Monday, 12 January 2009

John Tejada – Fabric 44

Minimal and techno have been around for what seems like an age now and come to think of it so has John Tejada and Fabric. Even when sometimes as with all genres over time a formula starts to appear, Tejada has always managed to stay fresh and skip around tempos and styles at will as a DJ and producer. So a full mix from him in the excellent Fabric series is an interesting prospect.

John takes tracks new and old from all over the genre and mixes them with a hell of a lot of his own productions and material from his label Palette. This gives the mix a really cohesive sound that is unmistakably Tejada.

The mix opens with subtle and musical Detroit vibed minimal techno that builds with lush pads and creaking synth tweaks. It’s pretty hypnotic stuff for the most part but you can snippets of what’s to come as a sort of jacking European electro sound creeps in.

There is a warm timeless feel to a lot of the tracks here, it sounds like it could be mixed at anytime since techno’s inception in the 80s. It’s got all those lush, melancholic soul feelings that the early stuff had but with a really contemporary electro or minimal undertone. I guess it’s just quality in the end.

Some of the stand out tracks for me are the more subtle minimal affairs, such as the simple yet effective, ‘WAX10001’ by WAX. It just pumps along with drums not to dissimilar to old Trax On The Rocks material from Daft Punks Thomas Bangalter. But instead of kind of looped out funk vibe there is a nice dub synth hook that makes you want to move. Another track from the same label Hardwax also makes my ears prick up in the mix, this one by EQD called ‘Equalized001’ it has a similar kind of tone.

The tracks from Palette All-Stars pick the pace of the mix up a little and take it into freaked out acid state of mind with a growling bottom end and those mad acid tweaks that techno does so well.

Throwing in the Orbital classic ‘Fahrenheit 303’ is a nice touch as not only had I not heard it in a long time but it gives the mix a really old skool euphoric rave feel, which is never a bad thing.

Apparently Tejada heavily edited a lot of these tracks to make the Fabric mix a more solid flowing piece of work compared to his in club mixing. He wanted it to come across as a whole. I think he achieved this very well indeed. By the time your half way through you really locked into the vibe of it all and ready to get taken where ever Tejada feels, and he doesn’t disappoint with the final third which is maybe the best. Tejada himself with Arian Leviste kill it with the subtle raver ‘Forbiden Planet’ before a nice Shed remix brings it down a bit in his own wonderful dubbed out style.

Fabric mixes are always quality and John Tejada really doesn’t disappoint, grab this if you’re a fan of the more subtle end of electro, techno and minimal. I doubt very much you will be disappointed.

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