John Talabot: Pitchfork's 9 best DJ mixes of July 2018

01.08.2018

Some DJ sets feel supercharged with purpose. Sometimes it has to do with meeting the dancefloor’s demands; other times, that motivation is more cryptic, if every bit as palpable. In the case of John Talabot’s latest for Beats in Space, perhaps it’s the slow tempo that reveals its keen sense of focus. Beginning with languid, shuffling breakbeats and steadily, stealthily dialing up the pace, the beats march slowly and deliberately forward. After an hour, he has barely broken the 100-BPM mark, and the further he presses on through pensive, echo-soaked new wave disco and cosmic house, the heavier the anticipation looms. Teased by minor-key arpeggios, murky voiceovers, and the occasional flash of acid squelch and dub delay, you keep waiting for the other shoe to drop, but it never does. Distrustful of anything as obvious as a climax, the Barcelona DJ leaves us hanging until the very end. Radio sets rarely feel as carefully thought out.

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