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Sasu Ripatti presents Dancefloor Classics Vol. 1 - 5, a series of five 10" releases coming throughout 2023. Music for imaginary dancefloors, released on Ripatti's own label "Rajaton".
”Look up, into the light” she said, while the camera shutter clicked. ”Like this? Does it look holy?” His neck felt stiff. Her reply: ”Yes, just like that. What do you mean holy? Like religious? ”No, more like trying to look very far, somewhere beyond what we can see.” ”Okay, stand still, I’m going to come close to you now. The light hits your face great.” *click, click, click.
He noticed her fingernails. They were not polished. Natural. Even somewhat rugged, as if something wore out the fingers slightly. What had these hands held besides the camera? What made the edges of her fingernails drift off?
He thought it’s weird to look straight into the camera. The photographer had closed her left eye, the one not looking into the lens. Then it opened, she looked up, perusing the surroundings, then she closed her eye again, then looked up, closed, looking up, very quickly. It all seemed very professional. Maybe she calculated the light, making sure it’s close to perfect. ”What will these photos look like?” – the thought popped into his head briefly. It was liberating to think it wouldn’t matter.
”What’s that song playing?” he asked. ”Wait a sec, Ol’ Dirty Bastard?” she replied. ”Oh yeah, right. But the sample?” ”Hey, could you look up again, like that. No, lower.”
New directions: ”Look out from the window, turn left.” ”My left or yours?” ”Yours, I always try to think from the direction of my model.” How professional! This is a good shoot, so natural. Should I worry about how the photos look like? No, I don’t want to. His thoughts bounced around. What would the story be like? It’s a big newspaper, everyone will read it. Maybe someone drinks coffee and eats a stroopwafel while they do it. Will they place the waffle on top of the mug for a brief while, so that it gets hot and the syrup melts a little? Then it feels wet, and you can bend the cookie.
She broke his train of thought off midway through: ”Now turn right, but look left, and slightly up, but don’t turn your face right.” ”Umm, like this? Sounds like a set of pilates instructions.” [she laughed] ”You do pilates?” ”Yeah, it’s hard sometimes. Have you tried?” ”No”, she said. ”I’m not good for sports that are done in groups.” ”Yeah, but in pilates you can just be inside your mind, drowning in your private thoughts.”
”What are you thinking in pilates?” she asked, taking more photos. ”Well, mostly just which way is right. And which left.” *click, click.
**Q&A with Sasu Ripatti:**
*1) Tell us something about the EP series ”Dancefloor Classics”, what’s the idea and what can we expect?*
I’ve been slowly writing these sort of dance music pieces and finally curated them together for a conceptual release. I like to create music for a dancefloor that exists only in my imagination and doesn’t try to suck up to the standardized reality.
*2) Your vinyl format is 10” which is quite special (as opposed to LP / 12”). Why did you choose it?*
It’s my favourite format, absolutely. The size is perfect, and you can make it sound really good @ 45 rpm. And you still can make great artwork.
*3) You seem interested in sampling/repurposing, what does it mean to you as an artist to approach something already existing from a new angle? How does the source material inform you about the approach to take?*
I guess i could flip it around and just say I’ve outgrown synths or electronic sounds to a great extend, and having gotten rid off all my synths already good while ago I’ve used samples as my main source material a lot. It’s obvious on this series that i’ve sampled existing music, but I also sample instruments and things in the studio and resample my own library that I have built over the years, it’s quite large. To me the end result matters, not so much how I get there. Once I have something on my keyboard and play around, it’s all an instrument, though with sampling other music it becomes a really interesting and complex one as you’re possibly playing rhythm, but also harmonic content and maybe hooks or whatever, all at once.
I never sample premeditadedly, like listening to records and looking for that mindblowing 3 sec part. I just throw the cards in the air and see what lands where, just full intuition and hopefully zero mind involved, playing tons of stuff, trying things, just recording hours of stuff. Then comes the interesting part to listen to hours of mostly crazy stuff and finding that mindblowing 3 sec part.
*4) What is your relationship with the dancefloor (conceptually and/or in experiences / as a performer)?*
Very complicated. I have never really felt comfortable on a dancefloor but have always wanted to. There’s something in club music, in theory, that really speaks to me. It has never really materialized for me – speaking mainly from a performer’s point of view who goes to check on a dancefloor for a moment after a concert. I never have DJ’d or felt much interest towards it. But again, I love the idea and concept of DJing. As well as producing music for imaginary DJs. Lately, as in the past 10+ years, I haven’t even performed in any sort of club spaces. So my relationship to the dancefloor is quite removed and reduced, but there’s quite a bit of passion and interest left.
released January 18, 2023
All tracks composed and produced by Sasu Ripatti.
Artwork & photography by Marc Hohmann.
Mastering by Stephan Mathieu for Schwebung Mastering.
Vinyl cut by SST Brueggemann.
Publishing by WARP Music Ltd.