Chris Fortier is hangin around as long as the moment exists (oops there it went)

Chris Fortier contacted me a few months ago to let me know about a series of EPs that he and Australia's EQ Records (home of the Balance series) were releasing this year based on his 2007 album As Long As The Moment Exists. I liked that album, it was way more interesting than others like it, but I also found some tracks a little too proggy for my tastes and I felt that especially these tracks were in dire need of remixing to help correct what I considered missteps. Anyway, despite any hidden misgivings I may have harbored about the new project I was mostly interested in learning more about the ambitious undertaking based on the strong flow of top notch tracks that Fortier's Fade imprint has been putting out. In my opinion, most of the label's new releases have had staying power so a series of remixes is no doubt gonna get my undivided attention.


Chris Fortier @ Pacha_NYC part 1 (September 19, 2008).mp3

Chris Fortier @ Pacha_NYC part 2 (September 19, 2008).mp3

Chris Fortier @ Pacha_NYC part 3 (September 19, 2008).mp3

So far the first three EPs have been more tech than trance-which is great since the summer has been littered with ever so much shitty trance passing it self off as techno. Most of the remixes work-whether they are radical re-working or stick to the original templates more closely, and best of all there are few clunkers in the bunch- a rarity in the download age where quantity has vanquished quality. Some remixes such as those by old veteran Ed Davenport or up & comers like Coalition of the Killing deconstruct the material so completely that not only is it a great new track but also had me going back to appreciate the original version. Others in ther series go for the dancefloor in a variety of the standard techno guises from minimal to housey and you can find a lot of them on here to varying degrees of taste. I think the idea here is a little something for everybody and a "best of" collection on CD when the whole project is complete. How egalitarian....

It seems clear to me now, especially after chatting with Fortier on the phone, that he is treating this new release as a showcase for his own label and sound. I've found little difference in the new EPs on EQ and most of the recent output coming from Fade. Lucky for us that the guy honed his A&R skills to a science running the Balance record pool with Jimmy Van M because usually these things just devolve into your typical lowest common demoninator pap. Even though Fortier is no longer invoved with the pool you can hear the limitless expanses of his tastes in the remixers he chose for these EPs in addition to the artists he presents on Fade and that's what it takes to keep an ongoing series from tanking.

I can appreciate Chris Fortier's focused vision of his artistic output and his sound is slowly catching on. Mostly what I hear is young bucks like Adultnapper pretty much stealing outright from the guy or European artists like Argy or Mark Knight doing essentially the same thing as Fortier to larger crowds and buying audiences. Based on that, what I found most interesting in my conversation were Fortier, as an American artist (i.e. "the underdog"), his thoughts on the US market's secondary nature in dance music despite our huge population. Beyond the obvious thoughts of geographic and population sizse he touched on some variables that I had never considered like the lack of a nationally syndicated radio show reaching a huge audience such Pete Tong's Essential show in the UK as well as the lack of a signature club indicative of a sound or movement which every country in Europe already has and has for decades Whether electronic dance music in the US will ever be pop ready complete with a cheesy douchebag like Tong as spokesperson does see, unlikely at this time Fortier did point out that at one time New York superclub Twilo was a US club comparable with The End, Fabric, or DC10- capable of breaking new records and championing new movements. Fortier believed that era in American dance music had passed and professed that he was no savior in terms of returning the US market to any sort of commercial viability saying the problem was too complex and filled with too many variables for any one person to solve. Besides the man has been trying hard to uncomplicate his life so he can focus more on his own releases and artistic output.

Well that's it for now, I do hope to have a follow-up about the big strides the Fade imprint has been making with some daring releases in 2008 and will definitely have monthly reviews of the ongoing As Long remix series in my regular singles round-up series. Maybe I can coax a mix of some sort from the dude as well. I'll keep you posted....

*the first hour of the mix was broadcast on a German radio program that Fortier appeared on.

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