Techno producer, DJ and Sandwell District member Silent Servant has died

After a 30-year-long career, Silent Servant has passed away.

Silent Servant

Credit: Primavera Sound

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Techno DJ John Juan Mendez, otherwise known a Silent Servant, has passed away.

The news of his passing was shared earlier today by Resident Advisor. According to RA, Mendez’s management, Triangle Agency, contacted the publication to confirm the producer’s passing. The cause of death was not disclosed.

Despite his DJ pseudonym, Mendez was anything but silent in his musical career. Mendez spent over 30 years navigating the electronic circuit, his first release coming out in 1998 under his original alias, Jasper. In those years, Mendez slowly became a prominent, influential, and respected techno artist in the scene.

From his work alongside Regis, Female and Function in collective Sandwell District, to his own solo work, Mendez proved time and time again that he had a keen ear for captivating techno production and exhilarating DJ sets. Mendez’s sets were a sight to behold, earning him regular slots at top-grade techno clubs like Berghain and Tresor. As Resident Advisor sadly notes, Mendez was set to perform in Phoenix, AZ tonight.

As well as his DJing, creating music wasn’t his only skill; following his time in Sandwell District, Mendez also launched music label Jealous God alongside former Sandwell District partner Regis and James Ruskin. The label allowed Mendez to platform the potential future of the techno genre, supporting daring acts that forayed into the realms of post-punk, dub and classical minimalism.

As well as challenging and pushing the limits of the techno genre, he also regularly shined a spotlight on brilliant new artists on his monthly NTS Radio show.

Looking back on Mendez’ final November release feels rather bittersweet. The short EP, entitled In Memoriam, feels bleakly named in retrospect. An archival compilation from Sandwell District, WHERE NEXT?, was also announced earlier this week.

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