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Podsumowanie roku 2008 Resident Advisor

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PostWysłany: 21-12-2008 22:44    Temat postu: Podsumowanie roku 2008 Resident Advisor Odpowiedz z cytatem

Top 20 labels of 2008

20. Mule Electronic

For a country whose techno market is second only to that of Germany, Japan has remarkably few labels of its own. But this year—and indeed since its inception in 2005—Mule Musiq and sister imprint Mule Electronic have more than made up for that. From the jazz-tinted disco and downtempo styles of Henrik Schwarz and Kuniyuki to the smart synthetics of IMPS, Glowing Glisses and Vince Watson, Mule's consistency has rarely faltered over the last 12 months. They're not afraid of taking a punt on a relative unknown, either, with sparkling EPs from fringe players like Audision and Tony Lionni. Quite simply, Mule is a Far Eastern powerhouse of high-end, deep frequency dance music.
-- Lee Smith

19. Spectral Sound

While the latest instalments in its Death is Nothing to Fear EPs welcomed Sami Koivikko, Alexi Delano and Kate Simko—who released a fine EP for Spectral—to the label, Spectral Sound's standout releases in 2008 came from established names. Osborne's Ruling was an infectious and, in the truest sense, uplifting house record. The US producer followed it with an album, Osborne, which lithely traversed electro, pop, deep house and stripped back techno, never sounding contrived or calculated. Spectral also released James T. Cotton's scuzzy, track-based 2AM/FM collaboration with D'Marc Cantu and Cotton's Like No One was this year—or any year's—rawest, meanest and most belligerent exploration of the jacking Chicago sound.
-- Richard Brophy

18. Innervisions

2008 was yet another stellar year for Berlin-based Innervisions' co-label head Dixon in the DJ arena—helped in no small part by the fact that he had gems like "Back to My Roots" and "I Exist Because of You" in his record bag before almost anyone else. Of course you'd expect established talents like Laurent Garnier and Henrik Schwarz to come with the goods, so perhaps the bigger story here is that 2008 also saw the imprint introducing the larger world to Boola, Lil' Tony and a host of others on their Secret Weapons Part II. Oh. Did we mention they did all that in the span of only seven releases?
-- Terrence Fuller

17. Workshop

One cold night in the winter of 2006, Lowtec and Even Tuell drank Bordeaux and talked about their new record label, Workshop. As their teeth grew increasingly purple, the two producers agreed on a few ground rules: they would release only four records per year, showcasing themselves and a few close friends. Each EP would be identified solely by its catalog number, and all tracks would be untitled. Six EPs later, this charming austerity accounts for only a fraction of Workshop's allure: from the quivering groove of Even Tuell's nameless house tool, to the misty euphoria of Benjamin Brunn's label debut, Workshop modestly delivered some of 2008's most compelling moments on wax.
-- Will Lynch

16. Hyperdub

After years of Kode 9 and Burial carrying the label's profile, Hyperdub was due for an identity crisis in 2008. The previous year had ended with a critically and commercially massive Burial album, the third in a trilogy of landmark dubstep albums from the label that still tower over any full-length the genre has yet produced. Would they push that envelope? To their credit, they didn't even try. 2008 was a year of left turns and reinvention for the imprint, with dubstep surprisingly dropped for a new roster—Ikonika, Zomby, Samiyam and others—who focused on the fatter, synthier, wonkier sound. While other labels rushed to catch the bandwagon or climbed into bed with techno, Hyperdub fearlessly pushed forward into new territory.
-- Dimitri Nasrallah

15. Kompakt

From the annual Pop Ambient compilation, to the safe and cozy pieces on SCSI-9's Easy as Down and all the way down to the re-emergence of Gas—deep was the word for Kompakt in 2008. Stepping past the ambient fare, the imprint ping-ponged between straightlaced fare from the likes of Ferenc, Partial Arts and Justus Köhncke, and unusual bits like a genre-defying re-release from unknown Swedish trio Pluxus. Perhaps Matias Aguayo statement record "Minimal" put to words the undercurrent of Kompakt's releases, though. There's more to dance music than minimal techno: And Kompakt showed us that they're more than happy to move on.
-- Mark Strauss

14. Smallville

2008 was anything but small for Smallville Records, the Hamburg-based label run by Peter Kersten and Julius Steinhoff. Many listeners will no doubt single out the label's Move D & Benjamin Brunn collaborations for well-deserved praise—Songs from the Beehive, Smallville's first full-length release, is easily one of 2008's finest, and came complemented by two noteworthy EPs. But the year also featured strong 12-inches from Steinhoff & Hammouda, Sven Tasnadi and Sten, which saw the label defining its aesthetic—one of smoothly flowing planes and melodies. Combined with the distinctive cover art of Stefan Marx, Smallville is an imprint that has quickly developed a voice that is unique and compelling.
-- Cameron Eeles

13. Circus Company

Showing no fear in crossing genre boundary lines and injecting its dancefloor material with a healthy dose of art and experimentation, Circus Company found huge success with Dave Aju's massive "Crazy Place" (and its companion Luciano remix) and Open Wide, as well as standout releases by Guillaume & the Coutu Dumonts, Seth Troxler, Sety and Oleg Poliakov, all united by the fact that they sound totally different to just about everything else out there. But while 2008 was a breakthrough year for the French imprint in many respects, longtime followers of the label may be wondering what took the rest of us so long to catch up with its brilliance.
-- Todd Hutlock

12. Oslo

For being the new kid in town, Nekes and Federico Molinari's Oslo certainly didn't act like it. Only in operation since 2007, the burgeoning German label has positioned itself as a tastemaker with its ten EPs. Oslo's releases fall in the grey area between house and techno, with outputs ranging from funky and upbeat to deep and ethereal. Everyone remembers Johnny D's "Orbitalife," of course, but the imprint also diversified its catalog with top-notch releases from young producers such as Mara Trax (a Vera and Miss Fitz collaboration), Guillaume and The Coutu Dumonts, Nekes and Christian Burkhardt—a collection of artists that should help continue Oslo continue its run for years to come.
-- Elly Rifkin

11. Diynamic

After dusting off their classical instruments and crystallizing the label's sound in 2007, Diynamic spent 2008 expanding it. It was a year of firsts: first remixes, first album/mix and first single from outside the label's tight-knit stable of producers. In fact, Diynamic tossed aside their signature sound for more than a few of the label's hits in 2008. The largest was Stimming's "Una Pena," a track that took minimal Latin house and remade it into an unassuming summer-anthem. Fellow Hamburg resident Lawrence turned in the best Diynamic remix this year, weaving his signature melancholy into "Eiszauber." But it was Solomun's catalog mix on Saturday, I'm in Love that proved no matter how much they've experimented in 2008, Diynamic hasn't been diluted a bit.
-- Nate Deyoung

10. DFA

Piano house anthem "Still Going Theme" closed out 2007 for DFA, but 2008 saw the label only pursue this dance floor-focused sound further with the release of excellent albums by Hercules & Love Affair and Maurice Fulton's Syclops project. On the singles front, the imprint stood out by releasing house music with a strong disco bent which was unashamedly emotional and sometimes even borderline cheesy, such as Juan Maclean's 'Happy House' and H&LA's 'Blind'. In a year when so many labels focused on releasing slick, serious, 'authentic' dance music, label manager James Murphy's unabashed pop sensibilities and love of "pretty gay-ass disco" led to a run of releases which earned the label newfound admiration amongst house and disco devotees.
-- Bernardo Arrospide

