Martinez - Restructured Layers

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  • The chopping-n-dicing aesthetic is nothing new. One could even say that fragmentation has been at the heart of the poetics of deejaying since its very beginning (and this process starts at home: when packing their vinyls to play on a specific night, DJs are already segmenting their own discothèque, thus orienting their creative end result), making it a definitely modern art form. Recent offerings from Richie Hawtin (the ‘DE9’ series), Magda (‘She’s a Dancing Machine’), or even Matthew Dear (‘Fabric 27’, under his Audion moniker) were all done with the intent of blurring the lines between fragments, rejecting the Cubist-like patchwork ethos of regular DJ mixes in favor of impressionistic, more abstract outcomes. Copenhagen-based producer Martin Swanstein, aka Martinez, is adhering to these principles on his second, most recent mix, aptly titled ‘Restructured Layers’. Here, it is the Out of Orbit Recordings back catalogue that is being submitted to the shred then re-assemble method, and it makes for an effective yet frustrating listen. ‘Restuctured Layers’ is composed of bits of Martinez’s own tracks for the label (about half of the stuff here), two pre-Poker Flat Trentemoller’s from 2004 (the still visceral ‘Beta Boy’ and ‘The Forest’), and some obscure producers that might or might not be part of Denmark’s tech house mafia (Ibn Al-Khimyia or Nima Gorji anyone?). Bits and pieces are used to create a whole, restored sentence, and the new results, at times, wouldn’t be out of place in the middle of a Get Physical-sponsored set: bouncy, fresh-sounding, and pristine. That said, what Martinez himself gains in creativity (the album could be seen as Swanstein’s latest one-hour song), individual tracks lose in personality: sampling-recognition makes for a pleasurable experience for the listener, but blend too much and you get bland, indistinguishable baby purée. Thus, what was announced to be a state-of-the-art, all-encompassing DJ mix turns out to be the exact opposite: a producer’s plea for creative narcissism. Martinez’s craft is impressive (the whole thing sounds immaculate and clean, and his mastery of studio trickeries is obvious), yet counterintuitive: the accent ends up being on the actual agent of the process (the DJ himself) instead of the objects it is supposed to enhance (the Out of Orbit stable). This might sound reactionary to some, but the idea of DJ mixes is about finding the right balance between discrete pieces of music and the connective powers of the art of deejaying itself, something even Richie Hawtin at his most experimental (i.e. anal) seems to always be aware of. Here, unfortunately, the very concept of ‘Restructured Layers’ ends up being more successful and engrossing than the actual upshot, which is something that even the most modernistic art forms never fall away from anyway.
  • Tracklist
      1A Phil Stumpf - Borderline 1B Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 1C Robert Babicz - The Cloudpainter 1D Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 2A Phil Stumpf - Borderline 2B Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 2C Robert Babicz - The Cloudpainter 2D Nima Gorji - Determination 2E Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 2F Zvukbroda - Br (Martinez Central Europe Express Mix) 3A Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 3B Nima Gorji - Determination 3C Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 3D Zvukbroda - Br (Martinez Central Europe Express Mix) 3E Martinez - Chordripper 3F Dibaba - Lovetrain (Martinez Triple-O Adjustment) 4A Dibaba - Lovetrain (Martinez Triple-O Adjustment) 4B Zvukbroda - Br (Martinez Central Europe Express Mix) 4C Nima Gorji - Determination 4D Reynold - Abstract Cream 4E Nima Gorji - French Connection (Original Mix) 4F Felix Houzer - Mandolina (Original Mix) 4G Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 