The Trippin Mixes, Vol. 29: Sylvere
Hypnotic melodies, a Dizzee Rascal edit and humid, hard-hitting techno from the Parisian selector.
Sylvere has been making noise across the Parisian underground scene. As a lynchpin within its electronic community, the producer is an essential figure and resident at the La Créole parties: a club night that centres Creole culture in particular. The producer is best known for his three-part EP series released via Moderat’s Monkeytown Records, in addition to his work that’s appeared on the London imprints Trax Couture and Sans Absence.
The producer was born to a Martinique father and French mother, and grew up in Paris. With roots in the West Indies, he spent most of his summers in Martinique as a young child. He often still visits once a year to recharge, and this is evident through his sound. Sylvere’s work demonstrates his flair for crafting bassbin-rattling heaters that pull from his Caribbean heritage, which occasionally veers into gauzy, playful melodies. His EPs, packed with club missives, make his intent clear: to make ravers dance; his slamming dancehall-tinged club belters sounding as though they’re heaving under the weight of its own bass pressure.
Sylvere recently curated a travel guide to his favourite clubs in Paris. Alongside the guide, he’s pieced together a Trippin mix that begins with the kind of elastic, rubbery beats that he enjoys listening to, before segueing into a tracklist of breakthrough club favourites (Surusinghe and Coffintexts, for example) alongside Bambounou and, of course, a Dizzee Rascal edit. We caught up with the producer to talk about his influences, club closures in Paris and emerging artists.
Where are you and what’s around you? What’s on the agenda for today?
At home, it is not even 6am and I am already awake and ready to do stuff. I like when I can be up super early these days. I feel like my creativity and productivity are at their peak at this time of day. I've started working on some new music for a bigger format.
What was your thinking behind the mix?
I wanted us to dance to the club music I like: innovative, weird and bouncy. My track Ah Oui Ah Oui is a good example. The idea was to build the mix around this, most of the tracks are recent ones from artists and friends that I like.
What kind of music did you listen to growing up? Was music around you from a young age?
I discovered techno music almost from the cradle. [laughs] I'm only half joking, I must have been six when I heard this kind of music on the radio for the first time ever, it was 90s techno and it blew me away! A few months later I asked my mum if I could buy a CD and I picked up a random techno compilation featuring tracks that already had a cult following, but I didn't know it yet, like Mainx – 88 to Piano. As a result, today I worship artists like Robert Hood, Jeff Mills.
But that's not all, I grew up with Caribbean music, hip-hop – which has always been in the background and still is today – but also shoegaze, new wave, pop, rock; all the different kinds of electronic music and so on.
How has your heritage influenced your tastes and your own sound?
I grew up with ragga, dancehall from Jamaica, Zouk, kompa and more recently shatta. This is a part of my musical identity. I like sound system culture and this is also one of the reasons why UK electronic music like UK funky, jungle and grime has really touched me too, as these styles were born from the Afro-Caribbean diaspora. Some of my tracks sound like dancehall, for example, but it is techno for me. I'm of mixed race, and so is my music. I'm just trying to create club music in my own image.
Have your travels shaped your sound in any way?
You can hear dub sirens from Jamaica as well as Japanese sounds, like in my track Because. My aim really isn't to make world electronic music though. [laughs] I was living in London for a couple of years so it of course had an impact on my music too, but when I travel what really drives me is to live like local people, not jumping into the nearest record shop. From that to saying that my travels inspire my music, certainly, but it's not a personal quest.
When you’re touring, do you ever get time to explore a location and if so, how do you prefer to do so?
Let's take the example of my European tour with Moderat. We played around 25 concerts over the course of a month. You leave the town in the evening, get on the bus and arrive in another town in the morning. I managed to take two or three hours to visit each city we stopped in, from Madrid to Warsaw. It would have been really frustrating for me not to know the environment I was in, so I wandered around on my own each day, which helped me recharge my batteries for the evening show.
What’re your thoughts on the French underground scene now?
The scene has become much more unbridled and there is a big bunch of geniuses. [laughs] It's incredible how quickly the new French club music scene has been democratised and I see a lot of artists signed to excellent record labels. I see incredible sets every time I go to Rinse France, for example, and it's really exciting.
There’s been a number of club closures within the last few years. How would you describe the club scene in Paris in 2024? What would you like to see change within the scene?
Indeed, I think that's a real weak point for Parisian club music unfortunately. It could be worse, of course! The Rex Club has just had a facelift and reopened recently, and the programming is good. There are clubs like La Machine or La Station where the programming is generally good. There are still some good spots, but not as many as before. The days when every club had a very distinct musical identity, and you knew that if you went there any night it would be great – unfortunately those days are gone.
Which up-and-coming French artists should we be paying attention to?
Le Diouck, Sunareht.
Rhyw – Spritz
Parris & Untold – Lip Locked
Chloe Robinson & DJ ADHD – 0121 Do One (Coffintexts Remix)
De Grandi – Bravo Taig Khris
Surusinghe – Bet
Ayesha – Tactilia
Sylvere – Ah Oui Ah Oui
Soul Mass Transit System – Nobody Else But U
Gremino – Shining (Jam City Remix)
Crosstalk & DJ RaMeMes – Mtg Do Operator
Dizzee Rascal – Stand Up Tall (Soulely Baile/UKG Edit)
Sylvere – Urban Riots
Bambounou – Tboujeh
YNZN.P – ???
Addison Groove – Bad Things (ft. Spank Rock)
Modeselektor – VW Jetta
Despina – Lo Tech Hi Life (WTCHCRFT Remix)
DJ Swisha – WABBLEDEEDABBLEDEE
Floorplan – The Deal
Sylvere – What Is This
Modeselektor – War Cry