Joy Orbison - "The Shrew Would have Cushioned The Blow"
Apparat - "Sayulita (DJ Kicks)"
T++ - "Worn Down"
Tim Hecker - "Borderlands"
Review: Apparat's respected position amongst the electronic music cognoscenti has been secured mostly via his overseeing the Shitkatapult Empire and the canon of music released alongside Ellen Alien and the more recent brushed metallic tones of techno drama explored as Moderat with Modeselektor. He isn't, however, known for his DJing abilities, which makes his inclusion in the DJ Kicks series a puzzling one at first. This sensation dissipates however once your ears consume the 70 minutes and 22 tracks on offer here. Ring stated an intention to dispel the notion he plies a distinctly bittersweet sound, and that's always going to be achieved when there's the likes of Ramadanman, Martyn and Carl Craig (in his 69 guise) amidst the tracks. Whislt this isn't, as you'd expect, a technically sensational mix, a definite glitchy mood is retained throughout with some dazzling moments. The harmonious ascent of Four Tet's remix of Born Ruffian's from the industrial mist of Autechre's remix of Scorn in particular stands out. Four Tet's collaboration with Burial marks the onset of another highlight with the swift saunter through Vincent Markowski and Ramadanman that arrives at Radiohead twitcher Thom Yorke's "Harrodown Hill". An engaging selection best heard on headphones at high volume that highlights new aspects with every listen.
Review: As a producer, Daniel Avery has rightfully earned a reputation as someone with a distinct stylistic vision. While he regularly flits between styles and tempos, his music retains a dark, horror-influenced edge that's rarely less than beguiling. During club sets, he rarely strays away from a dense techno template, selecting tracks that fit his distinctively foreboding style. It's this side to his musical personality that shines through on DJ Kicks. It begins and ends with two maudlin chunks of otherworldly ambience; in between, you'll find an array of booming, late night techno jams from the likes of Shlomo, Planetary Assault Systems, Slam and Artefakt. Naturally, it's slickly mixed, resulting in a paranoid journey through 21st century body music.
James Braun & Troels Abrahamsen - "Wooden Knuckles"
Glenn Astro - "How I Miss You"
Philogresz - "Edge"
Bok Bok & Tom Trago - "Vector"
Cosmin TRG - "Echolab Disaster"
MMM - "Re-Tics"
Jam City - "How We Relate To The Body"
Brandt Brauer Frick - "Hugo (DJ Kicks)"
Machinedrum - "Now U Know Tha Deal 4 Real"
Thundercat - "Tenfold"
Dean Blunt - "Galice"
Review: The long running DJ Kicks serious has always been fascinating, offering as it does the chance for DJs and producers known for a particular style to spread their wings musically. Jazz-minded German techno combo Brandt Bauer Frick grab that chance with both hands on their instalment, showcasing an atmospheric blend heavily influenced by nu-jazz and smoky, jazz-flecked deep house. Along the way, there are numerous pleasing diversions, from the head-nodding analogue boogie of Inkswel and Moog-laden African rhythms of William Onyeabor, to the dense drum workout of their own "Brommel" and the winding synths and ultra-deep production of Fantastic Man's "Late At Night". They also make room for a bit of tech-jazz (Galaxy 2 Galaxy), and the booming late night moves of Cosmin TRG.
Review: Ben Westbeech dons his deep house moniker, Breach, to mix the latest installment of the long-running DJ Kicks series. With a quietly soulful sheen, tactile chords, late night deepness and shuffling rhythms aplenty, it's an enjoyable listen; atmospheric without being dreary, with enough stand-out moments to require multiple listens to really enjoy its melodic intricacies. It's an impressive tracklist, too, with inspired contributions from Wire People, Fred P, Cassio Kohl, Dusky (whose booming remix of CLOSE and Joe Dukie's sinewy "My Way" is turning into one of the tunes of the year) and Dopplereffekt, as well as the obligatory exclusive track (Westbeech's touchy-feely "Beroving").
