- There's an inevitability to Optimo's JD Twitch remixing, re-editing and DJing the catalog of Belgium's premier early-’90s dance label, each representing a slightly different era but with an audible through-line running between them nevertheless. Both R&S Records' early '90s heyday, which helped set the scene for the hardcore and gabber to come while linking with the straighter US and UK house and techno that preceded them, and the latter-day anything-goes DJ extravaganzas of Optimo aim for big crowds but are best loved by initiates; they both present dance music as equally inclusive and knowledgeable.
JD Twitch's ministrations on Optimo Presents In Order to Edit don't add too many new tricks to the R&S catalog; nor do they need to. The swarming hi-hat sound of many of those tracks defines rave's second wave: the buzzing 303s and Hoover noises of Mundo Muzique's "Acid Pandemonium," the glowing pulse of the low end on Autonation's "Sit on the Bass" and the swamping overload of Speedjack's aptly titled "Storm" are instant aural time machines. Updating them to resemble something cooler or more "modern" would miss their banging essence.
Often, though, Twitch does work subtly. He cuts up and stacks the sinuous, snaking lead line of Joey Beltram's "Energy Flash," effectively doubling the riff over itself, letting new air and color into a well-worn classic. He does something similar with the raging snare-and-cymbal crashes that define Mescalinum United's still-astonishing "We Have Arrived," perhaps the foundational gabber track. Where producer Marc Acardipane came up with a rousing, clean doom-march, Twitch makes it over into something cloudier without losing any of the momentum.
And cheekily, he glides "Arrived" into Jam & Spoon's "My First Fantastic F.F." by bridging them with a swipe from the same duo's trance classic "Stella," soft string pads and overripe femme "Hold me . . . love me" reminding us of what a big tent "techno" once was—until, of course, R&S came along and drew lines in the sand between "real" techno and a newer wave that prized pandemonium. Clearly, Twitch himself still does, sometimes: see DHS's roughened-up "House of God," which incorporates serrated spoken snippets on the order of Sleezy D's Chicago Trax touchstone "I've Lost Control."
01. Fatal Error - Fatal Error
02. Spectrum - Spectral/Amplification (Lenny D & Eric Kupper Mixes)
03. Spock Jr. - Ion (Boccaccio Edit)
04. Joey Beltram - Energy Flash
05. Direct - Let It Ride
06. Mental Mayhem - Joey's Riot
07. Joey Beltram - Sub-Bass Experience
08. Mundo Muzique - Acid Pandemonium
09. Autonation - Sit On The Bass
10. Mantrax - Untitled
11. Speedjack - Storm
12. The Mover – Illuminated
13. Mescalinium United - We Have Arrived
14. Jam And Spoon - My First Fantastic Ff
15. Cj Bolland - Horsepower (Remix)
16. Sonic Solution - Bagdad
17. Capricorn - 20hz
18. Dhs - House Of God
19. Mu-Ziq - Phi 700
20. Aphex Twin - Analogue Bubblebath
21. Mundo Muzique - Andromeda
22. Jaydee - Plastic Dreams