Stacey Pullen - Balance 28

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  • Balance isn't the most consistent mix series. The compilations have ranged from utterly indispensable (Joris Voorn, James Holden) to utterly forgettable (Danny Tenaglia, Timo Maas). Stacey Pullen, on the other hand, is a very consistent DJ, cleaving closely to the same sleek techno since he emerged as part of Detroit's "second wave" alongside Carl Craig in the early '90s. He's not a prolific producer, but he tours heavily, becoming an ambassador for the purist sound he continues to take around the world. For Balance 28, however, Pullen says he's compiled music "I don't get a chance to play when I'm on the road." But don't expect anything as leftfield as the experimental CD on Magda's Balance 27, or even a selection of the jazz and funk influences that inspired Pullen's 2001 album, Todayisthetomorrowyouwerepromisedyesterday. Both discs here are fully 4/4-driven—albeit at a slightly slower tempo than Pullen's usual pummelling pace—and you have to wonder if he actually plays many clubs where something like Cid Inc.'s nondescript tech house would risk clearing the floor. Indeed, the only part that comes close to a surprise is the closing stretch of the second disc, from Jad & The Ladyboy's Afro-jazz-tinged "Be My Friend" onwards. Even the jerky guitars of Osunlade's "Schavanna" are hardly the sort of risk someone like Theo Parrish might take mid-set. Balance 28 still shows Pullen's mastery at nailing a groove. With The Revenge's loopy disco take on "Dancing In Outer Space" by Atmosfear, Roi Okev's new-school jack track "Run Giorgio Run" and Deetron's remix of Huxley's "I Want You," CD 1 is only slightly looser than what you'd get from Pullen in a club. And if you want a snapshot of him in full-on techno mode, the first part of CD 2—featuring two new Pullen productions and Kevin Saunderson's recent E-Dancer track, "Foundation"—gives it to you in spectacular effect. But the internet is awash in mixes of Pullen doing exactly that, and he claims Balance 28 to be his reaction against streaming sites that "have diminished the quality and validity of the proper mixed compilation." For that to work you generally need to be playing stuff people can't hear anywhere else, whether ultra-rare obscurities or ultra-fresh exclusives. But nothing on Balance 28, save for the mixmaster's own new productions, is all that tricky to find elsewhere. True, he does more with them than many could, but when you're a DJ of Pullen's standing, pushing your first physical compilation for six years, that's still not quite enough.
  • Tracklist
      CD1 01. rEJEKTS - Strung Out In Reno (Marc Ashken Remix) 02. Leman & Dieckmann - Stomp 03. Folic State - Another (NoGo) Zone (Gurwan Remix) 04. DJ Hightech & IZT - Fearless (RaySoo Dxb Mix) 05. Atmosfear - Dancing In Outer Space (The Revenge Rework 1) 06. Miss Mee - Lets walk down (Dub Version) 07. Roi Okev - Run Giorgio Run 08. Cid Inc. - Response 09. rEJEKTS - Skinnfog 10. Digitaria - Little Boy 11. Sobek - Ubomi 12. Toby Dreher feat. Dirty Paul - A Try (Autotune Remix) 13. Huxley - I Want You (Deetron Remix) CD2 01. Anderson Noise - UFO 02. Stacey Pullen - Save Ourselves 03. Stacey Pullen - I’m Coming 04. Peter Gibney - Fine Lines 05. Kevn Saunderson as E-Dancer - Foundation 06. Kevin Over - 2002 07. Hoito - Modern Kush 08. Alex B - Discordant 09. Chris Carrier & Hector Moralez - Disco Remodel 10. Jad & The Ladyboy - Be My Friend 11. Oscar P - Reactions Of You 12. Osunlade - Schavanna 13. Roscius - The Royal Albert Hall (Jona Sul Remix) 14. Tom Ellis - Off On A Tangent 15. Fake Blood - Music Box