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The Story of A Mix

> Click here to download this mix, and all others from 709Sessions Episode once they have played.

It’s not very often as a DJ that you get to put together a mix where the challenge is to encapsulate the past 8 years and change of music in your collection into a two hour journey that is both reflective, inspiring, unique and challenging to the listener, where the ultimate goal of the mix is to be put together in a certain way where it becomes greater than the sum of its parts.

So many tracks over the years have taken on different meanings, either through the stories they tell themselves, or through the stories that they are associated with personally – whether it was hearing it for the first time in giant club, or something that was a staple of many memorable DJ gigs.

Each track in this mix is its own story within a larger book. Here is the story of my mix, for 709Sessions Episode100.

Blufeld - Emotional Tentacles

Track 1

Blufeld

Emotional Tentacles

Original Mix

Bonzai Progressive

The first track of a mix can set the tone for the entire journey, especially if it’s an ambient intro-style track. Blufeld’s “Emotional Tentacles” really was spot on for leading things off. The build up of melodic elements and presence combined with a slow drop off in the second half allowed for the perfect blend into 4/4 beats.

Andrew McDonnell - One Day In Kowloon

Track 2

Andrew McDonnell

One Day In Kowloon

Original Mix

Particles

After being introduced to Andrew McDonnell a few years back by fellow 709’er Matthew Belleghem, I quickly became a fan of his production work. This track, titled “One Day in Kowloon” has always stood out for me as it’s as deep as it gets when it comes to serious progressive music. Solemn, moody and introspective sounds combined with a well placed, heavy-minded conversation sample create a dreamy yet brooding feeling through the the track.

Ben Rama - Intuition (Wes Straub Remix)

Track 3

Ben Rama

Intuition

Wes Straub Mix

Hypnotic Instincts

Coming out of the depths of the previous track, my remix of another old-time 709’er who is now blowing up the world over with his production skills, Ben Rama, fit really well here. This remix was one of my best works of 2015 and I hope to work with Ben on more projects in the future.

DYNO - Aquatika (Luis Junior Remix)

Track 4

DYNO

Aquatika

Luis Junior Remix

Microcastle

If there ever was a track that brought an instant visual of moving through a vast expand of space, it is this remix of DYNO’s “Aquatika” by Luis Junior. An older track from a few years ago, this one combines a straight up bass drone with building, expansive pads that really let you know you’re on a trip to somewhere.

Rick Pier O’Neil - Signal

Track 5

Rick Pier O’Neil

Signal

Original Mix

Bonzai Progressive

In moving to Playa del Carmen, Mexico I’ve been lucky to become friends with one of the true masters of progressive music, Rick Pier O’Neil, swapping tracks and exchanging feedback along the way. Out of the many tracks and remixes he’s produced, this recent one titled “Signal” really stood out for me. Signature pounding and driving RPO sounds here, that carry the mix into a darker underground realm.

Mark Reeve - Arena

Track 6

Mark Reeve

Arena

Original Mix

Soma Records

The perfect track for transitioning out of the dark passages of the previous two, Mark Reeve’s “Arena” has always been near the top of my music collection since first hearing Scuba play it in the twilight hours at Ushuaia in Ibiza in 2012.

Extrawelt - Titelheld

Track 7

Extrawelt

Titelheld

Original Mix

Cocoon Records

Originally produced in 2005, this was the track that introduced Sarah and I to Cocoon-style techno, after hearing Sven Vath himself play it at Amnesia in Ibiza in 2006. Gritty and dirty, yet warm, this track is the perfect fusion of techno and progressive sounds.

Vangelis - Rachel’s Song (Antrim Unnofficial Remix)

Track 8

Vangelis

Rachel’s Song

Antrim Unnofficial Remix

White

Antrim’s remix of Vangelis’ “Rachel’s Song” is simply a beautiful piece of music with its warming vocal sample and light keys, and comes out of the previous run of techy dark tracks very nicely. A recent track I snagged off the promo pools, this one has been near the top of of my track collection since the summer of 2015.

Dark Soul Project & Mathov - We Are Not Alone feat. Fe Malefiz (Nico Parisi Remix)

Track 9

Dark Soul Project & Mathov

We Are Not Alone feat. Fe Malefiz

Nico Parisi Remix

Bonzai Progressive

A few names I’ve become a fan of over the past few years all come together on this track, with Nico Parisi’s remix of Dark Soul Project & Mathov’s “We Are Not Alone” that features vocalist Fe Malefiz who I’m just finishing up a new track with right now. This one’s a subtle and warm progressive number that allows the mix to breathe a little before moving into a very powerful next stretch.

Anthony G - Pravda (Desaturate’s “And Justice For Some” Remix)

Track 10

Anthony G

Pravda

Desaturate’s “And Justice For Some” Remix

Bonzai Progressive

Part of the first release on the previously mentioned Rick Pier O’Neil’s recharged and reloaded “RPO Records”, this remix by Desaturate of Anthony G’s “Pravda” is the definition of proper progressive. Driving bass and production coupled with some dark spoken word samples flawlessly mixed and mastered of course, push some serious moody overtones back into the mix. Taking the overall mix up to the halfway point, this track is the first of a big run of tracks that really get things going.

