Various Artists ‘Fabriclive 56 mixed by Pearson Sound/Ramadanman’

Various Artists / Fabriclive 56 mixed by Pearson Sound/Ramadanman


Fabric / Released March 21st 2011

One glance at the 30-strong tracklist for this latest in Fabric’s beats and breaks offshoot series makes two things pretty clear. Fresh sounds abound, and they’re going to come thick and fast.

A bass heavy tune-up steps into an awkward four four that finally gets its groove on halfway through the Levon Vincent’s shuffler, Late Night Jam. Underground house music doesn’t often sound so delectable, and neither do many mix album intros. So far so good then.

It’s unclear what to emphasise next. Perhaps Tiyiselani Vomaseve’s lunatic Vanghoma, a tune that sounds like Tom Tom Club on safari, with added club trimmings. Whatever the choice, it seems foolish to skip forward all the way to, say, Pearson Sound’s sublime remix of Joy Orbison’s GR Etiquette without mentioning selections in between, like the horn and strained vocal building block beats of Grab Somebody from Ramadanman.

All in all, it means once you’re far enough in to be hearing the hypnotic grime of MJ Cole and Wiley’s From The Drop it’s difficult to tell exactly what could, or rather couldn’t come next. Better yet, it’s not some mindless combination of ‘club sounds’. Because, despite the altering tempos, beats and styles, there’s a logical progression here often sorely missing from the weaker end of these styles now being dubbed UK bass.

That Burial’s eerie, glitchy, staccato ambience arrives mid-way through is proof of this point. It shouldn’t really work, and almost doesn’t, so hats off for grabbing glory from defeat. Another nod should go to Addison Groove’s vocal-loop-heavy Fuck the 101, a track so rude and dirty it’s any wonder nobody has made it before. But really the CD is crammed with bigness, in the best possible way, meaning emphasising individual tracks may not be the most suitable approach here, whereas buying the album probably is.