What’s in a name? DJ Seinfeld’s has been one of the most intriguing in electronic music in recent times. Yet, over just a few short years, the artist otherwise known as Armand Jakobsson has defied expectations, not only within the ‘lo-fi’ scene he briefly, inadvertently helped define, but across the wider spectrum of electronic music. As well as releasing one of 2017’s most-celebrated debut albums, ‘Time Spent Away From U’, he’s proactively flexed his creative impulses, utilising a number of not-so-secret aliases to explore the margins of jungle, techno and ambient. This all-encompassing approach resulted in Jakobsson becoming one of the youngest ever artists to be invited to curate an entry into !K7’s legendary mix series, DJKiCKS, which boasts past editions from Actress, Nina Kraviz and Moodymann.
The debut EP from DJ Seinfeld, ‘Season 1’, arrived in 2016 on Lobster Fury, a new collaborative-label from the influential British labels Lobster Theremin and Meda Fury. It’s immediate sound – in key with the ‘lo-fi’ trend of the time, shot through with a distinct soul and charisma and had scene devotees scrambling for follow up releases on E-Beamz, Natural Sciences and Endotherm, with little clue to who was behind such accomplished and prolific club music. Before ’Season 1', even the label boss at Meda Fury (where he also releases under his ‘Rimbaudian’ alias), wasn’t privy to the alternative identity of his friend, and reached out asking Jakobsson if he knew who the YouTube cult hero ‘DJ Seinfeld’ was. And while this understandably hyped new alias was creating enormous buzz, Jakobsson was already busy crafting hypnotic contemporary jungle as Birds of Sweden. Regardless of the tempo, and whatever the genre, each production – warm, often melodic and typically unmistakable – immediately transcended any lingering scepticism about DJ Seinfeld’s skill and sincerity.
After a successful string of underground releases, the sound of DJ Seinfeld was more definitively established on his debut album, ‘Time Spent Away From U’. Also released on Lobster Fury, the full-length skilfully mined melancholy dancefloor hooks from the dissolution of a long-term relationship experienced by Jakobsson, expanding his slow-burn, analogue sound into a journey that was more ambitious both musically and thematically. Among acclaim from the likes of Pitchfork and Resident Advisor, Crack Magazine concluded it contained “enough emotional potency… to transcend his ‘spoof house’ trappings once and for all”. The album was also selected by Rolling Stone as one of their 20 Best Electronic Albums of 2017, and saw support from peers like Bonobo, Flying Lotus and Four Tet.
If it had not already been established, DJ Seinfeld’s edition of DJ-KiCKS firmly places him as a potentially timeless voice in the current music scene, as a DJ and selector whose taste and instincts match the versatility of his productions. Providing a colourful postcard of his corner of the electronic music landscape in 2018, the mix expertly threads together largely exclusive cuts from contemporaries like Mor Elian, Roza Terenzi and Project Pablo, with established international artists such as Andras and FaltyDL also making appearances.
Currently based in his home city of Malmo, Sweden, following extended stays in Barcelona and Edinburgh, the relatively slow pace of his surroundings has, amid international success and a beguiling touring schedule, allowed Jakobsson the space to return to the spirit of his music and indulge his restless creative attitude. Drifting in and out of the scene thanks to an extensive international touring schedule, DJ Seinfeld has recently played festivals including Field Day, Melt Festival and Primavera Sound, as well as embarking on extensive US and Australian tours in the summer of 2018.
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