By Theo Kotz
In a city defined by the symbiotic relationships between artists, labels, crews and institutions, Anina’s position within Bristol’s music scene stands out. Affiliated with Livity Sound, Happy Skull, Timedance, Slack Alice, Noods, Wisdom Teeth and more, there’s hardly a space in the city’s ecosystem where she doesn’t command respect.
Given her skills as a DJ and inquisitive taste, this is no surprise. One thing we love about Anina is how she at home she is both on the radio and at the function, whether throwing down jungle and weighty soundsystem tracks or playing with texture and mood for something more cerebral. Her residencies on Noods Radio and NTS (with DJ Persuasion and Dev/Null for Demon Poetry) are habitual listens.
Her mix for us finds her in a more contemplative mood, drawing the curtains and settling in for the long winter nights. Peppered as ever with tracks by friends like fellow AMA member Sunun and Bruce, Anina threads soundtrack works with ambient diffusion, textured explorations with hinted echoes of beats to build her chosen mood. It’s a blend that reveals more with every listen, and we can’t wait for you to get stuck in.
To accompany the mix we spoke to Anina about radio, winter, the Rye Wax basement and more.
Hi Nina! How’ve you been? Recovered from the Slack Alice function on NYE I hope.
Not too bad thanks, yes just about!
With this seemingly endless winter in mind, you’ve named this your hibernation mix. What are some of your favourite winter hibernation activities?
I have a few, all fairly centred around all things cosy and comfortable. I love to cook, listen to music and light lots of candles in my house morning and evening if it's cold and grey. I do enjoy a fresh winter walk, although I'm much happier to be outside in the summer months.
Favourite hibernating animal?
Really dig the mix, it feels like being suspended in mid-air. What did you have in mind when you were putting it together?
I wanted to put something together that was utilising a lot of music that I love but hadn’t found a home for in any of my other projects. It features some of my favourite tracks of all time amongst some amazing pieces made by friends. I often try to cover a more sparse ground in terms of tempo and energy when I put mixes together, I put that aside for this and indulged purely in the atmosphere.
Is there a version of a Mobb Deep instrumental in there?
How do you generally go about putting something like this together? Is it a case of picking a few tracks you really want to play and going from there?
Yea, I tend to hoard bits that I think go together on an ongoing basis in various places on my computer and on paper when I'm listening to music, which is a lot of the time. That always gives me a starting point, then I spend time mixing and playing to see what really works to execute what I have in mind.
Is it different to the way you might approach your regular radio shows?
Yes, I do tend to approach my radio shows in a similar manner but when recording a mix I home-in on a particular idea that I have about an overall sound and feel. Doing radio is a bit more like writing a diary whereas recording a mix is like writing a story, that's how I separate it anyway.
If you had to pair this mix with some food and a drink, what would it be?
Noodle soup and a nice gin and tonic.
It’s obviously been difficult for various reasons but every time I’m in Bristol these days I get a sense of everyone working in similar avenues, Mickey Zoggs, Strange Brew, Noods, ATC, Slack Alice, Idle Hands etc etc etc, creating this supportive ecosystem in the city. Is Bristol in a good place right now do you think?
When it comes to the music and creative culture I think so, the sense that you get is probably the main reason that I still love living in Bristol. I’ve lived here a long time now and there hasn’t been any point in which I have been bored of the city and what it has to offer.
Last time I saw you was at Mickey Zoggs, and I remember you saying how nice it was to have a few more places like that to hang out in Bristol again. Tell me about your ideal mythical hang out spot if you could build one?
Did you ever read The Magic Faraway Tree? It would be something like that.
You’re no stranger to the Rye Lane basement, and I think you hold the widely coveted mantle of being the most frequent guest at Roads. Are there any particular times at Rye Wax that stick out in the memory?
I've always enjoyed myself at Rye Wax and Roads is great. Those longer day-to-night sets are a good experience, especially if you're playing with someone else. I've had the pleasure of doing so alongside Ossia, Andy Payback, Slack Alice crew and Peverelist, all of whom own collections of music that I would love to listen to all day (and night) long. The session with Pev was a fave, it was shortly after my birthday and Sophie (Roads) baked me an amazing orange and almond cake, it was delicious.
Your trio with Guest and Sunun, AMA, is named after the ama pearl divers of Japan. What would be the sweetest score you could find on the sea floor do you reckon?
A giant clam which opens up to reveal a pristine sealed package of the entire Tom & Jerry collection on vinyl.
What have you got on in the near future?
My first Noods radio show of the year was at the end of February, I also share a show on NTS with Pete Dev/null called Demon Poetry, we’ve got a few exciting things in the pipeline for that this year too. In March I’ll be playing at Corsica Studios with Facta and K-Lone, which I'm really looking forward to. Aside from that AMA is bubbling in the background so maybe some more news on that soon.