09. Cécille

After just 12 months and only a handful of releases, Cécille has firmly established themselves as the chief protagonist in the resurgence of funky and deep house across the underground scene. Andomat 3000's chunky "Vertical Smile" began things quickly for the label, peaking at number 2 in RA's February Top 50 chart. But it was soon followed by label boss Nick Curly's Dubnoise EP, which cemented the Cécille sound with a straight-up funky house record before track-of-the-year contender "Nesrib" by SIS made headlines towards summer's end. Going into 2009, the attraction with Cécille remains as much for the great productions as for the renaissance of the sound they epitomize.
-- Grego O'Halloran

08. Dial

Dial lost none of the steam built up by 2007's masterful full-lengths from Efdemin and Pantha du Prince in 2008. Its impressive roster continued to cultivate the label's highly distinct style—a sound that is also flexible enough to allow for new blood and fresh air. It's a refined, seductive take on melodic minimal techno which this year cast its dark, velvety sheen over everything from the You Are My Mate compilation to the dubby house of John Robert's debut EP Hesitate. Label owner Peter Kersten himself did double duty, first delivering stripped grooves as Sten on The Essence and then under his Lawrence moniker nailing it with the sublime "Miles," perhaps Dial's single standout jam for 2008.
-- William Rauscher

07. Rekids

Despite surfacing little more than two years ago, James Masters and Matt "Radio Slave" Edwards' Rekids imprint has quickly carved out an established nook among UK independents. 2008 was a glowing year for the label, with sterling debut LPs from self-confessed outlaw Luke Solomon and former graphic designer Toby Tobias somewhat overshadowed by a rampaging monster of a track—Radio Slave's terrifying "Grindhouse"—the outrageous Dubfire remix of which tore the vital organs out of all it inflicted itself upon. Less messily, the unsuppressed joy of Toby Tobias' "The Feeling" reminded us of shinier treasures, with a vocal from Kathy Diamond bursting forth brighter and more alluring than a lapdancer's jewel-encrusted thong.
-- Greg Sawyer

06. Cadenza

Label boss Luciano hardly seemed to set foot in the studio in 2008, what with his increasingly popular (and populist) DJ sets, but his label made an astute pincer movement to consolidate its status in both leftfield and mainstream zones of post-minimal dance. While Rhadoo's deranged "Dor Mit Oru" seemed to warp time across the four sides of its vinyl, Alex Picone's ripe, sculpted "Furby" was as blissfully in-the-moment as house music gets. Even the Los Updates project, quirky and cheesy as it might have been, spawned a host of terrific remixes from Ricardo Villalobos, Dandy Jack and Luciano himself. With its spectacularly beautiful 12-inch sleeves and almost edibly luscious sounds, no one makes decadence quite as seductive as Cadenza.
-- Derek Walmsley

05. Wagon Repair

Whether it be the sparse minimalism of Luca Bacchetti, exegetic electro from Hrdvsion or the classic wonky jazz harmonics of Mathew Jonson, Wagon Repair found itself alone this year in its sheer breadth of excellent work from a host of genres. Coupled with tobias.'s well-regarded "I Can't Fight the Feeling," and world-beating albums from Deadbeat and The Mole, it's clear that while many other labels have released dazzling music, been wildly hyped or ascended quickly in 2008, few matched this Vancouver imprint for its consistent quality. With new turks like Ryan Crosson and Seth Troxler, stepping up to the plate late in the year, it's a run that looks likely to continue.
-- Per Bojsen-Moller

04. Skull Disco

Although Sam Shackleton might hate to hear it, Skull Disco—if nothing else—has made for great theater. The release of each 12-inch in 2008 came with an unbearable tension. Would the duo of Shackleton and Appleblim be able to top the previous monument of abstract darkness? Where would Soundboy end up? Is this suicide note really the end of Skull Disco? If, as Appleblim tells it, the recent two-disc compilation Soundboy's Gravestone Gets Desecrated by Vandals is the final word from the imprint, then Shackleton can rest easy with the knowledge that he built one of the most singular labels of his time—an imprint that brought together two of the finest producers in dubstep for a short, mind-bending few years.
-- Sam Louis

03. Perlon

For this indelible underground bastion, obliviousness continues to be bliss. In '08, Perlon did nothing it hadn't done for the past 11 years—release extraordinary and otherworldly house music—but it still seemed dimensions away from everyone else. An inimitable roster of "friends" left a trail of releases that were near impossible to flaw or define; stalwarts STL and Sammy Dee released vicious rib shakers, as did the mighty A Guy Called Gerald and Portable. But it was Villalobos who really melted craniums; Perlon brings out the best in Ricardo and Vasco was a mesmerizing return to form. Bringing hot sonic pups Shackleton and San Proper into the coveted Perlon circle proved that Superlongevity is not just a kooky word; it's Perlon's unflappable musical mantra.
-- Piero Ruzzene

02. Modern Love

If Modern Love's 2007 was ruled by the staggering form of Echospace, this year they returned their focus to their hometown of Manchester, presenting two albums from label stalwarts Claro Intelecto (Metanarrative) and Andy Stott (Unknown Exception). Claro Intelecto, AKA the other Mark Stewart, dropped a particularly heavy set of dub techno and modern abstraction, his palette whittled down to muddied blues and dust-caked silvers. But Stott's Unknown Exception ruled the roost, cherry-picking cuts from 2004 to 2008 and confirming the man's got the murky Midas touch: every track feels as though it's fighting through fog. Singles from Move D, MLZ and Pendle Coven were further proof that Modern Love's hive mind reaps rich reward.
-- Jon Dale

01. Ostgut Ton

Whether you buy into the notion that dance music in 2008 shared no ideological syntax and ultimately felt a bit stale or felt it was the genre's finest year to date, Berlin's Ostgut Ton couldn't care less. The Berghain club's label was too busy shaping techno's most compelling brand of new-vintage, one still well-grounded in classical dance modes. Fittingly then, Ostgut began the year peeking in the rearview; January brought the warm-throated Chicago house of Prosumer & Murat Tepeli's Serenity. But its base textures were forged with label stalwart Marcel Dettmann's Berghain 02 mix and Shed's Shedding the Past. Berghain 02 catches Dettmann tampering with a club-culture time capsule, sneaking out at pitch-black and reburying the original with this bold, rich new document amongst all that weathered wax. Shedding the Past was more open-eyed, if a little demented. Blending offbeat Aphex Twin rhythms, classic Warp Records atmospheres and dirty night Detroit sheen, Shed embedded a sense of narrative journey and progress in his record so often missing from dance full-lengths. But neither was simply toying with history. Both Dettmann and Shed innovated with how much space they offered within headbending creations so mission-bound. They made techno sound like you could move within it instead of against it again, keeping its sharp angles but opening up slight gaps for you to linger and just listen.
-- Derek Miller


Top 10 live acts of 2008

10. Shed

School of Sound Recording, Manchester, November 7: "Shed's set focused largely on his Ostgut material, with the first half of his performance all about building suspense and tension, with basic elements deployed to maximum effect: taut beats sparred with pristine breakdowns, bass drum drops were teasingly withheld. In the last half-hour, though, the dancers were given their rightful prize, the beats rising until Shed's old school sound broke through with the Ostgut bomb "Warped Mind." Whilst parts of his set were received with heads nodding rather than limbs flailing, the applause as he finished showed that Shed's appearance in Manchester was very much appreciated."
-- Michael Curtis

09. Andy Stott

The last time that I heard Andy Stott play live, he treated his audience to an army of unheard music alongside some familiar material, from a hard drive packed with hundreds of tracks. That said, it didn't sound much different from the simple and elegant work that he's made his name with, full of room-eating beats, bass like setting concrete and bright, intense melodies. The major difference is that live, things get even more serious. It's as though the monsters from his EPs have been given brass knuckles and poked in the eye before being set loose on those foolish enough to venture in their path.
-- Colin Shields

