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DJ DAN - In Stereo

Author: Will Jackson
Sunday, September 2, 2001
Dj Dan's In Stereo is a collection of well mixed house/techno tracks ranging from disco, with a slightly techy edge to tech with a slightly disco-y edge. Everything's filtered from top to bottom and it pounds along quite nicely.

Dj Dan is, as described by his PR, one of America's most sought after dj's - a 'towering figure in the world of dance music, always a step ahead in bringing new musical styles to his fans'. Sure. You may be familiar with his release with Jim Hopkins Loose Caboose sometime ago. Oh, and he comes recommended by "super-dj" Pete Tong.

In Stereo, Dan's first mix CD, opens badly with a weak radio sweep of the tracks to come, but once the hats on Eric Davenport and Smitty's Shake kick in, its pretty much all on. And it stays on.

You know how people are always saying they want djs to take them on a "journey"- Well dj Dan don't. He's happy to simply boogie away in the same, admittedly pretty funky, grove for the entire album. I suspect his live sets are similar.

I wasn't impressed by In Stereo on first listen, so I decided to put it to a little test involving one stereo, one kitchen and one stir-fry. Having cranked my little beast up to 11, I proceeded to potter around the kitchen to see what effect dj Dan would have on my culinary experience. Just as I was chopping my buk choi, my butt was beginning to sway a little, and by the time my chilies were toasting, I even had a little hands in the air action going on. So there you go.

Even though In Stereo's generic house rhythm can be quite enjoyable, in a mindless sort of way, those repetitive half-bar samples really start piss me off after a while. Loius Botella's Go to the Dance just keeps hammering away with this mini-synth line, before finally unleashing what turns out to be a pretty cool little loop - but it just tales so fucking long to get there. This happens a lot. I wish people would buy samplers with more than one second's worth of memory.

All in all it's house. It's very, very house. It's more house than god. The tracks use filters to create a sense of progression because those half-bar samples sure as hell won't. And as if the tracks' original producers hadn't used enough of them, Dan does some sound hacking of his own.

Points of interest- Liquid People's Somebody has a bustin little synth bass line that rocked my world, mainly cause it went for more than one fucking bar. But it morphates into Scanty's Get Next to the Opposite Sex, which sucks. Mainly because it has one of the world's more hideous vocal sample's. How could anyone produce a house track that exclusively endorses heterosexual sex- Isn't that basically alienating 80 per cent of your audience-

Dan the Man actually does make one contribution to the album, his soon-to-be-released track Get Up, which is, well...pretty much the same as the rest of the album. It has a vocal snatch, a little half bar melody line, a straight up house rhythm and is filtered to the shit house. There, I've just pretty much described every track on the record.

I actually quite like this album, almost in spite of myself. It's kinda generic, but that's not necessarily such a bad thing. If you actually really get off on house music then, logically, this release should make you cream your Levis.

In Stereo is out now through Kinetic