Kay D - My Dreams (Dark Soul Project Remix)

Track 11

Kay D

My Dreams

Dark Soul Project Remix

JOOF Recordings

I was first introduced to the sounds of Kay D and Dark Soul Project, and this track in particular through John 00 Fleming’s Essential Mix back in 2012. Sweeping and dark deep trance is the theme here and this track is a screamer. Pads come out of nowhere and build things up to an energetic four to the floor peak.

Solee - Aragorn

Track 12

Solee

Aragorn

Original Mix

Parquet Recordings

It’s often a challenge to mix out of a track like the one previously, but as luck would have it in going back through various playlists Solee’s “Aragorn” fit absolutely perfectly. The off-beat dotted synth line carries all the energy built up from the previous two tracks and really keeps the mix at a peak-time level.

Cristian R & Kasall - Flying

Track 13

Cristian R & Kasall

Flying

Original Mix

Movement Recordings

Another production team that can be found all over recent set lists in recent months is the duo of Cristian R & Kasall, and their original track “Flying” is no exception. Warm baselines, driving percussion and some subtle keys and pads all come together to simply create a powerful arrangement, and bring the mix slowly down to a deeper level from the peak sounds of the previous tracks.

Shmuel Flash - Chilling Moments (Kazell Influx Audio Remix)

Track 14

Shmuel Flash

Chilling Moments

Kazell Influx Audio Remix

Bedrock Records

This one is a definite classic, with the original vinyl release nicely packed away in a container in my storage unit in Canada. Thumping tribal sounds true to the days of progressive music’s prime rule this track, which at the same time still hold their weight when mixed with tracks from today.

&ME - Woods

Track 15

&ME

Woods

Original Mix

Keinemusik

From a classic, to a current day bomb, super-producer &ME comes into the mix with “Woods”, a techy, driving monster. Most people today shy away from calling this progressive and call it techno, but for those of us oldies out there, this is as progressive as it gets. What a track!

Dominic Plaza - Sundown

Track 16

Dominic Plaza

Sundown

Original Mix

TUSOM (The Sound of the Underground Madrid)

As mentioned a couple of tracks earlier, some tracks are just produced to be timeless – which is especially a challenge in the electronic music world. Another piece of vinyl from the early 2000s, Dominic Plaza’s “Sundown” is one of these tracks with it’s warm tribal percussion and the big pads that come up like the sun into a lush and building breakdown / build-up.

Pryda - Evouh

Track 17

Pryda

Evouh

Original Mix

Pryda Recordings

I just could not do this mix without including something from a dj/producer that both Sarah and I have just loved since the beginning, Eric Prydz. I especially gravitated towards his earlier more underground work, such as this track, titled “Evouh”. Coming out of the previous classic, the track choice was a tricky one, requiring something that kept with some of the tribal sounds of before while taking the mix into another melodic direction, and this one builds to do just that.

Rise and Fall - Open System

Track 18

Rise and Fall

Open System

Original Mix

Bonzai Progressive

A recent release by Rise and Fall, “Open System” this one is another driving and dark builder, where aggressive stabs come out of the depths to push things along. The idea here was to continue the mix in a dark direction for a couple of tracks before moving to the ending tracks, and “Open System” does this perfectly.

Rick Pier O’Neil - Up To The Groove (Dub Mix)

Track 19

Rick Pier O’Neil

Up To The Groove

Dub Mix

JOOF Recordings

Look who’s back! This recent track on JOOF Recordings is one of my favorites from Rick and just had to be included. His signature ultra-fat bass sounds, percussion and voice samples unleash an absolute bomb here. Overall I didn’t expect to have three RPO tracks in this mix, but with so many great tracks and remixes coming from him lately, the challenge was actually to not include more!

Wes Straub - Sunrise Over Xaman-Ha (2016 Beach Remix)

Track 20

Wes Straub

Sunrise Over Xaman-Ha

2016 Beach Remix

JOOF Recordings

With the mix reaching it’s final moments, what a better way to start concluding the journey than a ‘sunrise on the beach’ inspired rework of my “Sunrise Over Xaman-Ha” track I originally produced for JOOF Recordings back in 2012, that will be released on the JOOF 18 Year Anniversary compilation coming out in 2016. One of my stronger original production works, it was a really nice exercise to re-work everything, including Andrea Wettstein’s soft and lush vocals we recorded so long ago, into a new version of the track that fit with the slower tempos and deeper sounds that I tend to play today.

Guy J - Dizzy Moments

Track 21

Guy J

Dizzy Moments

Original Mix

Lost & Found

Last, but certainly not least is an absolutely beautiful ending track called “Dizzy Moments” from Guy J, someone whose music I’ve followed and loved for years now. This one concludes the two hour mix brilliantly with sprinkling keys and warm pads that build and slowly fade out to nothing, perfectly summing up everything I like about the progressive and deep trance genres I know and love.

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