As electro rears its pretty head into the mainstream once again, it's become a rare treat to hear an artist who masters the genre without creating a 'been there, done that' vibe.

Enter south-london based producer, Mokadem. Her heady blends of early garage and house, topped with sprinklings of rainbows and fairy dust, create such hedonistic fervour that you are instantly ready to don your 'gonna-shake-it-'til-sunrise' shoes.

Ahead of the release of her debut EP in february, Mokadem has shared what shaped her into creating the music that is going to take her so far. She also shared some photos with us, which we've peppered throughout the feature.


1. Trentemoller Vocal Remix - 'Moan' ft Ane Trolle

Every single sound in this is perfect. It was after a holiday to Prague that I was really turned on to using these kind of neat and discrete eurobeat clicks. I love the hollow, round synth sounds and the dial-up tone kind of crackles. Trentemoller's production is always so effortless and intricate, he's completely mastered it. His remix of Royksopp's 'What Else Is There?' was our party anthem for like five years.

2. The Knife - 'Like a Pen'

Again, every sound in this is perfect, and one of my favourite choruses ever. The Knife were one of the reasons I started making music in the first place. I saw them live for the first time in Germany last year. They get further ahead of their time with every release. Aside from music, even, I think the people they are and the examples they're setting are things we should all be looking to.

  • On 'Pretend Ur Mine' video shoot

3. Lone - 'Blossom Quarter'

Echolocations is definitely in my top five favourite records. I used to listen to it on a miserable bus to work at a theme park, although listening to it now makes me sentimental about all the doughnut batter on my clothes. Once I was listening to Blossom Quarter and the bus drove into a bird on the top deck and I was horrified all day, so I also think of that every time I listen to it.

4. Claude VonStroke - 'Who's Afraid of Detroit'

This was a massive tune when I was just starting to get into house and techno. It's so sexy, between this and 'Please' by Ikonika is where I started fetishising that kind of slow bendy modulation.

5. Jam City - 'Magic Drops'

I went down to the coast in the dead of winter to meet my friends new boyfriend and we were getting ready for a party. She had those small speakers you plug into your laptop that have mad ramped up bass and asked if I'd heard 'Magic Drops' by Jam City. I hadn't slept, was cold and in a bad mood, but when it dropped I completely turned around. He's one of the most talented producers I can think of, the whole EP is still such a whole and complete perfect entity.

  • My flatmates

6. Mr Lif - 'Phantom (Feat. El-P)'

My first introduction to electronic music really was this. I was so blown away at the time by how futuristic and visionary EL-P's production is and years later I still feel the same. He taught me early to be as experimental with sounds as possible. Plus Lif's bars really snuck in some real-world pragmatism to the 10-year-old me.

7. DJ Trouble - 'Bangs & Works'

The first footwork track I heard was a Bjork mashup of Joga somewhere and it completely changed how I built beats. It's a really hard thing to get right, tracks like 'Bangs & Works' and Poetry by DJ Nate do.

  • My best friend and my dog

8. Zomby - 'Aquarium'

I wish I made this track. He struck genius with tracks like 'Mozaik', 'Digital Fauna', 'Digital Flora' etc. The first one I heard was Strange Fruit, still one of the most beautiful things I've ever heard. The flip side to his sound is equally good, 'U Are My Fantasy' (from '92) has as many plays.

9. Azzdine - 'Droub Al Lil'

Driving around Algiers listening to label-less tapes in the back of my auntie's car... I managed to get the name of this one. The way Arabic is spoken and sung has always appealed to me more than English. It's primal, gliding around arpeggios in a single breath is so much more emotive and affecting. Burial was the first producer I ever heard really achieve the same thing outside of that.

  • Me chillin'

10. Burial - 'Near Dark'

I read an interview with Burial where he spoke about growing up with stories and tunes that his older brother brought back from these raves that he was too young to attend, and how he would fall asleep listening to the tunes his brother put on. That's exactly what I felt like when I first heard Burial. I was barely 14 and just starting to stay out at night, getting trains to school at 6.30 in the morning. There were a lot of long winters and a lot of darkness; it's been said a million times now but his music really was a soundtrack for that time. The kind of dreamy mystical but mournful vibe that he talks about is the same feeling I got from it, and why I wanted to start making my own too.