Let’s Dance – Various Artists: fabric presents Chaos in the CBD (fabric Records)

by Ben Hogwood

What’s the story?

The sibling duo Louis and Ben Helliker-Hales, who make up Chaos in the CBD, beam in from New Zealand as the latest contributors to the fabric presents series.

In the process they mark a decade in music, bringing together a set of house music described as ‘creating a tunnel between 1990 and 2007…a timeless listen, condensing the ebbs, flows, gear changes and the feelings that surface during an all-night set experience in 80 minutes.

The idea is to appeal to experienced listeners whose foundations lean heavily on rave music, but also newcomers getting into the genre for the first time.

What’s the music like?

This is a highly enjoyable, fluid mix of music that enjoys a good many twists and turns in its 77 minutes.

Chaos in the CBD are quickly into their stride, setting the scene before hitting a pretty much immediate high with Z-Formation’s Secret Departure. There are some nice lines floated throughout Hanna’s You & Me, where “I can see you in my dreams, you and me”, then some quality nocturnal house from Chris Brann – he of the Wamdue moniker – who contributes the wonderfully chilled Journey To The Centre, complete with airy piano.

We hear the deep Raymond Castoldi cut, into The Jungle, which segues nicely into the quality Tarenah from Psychedelic Research Lab, adding a bit more percussion. By the time Deep Sided‘s Fly You kicks in the vibe is definitely older school rave – and with a riff to match.

The mix roughs up really nicely through the likes of The Element, whose cut Oh You Got Me sounds great in its Deeper Than Deep mix. When Chaos in the CBD themselves surface with Higher Elevation the camera has panned out again, before Dana Kelley and Brothers Of The Underground offer slightly rougher, disco-infused cuts once again.

Musically the mix gets more adventurous the more it moves, and the wandering eye of Blak Beat Niks with Kerri Chandler proves a great listen on I’ll Be There, a Brazilian infused beauty. House music proper reasserts itself for Box Clever and I’ll Eat You (If You Were A Box), then the upfront Raunchy After Dark from Sound Clash Republic. Finally the deepness returns, with the lovely JD Hall and Johnathan Morning effort Into You, by which time the tempo is quite nippy.

Does it all work?

Yes – the brief very much fulfilled, with house music of varying dimensions and depths mixed into a really satisfying whole.

Is it recommended?

It is. Quality deep house is not always easy to find, but there is plenty of it here – and enough to satisfy those whose persuasions head more for the rave or even the jazzy side of things. Recommended!



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