Soulful Session - "All I Need" (feat Tisha Monique - demo Boogie version)
Beckie Bell - "Music Madness" (Charles Maurice extended version)
Uptown Funk Empire - "You've Got To Have Freedom"
Segway City 2
James Mason - "Sweet Power Of Your Embrace"
Segway City 3
Fruit - "If You Feel It, Say Yeah"
Kerri Chandler - "Stop Wasting My Time" (DJ Kicks)
Sylvia Striplin - "You Can't Turn Me Away"
Innerzone Orchestra - "People Make The World Go Round"
Cymande - "Getting It Back"
Kiki Willows - "3 AM"
Roy Ayers - "Liquid Love"
Review: On his edition of the long running DJ Mix series, Kerri Chandler has eschewed the dancefloor in favour of a set that showcases his "influences and inspirations". For the most part, that means a slick selection of soul, jazz-funk, disco and boogie gems from the '70s and '80s, with occasional deviations into electro (Fantasy Three's "It's Your Rock (Instrumental)"), Afro-dub (Chandler's own previously unheard "Stop Wasting My Time") and inspirational '90s fare (Innerzone Orchestra's sublime acoustic soul cover of "People Make The World Go Round"). Throw in a wealth of specially made interludes and you have a brilliantly programmed and mixed journey through Chandler's musical youth.
Milscot - "All Alone" (feat Angela Sheik - Domyan Just Slow remix)
Adam Stacks - "Hey Love"
Phil Kieran & White Noise Sound - "Never Believed"
Sigward - "Nuerd"
Maya Jane Coles - "Not Listening" (DJ Kicks)
Virgo Four - "It's A Crime" (Caribou remix)
Roberto Bardini - "Hate Me" (Muteoscillator Fairy Tall remix)
Tripmastaz - "Guess Who"
Standard Fair - "Little Helper 16-3"
Nocturnal Sunshine - "Meant To Be"
Zenker Brothers - "Berg 10"
Last Magpie - "No More Stories"
Zoe Zoe - "Church"
Gerry Read - "Roomland" (Youandewan remix)
T Williams - "Analog Tour"
Marcel Dettmann - "Translation Two"
Claro Intelecto - "Hunter's Rocket To The Sky"
Review: Given her current popularity, it's no surprise to see all-conquering house hero Maya Jane Coles mixing the latest instalment of !K7's long-running DJ Kicks series. The diminutive DJ/producer is in fine form, too, mixing up typically atmospheric house cuts and clandestine deepness with saucer-eyed late night faves and forgotten B-sides (see Bozzwell's surprisingly emotional "In My Cocoon"). As a mix it's as deep, melodic and groovy as you'd expect, with a strong vocal theme running throughout. As it progresses, it tiptoes further into bleary-eyed darkroom territory, via stand-out cuts from Marcel Dettmann, Caribou (his thrilling remix of Virgo Four), Gerry Read and T Williams.
Review: Dam Funk has been foundational in crystallising Stones Throw's undisputed leadership in the nu-school funk and boogie scene, and he's up there with the great J Dilla in our books. Naturally, he's been asked to mix up the latest series of DJ Kicks and, ladies and gentlemen, it's a real masterclass - one of those comps you can safely leave on and let it do its thing on you. The mood is personified by a fine blend of electronics and tougher, funkier rhythms by artists such as Index, Moon B, and Dam himself. There are also a few rare cuts by Chicago house legend Gemini that fit in perfectly, and a whole heap of wavy, Cali-inspired electronic funk. Badass.
Morgan Geist/Julie Dexter - "Linking Tunnel/The Plan"
Aardvarck - "Komt Goed"
Circulation - "Sincerely" (Creation mix)
DJ Koze - "Let’s Love"
Ron Trent & Chez Damier/Deetron - "Morning Factory/Choose Me" (feat Steve Spacek)
Nikola Gala - "Only" (Ryan Elliott remix)
Keith Worthy - "Moon Dance"
Paul W Teebroke - "Thing 1"
Radio Slave - "Children Of The E" (KiNK SP1200 remix)
Deetron - "Cry With The Stars" (feat Jamie Lidell - acappella)
A Made Up Sound - "Rework"
Hnny - "Hotline Riddim" (Jacques Renault edit)
Tony Allen - "Kilode" (Carl Craig remix)
Pepe - "Benzine Electronics"
Black Dog Productions - "Flux"
Deetron - "Untitled"
DJ Bone - "All My Heart"
Francis Bebey - "Bissau" (Pilooski edit)
Floorplan - "Let The Church"
Terrace - "Seventh City" (Filtered dub)
Derrick May - "Kaotic Harmony"
Equiknoxx - "Flagged Up" (Mark Ernestus remix)
DJ Bone - "Dreamers 6.1"
Stanislav Tolkachev - "Optical Illusions"
K-Lone - "Old Fashioned"
Jessy Lanza - "Strange Emotion"
Review: It would be fair to say that Deetron has taken the opportunity provided by a DJ Kicks mix to show off a little. We'll forgive him, though, because he's delivered an astonishingly good mix. Cramming an astonishing 38 tracks on to one CD might look like overkill, but the selection, programming and mixing (presumably in the studio, given the number of overdubs and sneaky track blends involved) is so good that you barely notice. Musically, he delivers a brilliant blend of electronic music old and new, moving from deep house and jazzy electronica to ambient via slamming rave jams and almost every techno sub-genre you can think of. We'd usually spend time banging on about highlights, but they're so plentiful that there simply isn't space. Just buy it: you won't be disappointed.
