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Friend Within

Idioma disponible: inglés
The pseudonym of British dance music veteran Lee Mortimer, Friend Within makes funky, uplifting tracks which nod to Chicago house as well as U.K. bass styles. Breaking through in 2013 with "The Renegade" (a rework of Wildchild's 1995 hit "Renegade Master"), he hit the U.K. Dance chart a year later with "The Mechanism," a collaboration with Disclosure. From there, he frequently put out tracks on labels like Dirtybird, Toolroom Records, and Defected, constantly refining and updating his sound. The playlist-styled Friend Within Presents: Love Defined appeared in 2018, and proper album Hope arrived in 2021. Born in Kirby, adjacent to Liverpool, Lee Mortimer grew up loving the rave and house tracks that crossed over to the Top 40, and started playing with music production software when he was around 12. He began releasing records in 2005, mostly under his own name, with a few issued as the Lemon Pesterer or Sawtooth Sucka (and later Tymer). He co-founded Wearhouse Music in 2006, and additionally appeared on labels like Dubsided and Fool's Gold. He quickly became a big name on the electro-house scene that was emerging at the time, and released tracks with Laidback Luke and Foamo (later of Gorgon City). However, he started getting tired of the style as it began morphing into EDM, and decided to take his music in a different direction. After hearing tracks by Eats Everything, Shadow Child, and Disclosure, he started making slower, less frenetic house tracks than the fidget house he had been making before. Calling himself Friend Within, he anonymously sent tracks to Claude VonStroke of Dirtybird Records and Jamie Russell of Hypercolour, both of whom he'd known already, and they agreed to put out his music. "The Game" appeared on Dirtybird in early 2013, followed by The Renegade EP on Disclosure's Method Records; its title track, sampling Wildchild's "Renegade Master," became a club hit. The Underground EP followed on Hypercolour in 2014, and Friend Within released a collaboration with Disclosure, "The Mechanism," which reached number 28 in the U.K. Dance charts. A trio of EPs appeared on Mortimer's own He Loves You imprint, and tracks appeared on Dirtybird Select and Defected sublabel DFTD in 2016. Friend Within Presents: Love Defined, a two-hour release designed as more of a playlist than an album, appeared at the beginning of 2018. Friend Within then signed to Toolroom Records and released several singles, with "The Truth" making the biggest impact. Collaborations with Friendly Fires and A-Trak appeared in 2019, and proper full-length Hope, an optimistic set of funky house tracks, arrived in 2021.
© Paul Simpson /TiVo
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