iZem
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iZem

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Rising soul/folk music darling Michael Kiwanuka, who we recently interviewed on Okayafrica TV, gets an electro-bass rework in this unofficial remix by France’s DJ iZem. The Lisbon-based DJ iZem makes use of his downtempo tropical bass sound to play with Kiwanuka’s soft voice and guitar riffs, creating a track that manages to be both soulful and tripped-out — with Kiwanuka’s relaxed style keeping things appropriately smooth. Keep an eye out for DJ iZem’s African and Latin-inspired productions on his forthcoming EP2 dropping in two weeks, which will include ‘I’ll Get Along’ next to four other tracks. In the meantime, listen and download his dope remix below. - Okay Africa


Two years ago, Jérémie Moussiad Kerouanton – aka DJ iZem – arrived in Dublin, with the intention of staying just a couple of months. Now, the Paris-born DJ is heavily involved in what he describes as “an exciting bass/dub/reggae scene” in the city.
“I came here initially to visit friends”, iZem explains, “but then I got involved in music, started organising events, DJing, meeting people – having fun! There’s an exciting scene in Dublin, and some really great producers. I’ve definitely been influenced musically by people I’ve met here.”

Born in Paris to a Moroccan father and a Breton mother, 31-year-old iZem is well-travelled, to say the least! Having lived in France, Brazil and Spain before arriving on the Emerald Isle, his musical style merges a diverse range of influences – dubstep, African rhythms, Brazilian cumbia and hip hop. Has urban music always been a big influence on him?

“I was into hip hop when I was a teenager”, iZem recalls. “It was quite big in France – that was my musical education. I started DJing around that time, but really defined my style about three or four years ago. I’m drawn to anything that has that kind of groovy sound – soul, funk, reggae, Brazilian.”

Let’s call a spade a spade though – ‘Irish’ and ‘urban’ aren’t usually two words that go hand in hand. What does iZem make of the Irish music scene generally?

“Well, the main scene here is indie rock”, he notes. “I do have an interest in indie – there are some really interesting bands and artists, but it’s not my main musical background. There’s some great underground producers here, usually more on the electronic/dubstep side of urban music, you just don’t hear much about them! (Dublin producer) T-Woc, for example is really interesting – he’s done a remix of my track ‘Quiver’ which is on the EP.”

Another act iZem has been working closely with here is Irish/Malaysian duo Madu. A fusion of reggae with Irish elements (Hothouse Flower Liam Ó Maonlaí appears on their debut From The Elder’s Yard), the band’s laidback, soulful sound is an example of how exciting musical diversity can be. Would iZem like to incorporate an Irish flavour into his own style?

“Definitely”, he enthuses. “I hope to release a few tracks that mix urban/bass music with Irish instruments – I think it would fit very well. I’m actually producing some tracks for a Brazilian rapper called Juliana Durães – who also features on the EP – and we did some gigs a few months back. I was playing reggae rhythm while Juliana rapped, and (Irish trad musician) Liza Delaney improvised on fiddle. It really worked well – Irish music should definitely be used more!”
Though he speaks no less than four (yes, four) languages, iZem has yet to master the mighty Gaeilge!

“It’d be nice to do a track in Irish while I’m here”, he smiles. “I’ve been talking with people about that. There’s a couple of Irish musicians who’d be up for it.” Watch this space…

In the meantime, iZem will be kept busy with the forthcoming release of debut EP Quiver, which he’ll launch officially in the Bernard Shaw on November 11. So far it’s been creating quite a buzz – with the ultimate seal of approval coming from BBC DJ Gilles Peterson, who recently played one of its tracks, ‘Do Avesso’. As well as this, iZem broadcasts a weekly show, Dublin Tropical on Groovalizacion, an online radio station he co-founded in 2008. “It’s a collaborative project that involves people from a lot of different countries”, iZem explains. “We take Latin and African influences and mix them with electroinc/cutting edge beats. Internet radio is a great way to spread music”, he concludes. “We try to showcase the local scene this way too.”

DJ iZem’s EP Quiver is available now from djizem.bandcamp.com. Listen to him every Wednesday at 7pm on groovalizacion.com. - Hotpress


Two years ago, Jérémie Moussiad Kerouanton – aka DJ iZem – arrived in Dublin, with the intention of staying just a couple of months. Now, the Paris-born DJ is heavily involved in what he describes as “an exciting bass/dub/reggae scene” in the city.
“I came here initially to visit friends”, iZem explains, “but then I got involved in music, started organising events, DJing, meeting people – having fun! There’s an exciting scene in Dublin, and some really great producers. I’ve definitely been influenced musically by people I’ve met here.”

Born in Paris to a Moroccan father and a Breton mother, 31-year-old iZem is well-travelled, to say the least! Having lived in France, Brazil and Spain before arriving on the Emerald Isle, his musical style merges a diverse range of influences – dubstep, African rhythms, Brazilian cumbia and hip hop. Has urban music always been a big influence on him?

“I was into hip hop when I was a teenager”, iZem recalls. “It was quite big in France – that was my musical education. I started DJing around that time, but really defined my style about three or four years ago. I’m drawn to anything that has that kind of groovy sound – soul, funk, reggae, Brazilian.”

Let’s call a spade a spade though – ‘Irish’ and ‘urban’ aren’t usually two words that go hand in hand. What does iZem make of the Irish music scene generally?

“Well, the main scene here is indie rock”, he notes. “I do have an interest in indie – there are some really interesting bands and artists, but it’s not my main musical background. There’s some great underground producers here, usually more on the electronic/dubstep side of urban music, you just don’t hear much about them! (Dublin producer) T-Woc, for example is really interesting – he’s done a remix of my track ‘Quiver’ which is on the EP.”

