Category Archives: dance

Joris Voorn – Global Underground #43: Rotterdam (The Exclusive Originals)

Album cover for Joris Vroon "Global Underground 43 The Exclusive Originals"

When I heard that Joris Voorn mixed a new Global Underground set, I immediately hunted it down. As soon as that first melody opened up, I prepared for an epic release of beats. Other than a bass drone, nothing came. Track two began, and again, no release. While there is a ton of innovation within electronic dance music, the genre… Read more »

Akufen – Fabric 17

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Album cover for Akufen "Fabric 17"

I love experiencing how different DJs navigate the peaks and valleys that are essential to great mixes. The 2004 Fabric set from Akufen (nee Marc Leclair) demonstrates how one creative song choice can shape an entire set. The first few tracks establish a glitchy mood, and the equipment complaints and Joe Walsh references of “Little Tiny 1/8 Inch Jack” cement… Read more »

Loraine James – Reflection

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Album Cover for Loraine James "Reflection"

I sometimes wonder what would happen if reviewers didn’t receive press kits. It’s a question that re-emerges as I read about Loraine James and encounter phrases like “genre-bending IDM” and “paint portraits of Blackness, queerness and loneliness.” I don’t know what genre-bending IDM sounds like. What I hear in Reflection is a thoughtful and emotional record that builds on the… Read more »

Joey and Norman Jay – Good Times with Joey and Norman Jay: Classic Party Tunes from the Good Times Sound System

Album cover for Good Times With Joey and Norman Jay Vol. 1

It’s tough to make a great mix tape. Great mix tapes require knowledge and thoughtfulness and love. You need to dig deep, not only into the crate but into what you know about the person who’ll be listening. The flow of the mix is important, but so is the selection of songs and artists and genres. When you make a… Read more »

Zhu – Dreamland 2021

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Album cover for Zhu "Dreamland 2021"

My taste in electronic dance music runs a bit below the radar. I’ve got nothing against artists like Skrillex or David Guetta, they just don’t speak to me. That’s why I’ve never bothered with Zhu. However, there was a compelling LA Times article about him and anti-AAPI racism, so I decided to check out Dreamland 2021. The album’s fine. It… Read more »

Jayda G – DJ-Kicks

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Album cover for Jayda G "DJ-Kicks"

As Westminster Quarters (you know, the doorbell song) opens Jayda G’s new DJ-Kicks set, I’m taken back to the new Visionist record. While Visionist used the melody to submerge us in a haunted fever dream, Jayda G promises us an uplifting summertime jam filled with sunshine, warm nights, and dance floors filled with sweat and smiles. This record completely delivers… Read more »

Yoshinori Hayashi – Pulse of Defiance

Album cover for "Pulse of Defiance" by Yoshinori Hayashi

Many dance albums take us on a roller coaster of intense peaks followed by chances to catch our breath. Pulse of Defiance instead climbs from an introspective opening to three high-energy closing tracks. It’s a journey that few producers have the confidence or discipline to attempt, and Yoshinori Hayashi nails it. Hayashi also navigates a journey across subgenres. The album… Read more »

Meute – Hey Hey (Dennis Ferrer Rework)

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Video still from Muete "Hey Hey"

Meute is a German marching band that understands the essence of electronic dance music. Their rendition of Dennis Ferrer’s classic “Hey Hey” embodies everything that is wonderful about house, then takes it to the street and celebrates everything that is wonderful about live music in public spaces. Bob noted how the best covers bring the right amount of both the… Read more »

John Tejada – Year of the Living Dead

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John Tejada - Year of the Living Dead album cover

Released: February 26, 2021 Years ago, my friend Kelly and I would listen to music and dance for hours on the roof of his Greenwich Village apartment building. It was a celebration of music and movement and friendship on starry Saturdays when we had no money or cloudy Mondays when the city that never sleeps was sleeping. Looking back, dancing… Read more »

Amelie Lens – Fabric Presents Amelie Lens

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Album cover for Fabric Presents Amelie Lens

Released: November 22, 2019 Amelie Lens’ first mix for Fabric opens with the kind of ebb and flow that makes me love electronic dance music. The ambient soundscape in “Theory of Relativity” drops into a beat that makes your heart rush a little faster, and the retro techno melody of “Limits of Real” builds and evolves and builds and evolves… Read more »