As many an ill-fated remixer can attest, it's hard not to mess up classic Chicago house, which can be deceptively delicate in all its rickety, ratchety glory. Tracks laid out with lots of open space and rendered by way of old lo-fi sounds would seem especially amenable to redux, but it turns out that all that open space serves a function and all those old sounds seethe the way they do for the many ways they're less than perfect. Armando's "Downfall," an acid track from 1988, certainly counts as classic Chicago house, and the three remixes here offer different lessons on what stands to come from the project of staring history down.
The Advent's "Pay Your Respect Remix" is the best, in part for the evident respect it pays but more so for the way it amps up the original's energy without sapping any parts of the track in the interest of foregrounding another. The Advent turns the acid line up and keeps the original's drums clacking; his trick, over a nicely concise five minutes, is to simply add some additional drum sounds to fatten it up and then to play around with filtration to tease an overly dramatic (and likely ruinous) breakdown that smartly never quite comes. Jason Fernandes's mix doesn't have the same kind of devious life in it, reducing "Downfall" mostly to a throb and only hinting at the 303 squeals buried deep in the background. Hugo Paixao's offering starts off in a similar mind, fit for a big club where just the suggestion of a track will bounce around the rafters, but Paixao's mix boasts more of a sense of exploration in the way it staggers and builds.
TracklistA1 Downfall (The Advent Pay Your Respect Remix)
A2 Downfall (Hugo Paixao Remix)
B Downfall (Jason Fernandes Remix)