Another act iZem has been working closely with here is Irish/Malaysian duo Madu. A fusion of reggae with Irish elements (Hothouse Flower Liam Ó Maonlaí appears on their debut From The Elder’s Yard), the band’s laidback, soulful sound is an example of how exciting musical diversity can be. Would iZem like to incorporate an Irish flavour into his own style?

“Definitely”, he enthuses. “I hope to release a few tracks that mix urban/bass music with Irish instruments – I think it would fit very well. I’m actually producing some tracks for a Brazilian rapper called Juliana Durães – who also features on the EP – and we did some gigs a few months back. I was playing reggae rhythm while Juliana rapped, and (Irish trad musician) Liza Delaney improvised on fiddle. It really worked well – Irish music should definitely be used more!”
Though he speaks no less than four (yes, four) languages, iZem has yet to master the mighty Gaeilge!

“It’d be nice to do a track in Irish while I’m here”, he smiles. “I’ve been talking with people about that. There’s a couple of Irish musicians who’d be up for it.” Watch this space…

In the meantime, iZem will be kept busy with the forthcoming release of debut EP Quiver, which he’ll launch officially in the Bernard Shaw on November 11. So far it’s been creating quite a buzz – with the ultimate seal of approval coming from BBC DJ Gilles Peterson, who recently played one of its tracks, ‘Do Avesso’. As well as this, iZem broadcasts a weekly show, Dublin Tropical on Groovalizacion, an online radio station he co-founded in 2008. “It’s a collaborative project that involves people from a lot of different countries”, iZem explains. “We take Latin and African influences and mix them with electroinc/cutting edge beats. Internet radio is a great way to spread music”, he concludes. “We try to showcase the local scene this way too.”

DJ iZem’s EP Quiver is available now from djizem.bandcamp.com. Listen to him every Wednesday at 7pm on groovalizacion.com. - Hotpress


Jérémie Moussaïd Kerouanton aka iZem recently moved to Lisbon after a long period of living in Ireland. He released his first EP while he was living here, a collection of chilled-out vibes with flashes of dub rhythms, soul, hip-hop and tropical music. We’re not too far from the source here with his second EP, simply titled EP2. Five tracks of lilting dub-inflected spaced-out worldly rhythms. XLR8R posted his Michael Kiwanuka remix that ends the EP,
‘Rocksteady’, a soulful dub cut from the release is of particular note to Irish readers as it features Irish soul project Madu on vocals. The EP is out later this month. - Nialler 9


French DJ iZem’s second EP, like his 2011 debut, is mix of dub vibrations, lazy rhymes, tranquil beats and Brazilian breezes and Afropean crosswinds that reverberate through a multicultural and luxurious ultra lounge. We’re listening now, and we can tell you the acoustics are fabulous. This outing from the Lisbon-based, world travelling producer and Groovalizacion Radio DJ is sparer than the first, but somehow deeper.

The EP is out January 24, but we’ve got spongy synth and soulful groove of “Belén,” caressed by the fleecy voice of Yolanda Reyes, right here. Pick EP2 up when it’s out, because “Belén” is nice, but you are going to want to hear “Rocksteady” too. - MTV Iggy


"iZem may be fairly new to the scene, but if this track is any indication of his prowess, we can be rest assured the producer will be climbing the ranks quickly" - XLR8R


"iZem may be fairly new to the scene, but if this track is any indication of his prowess, we can be rest assured the producer will be climbing the ranks quickly" - XLR8R


Discography

EP's //

Quiver / Debaixo D'Agua (2011) : http://djizem.bandcamp.com/album/quiver-debaixo-dagua-ep

EP 2 (2013) : http://djizem.bandcamp.com/album/ep-2

OFFICIAL REMIXES //

Mop Mop - Kamakumba (Agogo Records - Forthcoming)

Ondatrópica - Tiene Sabor, Tiene Sazón (Soundway - 2013): https://soundcloud.com/soundway-records/ondatr-pica-tiene-sabor

Lealea - Black Or White EP (Wah Wah 45's - 2013): https://soundcloud.com/wahwah45s/lea-lea-black-or-white-izem

Orelha Negra - Mixtape 2 (2013): http://open.spotify.com/track/7MJFEzoQfQVg3rajzUl9AJ

La Yegros - Viene de Mi EP (ZZK Records - 2013): https://soundcloud.com/dj_izem/la-yegros-viene-de-mi-izem

Lucas Santtana Remix Album (Mais Um Discos - 2012): https://soundcloud.com/dj_izem/lucas-santtana-hold-me-in-dj

LATEST MIXTAPE //

iZem na Batida (2013) : https://soundcloud.com/dj_izem/izem-na-batida-demo/s-CuPz6

Photos

Bio

Multi-instrumentalist, DJ and producer iZem started writing music during a 7-year long musical adventure through Brazil, Spain, Argentina, Portugal and Ireland. His unique hybrid sound joins the dots between cutting- edge beatmaking and post-tropical influences. His first EP, released in 2011, featured Brazilian and Irish vocalists and was heavily played by radios and DJs around the globe. BBC's Gilles Peterson and KCRW's Anthony Valadez are some of his early supporters. His second EP was released in January 2013, followed by a series of remixes for labels such as Soundway, Far Out, ZZK records, Wah Wah 45s, Mais Um Discos, which brought regular airplay on BBC Radio, KCRW, Funkhaus Europa, LDBK and many radio stations worldwide. iZem is also the co-founder and the music director of the multilingual internet radio, Groovalizacion.