One of the most talked about groups of their kind in the US and Europe, Reuben Wu and the Ladytron collective have been compared to a host of artists ranging from Air to the Human League. Their broad range of influences and unique brand of retro futurism ensure reviewers grasp at increasingly obtuse straws, with the NME offering “a teasing glimpse of how Britney Spears might have sounded, had she been born in the GDR as a heroin addict.” Nice thought.
Around the turn of the millennium, I’d reviewed a couple of records by Ladytron myself, they were running a club in Liverpool and I tried the band on the off chance that one of them DJ’d. Turns out that Reuben Wu played out occasionally under the name Datamath, and quite fancied a trip to the South West. I can’t imagine what his usual fee was, but he came down with his girlfriend for little more than a pastie, a couple of pints and a tour of the tin mine workings at St Agnes.
Two things struck me. Reuben was a terribly smart dresser, perhaps the dapperest DJ I have ever had the good fortune to meet. He arrived dressed in black, with an amazing jacket best described as something a ninja cop from the future would wear, if fearful of ballistic shuriken (it had a kevlar tail). Secondly, he was also the first DC DJ, this was 2002 remember, to turn up with no records. Instead, he pulled two shiny iPods from his pockets, and plugged them directly into the mixer. Suffice to say, he rocked the disco, and returned a couple of years later to play a second date.
His first DJ set for Deconstructed Live is a quite bit different from a lot of the other DJ’s who visited. Unsurprisingly its powerfully electronic, with a few classics, a couple of diamond mash ups and some Ladytron exclusives thrown in for good measure. For your listening pleasure, is the first half of Reuben’s first set for Deconstructed. Turn this one up.