Described as one of the best clubs in the world according to numerous polls (including DJ Mag top 100 clubs), Fabric has been responsible for putting out compilations of the most anticipated current artists for the last few years. Now on its 62nd edition, head honcho of happening Critical records, Kasra Mowlavi takes the reigns for a smooth ride impeccable mixing, exquisite track selection and a whole backlash of remixes of some of the best tunes to emerge in 2011. It's fair to say that if the track list alone hasn't got you all hot under the collar then you were clearly trapped under an iceberg last year.
Alix Perez's rerub of Rockwell's sublime 'Underpass' sets the tone well for the rest of the compilation. Stripping back a few of the clicky drums and brushing away the melodic elements, Perez leaves his minimal touch on one of the most ground-breaking tunes of 2010. Blended in beautifully, Foreign Concept's less cutthroat vibes draw for a fluent transition into ‘Detuned Souls’. The calm vibes don’t last long as Dub Phizix’s complex drum patterns take over for ‘Handmade’. Delving into murky depths, Kasra introduces Phace & Noisia’s powerful and show-stopping ‘Micro Organism’ with aggressive drum patterns and metallic sounding synths.
Next up are two highly anticipated VIPs from Hybris and Sabre, Stray and Halogenix showcasing Kasra’s excellent mixing from ‘The Cleaner VIP’ into the gentle, soothing tones of the VIP of recently released ‘Oblique,’ giving it a more rusty and dance floor ambience. Tearing riffs and disintegrating drums mark the mix being taken on a rougher journey through Mortem’s ‘Uprising’ and winding grooves of Jubei’s rerub of Alix Perez’s ‘Myriads’.
Break’s forthcoming ‘Soundwaves’ provides an excellent window into Critical’s next release - a warm, dubby number with driving bass before Kasra delivers Judda’s scratching, dark ‘Pressure Plate VIP.’ Dub Phizix’s signature drawing gated synths and guillotine-sounding samples signal the climax of the mix. Easily one of the best tunes, Critical’s main man drops into it the fluid, complex beats of Hybris’ ‘Make My Drink.’
Touching base with one of 2012’s hottest producer’s, Enei, ‘So Real’ is another co-produced tune for Kasra, complete with routine vocal sample before disintegrating into scorching synths and rasping bass. Enei’s solo production of ‘Machines’, a cluster of twisted melodies and whirling samples drops effortlessly into Foreign Concept’s take on Enei’s mighty ‘Obsession’. A more sinister descending bass and quicker tempo render this remix and Enei’s remix of ‘Mob Justice’ special enough to be released on a limited edition 10” vinyl.
A serene vocal line brings the party vibes of Bladerunner’s ‘Back To The Jungle VIP’ before the S.P.Y’s coiling basslines from ‘New Beginning VIP’ take the mix back down before reaching the peak of a second climax. Commix’s ‘Version’ and Ulterior Motive’s remix of Klute’s ‘We R The Ones’ are a nice visit to the other ends of the underground spectrum before Rockwell’s drums and Icicle’s stormy bass take control for ‘Resources’. June Miller & Proxima’s ‘Killswitch Engage’ has been rightfully receiving some big support as the minor-key heavily distorted bass makes for a powerful transition into another incredible production from Enei. ‘Count To Ten’ featuring MC DRS is one of the best tunes on the mix, and showcases DRS’ unmatchable talent in the lyrics department and Enei’s superb stabbing synth intervals.
Bringing the hour long mix to a close, Kasra swaps the bass of ‘Count To Ten’ into Mark System’s ‘Pursuit’ – a complex swirl of melodies and twinkling breakdowns before delving into a heavily static and hedonistic collaboration between Break and Metalheadz’s Mikal. Spectrasoul’s drawn out and punchier take on Enei & Riya’s ‘No Fear’ fashions the end before Stray’s ‘Timbre VIP’ jumps in at the last minute with an array of complex and evolving drums, which in itself would mark a great end to a live set.
Fabriclive 62: Critical listening.