Double Fabric props this week with a look at the next two Fabric albums. First up: Fabric 45 mixed by Omar S.
Less a mix album, more a continuous career retrospective: Fabric 45 takes its cue from Ricardo Villalobos' and Pure Science's sets, featuring no tracks from other artists. An outsider in his own scene (and hometown of Detroit) Omar S has long refused to compromise on quality or delivery and it is from this quest for perfection that the approach for Fabric 45 was derived: in the Omar's opinion these are simply the best tracks in the past few years. A bold statement.
It is always a dangerous path for a mix - it paid dividends in Villalobos' case as the variety in his own work shone through but it is difficult to imagine many artists who would benefit from some variety in this type of setting.
Omar S' disc is an interesting one. Initially dry, if excellently paced, what starts out as a fairly straight forward techno mix soon starts throwing in the curve balls. Whilst the general quality of the techno is great it probably wouldn't be able to sustain BlackPlastic's interest all on its own.
The changes are subtle - So 'U' adds a vocal and jacking, funky acid line, 'Oasis 13 1/2' veers close to house with a simple piano refrain and a skippy garage beat and 'The Maker' is soulful with a deep house female vocal. Best of all, Fabric 45 ends on proper full on house track 'Set Me Out' - it sounds like vintage Masters At Work (yes, before they lost the magic) with soulful male vocals and female BVs backed with a lovely minimal (small 'm') house beat... It really is that good and the fact the tunes are created on all analogue equipment really comes through.
The homegrown variety in this mix lifts it from being just quite good to great, turning it into much more than just another techno mix.
Available at Amazon.co.uk