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Ewan Pearson

We Are Proud of Our Choices

Rating: 3.5/5.0

Label: Kompakt Records

When it comes to commercially released mix albums, there’s really no comparison to Kompakt. Sure DJ-Kicks and Radio Soulwax have their niches, but ultimately, the label that brought us such influential records like Michael Mayer’s Immer and Superpitcher’s Today simply cannot be denied. Ewan Pearson is the latest electronic stalwart/serial remixer to be featured by the company, and his latest mix is ironically titled We Are Proud of Our Choices. And like his Kompakt compatriots, it’s characterized by slow-burning techno and contorted, naturalistic ambiance.

We Are Proud of Our Choices opens with a remix from Gold Panda, one of electronica’s most buzzed about up-and-comers – and that speaks for the record as a whole – incessantly, and unapologetically current, no Kraftwerk, no Liquid Liquid; these 18 tracks are some of the latest developments in the relatively fast-moving microhouse scene, all dripping with amniotic fluid and pulsing to warm, rubbery beats. There isn’t anything close to a club-mulcher here; these are songs for a long, desolate road trip, or an intensely focused World of Warcraft session.

A great DJ mix isn’t meant to have standouts. The music is meant to live and breathe as a whole being, and We Are Proud of Our Choices follows that code pretty vehemently. The sole highlight ends up being about six cuts deep, where Pearson drops a well-teased and immediately gratifying synth-spat in the form of Neville Watson’s conflagrating “Full Flight.” The rest is your traditional, half-circle-round-the-DJ repertoire – not dull, but not parameter smashing. Ewan matches his beats well and he knows when his tricks have outstayed their welcome, something a lot of DJs could learn a lesson from.

We Are Proud of Our Choices lasts a mere 70 minutes, and in a scene where a six hour endurance set is permissible (if not required), it’s definitely on the shorter side. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing (after all the only people making a big deal about length are already beyond philosophical saving).

Unfortunately, it’s nothing to get too excited about. Countless mixes of this quality are uploaded everyday to the internet and they don’t cost a dime, making it a little hard to recommend on an economic level. What I can say is that I’ve kept a burnt copy in my car and I don’t plan on taking it out anytime soon. It’s perfectly sequenced, impeccably systematized techno – something surprisingly ineradicable.

by Luke Winkie
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