Mike Cadoo

isolatedmix 67 - Mike Cadoo (n5MD)


This one has been a long time coming. Nights in Seattle. Japanese BBQ. Third person twitter conversations. It took some romanticizing, but he gave in. Finally.

If you're an avid ASIP follower over the years, Mike Cadoo will be no stranger. As head honcho of one of our most admired and respected labels out there, n5MD, Mike has presented us with some of the most forward thinking and unique music of recent years. 

n5MD is today's living equivalent of influential labels such as City Centre Offices - (mark my words in a few years to come). Defying all genre norms and carving their own path, n5MD started on a format that was noble and unique (minidisc) and went on to grow, nurture and define some of the most interesting electronic and ambient music associated with the music we love here at ASIP.

Loess. bvdub. Lights Out Asia. port-royalWinterlight. Preghost. OkadaCrisopa. (Ghost). Even names that have graced ASIP, such as Arovane, Dalot and Ex Confusion. The list of artists that Mike has cultivated is, and will go on to be, a big influence on this particular style of music. He'll likely be a little embarrassed at my compliments and superlatives, but that's what he gets for coming out into the ASIP spotlight with a superb mix of music. In many respects, it's like closing a little circle given how much Mike has impacted, aided, advised and inspired ASIP over the years. He was destined to put an isolatedmix together years ago. 

An artist in his own right, most recently as Bitcrush, recently as Dryft (hopefully again soon) and going further back as a member of Gridlock, Mike's musical taste can be traced back to extremes such as doom-metal, with post-rock influences , glitch and electronica gracing his many production guises. (check out his Wantlist) However, his isolatedmix is straight-up ASIP territory. 

Recent and upcoming tracks from dreissk, Leandro Fresco and RAI (thanks Mike) mixed with n5MD stalwarts Ocoeur and bvdub, and classic productions from Brambles, Dustin O'Halloran and Deaf Center, isolatedmix 67 is a classic in every sense - the friend, the label, the choices, and the mix.



01. Sarah Davachi – For Piano [Students Of Decay]
02. Belong – Remove the Inside [Carpark]
03. Ocoeur – Time Over (Ocoeur rework) [n5MD]
04. Jon Porras – Pleiades [Thrill Jockey]
05. dreissk – Near the Shore [n5MD]
06. Grasslung – Lay Down In a Ditch [Root Strata]
07. Leandro Fresco & Rafael Anton Irisarri - Bajo un Ocaso Desteñido [ASIP]
08. Moshimoss – Grottuviti [Dynamophone]
09. Brambles – In The Androgynous Dark [Serein]
10. Deaf Center – Lamp Mien [Type]
11. bvdub - Safety In Numbers [Self]
12. Fieldhead – Introductions [Self]
13. Dustin O'Halloran – Snow + Light [130701]

Mike Cadoo | n5MD | Bandcamp | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud


ASIP Wantlist #3 Mike Cadoo (n5MD)


Mike Cadoo is a man of many talents and many guises, and I'm sure plenty of you reading this are familiar with his legendary label, n5MD and his post-rock epic-ness as Bitcrush.  

It was a crate-digging session with him and Brock last year at Substrata Festival that part inspired me to start this mini series; intrigued by the many musical influences that have shaped such well-respected people in the ambient community.

Here's five records Mike's on the hunt for, ranging from a classic ambient LP to modern classical, metal and industrial rock - a spectrum that no doubt influenced his interests and output for both n5MD and his own productions. 

1. Autechre – Amber [Discogs]

While my want-list is not in any specific order I think of this one often when I think of record I truly am looking out for in decent quality at price that is not too over the top. I'm not 100% sure if stock of the repress was lost in the Sony DADC warehouse fire in 2011 as it is "plentiful" on discogs. But the prices for decent quality copies are running in the mid to upper 200s not including shipping. I have special place for this album as it was the only CD I had with me on a west coast tour back in '98. The track Slip being the highlight of the album for me even to this day.

2. Skinny Puppy – Last Rights [Discogs]

I often have heated discussions with Skinny Puppy fans about this album and its predecessor Too Dark Park. I find that Last Rights still holds up to this day where Too Dark Park doesn't (please save your complaints - it's just one person's opinion :P ). I feel Last Rights' more decoupage of sound layering that is barely held together by Oglevie's production gives it a more timeless feel than their other more “fleshed out” efforts.   I have never actually seen an original pressing for sale. While even the 2XLP prepress is going for a decent price when they become available. There is also a Capitol Records version, from Germany I believe, where side A was erroneously pressed with music from a live Poison (yes that Poison) album. Not that I would want that one mind you...

3. Brambles – Charcoal [Discogs]

The LP of Brambles' Charcoal on the Serein imprint was crowd funded back in mid 2014. I completely missed out on it as I didn't even know that there was a crowd funding campaign for a vinyl version. Charcoal is very personal listening and there is no better format for heartfelt electro-acoustic ambient music than vinyl in my opinion. I find this release to be very similar in tone and mood to Last Days or Helios whom in addition to Brambles, I often immerse myself in. While the prices for these aren't as astronomical as some of the others on this list, it might not be as out of reach as I originally thought...

