Jobot doses the dance floor with acid in this week’s recommended mix


Jobot Wendy Thomas

Everybody loves acid, right?

Well, no—some people can’t stand the stuff. Meaning, of course, the sound of a Roland TB-303 bass synthesizer’s knobs being tweaked mercilessly, rendering the machine’s metallic tones into the aural equivalent of a Jackson Pollock canvas. (Not the drug, sorry—everybody does love that, obviously.)

An adherence to acid tends to be the mark of a true dance-music lifer, and if anyone can be called that it’s Jobot. Born Joe Bartuski, he “grew up in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, just west of Milwaukee,” he says, and lives now in Northeast Minneapolis. “I love the proximity to most of the venues that support electronic music,” he says—including Honey, where tonight he and longtime local crew the Headspace Collective will be throwing an all-acid jamboree called Meltdown. Even better, it’s free.

Jobot’s been spinning records at parties for nearly 20 years. In 1999, he says, “I graduated from belt drive turntables to direct drive, and then finally Technics 1200’s. I had already been playing the occasional house party on one of those old-school rack-mount dual CD players. Feel like it was in my blood even as a kid—I used to play tunes from the DJ booth at the local roller rink when I was about 12 years old.”

In 2003, he began putting on events of his own. These tend to bring out a lot of locals as diehard as Jobot himself, notably the events he puts on at Club Underground, i.e. the basement of Northeast’s Spring Street Tavern, as much of a divey Minneapolis bar as you could ask for, under the auspices of Overland Recordings, the label Bartuski runs alongside Jacob Hoffman, Dave Eckblad (aka mrBlaQ), and Josh Bestgen. The next one of those is on Saturday, March 24. In between, on the 17th, he’ll appear with several dozen other area spinners and live electronic performers at—I am not making this up—the Best Western in Albert Lea for a day-and-night-long blowout dubbed Heartbreak Hotel 4.

As you’d guess from somebody with such a busy DJ schedule, Jobot’s stylistic range is broad and deep—he’s a regular at the Goth-industrial dance night Dark Energy as well as half of ZWAREMACHINE, an industrial project with Mach Fox, plus a fluent spinner of everything from synth-pop to vintage house to ambient—he cites electro as his “predominant musical focus,” and his DJ Set @ Summer No Chill (August 2016) is excellent evidence of it.

“This mix was recorded live at the Klubhaus, an unfortunately now closed Minneapolis warehouse space,” says Jobot. “I was aiming to juxtapose darker electro sounds against quality 4/4 tracks, both newer dark techno releases and some old school cuts as well.” All of it meshes nicely—electro’s tinny squiggles and the 303’s acid lines offer the listener/dancer similar sorts of aural tunnel vision (or irritation, if you’re not inclined), though the set is far heavier on the former than the latter. Expect things to reverse at Meltdown, for which Jobot reports he is “excited to play some old Trax vinyl records at a venue that is genuinely supportive of and interested in electronic music.”

With: The Headspace Collective, Jobot
Where: Honey Mpls
When: 9 p.m. Thu. March 8
Tickets: Free; more info here

Are you a Twin Cities dance-music DJ? Michaelangelo Matos wants to hear your latest set. He writes about recent mixes by local DJs (and DJs making local appearances) every Thursday for City Pages. Tweet to his attention: @matoswk75.