08. Nôze

Parc Jean-Drapeau, Montreal, June 1: "Nôze, however, was an even bigger disappointment than the rain. As you can hear on their RA podcast, it was a 'kitchen sink' performance that went from house to tango to klezmer with drunken shenanigans a-plenty. To my ears—and eyes—this kitsch was inappropriate and out of place amongst the smooth organic house sounds of Ernesto Ferreyra, Özer and Kaden. Though I am a big fan of Nicolas Sfintescu's label Circus Company, Nôze was ridiculous in the context of the party. Predictably, everyone I spoke to either loved it or hated it."
-- Elly Rifkin

07. The Mole

The Mole is a vinyl junkie, and that love of the past is what makes his live sets so thrilling and so unique. Whether it be old R&B, '70s kitsch or obscure prog, The Mole live experience sidesteps the disco re-edit trend of lifting and looping entire bridges, and instead strips a nearly forgotten music history down to barely-there moments, which he then loops and layers ad infinitum until they get under your skin and literally force your feet to move. The Mole has a lock on pure dance floor magic of the timeless variety. He can strip an old song down to its warmth and then raise its temperature, without ever tipping his mix into recognition.
-- Dimitri Nasrallah

06. Henrik Schwarz

If you stop for a moment to think about it, the Henrik Schwarz live experience is an amazing one. In one night, you can hear African, jazz, hip-hop and house music all in the span of an hour's time. What's more, it isn't forced: With the help of Schwarz's Ableton warp addiction, kalimbas, kick drums and Kraak & Smaak all merge together effortlessly into a soulful and deep journey that would sound about as cheesy as a balding German man trying to bring back nu-jazz if the results weren't so damn funky. That Schwarz seems to pull it off show after show—and in the studio too with 2007's Live—is a testament to his immense talent.
-- Sam Louis

05. Booka Shade

Being familiar with their music will only bring you so far in knowing what to expect from Booka Shade and their live show. Sure, it's punctuated by their moody, soulful riffs, but it's also techy, driving and, best of all, all played live on drum pads and synthesizers, making them one of the most engaging live acts around. Of course it doesn't hurt that complementing the measured, yet next-level thinking that's instilled in the music, there's a tasteful backdrop of evolving geometric projections and a razor-sharp lighting scheme either. 30 years from now, all rock bands will look like this.
-- Daniel Petry

04. Cobblestone Jazz

It's no secret that the only thing "live" about many electronic performances is the name of the software being used. Not so for Cobblestone Jazz. Onstage, the Canadian trio does ample justice to its unusually dynamic recordings—hypnotic affairs marked by undulating arpeggios, restless filter sweeps and self-generating keyboard melodies—by recreating them from the ground up. Danuel Tate's keyboard riffing sets the bar for the group's real-time ideal, which Mathew Jonson and Tyger Dhula match on laptops and hardware. It never goes too loosey-gooesy: always deep in the groove, this is swing, not skronk. But revelatory moments come fast and thick in a Cobblestone Jazz set, where creation always wins out over re-creation.
-- Philip Sherburne

03. Move D

Much has been made of Move D's resurgence this year, and why shouldn't it be? Dude has been churning out the hits with a string of incredible releases for labels like Smallville, Workshop and Modern Love. Not one to slack off, his live performances have been on par with (if not superior to) his studio work, pulling from all corners of his diverse catalogue in order to create an experience that attacks the hips and head in equal measure. When he stopped through Philadelphia earlier this year, he played a live set that touched on house conventions but was delivered in his own inimitable style, leaving everyone—from long time fans to the uninitiated—with their jaws on the floor.
-- Carl Ritger

02. Hercules & Love Affair

Following two inescapable singles and one perfectly formed album, Andy Butler grabbed 2008 by the proverbial balls with his neo-disco, house and pop amalgam while taking his Hercules & Love Affair bunch to where dance music so rarely dares to venture: the live stage. With the help of a bass player, a live drummer, a second keyboardist and an actual brass section, subtle acid-house cuts such as "Classique #2" and "I'm Telling You" became thunderous bouncing 'n' grooving monsters. The highlight, though, are the two gender-bending, ambiguous front singers: the quirky Kim Ann Foxman and the mesmerizing Nomi Ruiz, who makes the triumphant "Blind" totally his/her own.
-- Stéphane Girard

01. DBX

The machines Daniel Bell surrounded himself with were already obsolete in the early '90s when he first created his trademark minimal techno tracks, but the sounds they made on a warm spring night earlier this year still sounded fresh. With the TR-909 front and center, his funky drum programming and razor sharp arrangements rocked the bowl at the main stage in Hart Plaza at Movement 08. Old school techno heads and young ravers alike jacked their bodies wildly to the relentlessly pounding kick drum and quirky synth lines of classics like "Baby Judy and "Phreek," but it was when the screams of "Can You Feel It?" echoed across the concrete that the crowd's ecstatic response affirmed that they did indeed feel it. DBX live proved that Bell remains techno's greatest reducer.
-- Thomas D. Cox


Top 15 remixes of 2008

15. Dave Aju - Crazy Place (Luciano «Likuid» Remix) [Circus Company]

"Veering 180 degrees from Aju's spacious, laid-back original, Luciano's 'Likuid' mix opens with a cut-up voice and percussion wig-out before submitting to a murderous bass thump that drives the track. Layers of his trademark percussion keep things moving along until 5:30, when a hammering synth riff is introduced and, by the time the jazzy keyboard solo hits a few minutes later, I had to check my pants for wetness."
-- Todd Hutlock

14. Shackleton - Death Is Not Final (T++ Remix) [Skull Disco]

"Whereas Sam Shackleton's original cut was like dubstep's Tibetan Book of the Dead, Monolake member T++ sets sail for more Stygian domains with his Necronomicon-like remix. The flickering snares suggest panic, whereas the fractured rhythms weigh heavily over the still, black drones like Charon's oars beating on the waters of Hades, as the cavernous ebbs and flows seem to take over your ears and soul."
-- Chris Mann

13. Sety - Mogane (Guillaume & The Coutu Dumonts Remix) [Circus Company]

"Guillaume & The Coutu Dumonts take on 'Mogane' is a radical one, totally gutting the original and creating a boompty bouncer that owes as much to early acid house as it does to modern techno music. A pumping Chicago bassline grooves along to deep stabbing synths and hat-heavy percussion, and is sure to find favour with DJs straddling the line between deep house and more jacking fare."
-- Richard Carnes

12. Vladislav Delay - Recovery IDea (Andy Stott Remix) [Semantica]

"Modern Love's Andy Stott distils the thick atmosphere of Delay's original with his trademark metallic reductions and hi-hat/kick propulsion, and with a super smooth bassline adds swing and funk. The dark washes of the original now sit behind a sharp foreground that's dance floor friendly yet still deep and detailed enough for headphones. A wonderful combination of two very different, but complementary sound palettes."
-- Janet Leyton-Grant

11. Radio Slave - Grindhouse (Dubfire Terror Planet Remix) [Rekids]

"A desolate vision of armour-clad fiends marching across a techno landscape of relentless snares, hissing fissures of steam and acid-burn synths. An apocalyptic siren signifies the true beginning of the track and potentially the end of the world, while Danton Eeprom's ominous vocal creates an unassailable sense of impending metallic doom. Immense, formidable and not for the faint of heart."
-- Greg Sawyer

10. Kevin Saunderson feat. Inner City - Good Love (Luciano Remix) [KMS]

"Luciano's take on Inner City's 'Good Love' works Paris Grey's vocals in layers over a stripped down groove that sizzles along over a lightly acidic one-note riff and chattering Cadenza-style percussion. Neatly summarizing Luciano's recent turn toward deeper house sounds, 'Good Love' fuses Saunderson's soulful techno with the Chilean School of Minimalism for one of the highlights of 2008, as well as the History Elevate series."
-- Todd Hutlock

