Sebastian Mullaert

WaWuWe

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AllMusic Review by

Looking at the cover of this two-disc set, which features nine different photos of Sebastian Mullaert posing in a furry black dog costume, you might expect the music to be somewhat weird. And you would not be wrong, though you might be surprised at how strangely soothing and genuinely engaging it is at the same time. The first disc is the more downtempo of the two, and is in fact nearly soporific, featuring gently thumping techno fare from the likes of STL, Darko Esser, Black Jazz Consortium, El_txef_a, and Minilogue (Mullaert's duo project with Marcus Henriksson). But somehow it never gets boring; the sound is consistently gentle, warm, soothing, and richly textured. Although Mullaert DJs in strictly analog mode, without the help of a computer, his beat-matching and segues are absolutely seamless and the disc ends up being strangely uplifting. Disc two, which is also continuously mixed, is funkier and more lively, and also brings more exotic sonic elements to the program: woven through the tracks by Joe Clausell, Cobblestone Jazz, Marlon D., the Black Dog, and Mullaert himself, you'll hear vocal samples that sound like they were recorded all over the Southern Hemisphere, deeply dubwise echoes and reverb effects, slippery syncopations, and lots and lots more of those gently thumping techno beats. Starker and edgier than the first disc, the second is nevertheless equally inviting and involving. Taken together, the whole WaWuWe program is amazingly satisfying.

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