Brodinski brings French beats to dancefloors

by Richard Smart

With a big boost from Daft Punk, French producers have shifted the focus of dance music away from house and toward electro, and young DJ Brodinski could surpass his peers in commanding the evolving French scene.

At the age of 23, Brodinski has produced a number of sleeper hits, and as featured in the song “Sha! Shtil!” he has found that rarest of commodities — a sample taken from a style of music that has not been used before.

The song, produced with Guillaume Briere of The Shoes under the name Gucci Vump, samples an Eastern European folk song, and when it’s played it can often leave clubbers bewildered. But when talking about finding this gem, or the style of his production in general, Brodinski seems to be at a loss for words.

“I really can’t (define it), every time someone asks me this question, I don’t know what to say,” he says.”I play every kind of music . . . but only things that are in good taste.”

“Sha! Shtil!” is reminiscent of songs from the earlier days of dance music, when as a fresh genre, songs could often be heard on dance floors that increased the scope of the scene as a whole (think the Twin Peaks sample in Moby’s “Go,” which brought Hollywood soundtracks into electronica for the first time).

The song is typical of Brodinski, whose productions combine originality with familiarity. His sets are nostalgic with dance music from the 1990s, but brought up to date by being mixed with current beats.

His music, which is electro-based but incorporates elements of techno, fidget house and dubstep, has won Brodinski fans worldwide, and is why he is coming back to Japan for a second tour. The Frenchman says he is looking forward to his visit, and the crowd should expect almost everything — except hip-hop.

“I can’t play hip-hop in my sets, which is a genre I really love, because the crowd doesn’t expect that from me.”

However, the DJ has refused to rule out taking his production down the urban path, or any other path, in the future.

“I really never stop trying to develop the way I produce, so it is difficult for me to say where my music will end up. But I think I will be the same kind of DJ for a long time.”

Brodinski burst onto the music scene in 2006 with the track “Bad Runner,” a techno anthem favorited by DJs such as Laurent Garnier, Tiga and Erol Alkan. Since then, a constant stream of remixes, original productions and collaborations have helped him climb the ladder to DJ royalty.

Gan-Ban Night: Break On Through Featuring Brodinski takes place at Tokyo’s Womb on Feb. 10, and Osaka’s Club Karma on Feb. 13. Brodinski also plays Nagoya’s Mago on Feb. 12. For details, visit www.ganbannight.com or www.club-mago.com

In conjunction with Ganban Records, The Japan Times is offering spots on the guest list to Brodinski’s Ganban Night shows in Japan (two pairs for Tokyo; two for Osaka). The deadline is Feb. 8. Click here to submit your name for the giveaway.