If her chosen name means anything—which it surely does—it's not that Ms. Nidam is some sort of misfit. It might be more accurate to say that Maayan shapes sound to fit her own singular sensibilities—a strategy that has resulted in a significant and growing body of recorded work and a reputation as a talented, versatile DJ who unerringly takes listeners to special, unexpected places. Since she began DJing and producing in 1999, Mayaan has racked up an impressive discography. As Miss Fitz, she has released EPs on Archipel, Sushitech, Raum…musik, Eklo, Kalimari, Freak n' Chic and Contexterrior; she also travels in disguise as Laverne Radix, with one single so far for Oslo's Love Letters from Oslo. March 2009 also marks the release of Maayan's debut release under her own name: "Night Long" (on Japanese label PowerShovel), an intimate album woven together out of recordings of Cuba's best contemporary instrumentalists. It's not the first thing that might come to mind when recalling an artist best known for machine grooves and moody funk—but that's what makes the move so quintessentially Maayan. As if that weren't enough, Maayan is no stranger to collaborative efforts. Working with Lee Curtiss and Shaun Reeves as Uli Künkel, she's put out EPs for Kalimari and Phonocult. And Mara Trax, Maayan's DJ/production duo with Frankfurt's Vera, is a force to be reckoned with in its own right. The pair has recorded for Oslo and Cyclical Tracks, and their Resident Advisor podcast introduced their lean, loose-limbed style to listeners the world over. The most fortunate fans, of course, have caught Mara Trax in their native terrain: the club, where their long, evolving tag-team sessions generate a rare kind of energy—the essense and spirit of house music, of dance music itself.