So many gems that I forgot even existed all mashed up into a crazy party mix.

    Get on it people and see you at the Birthday!!

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