The Renaissance machine churns out another mix in its Sound Of Renaissance series. Renaissance resident Marcus James selects and mixes this compilation of dancelands current big tunes from the world of Progressive House. With a bit of a Progressive backlash coming into force and dancefloors demanding more creative mixing and sounds, this mix veers away from the usual tribal sound that we've been used to recently. Soothing deep house is served up to start in the form of Schmoov and Solaris Heights. Nova Scotia's mix of Echomen's Through To You take things on a very Blue Monday-ish tip, not your usual start to a Renaissance compilation and a welcome change. Things toughen up from then on in, funky sax, bass and beats come to the fore with Saxophobia before an absolute stonker comes in the form of Nosferatu. Echoing violins, menacing choir voices. Its far away from being just another tribal drums track. An old old old classic in the form of Wild Luv makes an appearence which is always nice to see.
The second CD follows a more standard Renaissance path after the latin guitars of the opener. Punchy percussion and moody synths from Herweijer, dark progressive far from Gardner & Thomas and Dave Gahan. A top track in the form of De Moma De, tribal chanting, sparky percussion and a warped little breakdown in the middle. Great track. A classic pops up in the form of Danny Tenaglia's remix of The Orb's dance classic Little Fluffy Clouds, dark menacing and trippy, before the mix is rounded of with a wicked extatic vocal track Strings Of Life, always reminds me of Funk D'Void's Diabla.
All in all, a solid mix, more variety of sounds that you'd usually expect to hear, Marcus James' mix programming is spot on too, always a nice sense of movement and purpose with both CDs. Love the way the basslines meld together with the blend between Prophecies and Again & Again on the first disc. Something you can bang out in the car, as well as sit and listen to.