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A-Trak, Diplo and Skrillex's New Video Channel 'Potato' Explores History of Techno

Boys Noize and genre pioneer Kevin Saunderson trace back dance music's roots

Last Friday, Diplo, Skrillex and A-Trak launched the goofily-named but earnestly conceived Potato, a new music channel on YouTube that will humbly attempt to, as the trio said in a press release, "bring back the spirit of early music television for the digital and mobile era."

The channel premiered a teaser of their upcoming content over the weekend, promising video and audio premieres alongside new mixes and original shows. Now, we've got the first episode, featuring interviews with Detroit techno pioneer Kevin Saunderson, German electronic producer Boys Noize and, unsurprisingly, Skrillex.

Once you get past the Sprockets-like pretension of Boys Noize ("Techno is way more than just a music style. It’s a way of living and an attitude"), the episode is a concise look at the history of techno, its Detroit roots and the genre's evolving racial dynamic. “They call it EDM, but that’s just another way of changing the word around because the new kids hear it that way," says Saunderson, acting every inch the Obi-Wan he is to the genre. "To them, it’s new and it’s fresh but it stated a long time ago."

Far from the expected "Look how awesome EDM is!" over B-roll of sweaty teenage dancers, the episode is a fairly in-depth look at a subculture turned mainstream and the factors that made it the ubiquitous presence it is today. 

Check out the full episode above.


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