Fresh from the news that Spectral will be releasing a rather tasty remix of Mark E by Scandolearic deity Prins Thomas comes details of a new Merc release from the Midlands based producer which includes revisions from both Dixon and Tensnake.
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For the last 11 years, something electronically special has been brewing in Montreal. Throughout five adventurous days and nights, Mutek emphatically made a case for being quite possibly the world’s premier showcase for forward-thinking, cutting edge electronic music and digital creativity. Accompanied by its unmatchable array of stunning visual spectacles, this year brought a host of exciting North American artist premieres including King Midas Sound, Ikonika, Brandt Brauer Frick among many others As over 150 artists and acts converged to dazzle and challenge us, it was impossible to take in everything. The following is what intrepid Juno Plus techno warrior Steve Phillips extracted from all the blissful madness.
Dixon, aka Steffen Berkhahn, likes to try new things. In the past 12 months there has been an adventurous live show, two (very different) mix compilations, and, most recently, a film score – much of which has been accomplished in partnership with long time friends Henrik Schwarz and Âme. Of all these projects, the Temporary Secretary mix, released last October, managed to stand above the rest. It was a mix in which he lovingly rejigged, reimagined and reinvented almost every track that featured, taking the parts and editing them to suit his chosen direction. It also injected some much needed life into a dying medium: the commercial mix CD. Dixon spoke to Juno Plus about his latest projects, a newfound passion for chess and why he is sick of the deep house resurgence.
Deep house type Dixon from Berlin’s Innervision’s crew has been dominating musical proceedings of late. Temporary Secretary, his first foray into mixes since the 2007 contribution to the Body Language series, has rightfully been critically lauded across the board (including on these here pages) for its take apart and put back together approach and stands apart from a sea of somewhat one dimensional mixes released this year.
Additionally, Dixon’s sublime reimagination of Lykke Li’s Dance Dance Dance which has set closer writen all over it, finally got released on all too limited vinyl and is likely to secure him space on the end of year lists that everyone likes to make.
A musical cherry on the Dixon pie is offered up by Innervison in the shape of three edits from the Temporary Secretary mix. Those familiar with the mix will need no further incentive to add these edits to their collection but the unfamiliar should read on.
It’s a exercise in futility to narrow down the release to one definitive highlight as all three edits are of the highest quality. Henrik Schwarz’s Equinox remix is given a hypnotic makeover that builds from a bouncing bassline into a pitter patter of pads and epic synths until the piano is dropped in. The clattering drum workout on Ben Klock’s mashup with Precious System demonstrates that deep house can contain funk whilst Dixons take on Ewan Pearson’s rerub of Junior Boys contains enough starry eyed melodies to drown in.
Review: Tony Poland
Title: Temporary Secretary
Genre: Minimal/Tech House
Buy From: Juno Records
Known for its high profile artists like Ame/Schwartz and label head Dixon, Innervisions has been elevated over the past 18 months to sit alongside the likes of Soma as the benchmark of intelligent techno and house.
The highest of standards are expected of their releases and this new mix from Dixon, his first since 2007′s Body Language, is no exception. The Berlin-based producer slices up tracks in a way that’s impossible on the traditional CDJ set up, and yet somehow manages to still produce the urgency and feel of a live set.
There are many future dance floor classics on show, including Kiki’s “Good Voodoo” with its deadpan vocal delivery and “Law Of Return” from Peter Kruder. The mixing absorbs the senses with textured electronics, constructed on a bed of crystalline beats. Indeed, Dixon may have just put together the perfect soundtrack as the summer draws to an end.
Review: Mark Algar