The Jackathon makes a bit of a poor first impression. Starting with an intro in the form of Derrick Carter telling us Heidi is bringing us something "you ain't never heard before” she then drops into Soul Clap's 'Incoming Bitch (Get Low)'. A problem for me on two counts - the intro smacks of self-indulgence from a DJ who doesn't have the reputation to permit it and 'Incoming Bitch' is a pretty terrible track from a usually dependable outfit - it's tasteless, two-dimensional and the combination of the vocal and high pitched squeals is frankly irritating.
It took me a while to get past this but I'm pretty glad I did - much of what follows is great. 'What The Funk' by Solomon is tasteful, minimal and, yes, subtly jacking house music in all the right ways. It feels old and new at the same time. DJ T. proves he still has something to offer on the drum-heavy dark vibes of 'High'. Featuring vocals from Nick Mauer, it gradually builds into a sweatbox of a track, a tribute to being lost inside the drugs and the music.
Juan Maclean seems to be on some sort of mission - following on from his excellent turn on DJ Kicks where he turned in a fantastic straight up house mix he helps Heidi do the same here with the inclusion of 'Love In Tatters'. It may not be rocket science but it's done very well - straight up head music, perfect for lovers of house.
Actor One delivers a heavy, dubby number on 'March Violets' that keeps things minimal and simple, shining all the brighter for it. The mix closes with Steve Bug's 'Jack is Back' followed by an outro by Derrick. Sadly this feels slightly anti-climatic - Bug's track is fine enough but it doesn't feel like an 'end' and the outro is not much better than the intro. The result feels like the warm-up DJ handing over to a headliner rather than the end of a night peak.
So a duff start and, to be honest, a few too many mentions of the word (/ name) Jack (yes, we get it, it's about jacking) but other than than Heidi hits her target here. The Jackathon is mostly pitched just right - it's a mix album for lovers of stripped back, simple house music that's perfect for a sunny day or a pre-night out warm-up.