Yamaneko is a London-based producer who's affiliated with the angular instrumental grime of club night Boxed and label Local Action, but he's also an unmistakably individual voice. Take his debut album Pixel Wave Embrace, which he released quietly on Local Action last year in the form of a cassette that came with a sticker bearing the slogan "gentle can be powerful." His productions prove exactly that: meshing his influences from ambient composition to grime flows to original SEGA soundtracks, he creates sleepless digital lullabies, with very occasional forays into the darker corners of the club.
Ahead of his appearance alongside the Boxed and Local Action crews—including Rabit, Mr Mitch, and Deadboy—at London's Corsica Studios this Saturday, Yamaneko has put together an exclusive showcase of his under-the-radar London crew Daybreak for The FADER. Daybreak are all but unknown right now, but after getting carried away on the lush waves of Boardgame James, Rimplton, and Yamaneko tracks in the mix below, we're eager to hear more. Hit play below and get to know.
Where are you right now? Please describe your surroundings.
YAMANEKO: In the flat I share with my girlfriend. Our cat Tabitha is waltzing around my laptop being impossibly sweet. She wants me to stop fucking about and play with her I think. This is my happy place.
Tell us a bit about the mix—what do you imagine people doing while listening to it?
It's something I've wanted to do for a while now: a mix entirely made of tunes from the Daybreak family (and extended family). Daybreak were the first crew of artists I properly clicked with who appreciated certain tunes in the same way I did. Pixel Wave Embrace simply wouldn't have existed without them, so it means the world to be able to highlight some of my favourite tunes they've made over the last 10 years or so. There's some new things in there I've made alone and with friends too.
I'd recommend lighting some candles and listening to it late at night, watching The 7th Guest play-throughs on mute or something. Whatever suits you though really. Just keep moving until daybreak.
What's your earliest musical memory?
Probably Yuzo Koshiro's soundtrack for the Master System version of Sonic The Hedgehog. The slower PAL version (this is important). I still listen to it like once a week, I'm not even kidding. So fucking timeless. "Bridge Zone"! How is that melody even real?
The Iriomote yamaneko is a kind of Japanese mountain cat. Why did you choose that as a moniker?
With titling stuff, I try to include as many subtle (or unsubtle) nods to the things that influence it as possible. That cat is particularly special to me for too many reasons to list really. I hope that some of them are heard in the tunes. Plus, by googling it you get to learn about this beautiful, rare creature that's hardly ever talked about, and that is so much more buzzing than reading about dry music stuff.
And finally, what's the last book you read that had a big impact on you?
I can't remember the most recent one to be honest, so let's say Wise Children by Angela Carter, because—in spite of so much—what a joy it is to dance and sing.
Rimplton - White As (Talbot Fade's Buried In Snow Mix)
Campfires, Tents & Bedding (Daybreak Intro)
Rimplton - Organ
To The City & Yamaneko - Return Fire
Boardgame James - Tom Jones
Boardgame James & Rimplton - Filter Tips
Yamaneko - Accela Crash
Rimplton - Gaps
Boardgame James - Silk Worm
Boardgame James - Auspicious Waters
Boardgame James & Ashkii - Catch And Chang
Boardgame James & Ashkii - Sephirocks
Flukes - Hood Economics (Handsome Boys Remix)
Rimplton - Low Oxy
Shadow Moses - Tunnels
Rimplton - Vocal Ticks
Rick! - FGT
Rimplton - Gremlin
Yamaneko - Elite