Axel Le Baron & Kurbatov - "Menace" (original mix)
Surrender! - "Travellers" (Sharooz remix)
Hey Today! - "83"
Alex Gopher - "Brain Leech"
Twr72 - "Summer"
Digitalism - "Fallin"
Gai Barone - "Alicudi" (Digitalism Electro Clash edit)
Digitalism - "Simply Dead"
WhoMadeWho - "The Sun"
Kolsch - "Loreley"
Grauzone - "Raum" (Ata extended mix)
Tomas Barfod - "Came To Party"
Digitalism - "A New Drug"
Digitalism - "Silenz"
Hiroki Esashika - "Kazane"
Vitalic - "Second Lives"
Digitalism - "So Totally Good"
Housemeister - "Sommer"
The Rapture - "Sail Away" (Digitalism remix)
The Sneekers - "Teddy" (original mix)
Autotune - "Keep It Wrong"
Digitalism - "The Pictures"
Review: The genius of the DJ Kicks series has always been in the leeway it gives to DJs to strike their own chord. Over the years, this opportunity has been used in many ways, from showing off record collecting skills and surprise eclecticism to straight-up party rocking and curious after-hours sounds. So how have Digitalism interpreted the brief? Pretty much as you'd expect, to be honest, gleefully mashing up piano-laden party jams, gravely indie dance, over-compressed electro-house and nosebleed techno. Sure, there are surprises - a string of spacey synth jams and a dash of slacker rock - but for the most part this is a no-holds-barred romp through pogo-friendly dancefloor fun. Really, we didn't expect anything less.
Review: Given his longevity - not to mention the high esteem in which he's held as a selector - it's rather surprising that this is only DJ Koze's second mix CD. Having indulged his dancefloor side with 2004's All People Is My Friends on Kompakt, here he digs deep into his post-club crates for a DJ Kicks selection that relies heavily on well-swung electronica and left-of-centre instrumental hip-hop beats. It's a fine mix, all told, shot through with a quietly soulful vibes, his usual eccentricity and some killer selections (Broadcast, Freddie Gibbs & Madlib, his own quirky remix of Session Victim). There are a few curious, homemade downtempo mash-ups, too, plus - bizarrely - a surprisingly impressive track from William Shatner. Yes, that William Shatner.
Review: Eccentric Swedish sitcom enthusiast turned producer DJ Seinfeld is hot property right now, so it's hardly a surprise to see him mixing the latest instalment in the DJ Kicks series. It's rather good, all told, offering a good run through of his influences and inspirations whilst also packing plenty of dancefloor punch. Taken in isolation, the Swede's on-point selections (think breakbeat-driven lo-fi house, dreamy deep house, skewed techno and bubbly post-IDM jams) are often deep, melodious, atmospheric and left-of-centre; brought together, the result is a wonderfully fluid and entertaining mix. Highlights include the downtempo bliss of the producer's own "I See U", the bass-heavy breaks/deep house fusion of Rudolf C's "Deep Sea Survivor", the rushing dancefloor mania of FaltyDL and the loved-up goodness of Project Pablo.
Maribou State - "The Clown" (feat Pedestrian - Axel Borman remix)
DJ Tennis - "Certain Angles" (feat Fink)
Kona Triangle - "Astorias Ascent"
Review: What the deuce? !K7 return with yet another essential DJ Kicks mix. Hot on the heels of Matthew Dear and Michael Meyer comes ace-serving selector DJ Tennis. Famed for his deep drawing style and ability to whip up atmospheres like some type of DJ sorcerer, his debut mix album was always going to be special. Perhaps not this special, though. Two CDs ranging from the most startling and serene contemporary ambient (Bauri - "Twinkle Stars"), to fluid body-shifting machine funk techno (Robert Hood - "Escapes") via warm house laced with subtle layers of sleaze (Oval - "Textuell") and crackling theatrical breaks (Jon Hopkins - "Vessel"), Tennis has taken his club chops and presented them in a much more timeless and flexible context. Just as all the best DJ Kicks mixes do. Love.
