Fresh Beats w/ Stuart Johnston

Fresh Beats w/ Stuart JohnstonYou begin to follow trends when you spend as much time on social networks as I do. As a promoter, I look out for those who Like, retweet and comment on the content I enjoy. I figure these are the people who’d dig the music we provide, or in this case, provide the music we dig.

Obviously, Stuart Johnston is one of these people. We’ve been praising many of the same artists, loving and listening to the best of progressive house for a very long time. Together we support and encourage the legends and fresh talent of our underground even though we’re situated over 5000 km apart.  It’s a bond I’ve felt before and is very real to me.  It’s one of the most beautiful things about our scene.

After hearing this exclusive, I’m pretty sure he feels the same way.  It’s a serious compilation; super tight, skillfully programmed and methodically captivating.  I know A LOT of effort was put into this mix; we’re sincerely thankful for such an exquisite gift.

The journey kicks off on a tech / tribal tip with an intro from Scottish maestros Slam.  It reaches forward to gorgeous synths from Stelios Vassiloudis, which then melts into the hypnotic strings of Berg.  A deep gruuv is the undertone for the second half, rolling into a super-suave conclusion in Vincenzo’s version of Nuribo.

An instant btb classic and an incredible start to what we already know will be a long-lasting friendship.  Thanks again Papa Johnston.

I don’t often post artist bios straight up in this forum; I usually just reference them to confirm the facts.  But I’m including Stuart’s below because it’s well written and quite frankly he needs to get his money’s worth…

The shimmer of a beat the smooth edge of a flowing groove, dance music that seamlessly emerges from an electronic belly brimming with funk, soul and depth. Sounds which materialise in mixes by Belfast based DJ Stuart Johnston play-listed over the last 6 months by online Electronic Dance Music radio stations such as Frisky Radio and Proton Radio.

Submerging himself into a world of beats, grooves and rhythms in the early 90s the Belfast DJ frequented clubs such as The Art College Belfast, Kelly’s Portrush, and Circus Circus Banbridge, Stuart was greatly influenced by the DJ’s who played these clubs, David Holmes, Ian McCready, Chris Hurley, Glen Molly and Jacko.

His recent sets span the deep and melodic side of electronica and techier productions by artists such as Tale Of Us, Maya Jane Coles, Solomun, Tigerskin, Maceo Plex & Sasse. He cites DJ’s such as Desyn Masiello, Ricky Ryan, Luke Fair, Tom Morgan, Hisham Zahran and Dana Bergquist as contemporary peers.

Does the world still need DJs we hear you ask ? Just as a disco ball needs to spin and feet need to hit the floor. It appears so.



Filed Under: btb BEATS


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  1. barney says:

    Slam – Eterna – Radio Slave Remix – Soma Records
    Migoo – Maschine Poetry – Alexander Maier Remix – Moodmusic
    Stelios Vassiloudis – Reaching – Bedrock Records
    Tolga Fidan – Berg – New Kanada
    Nick Lawson & Matthew Burton – Playdo – Inxec Remould – Leftroom Records
    Terje Saether Feat. Malin Patterson – Scared – Alt. Vocal Mix – Darkroom Dubs
    Joachim Pastor – Braumstig – Rodriguez Jr. Remix – Mistakes Music
    Uner – Nuribo – Vincenzo Remix – Gruuv

  2. Bonnie says:

    Thanks so much for another great new offering…BTB never disappoints! Love the fresh sounds and faces :)

  3. Doran says:

    Great to see your recognizing Stuart’s passion and support… and thanks to BTB and Mr. Johnson for sharing such a terrific mix. I connected with our Northern Irish mate in the same way…. and if I am lucky boy one day I will be featured on BTB :) Happy holidays to all!

  4. squirtle says:

    I tend not to be in a rush to describe a set just listened. It`s not fair with the DJ or listener to provide such description with all the tunage and info embedded in the set. This time it was no different. Having read such generous reviews about Stuart´s set, something good was in the works- and so it was.

    Stuart´s set starts off with a percussive tune that kinda sets the mood for the rest of the set. It suits the intro once the parts start coming together. Maschine Poetry comes after with groove and a bass that sort of sneaks in and out of the tune to start making things a touch more interesting. Vassiloudis´ tune opens the set progressively yet the two following tunes have a techy flavour that manage to preserve the melody infused through Reaching. Playdo comes in both bassy and percussive to start kicking things up a notch and this is the point where the DJ quality comes into play as Johnson `shows the skill necessary to what is to come next. Scared is such a beautiful track that takes things to the next level, if that makes sense. The mix played by Johnson has spooky elements that combined with the vocals get in the logos to leave a trace. As one Liberal thinker more or less once put it, misery is part of an existential state that has to do more with the materialistic side of matter rather than with the mental one. Nonetheless, it is existential and it is an inherent trait in a great number of those considered to belong to the human race, said to be the highest form of thought in this planet though it is dubious that in present conditions thought is used to the advantage of humankind. Right after, Braumstig is the tune that starts bringing the beats down though by no means the chuggy bass implies it so. Nuribo does bring things to a halt in a soft manner with a melody that fades the set away.Overall, the set as mentioned before, it is a solid sample of hard work that for some reason has drops of acid house in between-hope Stuart can elaborate on this more if there is room for it.

    These days everyone wants to be a DJ and flatters him/herself by playing the top 10 Beatport tunes. Way too many lack the knowledge necessary to get into a booth and play tunes yet somehow knowing the ´right people´ allows them to do this and, in a way, disseminate wrongheaded ideas in front of a crowd that usually goes out for the sake of it. Others tend to highly think of themselves as Postmodernists by throwing the highest possible number of combinations without providing the minutiae necessary as to be not disproven. Johnson somewhat declares to be in neither camp and that is a sign of wanting to preserve the essence of music and, like some of us, tirelessly thinks that more can still be done.

  5. Stuart Johnston says:

    Thanks for all the nice feedback Guys.

    All the best for 2012…