A crunchy mix of rave, techno and hardcore from the Boston producer.
Isabella Koen makes body music that spans styles and eras, encompassing Midwest techno, Providence’s noise scene and vintage UK hardcore. Over the past few years, she’s become one of the most exciting producers from Boston’s underground scene, with releases on Börft, Jacktone and Peder Mannerfelt Produktion.
Koen started recording music at 17 on a four-track Tascam recorder, using found gear, effects pedals and tape collage techniques. Her machine-driven practice has continued over her career, culminating in this year’s debut album Melody Depleted, a blistering collection of hardware EBM, trance and power ambient.
Although primarily known for her live sets, Isabella digs deep into her favourites and influences for a fast-paced Fact mix featuring music from Bintus, Chris & Cosey, DeFeKT, The Mover and more. “I recorded this mix in my living room looking out the window on a hot afternoon, reflecting on how twisted the world is right now,” Koen says. “I’ve really been missing playing live but also just going out and seeing friends/family and dancing/going to shows – my legs ache just thinking about it.”
“I think I was in the mood to channel something thumping as a reminder, kind of like a ‘let’s play pretend club’. I’ve been listening to a lot of classical and ambient music so I think I needed something to rattle me up. This mix feels crunchy with spells of clarity that kind of come and go. Kind of bittersweet!”
Looking to the future, Isabella has a track coming up on a forthcoming release from Herrensauna, another on a compilation curated by Anetha, and she’s working on “a new project that’s much slower for a rainy day”.
Melody Depleted is available now. You can find the rest of Isabella’s music at Bandcamp.
Critical Amnesia – ‘OSNS.B1’
Muslimgauze – ‘From the Edge’ (Legion of Green Men remix)
The Sidewinder – ‘Psycho-Acoustic Dub’
S’Express – ‘Lollypop’ (Chris & Cosey Remix)
DeFeKT – ‘Destroy Your Planet’
Bintus – ‘Reflections On Brown’
Paul Damage – ‘Marigold’
Esoteric – ‘Playing with Voices’
R-ZAC23 – ‘Apocalyptic Heroes’
Unknown – ‘NTW2.B2’
Subwoofer Agte – ‘Puma’ (Intense Remix)
The Mover – ‘Spirit Slasher’
Abuse – ‘Hard and Fast’
Paul Damage – ‘Lockdown’
Dynamic Structure – ‘Dynamic Structure’
Adam Beyer – ‘Drumcode 09 A1 Untitled’
Adam Beyer – ‘Drumcode 09 B1 Untitled’
CORIN – ‘Maria’s Dream’
EQ – ‘I’m So High (DJ SS & EQ REMIX)’
The Holy Ghost Inc. – ‘Psycho Missus’
Listen next: Fact mix 775: Sarah Davachi