Ewan Pearson

We Are Proud of Our Choices

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    8
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This is Kompakt’s tenth DJ mix and Ewan Pearson's third, following contributions to the Sci.Fi.Hi.Fi and Fabric series. While Pearson would likely be flattered to be told that this disc resembles a hybrid of Michael Mayer's Immer (stern, dramatic; Joy Division) and Triple R's Friends (comparatively brighter and outgoing; New Order), he might also find the description a little limiting. Those mixes were, after all, released eight years ago, and the selections here are up to date and more varied sonically, presented in a manner that condenses a several-hour DJ set into 75 minutes. Yet this disc does have each one of its elder siblings’ charms: a gentle buildup and easy finish, extended trance-like passages, spongy rhythms, seemingly incongruent tracks melded with ease and restraint, almost subliminally tense transitions from menace to bliss, and even some whispered vocals, though the inner-growth monologue on Yukihiro Fukutomi's emotive piano-house track “Open Our Eyes” is a bit much. The set is at its busiest from the 12th through 16th (of 18) tracks, highlighted by Xenia Beliayeva's “Analog Effekt,” released on Systematic but worthy of 240 Volts' uniformly stark and sleek output, and the ecstatic, fully loaded John Talabot mix of Al Usher's “Silverhum.” And then, after B.D.I.'s tracky, wheezing, and very nearly assaultive “City and Industry [World Balloon Dub],” Pearson slyly reverts back to home listening, reviving his long-dormant World of Apples alias to slightly alter Little Dragon's darkly shimmering “Fortune.” Bot’Ox’s “Blue Steel,” friskier but just as placid vocally, closes it out.

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