David Toop - "Things Just Went Sour Gradually All At Once"
Forest Swords - "Voice Memo Of Outdoor Singing Group In Chinatown, Liverpool"
Anna Homler & Steve Moshier - "Oo Nu Dah"
Kara-Lis Coverdale - "Imgs /R"
Dialect - "Th Ree Sisters Theme"
Rhythm & Sound - "Best Friend" (with Love Joy)
Anna Domino - "With The Day Comes The Dawn"
Neneh Cherry - "Blank Project"
Tokyo Prose & FIS - "The Truths"
Dead Can Dance - "Mesmerism" (remastered)
Forest Swords - "Crow"
Lutto Lento - "Gyal A Devil"
Disjecta - "Smokehead"
Skinnerbox - "Gender" (Axel Boman remix)
Deena Abdelwahed - "Walk On, Nothing To See Here"
Pantha Du Prince - "Welt Am Draht" (Animal Collective remix)
Mira Calix - "Umchunga Locks"
Laurel Halo - "Throw"
Demdike Stare - "Mnemosyne"
Djrum - "Showreel" (part 2)
Orbital - "The Box" (part 1)
Rupert Clervaux & Beatrice Dillon - "VII"
The London Bulgarian Choir - "Pilentse Pee"
Vashti Bunyan - "Here Before"
Forest Swords - "Voice Memo Of Piston At Manchester Museum Of Science & Industry"
Baka Forest People Of Southeast Cameron - "Eden Liquindi 2"
Ande Somby - "Gadni (Spirit Of The Mountain)"
Review: Since mood, atmosphere, emotion and a left-of-centre approach have always been the hallmarks of Forest Swords' own productions, you'd expect to find a similar emphasis on this DJ Kicks excursion. Predictably, he's done just that, conjuring up a heady, constantly surprisingly musical journey that somehow manages to draw together many different stylistic elements whilst still making perfect sonic sense. There's not enough room to go into all of the eyebrow-raising twists and turns, but expect a mix of field recordings, neo classical, 1970s electronic experiments, the dub-wise reggae of Rhythm & Sound, out-there jazz-funk, Cameroonian water rhythms (really), haunting Bulgarian choirs, post-punk pop fuzziness, contemporary leftfield techno, pastoral folk songs and a dash of mid-'90s Orbital.
Group Home - "Up Against The Wall" (Getaway Car mix)
Autechre - "Flutter"
Review: A genre-hopping, mind-bending mix from the king of eclecticism, Kieran Hebden (aka Four Tet), that ushers in a new age of experimentation for the seminal DJ Kicks series. Known primarily for his home made excursions to the far reaches of the musical map, Kieran Hebden is a DJ on a different kind of trip, the gratifying results of which can be seen all over this exemplary DJ Kicks compilation (the 26th in this now legendary series). Inspired by his 8 hour sets at The End and in Ibiza with Timo Maas, Kieran says he has rediscovered the thrill of filling a floor: "Playing for people who just want to dance is an exciting thing for someone who’s into experimental music". As you might expect with Four Tet, however, nothing is ever that straightforward, and his DJ Kicks is a mind blowing experience, taking in just about as many genres as there are tracks: Old skool hip-hop, French prog, conscious soul, electronic experimentation, minimal techno, early two-step, cosmic jazz, African thumb pianos and much more besides share space here, bound together by analogue synth interludes, segues and an exclusive new Four Tet track specially created for this compilation 'Pockets'; this year's only release under the Four Tet moniker.
Sly & Lovechild - "The World According To Sly & Lovechild" (Andrew Weatherall Soul Of Europe mix)
Dorisburg - "Rytm804"
Hiver - "Pert"
Kyle Hall - "Flemmenup"
DMX Krew - "EPR Phenomena"
JRMS - "3"
Shades Of Rhythm - "Exorcist"
Kode 9 - "Magnetic City"
The System - "Vampirella"
Black Merlin - "Kundu"
Aphex Twin - "Vordhosbn"
R-Tyme - "Illusion" (Mayday remix)
Psyche - "Crackdown"
Deniro - "Epirus"
I:Cube - "Cassette Jam 1993"
Review: South Korean star Peggy Gou continues her seemingly unstoppable rise by serving up her first ever DJ mix CD. It's a contribution to one of the longest running series in the business, DJ Kicks, and she's used the opportunity to showcase the depth and variety of the music in her crates. Beginning with the classic early '90s ambient of Spacetime Continuum, Gou flits between humid, mid-tempo Balearic house (her own "Hungboo"), acid-fired downtempo electronica (Pearson Sound), throbbing 1990 peak-time anthems (Weatherall's ace but largely forgotten remix of Sly & Lovechild), hypnotic techno minimalism (Dorisburg), main room throb-jobs (Hiver), pulsating electro (DMX Krew), classic breakbeat hardcore (Shades of Rhythm), post-dubstep (Kode 9), dark tribal drum jams (Black Merlin) and sunrise ready Motor City brilliance (Deniro).
