This is house music, Star 69 style. Both discs are packed with floor-throbbing New York house beats and will keep the bass-bins booming. The Roxy in New York City currently seems to be one of the few venues providing big room and epic house sets for NYC nightlife, and Live@Roxy 3 attempts to take a snapshot (over 120 minutes) of the club atmosphere; you get the vocals, but an equal amount of dubs. DJ/Remixer Peter Rauhofer, once a teen clerk in a Viennese record store- now the owner/founder of Star 69 Records label in NYC, has already had an amazing career, starting in 92 with Let Me Be your Underwear and most recently with Appreciate Me and HeartAttack. Living up to his DJ rep, he mixes Roxy3 like a club set- it's dark, hard, and dubby, with big vocals every once in a while- the opposite of a quick-mixed dance sampler with 2 and 3 minute edits. Live@Roxy 3 listens more like an authentic club sound. Overall, the mixes are rock solid and do proud the house groove; Rauhofers electronic style is imprinted all over- clean, tight, hard-hitting... the authority of the 4/4 kick anchoring it all down. Theres plenty of top notch, non-overplayed tribal cuts and some choice Peter mixes worked in- Time, HeartAttack and
CD1 begins with a pills track from William Umana, Enlightenment, the sample play between one and two creating a hypnotic word play and, as more vocals urge to use as directed over the building drums, the house feeling comes into effect. Next. a restrained dub from Boris and Beck introduce some circuit-styled synth stabs, establishing a feeling of anticipation as it reaches into the blistering drum track by French Sleaze- Percussive Sensation. And now comes Madonna, whose vocals read like a blog entry throughout Peters solid production with Nobody Knows Me. Things get harder, building with Erik Reyes Lets Do It and rolling into a dubby excursion laced with the classic woman beat on their men / men beat on the drum sample. Theres a particularly breathless mix between Park Palladium and The Tribal Gang, nodding to the idea that less can be more.
CD 2 opens with the distinctive, funky Detroit/Chicago sound of Cajmere and their lets get started track Midnight. From here, the darker New York house vibe emerges. A few tracks in, a campy vocal peeks out from the dubby grooves (Angelo Kortez Scandalous) and then settles back into a wall of New York beats spiced with the occasional sample/vocal. Rauhofer uses dubs to good effect in setting up and letting the vocal tracks breathe in the mix; half the tracks on CD are dubs, the other half vocals. Midway through the mix, Peter drops Jahkey Bs massive track, Heartattack then seamlessly blends in another dub-oriented track from Assaf Amdursky, Tribal Scream. Other standouts on Disc 2 are Madonnas Nothing Fails and Murks Time.
The mix CD set gets high marks for style, track selection and mixing. Its a groove-out with a few sing-a-longs, and will please you again and again with its replay value. Peter and the crew at Star 69 deserve congratulations on consistently releasing great material, and especially for making it so available to the public.