Defining a decade of Dam Swindle in 10 tracks
'Keep on Swindling Part 3' is out now
‘Keep on Swindling’ finds itself as a remarkable title to celebrate an enduring decade of modern-vintage house music by Dutch duo Dam Swindle.
The first instalment of the three-part series started off with both fresh and previously released material — ‘Body Control’ dropped as a brand new club hit, 2013 Heist Recordings release ‘The Break Up’ receives a live jazz revamp courtesy of Emma-Jean Thackray, a 2022 remix of vocal charmer with Mayer Hawthorne ‘ 64 Ways’ and summer acid-laced vibes from ‘All I Want’.
Part 2 felt like it had no shortage as a follow up in the series; kicking off with one of the duo’s best dance floor destroyers ‘Good Woman’, followed by a formal release of a small-batched and privately pressed record which started off as a rework of Guadeloupean band Gaoulé Mizik’s 'A ka titine'. It taken down after being put online as a free download but it's so special as an afro-latin groove, that the boys went on a search for approval from the rights holders, and three years later it’s up some serious rounds across dance floors. More groovy goodness follows with Arp Frique’s remix of 'Yes, no, maybe, Ash Lauryn’s remix of their 2018 album’s title track ‘ High Life’, and rounded off with the unforgettable 'Call of the wild feat. Jungle by Night’
We arrive at Part 3 and the Dutch duo prepare us with two new productions, and two exceptional remixes including a creative Nightmares on Wax version of ‘64 ways feat. Mayer Hawthorne’, a raw soulful techno remix of ‘The Wrap Around’ by Detroit legend DJ Bone.
With that summary of Dam Swindle’s repertoire in mind, Mixmag Asia caught up with the house-centric duo to find out what their personal selection would come down to if their last decade could be summed in just 10 tracks. Here we go, and to another ten years from the boys of Heist.
1 'The Wrap Around'
This one is easy. It’s the track that kickstarted the whole thing. We didn’t even know our friend had sent out this demo to Huxley at the time, but we’re glad he did. Huxley called, put out the record and that was that. We’re re-releasing the track on our Keep on Swindling part 3 because we know how much in demand the vinyl has been.
2 'The Break Up'
This was the exclamation mark on our first year of releasing music. After putting out music on Saints & Sonnets, Dirt Crew, Freerange, Tsuba and Murmur, The Break Up was the first record we put out on our own label Heist.
3 '64 Ways (feat. Mayer Hawthorne)'
This was our first big collaboration. Mayer liked our music, and we were in touch from time to time. We had done a remix for him and wanted him on our record as a collaborator. We’d sent the demo and it took ages for us to get together. Suddenly, on a Tuesday night we get a call from him that he wanted to get in the studio after his gig in Amsterdam. We literally called the Red Bull sound engineer out of bed, opened their studio and Mayer laid down the vocals in one go. Amazing.
4 'Yes, no, maybe' feat. Tom Misch & Lorenz Rhode
This was recorded before Tom became a big star, but everybody knew he was gonna be big. He came over when we were doing recordings for our 2018 album High Life, got in the studio together with Lorenz Rhode, and based on a demo we had made just before, we jammed the whole day, and this track was born.
5 First Choice 'Let No Man Put Asunder' (Dam Swindle remix)
This might be the coolest remix we’ve done and at the same time, it was also the scariest to say yes to. It’s not every day that you get the chance to dig into the Salsoul catalog… We took our time for this remix, re-recorded a lot of elements and ended up with a version that - at least for us - adds something new to the original.
6 'Coffee in the Morning' (Feat. Jitwam)
We had Jitwam over in the studio and he had just written the vocal when we showed him the first demo of the instrumental that we had in mind. It was a perfect match.
7 'Call of the wild' (Feat. Jungle by Night)
Also on our 2018 album High Life, this track started as a studio concept. We had all these little ideas done in synths, and when we got together with the band, we started replacing all the parts with their live parts. Horns, percussions, everything. It’s become a staple in our sets and the trumpet solo does it every time.
8 Hablot Brown 'Go' (Dam Swindle remix)
Hablot Brown is an amazingly talented soul band and we were really lucky to meet them and get to do the remix. This was one of our first steps into downtempo electronic soul and the combination of those vocals and chords are pure goosebump material…
9 Pat Thomas 'Yamona' (Dam Swindle remix)
When we heard Pat Thomas was recreating his hit from back in the days, we got really excited. The whole album with the Kwashibu area band is amazing and I think we managed to add a nice electronic twist to the track, while still keeping the power of the original alive.
This was the first track we did on Heist where we did not use any samples and used a lot of our live gear to record the bass parts (which is made of 3 different basses) and synths. It’s a track we played live a lot as well and the energy is always amazing when that acid breakdown comes in.
Dam Swindle 'Keep On Swindling Part 3' is out now. Grab your copy here.