- I totally weirded a friend out recently when I put him onto Efdemin's sublime RA podcast. Gobsmacked by his self-titled debut album and seduced by his encompassing, widescreen remixes, my mate was more than a little perplexed when he heard the ballsy Detroit strut of Eddie "Flashin" Fowlkes and the bump-and-grind of Minimal Man welded to a set that wiggled closer to Stacey Pullen than Sven Väth. "He sounds like he should be 250 pound black dude from Detroit," was the only comment my perplexed mate could muster. A few days later, he had tracked down half of the tracks from the mix, including Fowlkes' wacky "Save Message."
The handsomely titled Carry On, Pretend We're Not in the Room, is Efdemin's first mix CD proper and follows on from what his podcast has promised: It's an extraordinary mix that captures the effortless sense of panorama that oozes from an Efdemin set. Curious opener "Watcha Waiting For" almost proposes French bossa nova breakbeat, but its burlesque swagger is reined in with alien sirens and crisp drum pads. Patrice Scott's ingenious "Deep Again" boldly layers cosmic strings over gorgeous piano before launching into the full-tilt, four-to-the-floor assault of Craig Alexander's booming "Soul Revival."
The resurgent Scott Grooves offers his brilliant "Only 500"—a skipping, dub-laden deep house cut that's eons away from his cheesy Parliament edits of the late '90s. From there, Efdemin uses the linear mood of Grooves' cut to turn proceedings into tougher tech territory, via the minimal bounce of Tobias. and the swinging tribal drama of Brothers' Vibe. Stephan Grieder & The Persuader's dusty dub techno cut from '98, "Kaos," is revived here and its fierce shimmy is mated exquisitely to Minilogue's trippy "Doiicie," as close to an anthem as Efdemin gets.
The dream-laden melodies that ripple through Surgeon's mesmerizing "Floorshow" melt into the esoteric flutter and vintage house feel of Efdemin's "America" until the marching tribal techno of Dettmann & Klock's "Blank Scenario" throws a blanket over the mirror ball and hits the strobe. Closer "T'Raenon" by Photek is pure genius; a barely-there, sci-fi house monster that cuts the cord and sends you floating gently and blissfully into the ether, a million miles from the warmth and comfort of where you started.
After all that, whether or not he should be a 250 pound black dude from Detroit seems immaterial. This is an astounding mix from Efdemin, particularly in such a tough medium, and his wide-ranging taste is unleashed expertly over 70 minutes: Carry On is educating, entertaining and essential.
01. The Showroom Recording Series - Watcha Waiting For?
02. Patrice Scott - Deep Again
03. Craig Alexander - Soul Revival
04. Tony Foster - It Is All Around Us
05. Scott Grooves - Only 500
06. Brothers' Vibe - Cuero Para Mi Gente (Altered Vibe Mix)
07. Tobias. - Second to None
08. Stephan Grieder & The Persuader - Kaos
09. Minilogue - Doiicie A
10. Surgeon - Floorshow 1.2
11. Efdemin - America
12. Dettmann & Klock - Blank Scenario
13. Pigon - Kamm
14. Photek - T' Raenon (Version)