09. Ane Brun - Headphone Silence (Henrik Schwarz Remix / Dixon Edit) [Objektivity]

"Brun's vocals are delicate—seemingly ready to wither away as soon as they emerge from her mouth. Innervisions label head Dixon takes advantage in his edit of Schwarz's mix, drawing out the intro for 90 seconds before dropping the vocal. He maintains the languid pacing throughout, adding a kick drum here, the interlocking synth lines there and then ties it all up with a sedate string-laden breakdown."
-- Todd L. Burns

08. Mlle Caro & Franck Garcia - Dead Souls (Radio Slave Long Distance Kiss Remix) [Buzzin' Fly]

"Mlle Caro and Franck Garcia's 'Dead Souls' was a rich and emotional pop-house track, but Radio Slave wanted his remix to take the song closer to its title's dead heart. Edwards doubles up the length, jacks up the kick drum, and strips away the jangled guitars to deliver a bleepy and hollow minimal marathon that voids any intonation in Caro and Garcia's voices, so that dead souls were themselves singing the lyrics."
-- Dimitri Nasrallah

07. TRG - Broken Heart (Martyn's DCM Remix) [Hessle Audio]

"Martyn takes TRG's sombre but hard-edged original and turns it into a melancholic but hopeful garage cum dubstep beauty. The vocals have been detuned; they sit lower in the mix and build a wistful atmosphere over the Detroit-sounding pads, a broken beat-esque drum workout and a driving but warm bassline. The angry and painful post break-up heart of the original is in effect turned into the sexy and lustful yearning of unreciprocated love."
-- Karl Tryggvason

06. Sascha Dive - Deepest America (Moodymann Remix) [Ornaments]

"Cynics might see Moodymann's remix of 'Deepest America' as Kenny Dixon Jr's statement on European house music. Riding along an infectiously percussive shuffle, countless sampled disco loops are layered around a yearning gospel vocal ('Music! Music! Ain't no soul no more!'), before a pulsating space-age arpeggio flies in out of nowhere to throb you into submission. It's quite a journey for a seven-minute house record—and one that's executed perfectly by Dixon."
-- Richard Carnes

05. Matias Aguayo - Minimal (DJ Koze Mix) [Kompakt]

"Focusing on the guitar lick, DJ Koze reimagines 'Minimal' as gently swelling disco reminiscent of Modjo's 'Lady.' This track has that 'iron fist in a velvet glove' thing going on—the sounds and style are smooth but with a restrained power and a constant escalation of tension that's likely to end up with people being surprised at how hard they've been dancing."
-- Jacob Wright

04. Sascha Funke - Mango Cookie (DJ Koze's Pink Moon Rmx) [BPitch Control]

"DJ Koze's epic re-imagining of 'Mango' takes elements from a completely different song ('A Fortune Cookie Symphony'), house music (the unyielding kick that only takes 120 seconds to appear) and outer space (just about everything else). It's less remix than it is jumping-off point, as though Koze came into the studio and set out to forget everything he knew about dance floor dynamics. God bless him."
-- Todd L. Burns

03. Hercules & Love Affair - Blind (Frankie Knuckles Vocal) [DFA]

"Promos of 'Blind' in its original form appeared early enough for it to feature in DJ sets last NYE. But Knuckles' utterly infectious, extended take took the record to an entirely new level, ensuring it became one of 2008's most enduring club anthems. Though incongruous initially, Antony Hegarty's soaring vocals, that nagging trumpet line and a bassline warm enough to double as a duvet all combine to devastating effect."
-- Dave Stenton

02. Sebbo - Watamu Beach (Moritz von Oswald Rework) [Desolat]

"I hate to say it, but it's embarrassing how much better the Moritz remix is compared to the original. Where the original sounds like a hurried attempt at a current trend, Oswald's has all the time in the world. Like an exercise in deep, meditative breathing, it unfolds into as much space as it needs, holds it for as long as it wants and then lets it go in a wonderful ambient fade-out."
-- Peter Chambers

01. Ricardo Villalobos - Minimoonstar (Shackleton Remix) [Perlon]

"Shackleton's beats are (relatively speaking) very straight sounding, even though they're made from popping hand claps under heavy flanges and what could well be a pair of large, metallic scissors positioned in disturbing proximity to your head/phone/cable. Beneath all these clippy snippets, however, is a gentle kick that marks time until a softer four-to-floor comes in, sending it all forward into… Doom? Bliss? Something between the two. With this returned favour and Ricardo's previous mix for Shackleton, the duo have managed to elevate 'dance music' into something strange, unsettling, startling, and wonderful."
-- Peter Chambers


Top 20 compilations of 2008

20. Carl Craig – Sessions [Studio !K7]

"It's not as if we needed much of a reminder of Carl Craig's genius in 2008, but when faced with the totality of his range on Sessions, it's still a bit breathtaking. Craig can recast just about anything—The Junior Boys' synth pop, Rhythm & Sound's deep dub, Francesco Tristano's solo piano—and make it epic, danceable and totally new. Which, of course, shouldn't overshadow his original productions. Sessions' second disc was littered with them and reminded us of just how long it's been since the master has been at work. Perhaps in 2009 he could see fit to remind us of that too."
-- Terrence Fuller

19. Adam Beyer - Fuse Presents... [Music Man Records]

"Unlike previous efforts, the emphasis for Beyer on Fuse is on the hypnotic repetition and the cleaner, intricate melodies of minimal and less on the dirtier electro hammer of the past. Beyer never gets weighed down in the intellectual pretensions of minimal, though. He sticks to his roots, driving straight for the more high-octane banging side, all without sacrificing the melodic complexities of the individual tracks. This is in fact where the genius of Beyer's mix lies: The prismic manner in which he burns the EQ spraying around the melodic and percussive accents is truly master class, even more so because of the high tempo he maintains."
-- Chris Mann

18. VA - Circoloco @ DC10 - 10 Years Anniversary [Moon Harbour Recordings]

"If its brief reopening for the rest of the '08 season was to be the last hurrah for DC-10, then this ten-year anniversary, six-disc behemoth of deep druggy house is even more essential. Those unfamiliar with the DC-10 sound will be bemused at how such "deep" music can enthrall over a two-hour set, let alone nearly nine. But those in the know understand it's all about stamina at DC-10: Beloved resident Tania Vulcano, Italo boy DJ Sossa, those Romanian [a:rpia:r] upstarts Rhadoo, Petre Inspirescu and Raresh, the irrepressible Matthias Tanzmann and the sublime Thomas Melchior each have programmed a swirling subterranean soundtrack for a day in the dust."
-- Piero Ruzzene

17. Matthew Dear - Body Language Vol. 7 [Get Physical Music]

"The core of Matthew Dear's entry into the Body Language series focuses on tracks that tease out controlled funkiness, congas, heavy breathing and the kind of innuendo-tainted vocals intent on clawing foreplay back onto supposedly sterile dance floors. Sascha Dive and Johnny D are on board for two tracks each, with the likes of Kid Sublime, Seth Troxler and others co-opting the habits of deep house along with some of the influences that first fed house music in the first place—a touch of diva here, a taste of polyrhythm there. In other words, a portrait of what made dance floors move in 2008."
-- Dimitri Nasrallah

16. Dave Clarke - Back in the Box [NRK Music]

"Back in the Box provides the ultimate tool for dance music history boffins with a collection of classic deep Chicago house and forthright acid weirdness, as well as a number of "uncategorizables." What is most intriguing about listening to this collection though, is that over time you begin to hear where modern genres like minimal techno and progressive house came from. "Give Yourself to Me" is a dead ringer for "Trompeta" by SIS, you could be fooled into believing that "In a Vision" was a John Digweed creation and "Mystery Girl," the best track of the lot, sounds like it's straight off Daft Punk's Homework."
-- Finlay John

