Tiefschwarz: Fabric29

Tiefschwarz's contribution to the Fabric series oozes late-night decadence with brothers Ali and Basti Schwarz keeping the vibe sleek and chilled through fourteen deep cuts. Certainly the two give the mix a relentless drive but shy away from deranged hysteria, opting instead for snappy pulses, jaguar-like stealth, and multi-hued electro-techno ambiance. In the long run, the set raves less rabidly but its suave ambiance is delectable nonetheless.

Hard to argue with Louderbach's (aka Minus artist Troy Pierce) “Grace (Anxiety)” as a starter, especially when voice samples like “I can't sit still—anxiety” are sluiced and mangled so memorably, and there's no shortage of highlights in the tracks that follow: Everything But The Girl siren Tracey Thorn drapes her sultry voice around Tiefschwarz's own “Damage (M.A.N.D.Y. Remix),” and the middle section, where cuts by Thomas Schumacher (“Rotor”), Night On Earth (“Rondell”), Gummihz (“A.A.K.N.Y.”), and Ichundu (“Hey”) shape the groove into a locomotive electro-chug, is particularly beautiful. Armed with a squirming synth squadron, Night On Earth's spacey electro-funk snaps and flails beautifully while Gummihz showers his hand-clapped strut with marble-mouthed percussion that sounds like someone throwing steel drums down the stairs. Tiefschwarz makes room for Depeche Mode's “John The Revelator” (though the largely vocal-free “(Dave is in the Disco Dub)” version diminishes its DM identity), and takes an occasional unexpected detour (Claude VonStroke's slightly mellow “Whose Afraid of Detroit” [sic] and the flirtation with prog in Riton's synth-heavy “Hammer Of Thor”). The set grinds to a rather bizarre halt with Kate Wax's lounge affair “Beetles And Spiders” but it's a satisfyingly scenic visit to the Fabric factory otherwise.

September 2006