Review: Although she's offered up plenty of high-grade DJ mixes in the past, this volume in the "DJ Kicks" series marks Laurel Halo's first commercially available mix-up. The sometime Hyperdub producer has dutifully delivered something rather special, somehow joining the dots between 29 diverse and disparate cuts in the manner of a true turntable maestro. Beginning with the melodious experimentalism of her own "Public Art", Halo giddily charges between mutant industrial funk (Stallone The Reducer, Final Cut), thrusting electronic disco (Red Axes), deep techno (Parris), mind-altering acid-style intensity (Rrose), stomping, sweat-soaked peak-time techno (Machinewoman, FIT Siegel), polyrhythmic bass music (Facta, one of her Livity Sound collabs with Hodge) and an impressive array of cuts that defy easy categorization. The resultant all-action mix is nothing less than stunning.
Rhythm Mode:D - "Can You Feel It (Reach To The Top)"
Hercules & Love Affair - "Release Me" (DJ Kicks)
Fax Yourself - "Strut Your Techno Stuff"
Klubb Kidz - "Don't Want To Hurt You" (Skool Flava dub)
Solution - "Feels So Right"
DJ Duke presents Freedom - "Love Don't Come Easy" (Power dub)
Cloud 9 - "Do You Want Me"
Mark Imperial - "The Acieed That Ate New York"
Inflagranti - "Magojiro"
Haze Factory - "A Bit Of Redemption"
Fierce Ruiling Diva - "Allemaal, Allemaal!"
Jump Chico Slamm - "Feel Free"
ZAM - "Africa Freedom" (Johannesburg dub mix)
Review: When interviewed around the release of the first Hercules & Love Affair album in 2008, main man Andy Butler did little to hide his house influences, despite that set's loose disco vibe. Since then, he's continued to pursue a retro-futurist house agenda, and here re-states his credentials with a DJ Kicks mix that happily joins the dots between vintage New York house and garage, acid, contemporary revivalist fare and the odd foray into dubwise electrofunk territory (see the thrilling opener from Mankind). It's an excellent representation of what you could expect from one his basement-bothering DJ sets and is jam-packed with largely overlooked fare from the '80s and '90s.
Review: Let the sermon begin - Detroit techno legend and innovator Robert Hood steps up to deliver the latest installment of !k7's legendary DJ Kicks series and it's an edition well worthy of attention. The ordained minister leaves the minimal techno sound that he helped pioneer, for powerful, big room techno on this highly anticipated mix. Despite his famously linear approach, here he builds tension between tracks with suspenseful breakdowns throughout. Highlights include the direct impact of his own "Focus" and its factory floor stomp, his hypnotic rework of Landside's "Signs Of Change", the seething tension of Slam's "Remain" and the return of Space DJz' Ben Long who teams up with Belgian veteran Tom Hades on the sci-fi epic "The Knight Rider".
Massimiliano Pagliara - "I Am Running All My Drum Machines At Once & Dancing"
Mike Dunn - "A Groove"
Playground Productionz - "Orgy (XXX)"
Eli Escobar - "Tension" (vinyl mix)
Alcatraz Harry - "Ode To Frankfurt"
Lory D - "Deep Acoustic"
Tomahawk - "Forever Free"
Anno Stamm - "A Night Out With Therese"
Denis Sulta - "Dubelle Oh XX" (JVIP)
Konakov - "Clonki" (part 2)
Mr G - "Transient"
Basic Channel - "Q1.1/I"
Fango - "Vena Cava"
Tessela - "Up"
Ricardo Villalobos - "Logohitz"
Dean & Deluca - "A2"
Robert Hood - "The Pace"
Overmow - "Convulsions"
POM POM - "Pom Pom 18 B2"
Review: It's been four years since globetrotting Glaswegian Jackmaster's last mix CD. This time round, he's opted to pay tribute to the sounds of the cities that have most inspired him, namely Glasgow, Detroit and Chicago. In essence, that means a fast-paced, thrill a minute ride through his house and techno influences that builds impressively over 80 action-packed minutes. Highlights come thick and fast, from the woozy synths and loose breakbeats of Denis Sulta's "MSNJ", and Mike Dunn's throbbing jack-track "A Groove", to the bombastic dancefloor funk of Lory D, the hazy hypnotism of Mr G, and the wonky techno hustle of Ricardo Villalobos.
