DJ Dan

Beats 4 Freaks

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Hailing from the California's West Coast, DJ Dan releases his second mix album, Beats 4 Freaks, with uncomplicated, cheerful success. This time he sounds unique in respect to other more high-profile British DJ heavyweights as well as his own lagging American peers. Indeed, Beats 4 Freaks works primarily because of how undemanding it all comes across. The early track of DJ Technique's "My Technique" sounds like Fatboy Slim's "Rockafeller Skank" if it hung out at vintage discos instead of Brighton's big beat parties (probably a good thing), while the double-whammy of Groove Zone's "Eisbaer" also rocks along in almost similar surf guitar surroundings. Even the "Chemical Brothers meets C+C Music Factory" texture of "Walking Saw" by Patrick Lindsey and Coby Johnson (actually pretty accurate) shimmies with quite unabashed high spirits. The primary aspect going for DJ Dan's mixing style is that he never seems to get too wrapped up into genre posturing. There's no strict adherence to hardcore-house, no teary-eyed crescents of trance, and no pummeling of big beat "quirky" samples. It's more or less a house mix with a lot of playful high-hats. The fact that this mix also lacks the overexposed migraine-creator "Needle Damage (That Zipper Track)" does nothing but help the experience, too. Which is why if DJ Dan could be compared to any A-list "superstar DJ," it would probably have to be Carl Cox in his more Latin-based, funky moods. This simpler approach works. Beats 4 Freaks' jocular face may feel a tad workmanlike at times, but its laissez-faire mixing style should appease most discerning dance followers looking for just a harmless, good time.

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