Underground trans producer a.k.a. skips (fka Ducky) unveils debut EP Jawfiller
The five-track package is a throwback rave-inspired project on queer and trans identity
“So proud to present my first EP as a.k.a. skips. This project is a love letter to queer and trans life, and the unique connection that a proper rave provides is fundamental to my understanding of what a community can be. An unabashed commitment to love and connection, and a rejection of the systems that would separate us. Let’s dance.” – a.k.a. skips
Underground trans producer a.k.a. skips uses dance music as a vehicle to cultivate a vibrant cultural spirit. For him, community is everything.
Throughout much of the 2010s, the creative polymath built an impressive resume under his hyper-electronic alias Ducky, having surged through the electronic music world due to his heavy-hitting collaborations and touring slots with artists such as Jauz, MUST DIE!, Anna Lunoe, Mija, Kayzo, and NGHTMRE; performances at festivals such as Ultra Music Festival, EDC Las Vegas, Bonnaroo, and Lollapalooza; and releases on vaunted labels such as Deadbeats, Astralwerks, Dim Mak, Activia Benz, Spinnin, NEST (OWSLA sister label) and more.
In 2021, a.k.a. skips retired the Ducky project and began his private transition as a transgender man – a journey that allowed him to diverge from the normative expectations of an electronic musician and find homes in new art forms, new spaces, and in a new body.
This past summer, he released his first photobook i want to rest and be held by someone who loves me (press release). He also had an original painting (Mouse Trap!) included in renowned Los Angeles art gallery La Luz De Jesus – all while tattooing out of a shop in Downtown Los Angeles.
Naturally, the a.k.a. skips moniker has also become an extension of his new creative ethos – an ideology that embraces queerness and sexuality through loud, bold, and unabashed aesthetic choices, a cultivation of a new artistic identity whose mere existence is a defiant artistic statement.
As a result, he’s attracted a community that celebrates his queer lifestyle and allows him to be the person he’s always wanted to be. Since releasing his first music under the new alias in May (“F.T.N.U.” and “My Only Mistake”), he’s translated this newfound freedom into a sound defined by 90s throwback rave stylings – an evocation of wild warehouse parties where the outcasts can party to their heart’s desire.
Today, a.k.a. skips releases his debut EP, Jawfiller, a five-track package that pushes the boundaries of dance music through an unapologetically queer lens. Edgy, brooding, and filled to the brim with heart-pounding club beats, Jawfiller is an acute reflection of a.k.a. skips’ trans experience. Referencing the literal jawfillers commonly used to create a more masculine appearance, the title represents how the external can be transmuted to reflect greater truths about who we really are.
Listeners got their first taste of Jawfiller with the EP’s lead single, “I.T.C.T.M.,” – a playful club banger that is as infectious as it is subversive. Next was “If The DJ Let Me,” a gritty, propulsive house track that’s filled to the brim with dusty breakbeats, ethereal synth pads, and nostalgic chord progressions. Then, he released “F.M.T.D.,” a raucous techno banger that bursts with unhindered sexuality and confident energy.
Jawfiller is rounded out by two new tracks, including EP opener “I Get Along With Everyone.” The track opens with a rapid fire sample of skips’ processed voice, repeating, “I get along with everyone/it’s not that hard/I just do what I want/It’s easy,” a perfect tone setter for the EP’s liberatory sonic and structural choices. Stabbing bass tones and backing drum breaks build with a swirling mix of vocals before a whistle blow gives way to thumping kick drums and vintage rave chord progressions – a combination of aesthetics that accurately reflects the EP’s overall vibe.
There’s also “Shut Up,” a ghoulish techno heater that combines stuttering kick drum rhythms with cacophonous, distorted synth progressions – a singular dance music listening experience that combines nightmarish thrills with gleeful club euphoria.
Flush with creative ingenuity, Jawfiller contains a diverse, unpredictable collection of tracks all threaded by a.k.a. skips’ distinct vision. The EP comes out of the gate fully formed, and portends a bright future for the producer as he further settles into his new life and culture. This one is for the freaks.