1. James Nardi, Ostyn – Asylum
2. Jon BW – Wheels of Steel
3. Paul Reeves – I’m In
4. Cupra, Paul Batten – Abomination
5. Unit DVSN – Break Free
6. Random But Raw and Sinobe – Everyone Wants
7. Dev1se – Liquid Night
8. Paul Reeves – Viral Meat
9. A-DJ – Felt That
10. Mel – Told You
11. Roosta – Blinding
12. Random But Raw – Put It On
13. Unit DVSN – Give Me Something (Boski)
14. MegDVS, James Brown – Subliminal Cutz
15. Team Sly – Crazy
16. Luke Scott, Vandalize – Rebellious
17. Sean Inside Out – Been There Done That
18. Trauma, Bass Jumper – Leave the World behind
I almost gave up on this mix. On the first recording I got the first 11 songs ironed out exactly as they are here. After that the mix just fell apart. It was hard for the sake of being hard but served no purpose. I hate when mixes do that. They just trail off at the end and totally lose the narrative. I spent two weeks experimenting with different combinations and was ready to throw the whole thing out. I just couldn’t close it. I want each mix to be about 90 minutes and I’m not willing to cut one off at 70 just because I can’t figure out how to finish it. Anyway, the ending went from the weakest part of the mix to the best part of the mix in my opinion.
This mix was originally built around the song “Blinding.” I built all the build up to that, had the album art concept all ready to go and just needed to place the puzzles pieces around it. As things went on and I listened to it over and over again, I just didn’t feel that it was the song that really stood out (I love the song and I love the breakdown sample) but I just didn’t feel it embodied the mix as a whole. So once again, I had to scrap my concept and come up with a new one. (This was as I was struggling with the end piece and ready to scrap the whole thing). Anyway, the more I listened to it, the more the song “I’m In” stood out for me. The vocal is very loud in the breakdown and unmistakable. Also the song has that perfect mix of hard and emotion in it. So I started looking for a screenshot of that scene in Aliens. I grabbed a bunch of Hicks, but none of them made sense. Then I found this one. It’s like the reversal… In the song, I’m In, it was Ripley, Hicks, and Burke who were “all in” going to the planet, but once they got there, the tables turned and the aliens started wiping them out. In this context the alien is a metaphor for Hard Dance. It’s aggressive and scary with foreboding bass lines, relentless drum kicks, and aggressive synths. For the most part people hate it and fear it. tldr; The alien is hard dance, Corporal Ferro is “everything else.”
This is the most technical mix I have ever made. There are multiple mixes that span from breakdown to breakdown. There are mixes through breakdowns, almost every song had some FX put on them at one point or another. I try to keep the FX subtle so the listener will have to guess if that was part of the record or not. Every song that was placed was placed for a specific reason. Either I wanted to bring the energy up or give the listener a break, or they contained specific movie references that were meaningful, or they fulfilled a key change to get me where I needed to go. Towards the end I didn’t want another key change (I don’t like the way they sound but they are necessary). So from the song “Crazy” on, I was stuck in E flat minor. It turns out, only about 5 -10 hard dance tracks per year are released in that key. I had to go back to 2018 and 2017 to get the last two songs to finish off the mix, however, I think they were perfect. The end is now the best part. The mix started at 150bpm and ends at 156bpm.
So anyway, that’s a look inside the mind when I’m making these things. Each mix is live mixed, recorded on a single take, using Denon SC-5000m’s and a Denon 1850X Prime mixer. Each mix usually takes me about 2 weeks and probably about 25 hours total by the time the final recording is churned out and the album art is made. I love the process and enjoy it all. Even though all the individual pieces are created by others, I take them all, put my spin on it and make my own creation with it.