Fact Mix 834: Skyshaker

A blistering transmission of chaos and catharsis from the newly founded House of

Vemanei Soundsystem.

Skyshaker describes the newly founded House of Vemanei as “an international alliance of chosen families committed to the creation of worlds in which feminine presenting transgender and nonbinary people of color best fit.” Juggling their work as a DJ, composer and filmmaker with their tireless activism as a mainstay of the house and ballroom community in New York, Sky Vemanei spent time with the legendary House of LaBeija and the House of Old Navy, before going on to form the the artist collective House of Vemanei as an incubator for the gender-nonconforming Streamline community. Their Fact mix serves as an inauguration of Vemanei Soundsystem, a blistering, four-deck transmission from a new and vital community. “I was happy to be behind four decks after spending the majority of the pandemic indoors and writing on a laptop,” says Sky. “This mix navigates all the emotions I felt during the pandemic, having lost a friend a day before lockdown, and plotting to leave several toxic circumstances.”

“This mix also chronicles the creation of my house Vemanei, as an extension of my afrofuturist Saved By Air universe. Born out of a confrontation with several leaders in ballroom, my relationship to the subculture evolves ever further as I work to educate and protect my children against the Corporate America that now smells money on them. By the end of the mix, I hope the reckoning was worth it – and the destination is healthier as a result.” What follows is a brutal journey of catharsis and chaos of truly epic scale, in which Skyshaker finds emotional release in the cacophonous, gesturing towards vulnerability and tenderness with a relentless barrage of ballroom, pitch black techno and a lethal array of blends and mashups. Always exhilarating, frequently overwhelming, it’s a virtuosic session in constant dialogue with House of Vemanei’s mission “to transmute our individual pains into collective, purpose-driven tools of reclamation, recovery, affirmation, and self-defense.”

A similar energy radiates from Skyshaker’s latest project, Novox 10, which sees the artist reimagining a selection of tracks from the SVBKVLT back catalog to commemorate a decade of remixes under the Skyshaker alias. “This is a collection of electronic music commemorating a decade of Black voices silenced by anti-Black racism and xenophobia,” they say. “The Black experience remains an inspirational cornerstone of popular music worldwide, yet Black artists with deeper skin color remain doubted, dismissed, and uncompensated. Popular music in Asia is no exception, as fair-skinned Asian artists rise to superstardom and financial prosperity off the backs of Black artistry and Black suffering. Novox 10 emerges in Shanghai as a navigation beyond that contempt into a place of autonomy, authority, and commitment towards the shaping of worlds in which Black people best fit.”

In both their selections and productions, Skyshaker harnesses their singular sound as a raw material with which to forge the House of Vemanei, ensuring constant deference to the queer Black spaces in which this music was born whilst looking forwards to the kinds of spaces it will exist in the future. As they explain: “Born out of the house and ballroom community, Vemanei stands beyond the runway and on the shoulders of transgender women and gender-nonconforming people of deeper skin color. It is their spaces that we aim to create, maintain, and protect. It is their messages we aim to preserve.  Love remains the message.”

Novox 10 is out now on SVBKVLT. You can follow Skyshaker on Instagram.


Skyshaker [Feat.] ID – ‘ID’
Alice Glass – ‘Stillbirth’
Evanescence – ‘Bring Me To Life (Skyshaker Dusk Edition)’
Health – ‘Body Prison’
SHXT – ‘2016’
Skyshaker x Bulma x Kayla Nicole x Taylor Girls x Flo Milli – ‘Innocently Bundled’
Gabber Modus Operandi – ‘Dosa Besar’
Linda LaBeija and Skyshaker – ‘Skins (FIXED)’
Loyalty XIX – ‘Synobazz’
Vitamin String Quartet x Uematsu Nobuo – ‘How Deep Is Your Fayth (Skyshaker Fusion)’
Nina Simone – ‘Black Is The Colour Of My True Love’s Hair’
Teranoid – ‘Teranoid Anthem’
Skyshaker – ‘ID’
B.Yhzz x Polybius – ‘Raptor Gore (Skyshaker Baile Funk Remix)’
Tomas Urquieta x Imaabs x Kali Mutsa x Neana x Chunk – ‘Traga Shalt, Banbra (Skyshaker Fusion)’
Arca x Eva x Massacooraman – ‘Lash Revival Spell (Skyshaker Fusion)’
Tygapaw – ‘The Meek Shall Inherit The Earth’
Tropical Interface – ‘Elements’
Conjure One & Jaren vs. Schossow & Boiler – ‘Icy 2099 (Skyshaker 2011 Fusion)’
Loyalty XIX – ‘Orbita’
‘Give it Up (hands performance version)’
Beek – ‘Higher (Blow Your Smoke)’
Icy Flame x Ce7este x Sasha Manik Emocium – ‘Revelation’
Sky x Keyshia x Ying Yang Twins x Swan Meat x B.YHZZ x MY SWORD – ‘Breakup Spell’
Jikouroux – ‘Ruptured Pulse’
Faze Miyake [Feat. Sasha Go Hard] – ‘Below Me’
David Temessi – ‘You So Strong’
TOLE – ‘Thirst’
33EMYBW – ‘English (Skyshaker Kodeswisha Novox)’
Tzafu – ‘Resurrection’
Bentech – ‘No One Takes Me Down (Svetec Remix)’
Tygapaw – ‘Bag Juice’
I Hate Models – ‘The Night Is Our Kingdom (Skyshaker Shadewalk Edition)’
Osheyack – ‘Parataxon (Skyshaker Remix)’
Manni Dee – ‘The Wolves’
RVDE – ’90s Hammer (Perc Remix)’
4 Strings – ‘Diving (Cosmic Gate Remix)’
Zaliva-D – ‘End of Sky (Skyshaker Fem4Fem Novox)’
Hyph11E – ‘Escapism (Skyshaker and Lenchanter Edition)’
Hyph11E – ‘Escapism (Vemanei Transmission 072720)’

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