The Great Lakes Sound: Techno from the I94/I104 Corridor
"What you hold in your hands is from the next wave of electronic musicians from the Great Lakes area of the American Midwest -- the cradle of house music and techno. On the path cut by Juan Atkins, Derrick May, Jeff Mills, Underground Resistance, Richie Hawtin, DJ T-1000, Mike Dearborn and Green Velvet, Thee Madkatt Courtship and DJ Skull, the artists on this compilation are working their gear to keep the heavy grooves and the driving beats flowing. Several tracks from established composers like DJ ESP Woody McBride (Minneapolis) and L.A. Williams (Detroit) are included because these artists continue to evolve and create interesting work, while their presence provides a link to the origins of the sound. Other well-known names like Jake Fairley, pan/tone, and Mike Shannon, from the highly regarded Canadian scene are also represented. Detroit newcomers, Rex Sepulveda and Punisher (Michelle Hermann), who both played at the Fuse-In Festival, Detroit in 2005, are taking the music in a UR, Jeff Mills, DJ Bone, direction. Cosmic Spore (Mike Brickner), also from Detroit, gives us a similarly uncompromising hard industrial groove. Chicago jackin' house styles are represented and retooled by Woody McBride and Frankie Vega. Chicago's Soultek delivers a deeper Luomo-sounding track, joining the dots with the Toronto sound of Jake Fairley, Mike Shannon, pan/tone, and Toronto newcomers Adam Jay, Dan Lui, Mark Thibideau, Jeff Cochran, Adam Winick, Arthur Oksan, and Adam Marshall. What is remarkable about this compilation, in addition to the exceptional quality and variety of techno music that is maintained across 20 tracks, is that each city both has an identifiable sound which is a sonic representation of the history of techno as it has been encountered by musicians from those cities. And at the same time, geographical proximity means that influences and inspirations clearly flow both ways up, down, and around the I94 and I194 freeways between these great cities. The Detroit sound of UR and post-industrial techno is very evident in the Detroit tracks. The influence of Detroit techno in all its forms, and the German new wave sound pioneered by Force Inc., Force Tracks and Kompakt, is very evident in the Toronto sound. Yet the fact that there is such a vibrant scene in Toronto is obviously due to the proximity of Detroit and Chicago. Get the map out while you're listening to the music and you'll get the picture, literally."