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Ricardo Villalobos: Fabric 36

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Ricardo Villalobos

Album: Fabric 36
Label: Fabric

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Listening to Ricardo Villalobos' Fabric 36 feels like tumbling around in a drum set strapped to one of those spinning gyro chairs that astronauts use to train. It takes a decent set of speakers to do it justice, but Villalobos' syncopated minimalism—all of it on this unusual "DJ mix" produced by the DJ himself—makes a strong case for hearing more when less is at play. The sound is minimal-techno of a markedly progressive and singular sort: Villalobos has been at the forefront of the genre since taking it up years ago in Berlin, where he helped establish a rich tradition of Chilean/German techno, and his split roots grow out in a track like "Perc And Drums," which churns out a new organic idea every few bars. Villalobos has always been sultry and surprising, but his contribution to the Fabric mix series reconciles anew his traits as a producer (small, spacious, long) with his habits as a DJ (big, rapturous, time-agnostic).