Ashley Casselle

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On this double mix collection, up and coming U.K. progressive DJ Ashley Casselle mixes together a wide array of rare and unreleased selections from the Automatic Records vaults. Included in these slabs of vinyl are mainstays Cass & Slide, Astroglyde, and Filter Tip, all of whom appear repeatedly throughout the compilation. Disc one explores the more experimental leanings of today's progressive knob twiddlers. It is a newfound freedom to rut around in the breakdown, digging up dirty slithering sounds that would have been far too ugly in the previous days of trance. Unfortunately, progressive's parenting sound is still overwhelming when the beat kicks back in. The stiff Euro-trance rhythm of a million extended mixes still chugs along in its 130-bpm locked groove. Selections like Dallas Kiss' "Revelation" and Electric Tease' "Sizzler" are even holding onto the same preset synth stabs and arpeggios used by their forefathers. Progressive has certainly made inroads to a place occupied by more sonically novel concepts, but as long as it hangs on to its well-worn past, it will remain the stuff of ridicule. Can we please have a new dance beat!?

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