It wasn’t until I received my 2008 July/August edition of URB, when I read an article about this innovative DJ named Mike Relm. The San Francisco-based DJ/VJ is known for his live performances that mix and manipulate audio mashups with video images… in real-time. Mike mixes serious with silly, all while he is dressed in a black suit and tie, matched with some fresh sneakers. Not the average dressed turntablist, that’s for sure. But I dig it.
Mike’s 2005 mixtape, “Radio Fryer” (“Fun With Turntables”, “Nightmare On Relm Street”, & “Relm’s Big Adventure” being the favorites), got a lot of disgruntled letters from artists about his heavy sampling without compensation. But you should check it out for the eclectic mix of sounds that make the mixtape incredibly enjoyable.
On his 2008 debut album, “Spectacle” (Radio Fried Records), he decided it’d be nothing but original beats and hip hop vibes. No samples. While it might be a letdown for some not to have any samples, but personally, I still think this is a solid album. It’s a little different from what you hear at his live sets, but the good kind of different. Mike explores his serious side of his music on this album. The energy is still there, but as you may know you can’t duplicate a live performance on an album. And there’s still that quirky Mike Relm touch in there. To help the flow of the album, you’ll hear the sound of a television changing channels, with split seconds of bits from movies, TV news, and commercials. Mike rallied up some good artists to feature on “Spectacle”, such as: Morningwood, Alfredo Ortiz, Gift of Gab, Del The Funky Homosapien, Mr. Lif, Adrian Hartley, and so on. Check it out.
In the first visual below, you’ll see a video of Relm on Youtube Live 2008. He takes video visuals and applies them to his scratching set. The part that stands out the most to me, is the “Charlie bit my finger!” piece. You know, when the older child sticks his finger in the younger brother’s (Charlie) mouth and he bites his finger. Haha, who would’ve thought that that video would be known all over the internet? So much so, that when Mike used that video in his set, the crowd got wild when they first heard it. I know I did; my mouth dropped on some, “Ohhhhhh, shit!” mess. A lot of people have tried to duplicate the video of the kids, but it’s just not as funny and epic as the original. Anyway, check the Relm video and wait for the greatness to begin at 1:27. Nicely done, Mike.
Right now I feel like creating my own stuff. So first Iâ€™ll do a record and then after that Iâ€™ll do a film. My next live show is totally different. I retired my set. Itâ€™s time to showcase new ideas. Itâ€™s not going to be just me on turntables with a screen. Thatâ€™s all Iâ€™ll say. – Mike Relm in Format Mag.
Today’s SOUND CHECK is also MIKE RELM. Go there to get more information, downloadable MP3s, a tracklist of Spectacle, see more videos, and so on.