15. Basic Channel - BCD-2 [Basic Channel]

"After keeping Basic Channel more or less in mothballs for the last decade or so (a couple of reissues of some related work for Planet E aside), suddenly, with no fanfare or even much notice, a second CD arrives. This time, however, the tracks are full-length versions arranged in chronological order and packaged in a simple black digipak with titles clear on front and the BC and Maurizio catalogs detailed in the center spread (the "buy vinyl!" message remains on the back). Maybe the years have softened Ernestus and Von Oswald, because this CD is about as definitive a label comp as one could fit on a single disc."
-- Todd Hutlock

14. Stefan Goldmann - The Transitory State [Macro]

"The first disc of The Transitory State is a collection of works released over the past three years, but the lack of novelties is made up for by the fact that, in sequence, this album sounds wonderful. Voices of the Dead—the second disc—inhabits an odd twilight world of static tones and electroacoustic hums; a kind of bare-bones ambient music. The scale of this project might seem pompous to some, but Goldmann comes out of it well—his ambition is justified by the quality of the music. And whatever you think of the second disc here, the first is doubtless one of the best house albums released this year."
-- Robin Wilks

13. Sascha Funke - Watergate 02 [Watergate]

"Where Onur Özer's Watergate 01 was a strictly minimal affair, Sascha Funke's working from a more broadly colored palette far more in line with his own Mango release earlier this year. Though he sifts older tracks like the clubfooted house of Maus & Stolle's "Taxi" and Closer Musik's broad-shouldered "Giganten" into Watergate 02, the mix centers around some of 2008's deft club and home standouts, a well-crafted sequence fit for house parties, lengthy autumn drives or just sweeping up around the home. Watergate 02 is child happy, melding emotive techno with some of the year's steamier cardiac fare."
-- Derek Miller

12. Wighnomy Brothers - Metawuffmischfelge [Freude Am Tanzen]

"Recorded from turntables, several of them, Metawuffmischfelge is a fine antidote to the Hawtin school of digital cleanliness. Over 30 tracks are thrown into this sixty minute session, and we're seldom presented with individual works. Indeed, the point seems to be to play numerous records simultaneously and continuously, to see what exotic cocktail emerges. The pace is languid, in a woozy deep house kind of way, and the effect of all this is like seeing double, dancing drunk: double kick drums beef up the lower end, hats compete to stay in time, basslines stagger and sway, fading in and out of view."
-- Joshua Meggitt

11. VA - Soundboy's Gravestone Gets Desecrated by Vandals [Skull Disco]

Compilation and tombstone, Soundboy's Gravestone Gets Desecrated by Vandals collects (basically) the second-half of Skull Disco's output or—as I like to call it—when Shackleton and Appleblim got weird. While their first edition was assuredly strange, there seemed to be a formula to their Middle East-tinged dubstep. On Soundboy's Gravestone there seem to be no referents, something further put forward by their stunning slate of remixes on the second disc that move from dub to drone to somewhere else entirely. The only question that still lies unanswered for me? Where in the hell does these guys go from here?
-- Sam Louis

10. Andy Stott - Unknown Exception: Selected Tracks Vol. 1 (2004 - 2008) [Modern Love]

"Drawing inspiration from the usual dub techno suspects (Basic Channel is loud and clear) and fusing them with minimalist ideals and bathwater-warm melodies and textures, Stott's tracks offer a deep home listening experience, as well as the requisite punch to make club floors move. Stott works with consistent tones and a palette that never seems to get tired, Stott makes even his most dissimilar material sit comfortably together long enough to take a loving family portrait. Despite his pedigree, popularity and near-universal acclaim, Stott still holds somewhat of a low profile; Unknown Exception should raise it exponentially."
-- Todd Hutlock

09. Âme - Fabric 42 [Fabric]

"You might not associate the creators of 2005's ubiquitous milky way jam, "Rej," with musty old school funk and techno. But in creating Fabric 42, Âme's Kristian Beyer and Frank Widemann dug into their collection in an attempt to step out of their deep house shadow a bit. As such, perhaps more than any mix this year, Fabric 42 is reminiscent of The Mole's As High as the Sky. Murky and reverberant at once, Fabric 42 often seems refracted through a dense and cluttered space, one that resembles a museum storage hall as much as a dancefloor."
-- Derek Miller

08. Robert Hood - Fabric 39 [Fabric]

"In its best moments, Fabric 39 is a summation of a particularly hardy and long-lived style of Detroit techno, the kind with fast pummeling beats, short loops and a punchy, urban feel. It doesn't want to gently seduce you into dancing, it wants to beat you into submission and then jiggle your limp limbs like a puppet on a string. Like his long-time collaborator Jeff Mills he treats records as tools and components to be reassembled into a new whole. It feels less like the tracks are being mixed together, and more like they're being hurled at the dancefloor in quick succession."
-- Jacob Wright

07. Gas - Nah und Fern [Kompakt]

"When Arnold Schoenberg devised twelve-tone serialism in the 1920s, he claimed it would "ensure the supremacy of German music for the next hundred years." Similarly, Kompakt founder Wolfgang Voigt has always been about creating a distinctly German form of music, although this time not in opposition to atonal composition but to Anglo-American pop. The result has been twenty years of techno records defined by what Voigt has humorously described in the Wire as "boofta-boofta-boofta," and—under the name Gas—a collection of towering ambient work, a profound meditation on music and history. It's what Schoenberg would produce if he'd lived into the sampling age."
-- Joshua Meggitt

06. Luciano - Fabric 41 [Fabric]

"When news went out that Luciano was signed on for the next Fabric installment, people began to wonder whether he'd take the Villalobos route. But while much has been made by hardcore Luciano-fans and live set collectors that Luciano's unveiled a pretty stale assembly here—based on tracks played out from his sets or including 'old' standard-bearer Cadenza cuts like "Albertino"—Fabric 41 will sound to most home-listeners, or the many simply not lucky enough to catch Luciano live, as an intricate, season-muggy mix CD from one of dance music's most dependable producers, one which deftly balances its quirks with its more instantaneous appeals."
-- Derek Miller

05. DJ /rupture - Uproot [The Agriculture]

"If you want to understand DJ/rupture's music without hearing it, read his blog. Recent musings glanced Croatian hip-hop, Arabic classical, books by Polish journalists on Iranian history and talking Mattel dolls that may or may not endorse Islam. Rupture's mixes are similar. They play on the way sounds clash, not blend, but Uproot—one of the best mixes of the year in any genre—proves what his past mixes didn't imagine possible: when used well, a little restraint is more freeing than chaos. Rupture's eclecticism isn't defined by sonic opposites on Uproot, but his ability—and willingness—to reconcile them."
-- Mike Powell

04. Metro Area - Fabric 43 [Fabric]

"Metro Area's music is so basically tasteful that the beginning of Fabric 43 threw me off at first. Morgan Geist and Darshan Jesrani don't just get on the mike to introduce themselves and their mix: They narrate the proceedings. Geist: "Yeah, ladies, clap, clap! Clap, clap, clap, clap! The disco experience is all about the claps." When the hell did these guys turn into comedians, anyway? The answer, of course, is lighten up. Especially since the next hour-plus—which, rest assured, passes without anymore jokes from the DJs—is, like the best of Geist and Jesrani's music, as singular and direct as biting into an orange."
-- Michaelangelo Matos

