Pitch'd 

BASS, THE FINAL FRONT REAR?

No, that wasn’t a typo in last Wednesday’s New York Times; critic Neil Strauss really did devote most of his "Pop Life" column to DJ Assault and the Detroit ghetto-tech – booty, if yer nasty – phenomenon less than a year after MT profiled the sped-up mix of electro and dirty rap currently heard every weekend on the urban mix shows. Besides the national limelight – look for an upcoming ghetto-tech story in hipster mag Details – there’s plenty to report on the local low-end/rear-end front. Says Ade Mainor, Assault’s producer and Electrofunk Records chief, his company is pairing up with former arch-rival DJ Godfather to form Ghetto-Tech Distribution to handle both artists’ vinyl output, as well as handling smaller one-off releases by area booty turntablists 12 Tech Mob, legendarily obscure electro group Detrechno, and others. Meanwhile, reports Ade, Electrofunk has completed a remix of "Celestial Annihilation" by trip-hop super group UNKLE. "The original was kind of corny, like it was a remake of that old ‘weeky weeky weeky’ song, so we made it more into the kind of stuff like we do," says Mainor. Look for the vinyl on Island. Meanwhile, he and Assault are concentrating on all-original, full-length releases, including a DJ Assault rap album called Assaultland, as well as a full-length booty-bass album, veering from the usual mix CD format of their Straight Up Detroit Shit series. "There ain’t a whole lot of stuff comin’ out for a mix CD really," says Mainor, "so we’re doing a straight-up all-bass album, but it’ll be sped up so it feels like a mix album."

While the Times wouldn’t print its title, the new DJ Assault bass disc is called Mr. Motherfucker. See? Feels like a mix CD already. More info at the Web site.

TUNE IN, TURN ON, FREQ OUT

Listeners who tuned into 89X last Saturday night from 1 to 2 a.m., heard their Sugar Rays and Everclears replaced by the soulful thump of a tech-house mix by Planet E Records mainman Carl Craig, who debuted "Detroit Technology," a new weekly radio show he and co-sponsors Made In Detroit (aka Detroit Interactive) and Playground.com are dedicating to Detroit’s progressive dance music scene – and beyond. "We’ll get shows from everybody as long as it’s hype and as long as it’s good," says Craig, adding "We’ll even have comedy if it’s good."

So far "everybody" is the Detroit techno’s who’s-who: This Saturday Kenny Larkin mans the decks, with Kevin Saunderson "freestyling" the following week.

STOP, DROP, PUT ’EM UP, OPEN UP SHOP

DJ culture fans may want to check out Berkley’s Sonic Grooves (4148 W. 12 Mile Rd., east of Greenfield), a new sort of one-stop shop for aspiring DJs. One of the first nonchain stores in the area to cater to DJ-age needs, SG not only carries vinyl but pretty much the lowest prices outside of pawn shops for the industry-standard Technics 1200 turntables – with Stanton needles, $485 apiece?! – with which to spin it on. But lest this sound like a retail ad, SG also features early-evening, in-store DJ gigs, weekends at 7 p.m. Detroit-via-Chicago house spinner LA Williams has already lent his services, with other house-kateers from Williams’ Chisel Records label filling in the pre-club, warm-up happy hour spots. This Saturday, the DJ-curious can check out Chisel’s Norm Talley beating the house down with all kinds of straight-up, soulful house, free of charge. More Sonic Grooves info: 248-586-0010.

EM VOGUE

Detroit’s own Eminem – the now-ubiquitous MTV presence you will soon grow tired of if you haven’t already (mynameismynameis …) – will not be playing a Detroit-based record release party this weekend as originally planned. Seems the rigors of having the most-played video on MTV and having his Slim Shady LP debut shipping to stores platinum – one million copies plus – have bumped around the date of his next Detroit visit. Em and crew did take time out to celebrate the release Monday, when the good folks at Interscope-Aftermath threw him a bona fide Tinseltown bar mitzvah, with a gala party at the Sunset Strip’s House of Blues, according to East Coast-via-U of D Law School, Eminem manager Paul Rosenberg. "Now we just gotta see if we can sell some records," he says. And with a million copies on store shelves, he ain’t kiddin’.

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