By: Staff –
Composer & DJ Kate Simko is back a track called “Making Ground” from her new score for for Underplayed, a documentary about the struggles of female DJs in the EDM circuit. Stream the song exclusively via Aesthetic Magazine below.
The film was an official selection of both the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival and TIFF, and releases on the Amazon Music Mobile App and Amazon Prime Video next week on Monday, March 8th. The soundtrack will be out this Friday, March 5th.
Simko, since the age of 18 growing up in Chicago, has been resolutely dedicated to her music endeavors whether as an electronic musician, composer, producer or as internationally touring DJ. For the documentary film Underplayed, her wide-ranging electronic compositions—from lushly ambient, to classic Detroit-style techno—weave together the story of the female producers carving their place in the electronic music industry.
The film directed by Stacey Lee follows top DJ’s Rezz, Alison Wonderland, Tokimonsta, NERVO, Tygapaw and more as they share their struggles and successes in electronic dance music.
“Underground dance culture was created as a safe space for everyone- regardless of ethnic background, economic standing, gender, and sexual preference. Yet there have always been very few female DJ’s, and the handful that make it to the top are often scrutinized and held to different standards than men. This is something I witnessed coming up in the Chicago scene, so it was really an honor and a full circle moment for me to score Underplayed,” said Simko.
Simko’s elegant yet bold score seamlessly weaves in-and-out of diverse sub-genres of electronic music, with gritty textures, emotive melodies, and classic-style analog bass bubbling beneath the storyline of the film. From vintage New-style York disco beats to lush morphing synth soundscapes, the score reflects Simko’s experience as an ardent vinyl record collector and international DJ.
Underplayed presents a portrait of the current status of the gender, ethnic, and sexual equality issues through the lens of the female pioneers, next-generation artists, and industry leaders who are championing a more diverse pool of role models for future generations. Electronic music was born from the ideals of diversity, community, and inclusivity; yet in 2019, women made up only 7% of Billboard’s Top 100 DJs and less than 3% of production and technical roles in the music industry. Ultimately, the film explores how gender disparity happens, a theme that transcends music and finds relevance in many
of today’s industries.