4. Swans – Cop [Discogs]

Showing my age? Well, so what... :) this is a record that I've wanted for quite a long time. There was a time when releases from Neubauten and Swans were played so much in my youth the neighbors I'm sure were wondering what the hell was wrong with me. Cop and the other Swans EP at the time, Young God, were so damn bleak and heavy. Cop was the clear winner in its dystopian weight. There is that heavy double drum stupor of Your Property that still gets my head nodding today. And Gira is so damn mad on this EP. He sounds genuinely fed up with something. Cop even out-weighed most of the metal of that era. While not on this list, I later found similar nihilism in Godflesh's Streetcleaner which I sorta think was the point.

5. God Machine – One Last Laugh In A Place Of Dying [Discogs]

The God Machine were a trio originally from San Diego Calif. They moved across the pond to the UK and then released two albums and a small string of eps on the Fiction label. They made a sort of atmospheric rock-quasi-metal that utilized a decent amount of melancholia and personal introspection. This album is their second and was released after the band had disbanded due to the untimely death, shortly after the album's recording, of their bass player Jimmy Fernandez. It came out in 94' when vinyl was less convenient and the vinyl was fairly limited in release. I did own the CD at one time and I remember that even being hard to come by back in 94.


Crate Digging with bvdub & Mike Cadoo


Brock Van Wey (bvdub) played the closing set on the opening (Thursday) night of Rafael Anton Irisarri'sSubstrata festival this year, flying up from the Bay Area and bringing with him an hour of his most beautiful, and powerful sound. It was the first time I've seen him live, and whilst never declaring himself as a 'performer' as such, it was a fitting, immersive and euphoric end to the first night, as Brock sat with his n5MD hoody pulled over his head, carefully melting, weaving, and harmonizing vocals, synths and entire sections of some his greatest records to the backing of Leo Mayberry's visuals.

Playing on the opening night meant Brock was able to relax and enjoy Seattle for the remainder of the week, and given the festival was an evening affair, I was able to tempt Brock into a Crate Digging session - a rare opportunity that I could've only dream't of making happen. He is of course, an absolute gentlemen, and happily obliged in-between a few leisurely beers in the sun, so Brock, Mike Cadoo (n5MD) and I, hit a couple of Seattle's best, including Jive records in Fremont, and Wall of Sound in Capitol Hill.

Whilst we weren't looking for anything specific, we ended up coming across a little IDM treasure-trove, which many of us wouldn't necessarily expect from Brock. With Arovane missing out on the festival due to illness, it was an almost fitting ode to his absence, so here's what we found.

Phonem - Phonetik

One of IDM's most under-rated producers it seems, this was an unknown EP for Brock and I, as we were only familiar with Phonem's albums for the most part, but the Phonetik EP from 1999 was a steal at $8, with this track, Bitstream, my favourite of the day.


Accelera Deck ‎– Halo EP 

A completely new artist to me, Brock said he used to listen to Accelera Deck a bunch back in the early 00's. The Halo EP features remixes by Arovane too.

Magnétophone ‎– Temporary Lid Ep

Static Caravan has played host to a wealth of great artists of the years, include ISAN and Manual, but I had never come across Magnétophone before. Brock didn't pick this one out for me, but it was in the same area as many of the others he was digging through, and by now, I was on an IDM trip, so seeing the label and the year (1999) I had to give it a spin. 

If you're into Aphex Twin's 'busier' stuff as AFX or even Caustic Window, then you'll enjoy this EP. A gentle melody backing a bustling, fractured and choppy IDM beat. 

Accelera Deck - Disquieting LP

Another one from Accelera Deck, Brock picked out the Disquieting LP for me, which features some more great stuff from Chris Jeely. My favourite tracks aren't around to stream unfortunately but the track Discordia below, is a good sign of what you can expect - subtle melodies and some intriguing beat work. 

Various ‎– Plug Research & Development

Brock's record knowledge really came to the fore with his last selection - an unmarked double LP from the Plug Research label. I had no idea bout these guys, and looking back now they've played host to some of electronica's greatest including Lustmord, Dntl, John Tejada, Thomas Fehlmann and Flying Lotus.

This was at the bottom of my priority pile (you know how it goes) given how big the stack was getting, so I ended up not purchasing it given the price, but I made sure to remember the one track that stood out on it - this brutal electro/techno track by Lucid Lung.

It wasn't all IDM, as Mike Cadoo treated himself to a Joy Division record amongst others, and Brock was tempted by a couple of Slayer records - I'm sure the magnificent/tattoo-esque artwork was an attraction! I however, managed to pick up a few new bits in the form of Alva Noto, and Alessandro Cortini's highly critisized, Forse 3, a classic from Casino Versus Japan (Go Hawaii), and a long sought-after compilation called Futuristic Experiments #004, featuring Akufen, Donnacha Costello and Sutekh

Big thank you to Brock and to Mike for hanging and helping me find some great music I might've otherwise missed, and for a fantastic weekend all-round. 

Substrata 1.5 festival review to follow soon...

(Pictured below- Mike and Brock putting the world to rights, at Jive Records, Seattle)