The Next Big Thing

by Justin on February 5, 2006 · 0 comments

Future Music has shortlisted Justin Kent as a finalist in their Next Big Thing / Experiments in Sound competition. Experiments In Sound is billed as a “new, groundbreaking mix contest for talented DJs and VJs who are on the cutting edge of mixing.” Looks like Future Music has found a match in the new EJ K DVD mix comp ‘As Seen On TV’. The 55 minute video mixtape is a roller coaster ride through the underground pop video mayhem that Kent’s carved out as his signature style.

Sleeper video hits from established acts like the Gorillaz, the Bravery, the Chemical Brothers, and Felix Da Housecat blend seamlessly with up & comers like The Faint, Goldfrapp, Fischerspooner, and Mint Royale, on into new, unreleased material from underground legends EBN and original EJ K rerubs. Kent smoothly spans genres from rocked-out electro to dance-floor politico. The disc also features an innovative Pod Drop™ feature, which allows users to drag and drop a copy of the DVD onto their iPod in one step.

As Seen On TV is not available in any store. The feature length bootleg video mashup was created using a combination of off-the-shelf and custom hardware & software. Kent describes his process, “First I recorded the mix live using ScratchTV and the EJ MIDI Turntable. That gave me a lot of freedom to see what worked, what didn’t, and get the set to the point where I was happy with it. Then once I was ok with the rough cut, I brought it into Final Cut Pro to rough off the edges and get everything as tight as possible. I really wanted this mix to be a 10 out of 10… something that will make an impact, that is important, that people will remember.” The EJ Turntable and ScratchTV make up a hardware / software system that empowers disk jockeys to mix and scratch music videos for the first time, in addition to other creative styles of DJing. Kent invented the system while he was an undergrad at MIT, then moved back to Orlando and founded EJ Enterprises Worldwide to manufacture, market, and sell the product.

As stated on the Future Music website, “Experiments In Sound is about giving an artist the ultimate freedom to craft something extraordinary. The mixes can be achieved on turntables, CD players, DVD players, software, hardware… anyway you want.” To Justin, this was the perfect challenge to showcase what he and his system are capable of. “I invented the EJ Turntable technology because I was a DJ who wanted to do something that hadn’t been done before. I wanted to hook my turntables into the TV, and nothing on the market was capable of that, so I had to create the system myself. But the most exciting thing about it has been opening up these possibilities to other artists and seeing what happens. Now for DJs, imagination is truly the only limit. I want to bring this to the point where nobody can deny that DJs are musicians.”

Three finalists in the contest were named. In addition to Kent, the finalists consisted of Surya Buchwald, aka Momo The Monster, from Los Angeles, California, and Arturo Gil, aka Xnografikz, from Malinalco, Mexico. The winner of the contest receives a prize package valued at over $5,000 and the chance to mix a DVD compilation for the Future Music Label.

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