03. Appleblim - Dubstep Allstars: Vol. 06 [Tempa]

"Dubtsep Allstars Volume 6 reveals that Appleblim is a DJ more interested in evolutions within the genre than playing to its biggest hitters. He insists on taking the listener on a deep and varied excursion, and he's not afraid of slowing things down or speeding them up to get the results he wants. It's worth listening to this mix alongside his RA podcast, which takes the journeyman's mentality in an entirely different direction. Between the two mixes, Appleblim has showcased, if anything, just how versatile dubstep has become in absorbing the music that surrounds it."
-- Dimitri Nasrallah

02. Efdemin - Carry On, Pretend We're Not in the Room [Curle Recordings]

"The handsomely titled Carry On, Pretend We're Not in the Room is Efdemin's first mix CD proper and follows on from what his 2007 RA podcast promised, mining the vibe of both the ballsy Detroit strut of Eddie "Flashin" Fowlkes and the bump-and-grind of Minimal Man, wiggling much closer to Stacey Pullen than Sven Väth. Capturing the effortless sense of panorama that oozes from one of his sets, it's an astounding mix that takes you from the deep house of Patrice Scott to the tribal techno of Dettmann & Klock to Photek's barely-there, sci-fi house monster "T'Raenon." Educating, entertaining and essential."
-- Piero Ruzzene

01. Marcel Dettmann - Berghain 02 [Ostgut Ton]

"Berghain 02 is something of a definitive statement of where techno is at now, and where it is going. It's a purist vision to be sure, but it is by no means limited: T++'s excellent "Mo 1" is dubsteppish, "Warped Mind" by Shed is standout neo-Detroit, while the piano riffs and gradual undulations of Radio Slave's "Tantakatan" underscores the link between Berghain and Rekids' crossover hypnotism. In short, it's something of a guided tour of the most innovative and forward-thinking techno around. Chances are we'll look back at Berghain 02 as a defining moment when techno got out of that locked groove, and started moving forward again."
-- Chris Hobson
Tech-House Music

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Top 20 albums of 2008

20. Scuba - A Mutual Antipathy [Hotflush Recordings]

"Scuba's relocation to Berlin has been an important one. No, he hasn't started making minimal, but the textures of Berlin—and the influence of Detroit—are all over these songs. Antipathy is a stunningly successful combination of London dubstep beats and subs with the floating textures of early '90s and contemporary techno, all pitched just right for home listening."
-- Jacob Burns

19. Claro Intelecto - Metanarrative [Modern Love]

"Pounding, floor-friendly and sharply produced, Intelecto's Warehouse Sessions delved into the darker sides of techno and electro, but Metanarrative is something different again. Where Sessions was functional, Metanarrative is emotional, although, in typical Intelecto style, distilled from an extensive array of influences—electro, IDM, Detroit techno, dub techno."
-- Janet Leyton-Grant

18. Kenny Larkin - Keys, Strings, Tambourines [Planet E]

"Throughout Keys, Strings, Tambourines, Larkin peppers his elegant tech house rhythms with jazzy keyboard fills, strings, tambourines and oddball synth blurts, making for an especially tuneful listen that doesn't skimp on the ass-shaking. Fans of Larkin's classic works will not be disappointed here, nor will those discovering his music for the first time."
-- Todd Hutlock

17. Dave Aju - Open Wide [Circus Company]

"Dave Aju's conceptual precision on Open Wide is admirable—'all tracks written and produced...using only his mouth as a sound source.' But the album works because, while its concept is ultimately subservient to the overall composition, you can't imagine these tracks in quite the same manner without the particular tenor of Aju's mouth-noise."
-- Jon Dale

16. Quiet Village - Silent Movie [!K7]

Quiet Village caused a bit of commotion amongst the disco beards with their long awaited full-length. Was it an album of edits? Or just a sample-based record? However you classify the material, there's no escaping Silent Movie's ability to transport your mind to the most tropical climes imaginable. If that isn't Balearic, then I don't know what is.
-- Richard Carnes

15. Ricardo Villalobos - Vasco [Perlon]

"The Spanish translation of Basque, Vasco refers to a people whose language bears absolutely no resemblance to its neighbors. Fittingly, Vasco is an album that lies in contrast with all that surrounds it. After the stark musings of Fabric 36, Villalobos is now crafting lengthy, enigmatic pieces that either vastly redefine 'house' or defy categorization altogether."
-- Will Lynch

14. Minilogue - Animals [Cocoon Recordings]

"Animals is firmly progressive in form and length, recalling both drum & bass and '70s progressive rock at its most overblown. Yet their revisionism is subtle, keeping to a linear rhythmic template with frequently wonky analogue flourishes, familiar from 'Elephant's Parade.' If earlier tracks hinted at a trademark sound, here it becomes a firmly established one."
-- Joshua Meggitt

13. Ezekiel Honig - Surfaces of a Broken March Band [Anticipate Recordings]

"Surfaces of a Broken Marching Band is a symphony transmitted from the bottom of the sea. Cold and murky, it's warmed by sudden currents and shifts of sediment from the ocean bed, kicking up brief flickers of light and sound that you notice whether or not you catch the disturbances that created them. There hasn't been a better 'ambient' album this year."
-- Derek Miller

12. Deadbeat - Roots & Wires [Wagon Repair]

"Roots and Wire succeeds because the different intensities and beat structures of each track offer an ebb and flow, bound together by a dub reggae spirit. More importantly perhaps, Monteith's refusal to aim for moody, vacuous postures aids in letting the whole thing breathe. In fact, being so good, the only complaint you'll have is that isn't a little bit longer."
-- Chris Mann

11. Prosumer & Murat Tepeli - Serenity [Ostgut Ton]

"It's no light thing to say that Serenity is a perfect partner for a musico-romantic involvement with Larry Heard's classic productions as Mr. Fingers. And it's no mean feat that the duo have managed to produce a collection of tracks and songs that not only echo but amplify and renew the passion that they draw their form and voice from."
-- Peter Chambers

10. Loco Dice - 7 Dunham Place [Desolat]

"Besides the floor-fit swagger of 'Tight Laces,' Dunham Place trades pressing for peaceful, focusing on the momentary smear of all its parts over their sum. If there's an album from this year that's kissing-cousins with Dice's, not as much in sound but in the weight it places on attention to minutiae, it's Move D and Benjamin Brunn's Songs from the Beehive."
-- Derek Miller

09. Bruno Pronsato - Why Can't We Be Like Us? [Hello? Repeat]

"Why Can't We Be Like Us is like the unexpected fulfilment of a promise: unexpected because none of Bruno Pronsato's EPs so far had hinted at anything this good; and a fulfilment in the sense that he has spared nothing with this work—there is nothing missing, lacking, insufficient. All you other wannabes, you're on notice: the bar has just been raised."
-- Peter Chambers

08. Portishead - Third [Mercury]

"Third is so dense yet humanely touching, so diverse yet consistent, so remote yet profound, so vaguely cold yet keenly warm it goes beyond any generic conventions and expectations. Portishead doesn't do musical genre: it only does music. Nothing more, and nothing less. How often can you say that about any contemporary producers or so-called artists?"
-- Stéphane Girard

07. Lindstrøm - Where You Go I Go Too [Smalltown Supersound]

"Even for cosmic, with its inherent tendency for hubris, Lindstrøm's ambition is dizzying. The three tracks on Where You Go clock in at 28:58, 10:11, and 15:58, allowing him to 'develop different themes and let them evolve.' But despite appearances, Lindstrøm doesn't stray too far from his comfort zone of melody-based music. And as it turns out, that's a good thing."
-- Daniel Bates

06. Lee Jones - Electronic Frank [Aus Music]

"What's surprising about Electronic Frank is how low-key it is: There are few obvious peaks. But hidden beneath the veil of subtlety, these tracks conceal a wealth of charms, new textures that unfold with every listen. Like the red-striped zebra on the cover, the album's songs are delicate confections, wonderfully crafted and hard to dislike."
-- Robin Wilks