6th Borough Project - "Planets (The Revenge Lost Groove)"
A+O - "Take Me"
Rick Wilhite - "Get On Up!!" (Theo Parrish' Late dub)
Florian Meindl - "Here Today Gone Tomorrow"
Armando - "Don't Take It" (Thomos edit)
Jee Day - "Like A Child"
Giom - "I Know You Were Right"
Alex Niggemann & Superlounge - "Chip Chip"
Manuel Sahagun - "Pieces Of Me"
Sonny Foderra - "Everybody Get On The Decks"
Danny Howells - "Laid Out" (Fully Horizontal mix)
Shit Robot - "Simple Things" (Todd Terje version)
The Juan Maclean - "Feel So Good" (DJ Kicks)
Rick Wilhite - "Get On Up!" (Theo Parrish' Late dub)
Juan Maclean - "Feliz Casa" (Frankel's Rhodes Workout)
Review: Studio K7’s long running mix series, DJ-Kicks, continues with an instalment from NYC disco head Juan Maclean (former hosts include the likes of Hot Chip, Booka Shade and Henrik Schwarz). Sculpted with a combination of classic tracks and more recent cuts, the mix displays a diverse collection of songs that are more focused on the club than past mixes.
Although Maclean is mostly known for his productions and live performances, he is also a DJ of some repute and his inclusion in the series is no surprise. What is somewhat intriguing, however, is his decision to make a straight up house mix. Over the running time of seventy-two minutes, Maclean keeps the energy levels high as his unleashes his collection of records meant for the club. Selecting from a rich tradition of house music with a disco twist, he includes a combination of classic tracks like Rick Wilhite’s "Get On Up" (remixed by fellow house don Theo Parrish) and recent disco cuts from the likes of Shit Robot, Still Going and 6th Borough Project.
The mix has a free flowing feel throughout due to Maclean’s raw method of producing: the whole compilation was mixed live using only two turntables, a couple of filters and a tape delay, placing the emphasis squarely on the sprit and excitement of the mix as opposed to its sound.
Review: To get away from the 'one track after the other' compilation concept K&D checked in at Havlis Super Sound where their man Alex (don of the echo chambers) has a secret dub-laboratory. There K&D did a dub session on the selected tracks to inject some dynamics and life into it. They took two bottles of Highland Park whisky and their old dub-echoes from the cellar and did a smoked-out dub echo-orgy.
Review: While now revered just as much for his kaleidoscopic, all-action club tracks as his similarly colourful downtempo explorations, it should never be forgotten that Lone began life as a maker of skewed, head-in-the-clouds beats. For this fine contribution to the DJ Mix series, the DJ/producer has decided to take us on a whirlwind tour of his influences and inspirations, brilliantly joining the dots between sunrise-friendly ambient, melodious electronic, blazed hip-hop, dazzling experimental beat-scapes, loved-up house and futurist techno. It's a thrillingly eclectic set, but one that holds together brilliant. While this is in part due to the use of a number of his own productions, it's also testament to his immense skill as a DJ.
Review: The long-running DJ Kicks series has prospered largely because of the opportunity it gives to well known DJs and producers to showcase the breadth and diversity of their record collections. That's certainly the case with this latest volume from global house superstar Maceo Plex, who impressively opens proceedings with a string of stargazing Detroit electro cuts (see the contribution from DJ Stingray) and atmospheric IDM jams, before peppering the mix with such inspired choices as Charles Webster's sublime, long-forgotten version of Kumbu Kimbra's "Raise The Dead" and Vivandi's decidedly stone cold classic "Racing Tracks". Of course, there's plenty of typically touchy-feely Plexian fodder, but it's far from the mix you'd expect.
