Review: Kevin Saunderson – History Elevate

Label: KMS & Fabric
Catalog#: KMSHISTORYCD01D

Tracklist:

1. Good Love – Luciano’s Good Love Remix
2. Bounce Your Body To The Box – Mike Shannon’s Flashback Mix
3. Just Want Another Chance – John Tejada Remix
4. Big Fun – Simian Mobile Disco Remix
5. Till We Meet Again – Carl Craig Remix
6. The Human Bond – Claude VonStroke Rave Recognize Rave Mix
7. Rock To The Beat – Ben Sims Remix
8. Rock To The Beat – Christian Smith & John Selway Remix
9. Pump The Move – Samuel L Session Remix
10. World Of Deep – Jesse’s Respect To Detroit Remix
11. Bassline – Joris Voorn 07 Remix
12. Bassline – Loco Dice Remix
13. Good Love – Jay Haze Edit
14. Good Life – Mathew Jonson Remix
15. Kevin Saunderson History Elevate – Continuous Mix

Buy here (CD version)

The History Elevate series from KMS has been running since september 2007. Five vinyl releases with remixes of highly regarded producers with a wide range of styles.

Now the previously released tracks together with a new remix by Ben Sims gets compiled on this album release. The tracklist differs a lot from the digital version and the two disc CD version. The digital one has all tracks that are mixed on the second CD released together with it, but the CD version has a different first CD, with remixes by Kevin Saunderson himself. This review is for the digital version.

The first track is Luciano’s remix of Good Love, a remix that resembles both his and Saunderson’s style very well. The remix got pretty good support and was more or less rinsed by Luciano for over 6 months before it was released to the public. That guitar is deadly, and combined with those tripping vocals it’s a track that has a clear direction and flow, combining a slower vibe with high intensity building samples.

As for the second track, the pace gets higher with Shannon’s Flashback, which is a so-not-so raw remix of ‘Bounce Your Body To The Box’ – a clear and probably aware connection to DJ Sneak’s later work with hard hitting drums and a “dirty” and “sexy” bassline. It’s a alright track, but it’s not leaning towards the better one’s on the samplers and the CD.

John Tejada has created a really crafty remix of ‘Just Want Another Chance’. Comparing it side by side to the original, there’s not much that differ, except a synth which makes the track feel more modern and clear. This is really one of the best tracks on this release, a track that has a dark and mesmerising tone combined with a 909 hi-hat and classic Saunderson vocals – paradise!

‘Big Fun’ gets a treatment from Simian Mobile Disco, which brings it into a calmer groove with a sense of respect to the history of the track. Even though the choice of remixer here is a bit strange, SMD pulls it off in a good way. The track is very well produced and is easy to get in to which suits a more mainstream crowd, which I guess is a consious move from both Saunderson and SMD.

Track five is one of the best tracks I’ve heard in ages. Featured on the first History Elevate vinyl, this one really outshines all other remixes on this release. It’s honestly a pretty strange track, it doesn’t really “go” anywhere in the sense that it progresses very slowly and maintains pretty much the same structure from beginning to end – still, the amount of energy Carl Craig has packed into this track is absolutely unbelieveable. I haven’t dared to play this out even once yet.

I read a while back (can’t remember the source, sorry) that Claude VonStroke had trouble getting the feeling that his remix made justice to the original and the sound he was pursuing. He then shifted his focus and created this remix that is leaning towards the french electro sound but still being compatible with techno.

The tracklist has now reached the more traditional techno remixes of Saunderson’s originals, with Ben Sims, Samuel L. Session and Joris Voorn giving their take’s a signature sound and kicking the pace to a higher level. Sim’s has done a tripping and atmospheric track that isn’t as hard as his own releases are. Samuel L. Session brings ‘Pump The Move’ into a more modern structure and progression, featuring his traditional drum programming and style, ‘Pump The Move’ goes into a more clean sound that will suit a lot of people. Voorn’s remix of ‘Bassline’ got a lot of feedback from people that, honestly, love the “modern Detroit” sound, which I in general don’t. The remix is definitely solid and suits the floors very well with it’s high energy and tidy progression, but the track get’s a bit tideous after a few listens and that way it suffers from an early death.

Mathew Jonson’s take on ‘Good Life’ is a very impressive remix, being compatible with a more traditional reduced sound, it’s the most raw track on the CD. Lash snares that penetrates the groove and gives the track space works really well with the rearranged vocals from the original. Clever!

The mix is what you can expect, a very well mixed one featuring all the tracks in the tracklist, nothing special really.

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