- Ultra-hard techno from the artist otherwise known as Lady Blacktronika.
- Before she was Femanyst, Akua Grant was called The Lady Blacktronika, also known as the First Lady Of Beatdown. Beatdown was a type of of ultra-deep house characterized by creamy chords, soulful melodies and, in Grant's case, honeyed vocals. She ran an integral label called Sound Black Recordings, home to some of her best tracks. But around 2017, she turned towards what was essentially the polar opposite: industrial-tinged super hard techno, full of distortion and anger.
This is where we find Grant now, as Femanyst, with a mix that shows off heavy-duty techno that still has a heart. She started her own new label, called Dark Carousel, and has released on Paula Temple's Noise Manifesto. She manages to take some of the hardest techno around and imbue it with her signature melodic style. This is probably one of the toughest RA Podcasts yet, but it's also full of feeling, dynamism and tension. Get your best listening setup ready and sink in for two hours.
What have you been up to recently?
I've been working constantly on new music for various projects for Noise Manifesto, Boudica and other labels including my own imprint Dark Carousel as well as doing remixes. I just completed a mini-return to Berlin with a few dates this winter.
How and where was the mix recorded, and can you tell us the idea behind the mix?
It was recorded live at Gegen/Pornceptual NYE at RSO. My motivation for this mix was to bring incredible music of the hardest form to the people and destroy the dance floor. Love exposing underground artists and I pretty well have done that in this mix. I love it.
What's one club or party that had a major impact on you as an artist?
Berghain of course but also Buttons & Gegen certainly as a parties that have supported me in my techno expansions over the past few years.
Why did you decide to start the separate alias Femanyst, and what drew you to that style of harder techno after years of doing deep house/beatdown? Have you always been a fan of more abrasive sounds?
I decided to create an alias for my techno projects and gigs primarily because I'd been going under the alias Lady Blacktronika for so long. That name already had such a long-standing legacy and reputation for deep house. I wanted to make a clear distinction between the two genres, so if you saw the name Femanyst on the lineup you knew what I was coming to do. I also had grown as an artist and I wanted to try something new and see if it could work and it did.
I've always been into harder dance music since I first heard of something called techno in the early '90s. I had been drawn to gabber and speedcore since at least 1992 or '93. Producing house music and then playing house as a DJ was actually the original departure for me. My initial intentions were to become a speedcore producer in 2006 when I got my first laptop and started trying to make music. But at that time I found greater satisfaction from producing deep house, but I guess I outgrew that somehow and returned to my original plan, so to speak.
Do you feel like the Femanyst project has changed the direction of your career?
Yes, I definitely feel as though switching to techno, changing my alias and focusing on my own label Dark Carousel, where I could curate my own niche with other like-minded producers, has changed my career tremendously. For the better of course. I've gone many places I never could have dreamed of because of it. As Lady Blacktronika, playing that music I loved so much, I had no foreseeable opportunities for expansion and while being compared to Moodymann and Theo Parrish was great, it never got me very far where growth and expansion are concerned. Plus now I don't get compared to any men for the music I create, and I get credit for my sound without the need for such comparisons to more well-established artists—as though my other work was completely derivative and only recognizable by the ways in which it compared to the male house music canon. Even though I had long since moved on influence wise from my early inspirations in Theo and Moody. I'm happy now.
What's one social or political cause you want the world to pay attention to?
I would like to draw attention to racism, classism and lookism in the industry and hopefully help create change however I'm able.
What are you looking forward in the near future?
Looking forward to 2023 which should be a good year. I'll be completing projects and releasing new music which is exciting. Hoping for bigger and better things to come my way and to amaze the techno-loving world with abrasive sounds and lots of love.
Femanyst - Holy Ghost Gabber
Ornwiom - Mydriasis
Fabrizio De Santis - Anxiety problem (Alex Bilancini Remix)
P RISCO - Pand‘monio
6EJOU - Stay Away
CEKTA - Liturgia
TANCEV - She Likes It From Behind
Viegas - Hardcore Dreams
Rorganic - Go Cuchi Slam It
S.R.B. - Snake Business
STINGER BROTHERS x HERMANN GEWALT - Striker
Vanya Koreya - Meet You At Hard Dance
OCD - Sitting In Hell
Schrank - Less Talk (Femanyst Remix)
Artwaq & JOE SANE - Run For The Beast
Brad Lee - Extraction Point
Femanyst - Metallic Bath
Vishscale Feat. Gia - Cry For Them Remix
Dark 99 - Underpressure (303 Unlimited)
Smash? - Geht Schon
Vishscale Feat. Gia - Cry For Them Remix
HRDDMAT - Evil Kitty
EMINEM - Go To Sleep (Paul Siebzehn Edit)
Humandisuman - Turn Round
Kenny Campbell - Gabbernator
Mental Prayer - Covered Truth
Monokrome - 1984
Sebastian Vimercati - Chimaera (
Somebody From Rotterdam - The Lizard King
Sørenga - Parasthesia
STINGER BROTHERS x U H - ?? ?????? ??? ? ????? (MAIN SNIFFER ENGINEER
Rorganic - When You Hate The Actual Techno Scene