- Maybe it comes from staring out at the same drizzly city that gave us Ian Curtis and Morrissey (Manchester, that is), but there's always been a melancholy streak in Ryan Hunn's music. It's what links the records he makes as Illum Sphere, leaping as they have from the dextrous beatsmithery of 2009's Long Live The Plan EP to the techier textures of Spectre Vex and on to the smoky atmosphere of his debut album, Ghosts Of Then And Now. None of Hunn's music has been downright miserable, but even the acid line on 2012's "H808R" dissolved into something more wistful than sweatily 'aving it.
The thing is, that's not really the vibe you get from Hunn's DJ sets, or at least not the ones he plays as resident at his hometown's Hoya: Hoya night, where he delivers a smorgasbord of hip-hop, disco, jazz, psychedelic rock and much else besides. Yet it is decidedly the mood of Fabriclive 78. While his records might surprise someone who only knew him from his DJing, this mix is probably exactly what you'd expect if you only knew his records.
It also sounds informed by Hoya: Hoya's residency in fabric's Room 2. While the more intimate confines of The Roadhouse in Manchester give those nights more of a house party feeling, here Hunn seems to have selected tunes for fabric's bigger spaces and speakers. Fabriclive 78 begins with the reggae riddims of Soul Syndicate's "Now You're Gone" and Carl Meeks' "Danger," which might make you wish you could actually hear old-school dub at fabric, one of the few clubs with a system that could do justice to all that echoing bass. Elsewhere are sounds more commonly heard out, such as the Kenny Larkin remix of E-Dancer's "Pump The Move," part of a raw and jacking run that also includes Propaganda's "Thought Part 1." Hunn also finds space for curveballs such as Vazz's shoegazey "Cast Reflections," and crafts a wonderful midsection where Legowelt's "On The Tiger Train" bleeds into Kaseem Mosse's wintry ambience and then into Demdike Stare's prismatic "Repository Of Light." The overall atmosphere might be moody, but it's far from monotone.
01. E.M.A.K. – Sein Und Schein
02. Soul Syndicate – Now You’re Gone (Version)
03. Tapes – Dungeness
04. Powell – Fizz
05. Carl Meeks – Danger (Version)
06. (Interlude) E.M.A.K. – Sein Und Schein
07. Musumeci – Harry Batasuna
08. Streetwalker – Ooze
09. Grauzone – Film 2 (33 RPM)
10. Das Ding – H.S.T.A.
11. NGLY – Speechless Tape
12. Osborne – Bout Ready To Jak (TNT’s Acid Mix)
13. Charles Manier – Who Raised These People
14. Legowelt – On The Tiger Train
15. Kassem Mosse – B3 (Workshop 19)
16. Demdike Stare – Repository Of Light
17. James T. Cotton – Oochie Coo
18. E-Dancer – Pump The Move (Kenny Larkin Mix)
19. 2AM/FM – Desolate Cities
20. Propaganda – Thought Part 1
21. Actress – Gershwin
22. Illum Sphere – Bullet
23. Vazz – Cast Reflections
24. Nine Circles – What’s There Left