Every Saturday throughout New York’s long hot summer, MoMA PS1 presents Warm Up, the museum’s annual courtyard party that celebrates music’s experimental spirit. Each week, The FADER will be speaking to one of the billed artists to find out who they’re psyched about playing with. This week, Eamon Harkin of NYC party/label/institution Mister Saturday Night gets all gooey-eyed over the time he and partner-in-crime Justin Carter first caught wind of jazzed-up dance music trio Archie Pelago.
I first heard of Archie Pelago whilst listening to Jordan Rothlein’s radio show, Table Tennis, on WNYU back in 2011. They were playing a live set and I was struck by a level of musicianship that often is missing in electronic music (at the expense of aesthetic and groove). These guys were clearly stellar musicians with a classical/jazz bent but with a producer’s touch. Often when you bring these sensibilities together it sounds corny and cheesy but here it worked. The combination is greater that the sum of their parts, making for emotive music akin to Henrik Schwarz and Carl Craig.
I quickly reached out after hearing that radio performance and explaining that Justin Carter and I were starting a record label under the same name as the party, Mister Saturday Night. They sent us about 7 tracks which were so great it took us ages to choose 3 for the EP, the second record we ever released on the label.
They’re perfect for a party because the dexterity of the their musicianship and the sophistication of their live set creates momentum and energy. They’re able to maintain a strong live feel with their innovative approach to playing three Ableton set-ups, iPads for control, all while playing live instruments. I believe they are forging a path for other live electronic acts to now follow. And to top it all off, they’re super cool guys.