Various Artists: Ame… Mixing

[5 April 2007]

By Mark Szakonyi

Techno mixes done well for many (the author included) are about as close as we’re coming into “that” sound. This is most likely not the goal for dark and deep techno’s newest German princes, Kristian Beyer and Frank Wiedmann. They succeed nonetheless. Following their hit “Rej”, the duo, known as Ame, do the industry standard to any hit—make a polished mix. The strength of Ame… Mixing is its accessibility to non-techno listeners, much like how Erlend Øye straddled electronic, techno and electro on his DJ Kicks release. With skillful mixes of pioneers, such as Coldcut, and to the more obscure, such as, Dutch wave band New Musik, the album isn’t for glow stick weekend superstars. This seamless reinterpretation of broke beat, classic techno, French house with a minimalist German techno tweak is richer than any typical basement club scene.

Chicago composer Laurie Spiegel’s Appalachian Grove” builds into a minimalist mountain just as New Musik’s “24 Hours From Culture - Pt 2” turns on the creepy.  The album succeeds when it doesn’t allow its sound to stay for more than one song, as in the case of Double’s “Woman of the World” that puts in a funky house spin. These solid sets lose their drive later as songs build up to more than four minutes, allowing even Carl Craig’s remix of “This Time” to become a touch tedious. The duo finds its misplaced groove in their own “Nia” making it flawed, but still worth a spin for techno fans and dabblers. Besides, if Henrik Schwarz’s remix of Coldcut’s “Walk a Mile” doesn’t show the genre at is most sophisticated, then pass the pacifier.

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