It’s been awhile since the Fabric series captured lightning -in-a-bottle, that rare programmed DJ mix that sounds musically refreshing and yet feels totally spontaneous like a live set. Perhaps it has been as far back as Luciano’s installment from last year, who knows? However, San Francisco producer and dirtybird founder Claude VonStroke humbly answers the call from the UK superclub armed with a stack of amazing tracks and a laptop full of Ableton. Personally, I’ve always been on the fence about this guy, not that it has all been his fault but because the farting bass template he created on cuts like “The Whistler” and “Deep Throat” has been ransacked by every joker from here to Bogota calling themselves “EEE-lec-ktro”. These days I can’t help but shudder sometimes when I hear his name. Thanksfully on his new Fabric mix VonStroke stretches out and away from his signature sound and showcases his wide tastes in house music- from the German kling und klong of Robag Whrume to the sheer, but perhaps overused, lushness of Stimming. He also tries to sneak in a few tracks from his own labels-although dirtybird is only mentioned once, on the last track, and it’s by VonStroke himself. Rather the focus here is more on his new techno influenced mothership offshoot- as is the whole disk-with the feeling that here’s a guy getting in touch with his extensive Detroit roots. Sometimes it doesn’t work (the Dinamoe/Clara Moto mash-up and another from Markus Schatz/Catz N Dogz) but overall the results are musically diverse enough for even the finickiest of listeners. Hardly any of the sounds or genres are out of place- as you might expect from an internationally recognized DJ- and all played with supremo confidence with just a dollop of humor. Well played, VonStroke.
Claude VonStroke-Fabric 46 on Resonant Vibes