Review: Australia's Balance Music is known for its quality mixes by the very finest in the underground music circuit. With previous compilations by the likes of New York's Danny Tenaglia, Deetron and Funk D'Void, among others, this is as close to a Fabric mix as you can get without those shiny tin cases. Ex-minimal legend turned all-out techno queen Magda steps up for number 27 in the series, and it's nothing but vibes on this one. Amalgamating shreds of stripped back techno - Marcel Dettmann, DVS1, Samuli Kemppi - together with newer, more underground sounds from some of the most cutting-edge labels around - Marco Bernardi's Sandman project, TTT's Minor Science, XDB and Shackleton - the Minus legend shows why she's still one of the best in the game and a true expert at evolving her aesthetic. A great mix, dig in.
Review: French-Hungarian trio Rework are the ideal Visionquest act. They have a good understanding of how to mix electronic and new wave sounds; they make tracks that are both functional and hummable and in Sascha Hedgehog, they have a vocaost who exudes cool without being too aloof. On "Ask You", the detached, almost disinterested vocals are presented against a building acid groove, while on the title track they are cut up into an insistent loop as cowbells ring and techno chords build and build. Finally, "I'm Waiting" sees Rework revert to the fusionist approach that they are known for with rumbling basslines maried to primal tribal drums for a mutant disco outro.
Review: With their appearances few and far between these days, one-time Playhouse regulars Rework come back into view and to a fresh audience no doubt with this appearance on Visionquest. A full-bodied four tracker gives a good feel for where the group are at right now, with lead track "Touch" harking back to the new-wave meets minimal flavour they brought to the table, helped in no small part by the icy vocal. "Any Other" moves with a more modern house purpose, slipping some dreamy coldwave synths and cheeky bassline into the mix, while "Silver City" is a more traditional deep house affair replete with ethereal pads and dubby drum breakdowns. "Cathy's Clone" provides one of the pleasant surprises of the EP with its measured electro construction and warm yet weird synth lines.
Review: Magda, Marc Houle and Troy Pierce's Items & Things is still going strong, keeping on with their love for bleepy minimal house, this time for another by label mainstays Rework from Stuttgart. The title track, as well as "Dry Acid", are repetitive and hypnotic with Sascha's persisting vocal loop on top, But it's more of the punchy pop inflected tech house we've come to know from rework on "Dont Make Me Cry" with its killer acid bassline and "French Candy" which takes things a lot deeper for the afterhours sound.
Review: Stuttgart based trio hand in another slice of uber electro-pop infected house for Meant after a slew of releases for the likes of Visionquest and Items & Things. Start things off with the slow Italo grooves of "Too Forward" and "Hardcore" they turn up the heat for the infectious electroclash thriller "Overdosed" and the tech house groove of "Candy & Kong". There's a couple of killer remixes too. "Candy & Kong" gets a trippy techno re-rub by m_nus affiliated minimalists Click Box while "Too Forward" gets the treatment by BALD, making it more of a driving dub.
Street Players By Victor Simonelli - "Taste A Little Paradise" (produced , mixed, arranged and edited by Victor Simonelli for VJS Prod Engineer Paul Hawkins Special thanks to Jason Orriss Mastered by Jack Smeraglia) - (9:18) 129 BPM
Womack Rework - "Good Times In Life" (Greg Womack) - (7:30) 116 BPM
RLP - "I Dont Love You Anymore" (RLPs French Affair Philly Tribute Session) - (11:23) 118 BPM
Ramsey Hercules - "Ohh Child" - (6:24) 93 BPM
Mr Leigh - "Searchin To Fund Another One" - (5:44) 114 BPM
Review: Here's a tantalizing prospect: an expansive collection of edits and reworks old and new from some of the greatest exponents in the disco scene. With such quality fare on offer, picking highlights is tough, but keep an eye out for the contributions from Frico (a straightened-out and chopped-up version of Orlando Johnson & Trance's boogie classic "Chocolate City"), DJ Prime (a soaring version of disco-soul classic "Nothing's Gonna Hold Us Back"), Manix (the filter-heavy disco-funk workout "Hangin Through") and Alkalino (the heavy P-funk jam "This is a Party"). There's also another chance to enjoy scene classics from Revivra (their brilliant 2010 rework of Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On?") and The Apple Scruffs (the vocoder-laden Pink Floyd disco cover "Another Brick In The Wall").