Dixon, “Body Language Vol. 4” [Get Physical]
Berlin DJ/producer and Innervisions co-owner Dixon (aka Steffen Berkhahn) is the fourth producer to helm Get Physical’s Body Language mix series and the first not to have a release with the label. It makes sense, then, that Dixon’s contribution is also the most likely to catch the ear of the crossover crowd occasionally meandering into dance music territory, getting the hired guns to recruit. While many of his selections are regularly caned during his DJ sets, a few (Thom Yorke, Chromatics) seem aimed at this elusive group. Fortunately, their inclusion doesn’t detract from the mix; it’s more like Dixon is playing tunes for new friends whose comfort levels he doesn’t want to test just yet. After a brief strings-and-things intro by Timo Maas, listeners are treated to the obscuro pop of Chromatics’ “In the City” and Owusu & Hannibal’s “What’s It About,” which infuses Paul Simon-esque songcraft with 21st century soul. Dixon gets to his true passion – house and deep house music – with his laid back funk version of Château Flight’s “Baltringue” done with Innerzone’s pal Henrik Schwarz and Mari Boine’s “Voui Voui Mu” – another Schwarz remix. He also includes some of 2006’s standouts and 2007’s better tracks so far. Stefan Goldmann’s version of It’s “Women In Toilet” clangs sweetly with shuffling repetitions, while Larry Heard’s brilliant acid house b-side “The Sun Can’t Compare” makes way for the mix’s crown jewel: “Where We At” (Part 2) by Dixon, Schwarz and Innerzone co-owners, Âme. Featuring a prophetic sample of techno legend Derrick Carter ruminating about a “never-ending war” and clashing moral values, this soul-stirring tune brings the whole mix together and sneaks in some social commentary. The mix comes to a close with live set staples such as Martin Buttrich’s evocative remix of Tracey Thorn’s “It’s All True” and the brass-house stomp of Herbert’s “Moving Like a Train” remixed by Smith N Hack. Despite a couple tracks which lack the personality of the rest of the selections, the well-mixed Body Language Vol. 4 is a proud moment for Dixon sure to bring him wider exposure – inside and out of dance music culture.
Mari Boine, “Vuoi Vuoi Mu” (Henrik Schwarz remix) [Universal Jazz]
Owusu & Hannibal, “What It’s About” [Ubiquity]
Herbert, “Moving Like a Train” (Smith N’ Hack remix) [Studio !K7]
IT, “Women In Toilet” (Stefan Goldmann Macro version) [Electrochoc]
Dixon is spinning tonight at Ohm in Chicago.