Abe Duque

Tension Music, Vol. 5

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Techno jokester Abe Duque mixed the Tension Music, Vol. 5 compilation of tracks from his New York-based Tension record label. Typical of 1996-era techno, these tracks are mostly loop-based although they have not yet fallen into the late-'90s quagmire of unbridled drum attacks. "Jack You Fly Girl" contains definite elements of Chicago acid house, while Mika Vainio's "Rheuma" dissolves into a near ambient passage. Most notable is John St. James' "Synthecide" with its '80s female vocal that more than hints at the new wave direction Duque and many of his contemporaries would take just a few years later. Duque also displays his diverse musical palette with his own Latin jazz cut, "Manteca," although its inclusion seems almost like an afterthought rather than a sincere part of the mix. But whether or not you eject the disc before the conclusion of the final track, the previous 17 are excellent enough to merit repeat listening.

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