Kasper Bjorke - "Apart" (feat Sisy Ey - Michael Mayer remix)
Lionheart Brothers - "The Drift" (Prins Thomas Diskomiks)
Mekon - "Please Stay" (feat Marc Almond - Royksopp remix)
Dreems - "Mirages" (Michael Mayer remix)
Boreal - "Canopy Target"
Throbbing Gristle - "Hot On The Heels Of Love" (Ratcliffe remix)
Death In Vegas - "Consequences Of Love" (Chris & Cosey remix)
Idioma - "Landscapes"
Jon Hopkins - "Abandon Window" (Moderat remix)
Review: Given his length of service, it's rather surprising that Michael Mayer hasn't previously been asked to deliver a DJ Kicks mix. His contribution to the long running series is predictably impressive, moving from the warm and woozy downtempo vibes of Peter Zumo, to the loose-but-driving bliss of Modarat's remix of John Hopkins's "Abandon Windon". Along the way, Mayer doffs a cap to some of his early inspirations (Chris and Cosey, Throbbing Gristle), highlights the work of some of his favourite contemporary producers (I:Cube, Justus Kohncke, Alter Ego, Prins Thomas) and showcases a string of his greatest remixes. The vibe is woozy, melancholic and occasionally dark, with Mayer successfully blurring the boundaries between techno, new wave, krautrock, synth-pop and off-kilter ambient.
Rich Medina - "Can't Hold Back" (feat Sy Smith - Platinum Pied Pipers remix)
Julien Dyne - "Stained Glass Fresh Frozen" (feat Mara TK)
Little Dragon - "Come Home"
Andres - "El Ritmo De Mi Gente" (feat Lady)
Fort Knox Five - "Uptown Tricks" (feat Mustafa Akbar - Rodney Hunter remix)
Daniel Bortz - "Cuz You're The One"
Jose Gonzalez - "Remain"
Big Muff - "My Funny Valentine"
Les Sins - "Grind"
Tirogo - "Disco Maniac"
SLF & Merkin - "Tag Team Triangle"
Joeski - "How Do I Go On" (feat Jesante)
Kings Of Tomorrow - "Fall For You" (feat April - Sandy Rivera's classic mix)
Soulful Session/Lynn Lockamy - "Hostile Takeover"
Anne Clark - "Our Darkness"
Peter Digital Orchestra - "Jeux De Langues"
Noir & Haze - "Around" (Solomun vox)
Marcellus Pittman - "1044 Coplin (Give You Whatcha Lookin 4)"
Lady Alma - "It's House Music"
Daniela La Luz - "Did You Ever"
Review: It would be fair to say that Studio K7 has pulled off something of a coup in getting Kenny Dixon Jr. to agree to compile and mix the latest installment in the long-running DJ Kicks series. It is, somewhat remarkably, the legendary Detroiter's first commercially available mix set. This triple-vinyl edition features a whopping 19 cuts - all in unmixed form - from the 30 track mix. Musically, it's a blazed, jazzy, soulful and groovy as you'd expect, and contains a mixture of downtempo beats, nu-jazz and hazy house cuts from the likes of Flying Lotus, Dopehead, Peter Digital Orchestra, Nightmares On Wax, Soulful Session and Lady Alma.
Rick Poppa Howard - "Can Your Love Find Its Way" (club vocal)
Stone - "Girl I Like The Way That You Move" (dub)
Fred P - "On This Vibe"
Creative Swing Alliance - "Don't Forget Your Keyz"
Geraldo Pino & The Heartbeats - "Black Woman Experience"
Philippe Sarde - "Le Cortege Et Course"
Robert Hood - "The Pace"
Loose Joints - "Pop Your Funk" (vocal version)
Arts & Crafts - "I've Been Searching" (Walter Gibbons 12' mix)
Motor City Drum Ensemble - "LOVE (DJ Kicks)"
Aphex Twin - "Actium"
Recloose - "Cardiology" (Isolee mix)
Latecomer - "Cosmic Cart"
Timo Lassy - "African Rumble"
James Mason - "Sweet Power Your Embraced"
Review: Like the best instalments in the long-running DJ Kicks series, this mix from Motor City Drum Ensemble man Danilo Plessow gives a far better insight into his musical inspirations than his own productions ever could. While there are, naturally, great deep house moments included (Tevo Howard, Mr Fingers, Latecomer etc), these largely take a back seat to Plessow's other musical passions. So, we get soft-focus electric jazz (Sun Ra), dub wise explorations (Tony Allen, Basic Channel), sweet soul (Peven Everett), dusty afro-funk (Geraldo Pino), urgent leftfield disco (Loose Joints, Walter Gibbons) and even a dash of instrumental jazz-funk (James Mason). That it all makes sense musically, flows brilliantly and is effortlessly entertaining is testament to Plessow's skill as a DJ.
