- Anyone familiar with Alan Fitzpatrick's records for Drumcode or his own label, 8 Sided Dice, knows the Londoner can hit hard. But his productions have always had a poise that made them more than dance floor bangers. He's shown a deeper side in recent years, on the Falling Down EP for Hotflush and his contribution to Cocoon Compilation N. That balance is evident in his DJ sets, too, which most often trace graceful arcs from the pulsing through to the pumping and downright pummelling.
That's the path he takes on fabric 87. Following Joseph Capriati's edition last year, Fitzpatrick is the second Drumcode alumnus in just over 12 months to contribute to fabric's mix series. As with the Italian's set, this one features linear mixing that leads up to a lacklustre vocal track—in this case, Fitzpatrick's remix of "Bullets" by Drewxhill. But the way fabric 87 concludes is much different, as Fitzpatrick ducks and weaves between tempos.
After the unsettling pall of Charlotte De Witte's "Weltschmerz (Melodic Theme)" and Radio Slave's remix of Scuba's "All I Think About Is Death," the mix delivers its first big beats via "Zen" by Marcel Fengler. Amidst the pure percussive techno of Roberto's "Triage" and Jimmy Edgar and Truncate's convulsive "Submission," Fitzpatrick wields sledgehammer rhythms with the precision of a rapier, clearing an entryway for the instantly identifiable riff from Audion's "Mouth To Mouth."
Scuba's "Orbital 93 Mix" of that tune appears here, the acid house allusions in the title making it clear that fabric 87 is fixed on dance music's hedonistic past and future alike. As does "Where Haus?" and the Boxia remix of "1992," which revel in the proggier stripes Fitzpatrick displayed on Bedrock anthems like "Reflections." Between those selections is an unexpected but welcome change of pace: the eerie atmosphere of Bjarki's "Windy Cindy" and the breakbeat-laced, sci-fi sound of Markus Suckut's "Untitled #3."
By the 13th track, when things are pushed into the red again by Mike Dehnert's "Meckwiki," Fitzpatrick has already achieved most of what he set out to do here. Recorded in one take, fabric 87 captures the peak-time spirit of fabric's Room 2, and showcases exclusive edits from the DJ and remixes of currently boxfresh tracks like "Lolly Pop" by Reset Robot. So it's a shame that the mix runs out of energy before the end, pulling the knockout blow it should have had.
01. Charlotte De Witte - Weltschmerz (Melodic Theme)
02. Scuba - All I Think About Is Death (Radio Slave Atmos)
03. Marcel Fengler - Zen
04. Roberto - Triage
05. Truncate & Jimmy Edgar - Submission (Truncate Rework)
06. Mike Dehnert - Wokabeat
07. Reset Robot - Lolly Pop (4am Mix)
08. Audion - Mouth To Mouth (Scuba's Orbital 93 Mix)
09. Bjarki - Windy Cindy
10. Markus Suckut - Untitled #3
11. Alan Fitzpatrick - Where Haus?
12. Alan Fitzpatrick - 1992 (Boxia VIP)
13. Mike Dehnert - Meckwiki
14. Monoloc - TrySome
15. Reset Robot - Pressure (Roman Lindau Remix)
16. Psyk - Stigma
17. Alan Fitzpatrick - Eyes Wide Open (Mark Broom Edit)
18. Ilario Alicante - Forward
19. Operator - Flat Rotation Curves
20. 2000 and One - Wrangel Calling
21. Session Restore - Speak Out
22. Alan Fitzpatrick - End Theme
23. Drewxhill - Bullets (Alan Fitzpatrick's Lights Up Remix)