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Armand Van Helden – New York: A Mix Odyssey

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating

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Armand Van Helden - New York

Armand Van Helden - New York: A Mix Odyssey

www.TommyBoy.com
This is a much weirder and more joyful mix set than I would have ever expected from Mr. Van Helden, full of great 80s classics intermingled with cutting-edge house music with a slight electro feel. First single “Hear My Name” with its elegant and arch spanking video is getting a lot of attention, but it’s another of the three Van Helden originals which makes you want to drop your drink. “My My My” is built around a vocal sample from Gary “Dream Weaver” Wright himself, and it is one of the best records of the year. It builds and pumps and balances its myriad of elements perfectly, and even more, it feels like it might be a remix of a forgotten 80s gem, which just makes the whole effort fit together beautifully.

While it is a continuously mixed disc, it is not done so in either of the ways most listeners think of when they think of such a thing. Neither completely beatmixed nor artlessly segued, New York: A Mix Odyssey will often re-edit pieces of the songs, creating little abstract sound collages as bridging devices. It works, though it is the kind of approach which could be done badly by someone who doesn’t understand how to structure records. Van Helden’s selections make a statement that we don’t hear nearly enough of these days: good dance music is timeless. A must for your next party.

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