Efdemin - "America" (Terrence Dixon Minimal Detroit mix)
System Olympia - "Night Rise"
Oliver Coates - "Timelapse (Walrus)"
NY House'n Authroity - "APT 2B"
Computer Says No - "Grab & Reform"
D'Marc Cantu - "The Will & The End"
Object Blue - "Even In You"
Severed Heads - "Lamborghini (Petrol 1982)"
The Abstract Eye - "Nobody Else" (part 2)
Marco Bernardi - "The Light Beside The Hall"
Via App - "Chatter"
Mount Kimbie - "Southgate"
Stanislav Tolkachev - "Blue Mood"
Watching Airplanes - "Saboter La Machine"
Rupert Clervaux & Beatrice Dillon - "IX"
Aleksi Perala - "UK74R1512110"
Mount Kimbie - "Blue Train Lines" (Nina Kravitz remix)
A Sagittariun - "Contortion"
Taz & Meeks - "Obviously"
Review: When they were asked to put together the latest volume in the "DJ Kicks" series, Mount Kimbie boys Dominic Maker and Kai Campos drew influence from their recent gigs DJing in support of Actress. As a result, their hugely enjoyable 22-track mix tends towards the experimental and off-kilter. Over the course of 80 action-packed minutes, the pair touches on a myriad of styles, including ambient, industrial-era experimentalism, South American influenced tropical drum jams, spacey modular techno, raw-edged peak-time jams, mind-altering acid weirdness and intergalactic electro. Highlights are plentiful, from the hypnotic dancefloor intensity of Stanislav Tolkachev and bleeping body-jack of A Sagittariun, to the skewed warmth of Severed Heads and the dream-like weirdness of their own exclusive contribution, "Southgate".
Hot Toddy - "I Need Love feat." (feat Ron Basejam - Morgan Geist Love dub)
DLX - "Modern Man"
DJG - "Here Come The Dark Lights"
Dustmite & Kuru - "Bare"
Photek & Pinch - "M25FM"
Photek - "No Agenda"
Baby Ford & Eon - "Dead Eye" (original version)
Marco Effe - "Sexgas" (Arnaud Le Texier remix)
DJG - "Say Something"
Guy J & Miriam Vaga - "No Under But You"
Daze Maxim - "Tomorrow Universe"
Sepalcure - "Taking You Back"
Photek - "Levitation"
Photek & Kuru - "Fountainhead (DJ Kicks)"
Synkro - "Look At Yourself"
Photek - "101" (Boddika remix)
Parxe & Grincheux - "The Art Of Nothing" (part 1)
Review: While nowhere nearly as high profile - or, for that matter, prolific - as he once was, "intelligent" D&B veteran Rupert "Photek" Parkes has recently enjoyed something of a renaissance after embracing the strains of dubstep, future garage and contemporary bass music currently so popular. Here, he delivers his first commercially available mix CD for DJ Kicks, and it's a bit of a doozy. Dripping in his famous melodies and cinematic atmospherics, it thrillingly moves through a variety of sounds, styles and tempos over a thrill-a-minute hour. There's slow 4/4 fare, Detroit techno-influenced analogue groovery (a brilliant collaboration with Bristolian bass head Pinch), next-level IDM, wonky oddness (Sepalcure), shiny tech-house, future garage and post-dubstep goodness. Oh, and zero D&B.
Cultural Vibe - "Ma Foom Bey" (Love Chant version)
Metro Area - "Caught Up"
Tiny Trendies - "The Sky Is Not Crying"
Smith 'N' Hack - "To Our Disco Friends"
Zongamin - "Tunnel Music"
Charles Schillings - "No Communication, No Love" (Devastating - Salt City Orchestra mix)
Nigo - "March Of General" (Chicken Lips Conquest dub)
J Walk - "Buggin' Becky" (Fully Bearded mix)
KC Flightt - "Let's Get Jazzy" (Dope dub mix)
The Human League - "Do Or Die" (dub)
Parallax Corporation - "Anti Social Tendencies"
Playgroup - "Behind The Wheel" (DJ Kicks Electrocash radio mix)
Ralphi Rosario - "Get Up Get Out"
Bobby O - "Still Hott 4 U"
Dexter - "I Don't Care"
Wanda Dee - "Gonna Make You Sweat" (acappella)
The Rapture - "House Of Jealous Lovers"
Flying Lizards - "Money B"
Review: New York disco man Juan Maclean compiles the latest DJ-Kicks compilation, following the likes of Hot Chip, Booka Shade and Henrik Schwarz. Selecting from a rich tradition of house music, Maclean includes a combination of classic tracks like Rick Wilhite's "Get On Up" (remixed by fellow house don Theo Parrish) and recent disco cuts from DFA buddies Shit Robot and Still Going. There's some European tech house from Florian Meindl, Alex Niggemann and Andre Crom & Luca Doobie, and an exclusive new track from Juan Maclean to top things off.