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Album Review

Like Andrew Butler's Sidetracked mix for the Renaissance label, the Hercules & Love Affair leader's addition to !K7's DJ-Kicks series is a 14-track set that spans a few decades and contains selections from heroes, contemporaries, collaborators, and himself. This one doesn't range quite as far back — the earliest cuts are from the late '80s, rather than the late '70s and early '80s — so it's a little more fluid in sound. Victor Simonelli is behind three of the tracks, all of which are highlights: Solution's scuffed, dubby piano-house number "Feels So Right," Cloud Nine's Surface-sampling and therefore relatively atmospheric "Do You Want Me," and the dub mix of Z.A.M.'s tribal classic "Africa Freedom." A couple standouts are among the newer inclusions: In Flagranti's "Magojiro," featuring a wickedly warped bassline, and Haze Factory's "A Bit of Redemption," akin to Larry Heard's "Washing Machine" with dizzying bass probes decked out in bright keyboard stabs and smacking snares. The wealth of material from the late '80s and early '90s recalls a period when producers used scads of samples, when contemporary house and rap was just as fair game as older funk, soul, and disco. Producers either sampled for the sake of mere decoration, as heard in the bits of Blondie and Kraftwerk that speck Fierce Ruling Diva's "Allemaal, Allemaal!," or they went to town, exemplified by the brilliantly fabricated call-and-response pile-up that is Rhythm Mode:D's "Can You Feel It" (including Isaac Hayes' "Theme from Shaft," a snippet of Ronald Reagan swiped from a Streetwise 12", a mimicking of the bassline from the Grease soundtrack's "Summer Nights," etc.). The mixing is effective and purposeful — mostly blends of the non-flashy variety with a handful of abrupt but well-executed cuts. Thoroughly enjoyable and high in replay value, this will be most valuable for younger listeners for whom H&LA functioned as a point of entry into house music.

Customer Reviews

Disappointed

Purchased based on the strength of their self-titled debut, which I really enjoyed. This sounds dull and dated, nothing like what I expected. I regret purchasing this album.

Biography

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '00s

The producer behind Hercules & Love Affair, Andrew Butler, began DJing at a leather bar as a teen in his native Denver. After a move to New York, he became further immersed in club culture as a party promoter and began to make his own music. Butler's first 12" for the DFA label, 2007's "Classique"/"Roar" — a co-production with Tim Goldsworthy — featured vocals from close associate Kim Ann Foxman and friend Antony Hegarty, bearing his deep affinity for electro-disco and early Chicago...
Full bio
DJ-Kicks, Hercules and Love Affair
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Customer Ratings

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