4H Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 5A Jussi Pekka - Stereo Interleaved (Martinez Triple-O Adjustment) 5B Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 5C Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 5D Nima Gorji - French Connection (Original Mix) 5E Martinez - Eternal Mind 5F Martinez - Forever Whatever 5G Robert Babicz - The Cloudpainter 5H Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 6A Martinez - Eternal Mind 6B Martinez - Forever Whatever 6C Robert Babicz - The Cloudpainter 6D Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 6E Nima Gorji - Determination 6F Robert Babicz - Cristal Garden 6G Zvukbroda - Br (Martinez Central Europe Express Mix) 6H Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 6I Martinez - Chordripper 6J Mars Fellows - Sin 7A Robert Babicz - The Cloudpainter 7B Nima Gorji - Determination 7C Robert Babicz - Cristal Garden 7D Martinez - Chordripper 7E Mars Fellows - Sin 7F Cantrip People - It Went On For Days 7G Felix Houzer - Mandolina (Original Mix) 7H Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 8A Nima Gorji - Determination 8B Mars Fellows - Sin 8C Robert Babicz - Cristal Garden 8D Cantrip People - It Went On For Days 8E Trentemøller - Beta Boy 8F Martinez - Dark Moon Rising 8G Martinez - Waiting For Now 8H Martinez - Mount Lao 8I Martinez - Snorkel Safari 8J Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 8K Felix Houzer - Mandolina (Original Mix) 9A Martinez - Snorkel Safari 9B Mars Fellows - Sin 9C Martinez - Waiting For Now 9D Ibn Al-Khimiya - Randez-Vous At Night 9E Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 9F Dalminjo - Love Affair (Martinez 4AM Eternal Longue-room Killer Mix) 9G Martinez - Temple Of Dawn 9H Martinez - Minimal Deepness 10A Martinez - Temple of Dawn 10B Martinez - Minimal Deepness 10C Martinez - Snorkel Safari 10D Mars Fellows - Sin 10E Ibn Al-Khimiya - Rendez-Vous At Night 10F Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 10G Felix Houzer - Mandolina (Original Mix) 11A Martinez - Temple Of Dawn 11B Martinez - Snorkel Safari 11C Martinez - Chordripper 11D Nima Gorji - Determination 11E Martinez - Desertsweeper 12A Martinez - Stratocaster 12B Martinez - Temple Of Dawn 12C Nima Gorji - Determination 12D Martinez - Chordripper 12E Martinez - Cloudstepping 12F Trentemøller - The Forest 12G Lowtek Soundsystem - Swamp Thing (Dub) 13A Martinez - Cloudstepping 13B Trentemøller - The Forest 13C Lowtek Soundsystem - Swamp Thing (Dub) 14A Martinez - Cloudstepping 14B Trentemøller - The Forest 14C Ibn Al-Khimiya - Conference Of The Birds 14D Phil Stumpf - Who Told You? 14E Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 15A Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 15B Phil Stumpf - Cut 15C Trentemøller - Beta Boy 15D Nima Gorji - Welt 15E Cantrip People - The Fundamentalist 15F Cantrip People - It Went On For Days 15G Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 16A Phil Stumpf - Cut 16B Trentemøller - Beta Boy 16C Martinez - Like Dust On The Road 16D Cantrip People - It Went On For Days 16E Mars Fellows - Sin 16F Nima Gorji - Determination 16G Robert Babicz - Little Moon 16H Phil Stumpf - Borderline 17A Robert Babicz - Little Moon 17B Cantrip People - It Went On For Days 17C Phil Stumpf - Borderline 17D Nima Gorji - Determination 17E Cantrip People - Fool For A Night 17F Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 17G Zvukbroda - Br (Martinez Central Europe Express Mix) 17H Lowtek Soundsystem - Digital Dirt 17I Felix Houzer - Mandolina (Original Mix) 17J Martinez - Snorkel Safari 18A Phil Stumpf - Borderline (Martinez Triple-O Re-Adjustment) 18B Nima Gorji - Determination 18C Cantrip People - It Went On For Days 18D Martinez - Snorkel Safari 18E Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 18F Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic (Martinez Remix) 18G Martinez - Desert Sweeper 19A Willie Graff & Kyle Errison - Synergetic 19B Phil Stumpf - Borderline