Aleah Axiom spent the past 15 years focused on the many forms of electronic music, but techno appears to be her true calling. Now it's a full-time obsession behind the decks as a DJ and behind the pen on her blog Robotic Peacock. She travels to watch and interview techno DJs during their swings through Texas.
For this week's mixtape, Axiom presents a deep and varied mix of straight-up techno. In the Q&A, she opens up about her 16-year journey down the path to techno DJ.
Dallas Observer: How long have you been a DJ? How did you get started?
Aleah Axiom: I started playing music nearly 16 years ago — right around the time I first discovered electronic music — and always knew I wanted to be a DJ. I first started learning as a radio DJ at the University of Miami’s student station WVUM in 2007 and got my first gigs through them in 2009. I played every gig I could get my hands on in Miami until I left late 2012, and feel like I’ve become a real part of the Dallas scene within the last year. It’s been a wild ride and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.
How was this mix made and was there a theme behind it?
This mix was recorded on my Pioneer CDJ-2000 Nexuses and DJM-2000 Nexus mixer at the February edition of my show Cosmic Transmissions at the Crown & Harp. I always close out the nights with my favorite kind of techno: hard-hitting but still groovy and fun to dance to.
Which crews have you been playing with lately?
This year has been off to a great start. In addition to my shows at Crown & Harp and Beauty Bar, I’ve opened for Gabriel I and Volvox with Cross Border Warriors, played Love Rich’s Get Lucky party at the Green Elephant, and just became an official member of the Guild’s DJ crew, so you’ll be seeing a lot more of me at the Nines.
What’s new with your Robotic Peacock blog?
Since I’ve been focusing on my deejaying and my partner Jessica has been focusing on her clothing line, Not Sorry Apparel, we’ve slowed down a little, but I’m excited to be covering Miami Music Week/Ultra next week and she will be covering Movement in Detroit in May. One of our good friends recently started working at DJ TechTools so be on the lookout for more technology reviews as well.
How did techno journalism find its way into your life?
I’ve always been a writer and have been incredibly passionate about techno for years so it was natural for me to want an outlet for the two to convene. Since we started the blog back in 2013, it’s been a joy to shed more light on the music, producers, technology and lifestyle we love.
Where do you like to dig for tracks? Online or in stores?
My discovery methods have been overhauled since I became a Spotify member at the beginning of last year. I follow all of the producers I love and get notified when they have new releases, which makes it super easy to stay on top of everything. Their recommendation engine is top notch as well. My slowly growing vinyl collection has benefited a lot from Retroplex Records and Discogs.
Which new producers have been getting you excited?
Some of the up-and-comers who continually inspire me are Maksim Dark, Fabio Florido, Shaded, Bjarki, Alberto Ruiz and Tomy DeClerque. They have sounds all their own.
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What has been your most significant music experience of the past year?
As a DJ, my most significant experience was playing a certain secret underground party in Dallas this past year. It reminded me of my favorite events in Miami, equally focused on art and music of all varieties with a friendly and receptive crowd in a unique space.
As a fan, getting to see Matador in Austin the weekend after one of my best friends/our community’s leaders, Jason Lovel, passed away was incredibly moving and powerful and set my healing in motion. I’ve been spoiled by great music here in Dallas too, I’m super happy with the way the scene is growing.
What gigs do you have coming up?
I’m playing this Friday at the Nines’ St. Patrick’s Day party with Maxwell Carritt as our duo project Pulvis Solaris, in Amarillo at Sacred Vibes on April 1, at Crown & Harp for Cosmic Transmissions April 5, and then have a double header on April 22 where I’ll be opening for Charlotte de Witte at Sunset Lounge and then doing a late night Pulvis Solaris set at a secret warehouse. It’s going to be a busy, techno-filled year.
1. Timmo — "Ethereal"
2. Marck D — "Definition" (David Dega Remix)
3. Maksim Dark — "Electrobirds"
4. Skober & Sasha Carassi — "Reborn"
5. Christian Smith & Wehbba — "Second Life"
6. DJ Tonio — "Closer, Faster, Stronger" (Thomas Schumacher & Victor Ruiz Remix)
7. Jay Lumen — "Search"
8. Joran Van Pol — "Awakening" (Egbert Remix)
9. Marck D & Buitrago — "No One Else"
10. Moby — "Don’t Leave Me" (Reinier Zonneveld Remix)
11. 30drop — "They Saw It Again"
12. Alan Fitzpatrick — "U Said U"
13. Maksim Dark — "Beonix"
14. Marck D & Buitrago — "Out of Control"
15. Julian Jeweil — "Traffic"
16. Slam — "Fervant"
17. Enrico Sangiuliano — "Moon Rocks"
18. Victor Ruiz — "Red Lights"
19. Sam Paganini — "Chocolate"
20. Pan-Pot — "Lose Yourself"
21. Rex The Dog — "Teufelsberg"