His mum, Navlika, is in town celebrating her 73rd birthday. Like Leila, she is a fixture of Four Tet shows, often travelling with him to party, dote and offer constructive feedback along the lines of: “You were too indulgent, too noodley.” Hebden laughs. “Her favourite DJ is Ben UFO,” his friend and sometime tourmate. “She’s always like: ‘Ben crushed it.’”
I need to relisten to Happiness - it used to me one of my favourite night-time albums.
I emailed Adem from Fridge once to ask if his Steve Reich-esque piece from the end of In the Loop would ever get a release on its own. He said as much as he’d loved that, it was unlikely (and thanks). Two out of three confirmed nice lads, but maybe Sam Jeffers goes out rifling pigeons to death. We may never know for sure
Thanks to someone from a band who used to post on here, I got to go to Adem’s house once. They were recording live sessions there, he was very polite and nice to all of us rocking up on a Saturday afternoon to sit on his furniture and watch them play.
I’ve looked on Youtube but can’t find the videos sadly!
(I say “house”, it was some extremely cool warehouse in east London filled with instruments. It was amazing on a hot summer’s day but I bet it was freezing in the winter).
I saw Adem play 15ish years ago at Sage Gateshead and afterwards asked for the nice handwritten set list, which he gave me as he was packing up. Got it home to find it was written on the back of his contract for a previous show* - so I emailed him to see how I could return it, worried I’d be preventing him from getting his fee as it had the promoter’s invoicing details on it. He sent a really nice reply back saying thanks but no need to worry as he’d been paid, it has been nice to meet and that he hoped I enjoyed the show.
*fee: £1k + VAT for a one hour full band show, bargain.
Adem is lovely! I emailed him to say how much I loved his cover of dEUS’ Hotellounge and he wrote back a really nice email thanking me as he loved the song but was really worried about it as he’d got a lot of shit from other dEUS fans about it.
Adding to the ‘Adem is a gent’ chat. I went to Glastonbury with a bunch of uni friends, one of whom was a huge Adem fan and was celebrating her birthday. We stood at the front row of his stage quite drunk and annoyingly yelling that it was her birthday between songs. After his set he ran down and gave her a handbell that they’d used on stage and had a long chat. Really cool guy.
Nice double up given this thread but I got to see Adem sing whilst sat round a campfire at the first Greenman festival, with Kieran playing some sort of compact slide guitar. Obviously the kind of moment that stays with you, forever I hope.
I do think one thing that often gets left out of the ‘discourse’ around Four Tet’s ‘sell out’ era is that his mixing has improved so much over the years. I remember when people used to laugh at him smashing ‘Skeng’ into some rare African jazz record or whatever, but he’s still doing that sort of thing all the time, just with much smoother mixing.
(To be clear, I’m very much into both eras.)
Like the people who complain about him selling out never knew he’s been mixing pop bangers into minimal techno for at least 10 years by this point - people are just pissed thart he’s doing it on big stages now with Skrillex and Fred Again, not at Brixton Academy with BUFO and Caribou.