The Kings of Techno

The Kings of Techno

by Laurent Garnier


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Few things about this two-disc mixed set make clear sense, especially when they are viewed through the eyes of a techno neophyte. Once the contents and contexts are examined, however, everything falls into place. Roughly one-third of the tracks contained on these mixes from Laurent Garnier and Carl Craig can be classified as techno; the majority has more to do with the roots of the form, while a handful of tracks -- all of which are on Garnier's disc -- have very tenuous (geographic) ties. Though the discs are subtitled "The Detroit Perspective" and "The European Perspective," both are very Detroit-centric. Garnier, the European, delivers the former: a short history of Detroit through soul-jazz, hip-hop, proto-punk, funk, and some actual techno. Craig, the Detroiter, delivers the latter: each track in his mix was made in Europe and struck a nerve with the young clubbers and radio listeners of his city, and they encompass Italo disco, Franco disco, industrial, synth pop, and early U.K. techno. Garnier's mix, which is presented as one 78-minute track with no indexing, is given some extra enhancements: the tracks are interspersed with chatter between him and Underground Resistance affiliate Buzz Goree (as the two drive from Detroit's Eastern Market to the Submerge building), a short snippet of discussion with UR's Mad Mike Banks, the mumbled musings of underground house genius Kenny Dixon, Jr., and the beyond-chilling broadcast of a shootout from the 1967 riots. Craig takes a more playful approach on his fully indexed mix, guiding the listener from track to track with his impression of the Electrifying Mojo (a legendary Detroit DJ), yelps, and reminiscences. He transitions from Kano's "It's a War" to Yellow Magic Orchestra's "Computer Games" with the following: "This is out to all y'all who used to roller skate to this -- Northland Roller Rink, Eight Mile Road, shoot the duck." While this seems like a missed opportunity to plumb the depths of a very deep, wide, and rich archive of strictly Detroit-birthed electronic music -- much of which has never made it to CD in any form -- the two jocks present very unique, knowledgeable, and personal views of the city. Even card-carrying Midnight Funk Association members who danced to Ken Collier, left gallons of sweat on the floor of the Music Institute, and directed tourists to the Stooges Wax Museum can appreciate this. [In addition to the CD, Rapster also released separate, single-LP editions of each volume in 2006 as well.]

Product Details

Release Date: 10/31/2006
Label: Rapster
UPC: 0730003906329
catalogNumber: 63
Rank: 116801

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Laurent Garnier   Primary Artist

Technical Credits

Art of Noise   Composer
Aretha Franklin   Composer
Midge Ure   Composer
Yellow Magic Orchestra   Composer
Flying Lizards   Composer
Yusef Lateef   Composer
Beate Bartel   Composer
Boris Blank   Composer
Rusty Egan   Composer
Dave Formula   Composer
Chris Haas   Composer
John McGeoch   Composer
Stefano Pulga   Composer
Steve Strange   Composer
Laurent Garnier   Composer
Carl Craig   Composer
Luciano Ninzatti   Composer
Ed Handley   Composer
Maurizio Dami   Composer
Andrew Turner   Composer
Alain Pewzner   Composer
Arpanet   Composer
Ronald Watts   Composer
James Yancey   Composer

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