"Danilo Plessow's fabric mix is the absolute embodiment of all killer and no filler"
It is May 2021, we are over twelve months on from when the (socially and morally responsible) nightlife scene pulled down the shutters at the start of the global pandemic, and the first trial events geared around kickstarting the music economy – with the greatest of track and trace care – have begun to take place. In tandem with this, the underlying release schedule is gradually thawing, moving away from a focus on inner wellness and with a gradual heartbeat beginning to thump at a shade over 120 beats per minute.
This May sees the commercial mix return in full force, with familiar series returning alongside new pretenders. One such mix is Danilo Plessow‘s session for the ‘fabric presents‘ series. By my experience, fabric’s mix series has taken quite some time to lock into a groove since abandoning the monthly subscription tin-enshrined CD, replaced by a grander but less frequent digital-plus-vinyl offering.
The proposition is superb – the mix is presented as it always has been, except with an accompanying lavish double vinyl and supporting unmixed compilation. However the emphatic build up to the previous series finale – stopping off with big hitter entries from Sasha, Burial & Kode9, and a triple session from the outgoing residents – meant that the sudden absence felt like plunging into a chasm.
In retrospect, Bonobo’s entry that kickstarted the new series is a well crafted slow burner, and the idiosyncratic “mixtape shared between mates” vibe has been recaptured somewhat with the previous entry from Octo Octa and Eris Drew. So in this moment – when faced by some stiff competition from DJ Kicks and Sasha’s LUZoSCURA concept in a single month – fabric and Danilo have picked the perfect moment to come out to play absolutely ablaze.
Dredging up a cliché from the recesses of time, Danilo Plessow’s fabric mix is the absolute embodiment of “all killer and no filler.” Vinyl hunters will be salivating, wincing at past experiences hunting down oddities from a Craig Richards session, but now anticipating which are the cuts that will make the physical pressing of this mix. And what a selection it is, dancing through the decades, diverse yet always contextual.
You shift through moods and phases subtly, the first quarter of the mix is deep and warm, mixing moments with dubby and jazzy phrases against the whip-cracking finger snaps of pure house music. The momentum shifts as Powder ‘Random Ladder with 40‘ gently urges you into the realm of breaks and electro, with the usually understated and sultry The Other People Place ‘It’s Your Love‘ feeling like an emphatic “yes mate” moment as this section peaks.
Danilo keeps pushing you further, to the point where the firing Family Unit ‘Freak (House Mix)‘ sends you wheeling as the B-movie shout of “you are being taken under our power to your destination” fires across the audio, before you ignite in a shower of phosphorous when the pure eighties glam-disco of Jean-Claude Petit ‘Stones Of Law‘ takes over from the wriggly nineties tech house of Iridium ‘Ill America‘.
It is this ability to take the unexpected, make it work, and build it higher that is the key to the session. Early in the mix you hear ‘Decay/Sustain/Release‘ by Basic-Variation repeat its main phrase “you cannot sustain this” over and over, almost as if it is a challenge. Turns out, that Danilo Plessow can.
fabric presents Danilo Plessow (MCDE) is out now. Order a copy.
2. Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith – Understanding Body Messages [Ghostly International]
3. SKUAS – Traversée [Aroc]
4. Rhythm & Sound ft. Paul St. Hilaire – Music A Fe Rule Part 1 [Rhythm & Sound]
5. Scientist – In Orbit [X-Ray Records]
6. Recloose ft Dwele – Can’t Take It (Herbert’s Some Dumb Dub) [Planet E]
7. Moogroove – Dark Room [Essential Media Group]
8. Jeroen Vink – Waka Wakah [Reliant]
9. Powder – Random Ladder with 40 [Born Free Records]
10. Danilo Plessow ft. Francesco Geminiani & Peter Schlamb – Nightfall [fabric Records]
11. PROXYAN – Sky Walkers
12. Basic-Variation – Decay/Sustain/Release
13. Ciel – Raindance [Peach Discs]
14. Hypnobeat – Can God Rewind? (part 2) [Hypnobeat]
15. Cabaret Voltaire – Taxi Mutant [Plastex]
16. THE ORDER – E.W.R. (Sex) [Male Records]
17. The Other People Place – It’s Your Love [Warp Records]
18. $tinkworx – Mnemosyne [Delsin Records]
19. Roy Davis Jr – Broken Machines [Clone Jack For Dazes]
20. Johnny L – This Time (Carl Craig Mix 2) [XL Recordings]
21. Logue – Keep Me From Pain [White Label]
22. A² – Rebirth [Groovepressure]
23. Sansibar – Absence Of Being [Émotsiya]
24. Family Unit – Freak (House Mix) [C.R.E.A.M. Records]
25. Iridium – Ill America [Lowdown Records]
26. Jean-Claude Petit – Stones Of Law [Fauves-Puma Productions]
27. Moonstarr – Detriot [Sonar Kollektiv]
28. John Kongos – I’m Dreaming (Any Moment I May Wake Up Screaming) [Milestone Records]