I'm mainly reviewing the continuous mix as that is my main interest. Digweed doesn't usually release (or allow) liveset recordings so they're not as abundant as many other DJs out there so if not livesets, the only other way to get a long continuous mix from Digs is his studio releases. I've listened to his "Live in" series from Cordoba all the way to Slovenia but for one reason or another was not too satisfied (really, CD4 of the "Live in London" is the only one that did it for me). Right, I like the bangy, peaktime stuff.
This Versus mix is nice. The beginning is slow and he builds it up and at the 35 min mark, slam! It's edgy and raw. I love it! The one issue I have with it is that it's too short like his older 1-CD Transistions albums. These albums are still released today constrained to the 80 min time limit of the inevitably-extinct CD. So from 35 min to the end, it's really fast, bangy, and aggressive. This mix is just begging to be continued onto the next CD... but it's not there. There are officially 2 more CDs in the Versus album (3 total). One is unmixed tracks - it's great if you're a DJ and want to mix with them or just like listening to singles but for casual listening, I need mixed. Then there's the continuous mix, and finally the freely available downtempo CD3, which, in no knock against John, I personally do not have interest in downtempo albums. Many DJs do this, as in, release a downtempo CD along with the bangy mix counterpart but I've never taken interest in them. Perhaps, I really do need to make my way out to Ibiza and enjoy a lazy brunch sipping on a bloody mary while downtempo beats heal the wounds from the night before.
I think I have to change my mindset on this album. Instead of expecting 2 CDs of continuous mixes, this one is a special album with bits of everything including singles, the mix, and downtempo. Come to think of it, since there were so many tracks that were collaborated with other DJs/producers, it'd be more difficult to produce 2 CDs worth of the mix, as long as they're following the Versus album format.
The standout tracks for me are Red Tape and Awakenings. Both are floor destroyers.
I long for the GU-type albums again. And my dream would be for Digweed to release an 8 hour mix. Not as a CD album but as a continuous mix. If he releases it as an mp3-only album, it's possible. No breaks, no changing CDs, just 8-glorious hours of Digweed.