- Whether you fall for the inevitable local backlash against the tourist-friendly Watergate club, it's certainly assembling some telling promotional clips for both in- and outsiders with this year's mix series. For the second edition, Watergate 02, they've called on resident and hometowner Sascha Funke. Where Onur Özer's Watergate 01 was a strictly minimal affair, Funke's working from a more broadly colored palette far more in line with his own Mango release earlier this year. Though he sifts older tracks like the clubfooted house of Maus & Stolle's "Taxi" and Closer Musik's broad-shouldered "Giganten" into Watergate 02, the mix centers around some of 2008's deft club and home standouts, a well-crafted sequence fit for house parties, lengthy autumn drives or just sweeping up around the home.
Unlike many of 2008's more prominent mixes, Funke limbers Watergate 02 up not via stretches of polyester house or jiggy funk, but with contemplative star-gazing cuts. The fuzzy vision trance of Four Tet's "You Are Here" and Miss Kittin's snowy static take on Ellen Allien's "Alles Sehen" offer a distinctly cozy, almost ambient take on the mix opener. Funke extends a soft invite, a chance to take a look out at the Spree or into whatever seasonal perch open to you. It doesn't last long. With its disorienting hum-cry and chugging beat, Minilogue & KAB's "That's a Nice Way to Give Me Feedback" cuts through with a getaway offer, and the lippy funk of Dave Aju's "Crazy Place" stirs up a small physical revolt of its own.
The black Detroit night in Sten's "More Stash" breaks the mix's warm liquidity, but Funke again chooses a track that's not necessarily designed around its physicality; Sten's playing above the neck as much as below the hip, using its loosely confined tone to highlight how well it plays to solitude too. But its reverberating synths begin to ripple outward and push at the edges of its own claustrophobia, where the insistent disco-funk of the Mole's "Smiling and Running" works to keep you. DJ Koze's "I Want to Sleep" is debilitating house, a dark lullaby to sleeplessness and long empty hours. But it's Tobias Thomas and Superpitcher's mix of Funke's own "Mango" that provides the late centerpiece, spacious and gently propulsive in how it reshapes his favored remake choice.
Though it closes with loose pocket house—Patrice Scott's "Visions of Mantada" and the '94 Acid Jesus remix of Milch's "Housefrau"—for the most part Watergate 02 is child happy, melding emotive techno with some of the year's steamier cardiac fare. Of course, it ain't really comin' from the bedroom: it was recorded live at the club in August heat. But there are as many headplay moments as those that make your legs twitch, and Funke's to be commended for a mix that, for all of its core biggies, is still markedly distinct from the year's other big mixes. That's reason enough to find as many times, places and pretty strangers to settle in with to Watergate 02 with as any I can think of.
01. Nathan Fake - You Are Here (Four Tet Remix)
02. Ellen Allien - Alles Sehen (Miss Kittin Remix)
03. Maus & Stolle - Taxi
04. Zander VT - Get Down
05. Minilogue & KAB - That’s A Nice Way to Give Me Feedback (Wighnomy Brothers Quintenzirkel Remikks)
06. Dave Aju - Crazy Place
07. Sten - More Stash
08. Modal - Boy - Girl Boy Girl
09. The Mole - Smiling and Running
10. Sascha Funke - Mango (Tobias Thomas & Superpitcher Como Mango Remix)
11. DJ Koze - I Want to Sleep
12. Closer Musik - Giganten
13. Patrice Scott - Visions Of Mantada
14. Milch - Housefrau (Acid Jesus' Purer Sex Remix)