“Pero, ¿qué makina?” (But, what/which machine?)
False Witness invites us to ask ourselves, What political machines of oppression are you buying into? Which societal mechanisms do you have to destroy? And, after all, aren’t these questions we should be asking ourselves now, more than ever, in these particularly heavy times?
Record label slash ongoing, roaming rave establishment Lit City Trax has just released False Witness’ Makina EP, which prompts us to explore those very questions. The release is the latest in False Witness’ particular breed of “island industrial”– the merging of urban styles from Latin America and the Caribbean with minimalist dance music that’s in dialogue with darker undercurrents in club music. The EP is a reworking of last year’s hit of the same name by Dominican urbano artists Los Teke Teke. “Makina” combines crashing, trance-inducing samples built upon a “makina” chant, and the minimalist splicing of some familiar club music names (Joey Beltram and Armand Van Helden, welcome to the tropical realm).
The EP builds upon False Witness’ practice of exploring narratives that grow out of open-ended sociopolitical questions surrounding the ongoing struggles of oppressed people of color, alongside inspiration drawn from his background rooted in the Dominican Republic and Guatemala.
The 3-track EP also includes a hardstyle-influenced “duro” version of the track, littered with Amen breaks and the sound of pressurized engine exhaust, as well as a Baltimore-urbano (more of this in the world, please) remix from frequent collaborator Rizzla. The two teamed up last year to release their jumpstyle/urbano/circuit house-inspired Isla Toxico EP, which they described as their “love letter to the apocalypse, and a warning of what comes after.” Rizzla and False Witness are also part of KUNQ, a collective founded in Boston by a crew of like-minded multidisciplinary queer artists, with members having since relocated to Brooklyn and Oakland to elaborate on their craft.
Stream Rizzla’s remix of “Makina” below, and click through to download the full EP on Lit City Trax’s website.