05. The Mole - As High as the Sky [Wagon Repair]

"Rarely has an American dance music LP been so in touch with its oft-forgotten house and underground disco past while sounding so current. The admiration for genre luminaries Frankie Knuckles, Kevin Saunderson or even Morgan Geist is no mere redundancy, though: You can hear real and brilliant bedroom craftsmanship all over these ten cuts."
-- Stéphane Girard

04. Hercules & Love Affair - Hercules & Love Affair [DFA Records]

"Rarely has an American dance music LP been so in touch with its oft-forgotten house and underground disco past while sounding so current. The admiration for genre luminaries Frankie Knuckles, Kevin Saunderson or even Morgan Geist is no mere redundancy, though: You can hear real and brilliant bedroom craftsmanship all over these ten cuts."
-- Stéphane Girard

03. Flying Lotus - Los Angeles [Warp Records]

"The cover of Flying Lotus's Los Angeles will remind most viewers of Massive Attack's Mezzanine. The image perfectly captures the complicated, compelling and otherworldly sound contained within. Steven Ellison's second full-length comes together from all directions at once, a beautiful mess of contradictions, sacred thoughts and visual sounds."
-- Chris Mann

02. Move D & Benjamin Brunn - Songs from the Beehive [Smallville Records]

"David Moufang's work as Move D is geometric. Benjamin Brunn's sound signature, meanwhile, is closer to fluid mechanics. Together these two approaches harmonise wonderfully, with Moufang's structures providing solid shapes for Brunn's melodic whirlpools and rhythmic glidings to unwind through: D builds the beehive, Brunn makes the honey."
-- Peter Chambers

01. Shed - Shedding the Past [Ostgut Ton]

"Shedding is an album that harkens back to its influences for the sake of progress rather than nostalgia. Over the course of these eleven tracks, Shed paints a stark landscape, glistening with steely hues of early techno and forming something sleek, jagged and as he puts it, 'full of energy and vigor.' Much like Berghain/Panorama Bar and its illustrious cast of resident DJs, Shed perpetuates the visceral excitement of old school rave by ceaselessly presenting the listener with something cryptic, physical and modern."
-- Will Lynch


Top 100 DJs of 2008

100. Skream

99. Petre Inspirescu

98. Justin Martin

97. Audiofly

96. Pan-Pot

95. Extrawelt

94. Todd Terje

93. Rhadoo

92. Dominik Eulberg

91. Eric Prydz

90. Tim Sweeney

89. Agoria

88. Tiefschwarz

87. Nic Fanciulli

86. Andrew Weatherall

85. Nick Warren

84. Paul Kalkbrenner

83. Derrick May

82. Minilogue

81. Derrick Carter

80. Greg Wilson

79. Satoshi Tomiie

78. Sascha Funke

77. Daniel Bell

76. Jus-Ed

75. Stefan Goldmann

74. Jamie Jones

73. Jimpster

72. Paul Van Dyk

71. Ryan Elliott

70. Alex Under

69. Francois K

68. Zip

67. Appleblim

66. Mathias Kaden

65. Tiesto

64. Solomun

63. Matthias Tanzmann

62. Jeff Mills

61. Sebo K

60. Troy Pierce

59. Ben Watt

58. Danny Tenaglia

57. Dave Clarke

56. Seth Troxler

55. Prins Thomas

54. Donato Dozzy

53. Prosumer

52. Josh Wink

51. Anja Schneider

50. Onur Özer

49. Wighnomy Brothers

48. DJ Koze

47. Ewan Pearson

46. Ivan Smagghe

45. Craig Richards

44. Boys Noize

43. Theo Parrish

42. 2 Many DJs

41. Michael Mayer

40. Ben Klock

39. Lawrence

38. Aeroplane

37. Damian Lazarus

36. Armin Van Buuren

35. Joris Voorn

34. Carl Cox

33. Claude VonStroke

32. Ellen Allien

31. M.A.N.D.Y.

30. Steve Lawler

29. Marco Carola

28. Steve Bug

27. Âme

26. Erol Alkan

25. Cassy

24. James Zabiela

23. Move D

22. Raresh

21. Hernan Cattaneo

20. Carl Craig

He might have one of the best poker faces in dance music while he's playing, but Carl Craig sure seems to excite those he plays for. Chalk that up to a recent move to Serato, which has seen his mixing become tighter than ever before, and—of course—his stash of unreleased edits of his own material that always seem to nudge his sets to an even higher level.

19. Radio Slave

Forgive Matt Edwards for charting what seems like only his label's releases. He can't help that so few other imprints specialize in the unique brand of pulsing techno that has mesmerized dance floors around the world. A true minimalist, Edwards is one of the few DJs nowadays that believes in the power of the sensuously lengthy mix, exploiting the power of dance music's hypnotic potential to its fullest.

18. Adam Beyer

If you go to see Adam Beyer, you know exactly what you're going to get: Unremitting techno, all night long. The beauty of Beyer, though? Despite the consistent BPM range and sound palette, he somehow makes the tracks that he plays sound shiny and new, as though it was the first time you'd ever heard a 4/4 beat. You may have heard a kick drum before, but you haven't heard one quite the way that Beyer can transform it.

17. Loco Dice

Loco Dice's hip-hop background is crucial to his appeal behind the decks. Unlike many of his fellow DJs, you can feel his personality push through in the percussive rhythms that he likes so much. Crow all you want about Dice being only as good as his production partner Martin Buttrich in the studio, those who have seen him DJ in person know that only Dice could produce music with such panache.

16. Efdemin

Is Phillip Sollmann a deep house DJ trapped in a minimal techno DJ's body? Maybe so, but once you get over the initial shock of this melancholic producer playing such physical cuts, you've given into the jacking impulse enough to realize that Efdemin's productions and his favorite tracks to spin are both deeply emotional. One's just a bit better for partying—something that Sollmann knows well.

15. James Holden

Reports were most definitely mixed about James Holden as a DJ just five short years ago. But where the Border Community head's unique track selection seemed to lead to sets pockmarked by unsteady mixing and awkward dance floor moments, nowadays Holden is comfortable and assured behind the decks, delivering smoothly flowing performances that make his entertaining genre-mashing sound effortless.

14. Matthew Dear

Matthew Dear may not be the most technically adept DJ nor the deepest digger. Nope, Dear's talent lies in that indefinable region known as charisma. He imbues his sets with the swagger that he brings to the stage as the frontman for his Big Hands project and takes the crowd along for the ride. In an era when so many jocks sound the same, that's a rare treat indeed.

13. Danny Howells

Danny Howells may want to get back to his nursing career, but it's doubtful that dance fans will allow him to do so in peace. 2008 was yet another banner year for Howells, whether it be in his continued side career as an '80s DJ or proving that longer sets are indeed better by moving through genres like a hip-hop DJ might—as quickly and as smoothly as humanly possible.

12. Dubfire

How do you quash criticism that you've made yet another cash-grab by going to the genre du jour after years in the commercial dance scene? Hard work. And that's exactly what Ali Shirazinia excels in, taking his stunning string of productions to the masses for sets that are punishing exercises in the power of true power of minimal techno. Not bad for a man who once helped produce a song called "Sexy Dance," eh?

11. Marcel Dettmann

Ask any techno fan about Berlin's Berghain, and the first DJ that springs to their lips will be Marcel Dettmann. His streamlined, muscular style of techno embodies the spirit of the echoing, industrial space: music that you can surrender yourself to, losing all sense of time and place. As anyone who has witnessed one of his thunderous sets will attest, Dettmann is a modern master of rhythmic escapism.

