Tribal Vision need no introduction. You thought I was going to give them an introduction anyway, didn’t you? Hah. The Lime Light series of compilations doesn’t need an introduction either. And no, I’m not giving them one as well.
What’s on the cards this time is more of a remix compendium, sealing Tribal Vision’s morphing from a prog-psy label into the realms of house. I’m not saying this is a bad thing: we all know DJs who’ve morphed similarly, finding Electribe by way of Iboga, and ordering more from Juno than from Saikosounds.
Vibrasphere’s In Control gets a remix from Chris Micali, and the result is very…er… Micali. The vocal gets pushed to the front while the backing is tight and focussed. Kosmas Epsilon’s mix of Roman Rai’s Shinkanzen has more character and bounce than the original mix on Rai’s Tokyo CD. The melodies are playful and understated, the peaks are effortless, and the electro hooks are just the sort of thing a dancefloor responds to at the moment.
Next up, Eelke Kleijn & Nick Hogendoorn’s Rabbit Whole remixed by Fitalic; I’m not familiar with the original here, but this version is tight and pumping – perhaps too tight and pumping. There are some neat moments, but you get the impression that the track’s moving too fast for its own good and that it would benefit from stopping to smell the roses once in a while.
Peter Gun’s mix of Deep Forest’s Sweet Lullaby will be the main divisive one here. You’ve got an extended sample of the original in the middle of the track, pinned over tight percussion and a warping, wobbling bassline. I guess it depends on how you stand on Gun; personally I’ve always found him a little unidirectional and colourless. Nevertheless if what you want is a track that’ll get an outdoor dancefloor weak at the knees, you’re probably on the right lines.
Sonify’s En Electrique has good movement through it, but a few too many different sounds are all tied in at once. In terms of creating groove it works, but it sounds a little too forced to be truly organic. Likewise Phatjack’s Dirty Tuesday – too much going on, and not enough substance, and Tegma’s remix of Solead’s lay Down is just a mess.
Tegma’s Spooky Mariachi gets remixed by Beauty & The Beat, and it’s one of the best remixes of theirs I’ve heard. It’s confidently different in its sound, it flirts expertly with breaks, it brings in melodies from nowhere and, most importantly of all, has you listening right into it waiting to see what’ll happen next.
Duca are still very much on form with their offering Brooka: I just love this guy’s sound, it’s like the sound of sunshine pouring in through your bedroom window as you chill out in bed with the Brazilian Under 21’s Ladies Netball team. The anatomy of this track is perfect: all gripes about malformed or forced tracks go out the window with this one. As near to perfect as I have heard this season.
Finally Antix’s Downstairs Mix Up is a great example of what Antix are up to at the moment: flecky electro that personally leaves me cold, but I know I’m in a minority here. Most people love it, and that’s what a DJ wants to know about, not the mindless thoughts of some washed-up hack who doesn’t understand the intricacy of what’s going on. Of course.
All in all Lime Light 3 is a slightly awkward compilation. I sort of sense that Tribal Vision are trying to me many different things to many different people in many different scenes. This isn’t a bad thing in itself, but when you’re confronted with an end-product album that’s far less fluid or cohesive than the predecessors in its series, you have to question how strongly you should recommend the album as a purchase.
This may, in fact, hide what the real issue is: Tribal Vision have pioneered what it means to be a “digital label” and this could be where their (and possibly everyone’s) future lies. The case for cherry-picking a handful of WAVs off Beatport is perhaps stronger than the case for buying the whole album. This may be the future, but I still think it’s something of a pity.
[e,bed]Antix – Lime Light Vol. 3[/embed]