VA: Gommagang 3

VA: Sven Väth In the Mix: The Sound of the Sixth Season

Disco's obviously not an obscene word in the Gomma household, judging by the fourteen tracks of 2004-05 dance hits, vinyl remixes, and unreleased gems comprising Munk's 65-minute mix, the third comp from the German label. Thankfully, it's not disco of the Boney M sort but more the mutant type made famous by James Chance, Defunkt, and Daft Punk (though the disc does flirt rather shamelessly with straight disco in Munk's vocodered raver “Disco Clown” and Tomboy's handclapper “Maggie & Samira”). Headman's slamming punk-disco “Rong Hands” gets things started right while Whomadewho's “Space for Rent” boasts an irresistibly slinky vocal cascade (The Dirt Crew and The Rapture each do remixes). The funk party jam by Munk and LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy (and 'replayed' by Whomadewho) includes a hook even your grandmother would love (though you might have to push harder to get her to join in on the “Kick out the chairs, motherfuckers” line). The material moves into punk-funk territory with Whomadewho's “Satisfaction” while snarling guitars push The Rammellzee's “Cheesy Lipstick” into rockier territory (too bad the vocal's so over-the-top). Despite an occasional sunny moment, the vibe's raw, gritty, and sexy (the grocery list recited by a man and woman in Midnight Mike's throbbing groover “Hot in the Kitchen” makes being in the kitchen sound like the filthiest act imaginable) with the mix liberally infusing its disco base with goth, electro, punk, rock, and even dub throughout.

Sven Väth celebrates his sixth residency at Ibiza's Cocoon with an humongous, 150-minute set (the first disc christened 'wild' for the partying mood at night and the second 'life' for the supposedly blissed-out feeling the morning after) that compiles the club's top summer tracks. The Dionysian opening half is relentless, bruising, and industrial, the orgasmic sound of machines feverishly copulating (in this context, T.Raumschmiere's hellish “Sick Like Me” sounds right at home) while the second is more chilled, Väth largely staying out of the way and content to let the tracks speak for themselves. Disc one highlights include Adonai Elohim's churning raver “2000 and One,” the gleaming Kraftwerk melancholia of Akzidenz Grotesk's “Isbjörn,” and the trance-techno of Mathew Jonson's “Marionette” while the second features lush goodness like Isolée's “Pillowtalk,” Lawrence's “Swap,” and Serafin's pulsating techno-dub “Hasenmatt.” Though some judicious pruning (Sunaj Assassins' “Cold Callin,” for a start) would've brought the mix down to a more digestible 100 minutes, there's still enough good material to redeem the release.

February 2006