MONDAY MIXTAPE: HAZY POCKETS
"My God Has A Telephone"
”It’s funny. Ever feel like you’re freezing in the sunshine? That moment of dread interspersed with tingling joy. Blinking in the blinding light. Groping in the dark. A lysergic light switch that’s stuck in the middle. You can control the direction of the train with your mind! I can hear the second part of the melody, but I can’t ever reach it.
It’s the last house, it’s the end of the road.
Oh, to take that step out of summer. But it’s funny…My god has a telephone.“
Bless your little heart. Hazy Pockets has just rode into town. Cowboy-conjurer, dedicated disco dilettante, peerless music supervisor and event consultant, Berlin DJ by way of Texas and California, Joel Isaac Black is a memorable, if not divisive figure, a tireless soul man preaching sincere music in a robotic techno town. Hazy Pockets’ marathon sets are diverse musically, yet focused energetically, ecstatic dancing for the raver kids and the suits, human-level soul music at the club.
Drawing upon years as both DJ and chef at Berlin’s Kater Holzig and Kater Blau clubs and Katerschmaus restaurant, founding participant and resident at the Garbicz Festival in Poland, Joel’s primary calling has been honing a rigorous instinct for performance and service. This well-tuned sense for natural pace and trajectory is paired with an unwavering feel for long Berlin club nights, pushing dancers into soulful ecstasy with relentless disco-house, acid-funk, and blues-stomp, Joel is a worker dedicated to his craft. Your enjoyment. It’s working-class blues, it’s oh-my-god-we-work- so-hard-we’re-gonna-have-a- good-time-tonight music!
Joel was born in Texas to a blues musician father, harmonica and swamp guitar his lullabies. Moving out West to L.A, working first as a rock’n’roll drummer and later a studio owner and producer, Joel continued to chase that certain guttural, soulful sound he was introduced to at an early age. Arriving in Berlin, re-baptised at the discotheque, he is still seeking those uplifting, funky moments to this day, albeit in maximal dance floor form. Utilising a decade of crate-digging and curating a world- renowned vinyl store in Los Angeles, drumming for an array of West-Coast pop-rock supernovas, Hazy Pockets’ music arsenal is extremely diverse, a conscious love-letter to both the undeniable pop hooks and the obscure dirty bass counterparts. Funky-disco-acid house in subtle winks and deliberate bounce, but all imbued with a human funkiness that shakes it all loose.
”Technique and ambition can carry a dance floor only so far…and after that, it’s the learned intuition that comes from decades of molding audiences and listeners into the place that you want them. When the energy is there, when the dance floor is with you, it’s a tightrope walk, and every wobble or every graceful step forward is felt by all, and duly responded to. No one wants to see you plunge into the abyss, and it’s certainly not fun on the way down for the performer. Do what you need to do, but stay in that Pocket.“
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