Fabriclive 57: Jackmaster (Fabric Records)

Among the 56 installments of the Fabriclive mix series, this next offering must be one of the most highly anticipated. Since the merging of imprints Wireblock, Dress 2 Sweat and Stuff Records into the eminent Numbers label early last year, Jackmaster aka Jack Revill and the rest of the collective have developed one of the most crucial electronic labels around. It’s true that Revill’s A&R skills are way ahead of the pack but it’s his position as a member of the UK’s djing elite – one of few that earn their merit as exceptional selectors, without having produced a single record – that has skyrocketed him to the top of the UK bass hierarchy.

Revill’s flair for experimentation (he indulges everything from classic Hip-Hop through to Detroit Techno) along with his love of vintage party cuts provides the ultimate insight into the Numbers ethos, and it’s FabricLive 57 that gives Revill the chance to showcase his knack for integrating the fundamental elements of a great mix with only one, solid intention; to make people move.

Revill wastes no time, introducing the mix with the nostalgia of The Fantastic Aleems’ “Release Yourself”, which narrates like an audio prologue to the night ahead until it’s swallowed by Magic Juan’s remix of Inner City’s “Big Fun”. Get ready for a history lesson because 57 consists largely of classic House, Techno & Garage cuts from the 80’s & 90’s, an interesting concept for a DJ who could unleash an entire army of exclusives at any given time. Although, Revill doesn’t abandon the need completely, as he serves up a nice little Numbers special of Geiom’s percussion laden “246” and a few current selections from Addison Groove, SBTRKT and Hudson Mohawke – just to keep the balance.

As Geiom is left behind, JM’s intricate mixing abilities really come into play. Doug Willis’ “Dougswanna” is transformed when Jook 10’s “Emotions” is introduced at around one minute, drums and euphoric synths syncopate perfectly as the mix is held for another 1.30 until Mr. White’s “The Sun Can’t Compare” wades in to mellow the groove. I’m not sure I could call this an official Jackmaster mix without a couple of Garage classics, Wookie’s infamous remix of Sia’s “Little Man” and Kim English’s “Night Life” could get anyone onto the floor.

With 29 tracks mixed in just over 60 minutes, this really is Friday night condensed into one hour. And, as the mix ends with Radiohead’s “Idioteque”, Revill really has succeeded in implementing the Numbers ethos into the mix directly, by selecting timeless tracks that were made for the floor. Fabriclive 57 is a narration of how a great night out should sound by a DJ who knows what people want. In the words of the man himself: “It’s always been about the party for me”.

Lucinda Runham

Fabriclive 57 will be released on 16th May

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