10. Lee Burridge

Lee Burridge actually looks like he's having fun when he's DJing. And while that shouldn't be a rare thing, as anyone who has been raving can tell you, it most definitely is. That enthusiasm rubs off on nearly everyone who ventures through the door at a Burridge gig, but most especially at his celebrated Get Weird parties where anything goes—six-foot lobsters included. As his beloved recent RA podcast proves, whether it be in mixing upbeat tech house or moody, slow groovers, Burridge has graduated from being one of the NuBreed to become one of the top DJs in the world.

09. Magda

Whether she's doing one of her loopy minimal techno sets or playing with Serato Scratch, Magda has an undeniable connection with the crowd. We're not sure exactly what she did during her ten weeks of silence, but judging by the DJ sets she dropped over the past 12 months, we tend to think it was time well-spent. With gigs as far afield as Peru, Japan and the Dominican Republic, along with Minus label head Richie Hawtin, she continued to spread the gospel of minimal techno to the world—even despite a stolen laptop—as well as offering up a surprising variety of sounds that hinted at interesting avenues that she may well explore in 2009.

08. Dixon

Steffen Berkhahn, or Dixon as you most probably know him, has come a long way since helping found the Innervisions imprint in 2005. Sure, he's been DJing for over 15 years now, but the worldwide success of the label has brought him legions of new fans that have cottoned on to his smooth deep house grooves. His access to a raft of unreleased Innervisions material certainly helps his cause—his DJ gigs are one of the only places that you'll get to hear Henrik Schwarz's sublime reworks of Omar and Bill Withers.

07. Laurent Garnier

There's a joke that goes around certain circles that no matter what release is sent out to DJs and journalists, Laurent Garnier's name is there in lights, claiming "full support!" If you listen to a Garnier set, though, you'll soon begin to believe it. The French jock spans genres just about as well as anyone DJ alive, making treks from the outer reaches of deep house to dubstep to drum & bass and back again in fewer steps than you can imagine. Garnier's range is broad, and it's this open-eared approach that has kept him relevant over the course of his 20+ year career behind the decks.

06. Sven Väth

What was Sven Väth doing championing Johnny D, Pigon and SIS in 2008? Staying improbably and impressively relevant, that's what. Aside from hosting one of the most successful parties on Ibiza and continuing to curate a forward-thinking lineup at his Frankfurt club, Väth continued in 2008 to do what he does best: Namely, bringing underground sounds to the masses in an entertaining and convincing way. That Väth is well over 40 and still remains dedicated to blowing up the newest trends is good news for any up-and-coming producer who still wants to make it in the music biz. Respect, as they say, is due.

05. Sasha

2008's Invol2ver saw Sasha remixing some of his favorite recent tunes into a continuous mix. It's an idealized version of his vaunted DJ sets, which see him doing the same on the fly in the darkness of the club. In that context, Sasha hits upon another ideal: Even when he plays the same tunes, no set is alike. And just about anything can happen. For a DJ of such repute to be willing to play without a net at this stage in his career is admirable. For him to do it so well? That makes him one of the top DJs of 2008.

04. John Digweed

A good DJ plays records, a great DJ makes those records sound an extension of the DJ playing them. John Digweed is a great DJ—a performer that has managed to stay relevant despite the progressive house backlash by smoothly moving into the world of minimal and picking out the records that he could match with his own sound—and the progressive house that he still champions. It's no mean feat: Plenty of lesser jocks have fallen by the wayside when their genre of choice falls out of favour. It's to Digweed's credit that he hasn't—and he sounds all the better for it.

03. Luciano

Many have complained that Luciano plays the same records over and over in his DJ sets. The thing that those people seem to forget? They're damn good records. Sure, Luciano may not have reached too far into his box in 2008, but it's a set that has resonated with many. And why not? Luciano effortlessly takes in the floppy funk of his Cadenza label, the softcore romanticism of M83 and the chattering naturalism of sampled folk singers from around the world. In a genre where cold, mechanical mixing is often valued above all else, Luciano's DJing feels defiantly alive and wondrously human.

02. Richie Hawtin

Say what you will about Richie Hawtin, but remember this much: There are few other DJs in the world with the cojones to even attempt to push things forward in the manner that the Minus head has done, let alone ones that have been in the game for as long as he has. The fact that debate rages about whether what Hawtin does is DJing at all anymore is a testament to his immense (musical and marketing) skill, and it also ensures that he will continue to be relevant for years to come.

01. Ricardo Villalobos

In an age where we can find out the name of our favorite DJ's pet parakeet, Ricardo Villalobos is a rare breed: A superstar DJ that we still know precious little about. Sure, tiny bits of information leak out every time that he grants a rare interview, but it's been a long time since we've had someone so famous remain such a mystery. Perhaps that's one reason that we love him: Forced to focus on the wondrous music he selects (and makes), we inevitably cast him in the role we want him to play. Floor filler? Undoubtedly. At his late 2008 gig at Fabric, you could barely step into the main room at 7 AM. Futurist? There's no other DJ making massive crowds dance to such defiantly strange house music. Romantic? Of course! Who else would play heartbreaking folk songs from Chile in the middle of his sets? The best DJ in the world in 2008? Yep, that too.
Tech-House Music
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PostWysłany: 22-12-2008 15:20    Temat postu: Odpowiedz z cytatem

A linki gdzie?
ps. lubie takie zestawienia, można nadrobić to czego się nie ogarnęło w ciągu roku.
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guarana resort

Dołączył: 24 Mar 2004
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PostWysłany: 22-12-2008 22:26    Temat postu: Odpowiedz z cytatem

fajnie sie czyta to co RA podsumowywuje.
przy okazji mozna sie przekonac ze potrafia docenic prawdziwe talnety i faktycznie ciekawe, niebanalne kompozycje i muzykow. i odnalezc troche wiary w to ze trezba isc wlasna sciezka nieprzejmujac sie tym co ludzie powiedza - RA to doceni
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PostWysłany: 23-12-2008 11:12    Temat postu: Odpowiedz z cytatem

Ja nie wierze w żadne zestawienia DJs itp. ale ich ranking albumów, kompilacji i remiksów jest konkret (z resztą ranking tracków też).

Jeśli chodzi o kompilacje to polecam:
- 17. Matthew Dear - Body Language Vol. 7 [Get Physical Music]
- 13. Sascha Funke - Watergate 02 [Watergate]
- 12. Wighnomy Brothers - Metawuffmischfelge [Freude Am Tanzen] ...dziwne, że tak "nisko" w zestawieniu
- 02. Efdemin - Carry On, Pretend We're Not in the Room [Curle Recordings]

- 12. Deadbeat - Roots & Wires [Wagon Repair]
- 09. Bruno Pronsato - Why Can't We Be Like Us? [Hello? Repeat]
- 05. The Mole - As High as the Sky [Wagon Repair]
- 03. Flying Lotus - Los Angeles [Warp Records]

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PostWysłany: 24-12-2008 17:22    Temat postu: Odpowiedz z cytatem

Rysiek na pierwszym miejscu...

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PostWysłany: 01-01-2009 22:39    Temat postu: Re: Podsumowanie roku 2008 Resident Advisor Odpowiedz z cytatem

Galek napisał:

The machines Daniel Bell surrounded himself with were already obsolete in the early '90s when he first created his trademark minimal techno tracks, but the sounds they made on a warm spring night earlier this year still sounded fresh. With the TR-909 front and center, his funky drum programming and razor sharp arrangements rocked the bowl at the main stage in Hart Plaza at Movement 08. Old school techno heads and young ravers alike jacked their bodies wildly to the relentlessly pounding kick drum and quirky synth lines of classics like "Baby Judy and "Phreek," but it was when the screams of "Can You Feel It?" echoed across the concrete that the crowd's ecstatic response affirmed that they did indeed feel it. DBX live proved that Bell remains techno's greatest reducer.
-- Thomas D. Cox


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