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The Guest List: Steffi selects 10 broken beat & IDM tracks she enjoys while gardening

The Berghain resident's fourth studio album 'The Red Hunter' is out now.

  • Arun Ramanathan
  • 26 October 2022

A true ambassador of vinyl culture, Dutch-born Steffi Dolly Klakson, known around the world as Steffi, has been a pivotal and influential figure in the electronic music realm, namely as a Berghain resident where she’s been playing since 2007, the same year she moved to Berlin. Her productions were on par with her DJ sets — tasteful, rich in character and diverse, Steffi has left very corners of music untouched in her vast discography.

Whilst Berlin is her stomping ground, Steffi moved her home base to Portugal where she set up Candy Mountain as a label and creative hub founded with partner and collaborator, Virginia. On the side of Candy Mountain, Steffi also set up Destefster as a label for re-releases of her old work and future house productions.

For Candy Mountain’s debut endeavour, Steffi has unleashed her fourth solo album, which was written over the last few years and dedicated to her late mother; it’s titled ‘The Red Hunter’.

Embracing that the world has shifted into a new era, ‘The Red Hunter’ is also reflective of a current space that exists in 2022 where complexity and diversity have stepped to the forefront. Like we’ve come to expect from Steffi’s works, particularly since her debut album from 2011 'Yours & Mine' on the Ostgut Tun label, melody would often take centre stage. Yet throughout ‘The Red Hunter’, it’s used more sparingly and with an emphasis on meticulous details going into arrangement, tempo and song structure. The body of work feels like an organic development of Steffi’s creative mind, and with even greater depth of emotions being evoked through mood and intensity.

When Steffi is not in the studio and has a few moments between her shows, you’ll find her harvesting and discovering in her garden at her Portugal home. Whether she’s plucking fresh figs or playing frisbee, she’s been really enthusiastic about getting her hands dirty and expanding her world in horticulture.

To celebrate her fourth studio album ‘The Red Hunter’, Steffi soundtracks the time she spends in the garden with 10 choice cuts of eclectic and flowery bliss.

​Forest Drive West 'Anchor'

"'Anchor' is a beautiful laid back contemporary dub track. Forest drive west has been so solid with his productions. From uptempo d'n'b to downtempo lush and spacious stuff that I can have on repeat all day. Fresh and never disappointing as a producer."

​Loop LF 'Moon GZ'

"This record was the first release on well street records. super inspiring what they bring out since they have started. A hybrid sound between deep UK garage vibes mixed with dub and grime/d'n'b. All high quality stuff and great music to float around on."

​Norken 'Home'

One of the first and one of my favourite records on Delsin. Early days of Delsin with Aardvarck, CiM, Future Beat Alliance — and, Norken set the tone for the label.

It still sounds so ‘now’ with the delicate percussion standing out in this track. Tiny melodies but spot on! Big drifter this track.

​Autechre 'Second Scout'

"No top 10 without at least one Autechre track :-).

I could have picked any track from lets say the first 5 albums for a good garden session. Their older work is more melodic and structured, its pure storytelling for me and no matter how many times I listen it never fails to inspire me. This is musical history and mandatory for everybody."

​Metamatics 'Neo Ouija'

"'Neo Ouija' is also an older track from my collection that I love so much and still listen to when I am outside in nature. Metamatics is a big example for me when it comes to beat programming. I love the simplicity of this song. The melody is tiny but super catchy laying on a bed of killer grooves and amazing percussion."

Mark Ernestus’ Ndagga Rhythm Force 'Yermande' (Kick and Bass Mix)

"Mark Ernestus is a true pioneer that has set a massive tone in the scene with basic channel, chain reaction, etc. It's so interesting to see how he continues his musical journey and moves in new directions but always has the dub element preserved and yet modernised at the same time. i love the rhythm section in this track and the super minimal but yet distinguished melodies with these amazing vocals. i saw the band perform and it was really energetic."

Sun People 'Transitions'

"My partner recommended Sun People to me and I was instantly hooked on the 'Transitions' album. I am in love with this driving uptempo pressure and again melodic and deep atmospheres. At the moment in this genre is where the magic happens. Great to see producers like Sun People push the d'n'b genre further and further without falling back on the classic drum sounds."

​Mata Disk 'Rez'

"This track has certainly been one of my favourite ‘broken beat’ tunes from this year. great to play in DJ sets for the dance floor but at the same time super floaty and mellow for listening pleasure. tight modern beats with a funky groove and a catchy melody. Can't wait to hear more from this producer."

​The Irresistible Force '12 O'Clock'

"This track is an old favourite of mine. The Irresistible Force aka Mix Master Morris is simply amazing and a pioneer producer and DJ when it comes down to the ambient and beyond genre. I have been listening to this album ever since I bought it and I miss the so-called ambient/chillout room terribly as there is so much that we miss out on not celebrating this genre in a club context like we used to."

​Future Sound Of London 'Cascade'

"Certainly one of the best bands in electronic music. After a day of gardening, this is the perfect anthem to sit and put your feet up to. Once you have listened to this track you might as well let the whole album run as there is no better soundtrack to watch the sun go down and unwind. It is a piece of art so well written. I am obsessed with everything FSOL has ever produced. So many different projects and they have guided me since the early days of rave!"

Steffi 'The Red Hunter' is out now. Order and listen to the album here.

Arun Ramanathan is Mixmag Asia’s Director. Follow him on Instagram.

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