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Elli Arakawa
     
Elli Arakawa plays dark, textural techno whose sonics have emerged from the involute network of record shops, producers, and DJ bretheren unique to her native Japan--a network that provides a different, canny set of coordinates by which to navigate what we thought we had already mapped. Labyrinth Festival, Naminohana Records, clubs Yellow and Womb inform her sound as much as Panorama Bar, Berlin Atonal, Dekmantel, and Hard Wax. The result of this hybridized aesthetic--part Berlin, part Tokyo--is a style that takes risks or rather style as risk. Indeed Elli's sets are counterintuitive, daring, and thrillingly unpredictable while remaining always dynamic, emotional and captivating. She has parlayed this style into a robust touring schedule throughout Asia (Shanghai, Seoul, Manila, and Japan's prefectures), in addition to running her own party, DUCE, at legendary club AIR in Tokyo.  But it's easy to give a genealogy of one's gravitation toward dance music, to note the postmodern geographies, to locate the obscure festivals with elaborate Function One stacks in lush Japanese forests. Thankfully the thing is always more than its instantiation in a series.