Take 5 with Yak

Having released on the likes of Martyn’s 3024, Version and R&S RecordsYak is becoming an increasingly well known name in underground dance music.

Co-founder of Northern party Pretty Pretty Good, this Sheffield artist is known for his complex percussive productions that are difficult to be categorised by a single sub-genre.

He’s now regularly found on line-ups whose emphasis is on the up-and-comers, with recognition from the Dimensions DJ Directory, Rinse FM’s ‘New Residents on Rinse’ and recently a debut appearance on Boiler Room.

Ahead of his Flux appearance at the end of this month, Yak took us through five of his all time favourites.

1. Geode - Slipstream (Chord Marauders)

UKG was the first dance music genre I really got into and even though Ghost – The Club is still my favourite garage track ever, I went for this one because I feel like a lot of people already know about The Club. It sums up everything I love about UKG, the skippy fun beats, bouncy basslines and synths and little vocal snippets. This is the tune I usually use to transition into garage in my sets and its like it always gives everyone on the dancefloor a second wind.

2. Mickey Pearce - Wam Barzz (81)

I had to put some Swamp 81 on here because they're definitely the dance music label who had the biggest influence on me. This one's still one of my favourite releases off their back catalogue because it's so unique. There's so much different stuff going on in here but it just works. The guitars and synths build really nicely into the drums and bassline and this is a track people ask for IDs on all the time.

3. Randomer - Freak Dub (Hemlock Recordings)

This is one of my favourite tunes ever and the production still boggles my mind! It's really hard to make a tune which hits really hard but also still has groove to it and this just nails every part of that. These more percussive early Hemlock releases have been so influential on my style, tracks like Pangaea – Hex & Ramadanman – Glut and they still always go off in the club!

4. Djrum - Untitled 9 (Ilian Tape)

Djrum is one of my favourite producers right now because he always manages to create tunes that hit hard in the club but have real soul, emotion and progression to them too which is something I've been trying to achieve in my own tunes. This one's a real masterclass in production and I'd definitely recommend checking out his recent album on R&S if you're digging it.

5. Animals as Leaders - The Price of Everything and the Value of Nothing (Prosthetic Records)

Prog metal was the first genre that really resonated with me when I was younger and had a big influence on my percussive style for sure. Animals as Leaders were and probably still are my favourite band from that era. It's so hard to make a track that's technically amazing across all the instruments but still have soul and groove too but they really nail it with this one.