Intrepid Skin returns with its most outspoken, outlandish release yet. SPFDJ’s tastemaking imprint is proud to introduce ‘Glitzer Vs Hass’, the debut release from German artist, Valerie Ace.
Unrelenting but utterly charismatic across four tracks, Ace blends her lived experience intertwined with today’s increasingly complex politics of club culture with a thirst for experimentation, unpicking and subverting the strains of toxic masculinity that still run deep through contemporary culture. This is first-rate dancefloor discourse with little room for chin-stroking.
Opening track ‘Glucose Guardian’ signals Ace’s intent, a hard but loveable twist on peak-time techno tropes, it’s relentlessness underpinned by granular synthesis that seems to coax a chorus of synthetic angels (the track takes its name from a meme providing a gender-flip on the rather less loveable ‘Sugar Daddy’ trope).
“Listen up fives, a ten is speaking”, affirms the voice heard on ‘Lavender Ceiling’, a call to open-arms for dance music’s entrenched queer community, still subject to micro and macro-agressions in supposedly ‘safe’ spaces. Musically this translates to what Ace refers to as “Dystopian Disney”, drawing parallel lines between tenderness and absurdity.
‘Sweaty Syrup’ is a ruthless amalgamation of acid modulations and entangled synthesis, a something’s-not- quite-right atmosphere gleefully unnerving dancers, while keeping them hooked with flawless, pounding drum play.
Finally, ‘Hyper Hyper Dancy Hardcore’ submits to the ridiculous promise of its title with a breathless finale that showcases Ace’s ability to deliver function and pure fun. Leaving a strong final impression this Rotterdam- rooted hardcore anthem provides all the thrills but thoughtfully dispenses with the macho bullshit, its central vocal constantly shifting in pitch and context.
Driven by the energy and outrageousness that has come to define her scene, yet smartly subverting and experimenting with it, ‘Glitzer Vs Hass’ sees Valerie Ace enter the contemporary techno landscape with passion, humour and much-needed sonic resistance.
Hey Lina and Valerie, how are you ?
(Valerie) Great, I’m so excited to finally see my debut EP come out – We have been working on this for a long time!
(Lina) I am also great, thank you! Despite the difficult times for the music scene I have been doing very well on a personal level and now more ready than ever to kick this year off with this killer EP.
(Valerie) 太好了，我很高兴终于看到我的首张 EP 出来了——我们已经为此努力了很长时间！
(Lina)我也很棒，谢谢！尽管音乐界经历了艰难时期，但我在个人层面上一直做得很好，现在比以往任何时候都更愿意用这张杀手级 EP 开启今年的序幕。
Lina, if you would approach a totally fresh audience how would you introduce your label ? and what are the main values ?
(Lina) I would say that as a record label launched within the techno realm, Intrepid skin sits in the outskirts with a more playful attitude, not afraid of humor in an otherwise serious and dark landscape. With the label I’m hoping to continue to build a platform for artists with their own identifiable sound identities, fostering strong musical individuality and innovation rather than leading producers to converge towards a common sound or style. This all while aiming for dance-floor readiness – it’s not a very experimental label, but more a collection of somewhat unusual bangers that all fit into the sphere of ‘new generation’ techno.
(Lina) 我想说，作为一个在 techno 领域推出的唱片公司，Intrepid skin 以一种更有趣的态度坐在郊区，在原本严肃而黑暗的环境中不惧怕幽默。通过这个厂牌，我希望继续为具有自己可识别声音身份的艺术家建立一个平台，培养强烈的音乐个性和创新，而不是让制作人趋同于一种共同的声音或风格。这一切都旨在为舞池做好准备 – 它不是一个非常实验性的标签，而是更多一些不寻常的砰砰声，它们都适合“新一代”技术的领域。
When and how did you both meet up? Was it love from the first impression?
(Valerie) Intrepid Skin was my favorite label since I heard Lina play in Cologne in early 2019 – I didn’t know who she was before the night began, but her djing left such a strong impression that I still remember looking up interviews the day after (today we’re coming full circle – I’m writing about reading SPFDJ interviews, in an interview with her).
Then a bit over a year ago I sent an email with one of my tracks to her without thinking anything of it, but she was very interested and wanted to meet in person. I thought it was a scam at first because it just seemed too easy!
(Lina) For me it was love from the first audible impression yes! When I got that email from Valerie I got this immediate feeling of excitement and was testing her music in the club at the first possible opportunity.
Having a personal connection with the artists on my label is important to me so I asked her to meet, I think she even said then that she wondered if it was a scam haha, but when the music is that good and distinctive from the beginning it *should* be easy.
(Valerie) Intrepid Skin 是我最喜欢的厂牌，因为我在 2019 年初听到 Lina 在科隆演出 – 我不知道在晚上开始之前她是谁，但她的 djing 给我留下了如此深刻的印象，以至于我仍然记得那天查找采访之后（今天我们又来了一个完整的循环——我正在写关于阅读 SPFDJ 采访的文章，在接受她的采访时）。
Valerie, it’s your first EP on the label, congrats! What are your goals for the upcoming year ?
(Valerie) I have another track lined up for a compilation on vinyl this summer, and I’m hoping to make a second EP happen this year already as well! Also playing more gigs is the main goal of course – Please let this lockdown be our last.
(Valerie) 今年夏天我准备了另一首黑胶唱片合辑，我希望今年也能制作第二张 EP！当然，更多的演出也是主要目标——请让这次封锁成为我们的最后一次。
We are here to premiere a track called Sweaty Syrup. What were your influences? How did you process that into what you are creating now?
(Valerie) For Sweaty Syrup I went with an accidental recording of my friends laugh – It fits so well with the cover art and it has that quality between being friendly and hostile, which is central to the perspective on nightlife that I am trying to share. At the time I was experimenting and learning a lot with my modular synthesizer, which is also one of my main inspirations really. I became very interested in electronic sounds themselves on an abstract level.
(Valerie) 对于 Sweaty Syrup，我意外录制了我朋友的笑声 – 它与封面艺术非常吻合，并且具有友好和敌对之间的品质，这是我试图分享的夜生活视角的核心.当时我正在用我的模块化合成器进行很多实验和学习，这也是我的主要灵感之一。我对抽象层面的电子声音本身产生了浓厚的兴趣。
LISTEN TRACK HERE:
Interview : KEYI STUDIO