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Manakinz on Model Citizenz: Max Raskin’s Optimo Picks

Kono Vidovic May 20, 2024 53 4 5

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This week, we celebrate the second release on the Glasgow underground label Model Citizenz. The infamous duo Manakinz, consisting of seasoned DJ and party-goer Max Raskin and Subculture stalwart Harri ‘James’ Harrigan, is back. We recently had the pleasure of talking to Max Raskin, who took us on a musical journey through Glasgow. The seven tracks on the EP showcase their broad and dynamic approach to music, and we eagerly anticipate hearing much more from Model Citizenz in 2024.

For this feature, we asked one half of the dynamic duo, Max Raskin, to highlight one of his city’s most important labels. Max chose the mighty Optimo Records, selecting his top seven cuts from this much-revered imprint.


“Optimo Music is a Glasgow-based label run by JD Twitch and Jonnie Wilkes that I believe has been active since 2010. They’ve released a wide variety of styles over the years and have been a strong supporter of local talent. They held a weekly Sunday night at the Sub Club when I first started going out in Glasgow, so Optimo has always been a fixture in my musical life. I first started getting music on the label when I was playing regularly at Sunday Circus and have been a fan ever since.”

Max Raskin

Boot & Tax – Fusci

This was the first track I got from the label. Wonky noises, mad-ish vocals and a hypnotic, slinky groove. What more can you ask for, huh?

Jasper James – Sneaky

I’ve known Jasper for many years and we have a release with him coming out next month so it’s fitting that I mention this release, which I certainly played out back in 2014. Solid, housey vibes which helped put him firmly on the radar. 

Mia Dora – Un.Sub

This was a big one for me back in the day. Delayed, cowbell chaos is always good. Although they no longer making music, Rob Etherson (one half Mia Dora) is still in the game and has mastered both our Model Citizenz releases. 

Free Love – Skin On Skin

Free Love are a local duo who, according to all accounts, are amazing live. I love the vocals and general vibe of this tune – makes me feel nostalgic and think of my early years as a hedonistic buffoon. 

Iñigo Vontier – Weird Mantras

A track to get properly lost in but straddles the line of going too bananas well with a solid groove. Loads of good stuff from Iñigo but this is probably my favourite.

Pleasure Pool – Pure Touch 

Another local Glaswegian band. Love the loose drums on this one, vocal effects and trippy noises. Straddles the line between live-sounding and electronic, club music very well.

Benjamin Frölich – How Much Are They? (Chicken Lips Remix) 

I like Benjamin’s music and have always liked Chicken Lips since “He Not In” came out way back when. Everything they do is class so had to include them in this selection.


Thank you for joining us on this musical journey through the sounds of Optimo Records with Max Raskin. A massive shoutout to Max for sharing his insights and favorite tracks. Don’t miss out on Manakinz’s latest release, WHIM!, now available on Model Citizenz. Dive into their dystopian soundscape and let the music take you to new heights. Stay tuned for more exciting releases and keep dancing!

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Kono Vidovic at Dirty Disco

Kono Vidovic

DJ | MUSIC CURATOR & SELECTOR | PODCAST MAKER | BLOGGER Professional online interpreneur. Coffee practitioner. Electronic music culture maven. Total music guru. Infuriatingly humble problem solver. Food & sports fanatic.

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