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EP review: Sven Väth 'Electrica Salsa Revisited'

Revisiting a classic with two remix masterminds

Artist: OFF Feat. Sven Väth, Henrik Schwarz and Roman Flügel
EP: Electric Salsa Revisited
Label: Cocoon Recordings
Release date: 25/07/2016

Our selection this week comes loaded with a smaller tracklist, but here we have the epitome of quality over quantity with Electrica Salsa Revisited. Brought back to the booth at the lead of German governor, Sven Väth, the techno clubbers on the island who're here for the long haul - and especially loyal to Cocoon - should have “Baba baba – mmh mmh - aha aha” firmly sketched into their vocabulary bank. Those unfamiliar with the classic's chorus are about to be acquainted with not just the original, but also three versions from two of his most trusted compatriots.

The original version of 'Electrica Salsa' was released when Väth was 21 and a member of Frankfurt project, OFF, alongside Michael Münzing and Luca Anzilotti. It was a gem that thundered through Europe and reinvented the face of European electronic music during a period when dance music was still regarded as an underground movement from Detroit and Chicago. This year, we're celebrating the tune's big 3-0, and we'd consider bringing in its milestone with a fresh remix package an apt way to do it.

In the remixing rally first is visionary producer and champion live performer, Henrik Schwarz, with the first of two reworks. The German veteran's 'Dub' insert is the standout cut when considered for the environment where Väth dominates – the dance floor. His décor touch is more about latching onto the original magic elements with a focus on emphasis and modernisation, as opposed to creating a cut that favours select few samples. To the nerve endings, it's an instant puller – shackling you in until it shuts to a close after more than eight stimulating minutes on the clock. It pays in pleasure to hear its refreshed luster sonically induced through layered synths, a bombinating bassline, hooking hi-hats and most notably, the melody of the original was recreated with a full orchestral ensemble.

While Schwarz's version is running wild as a current Cocoon favourite, Roman Flügel's wired reinvention has been ushered in by Väth as the track that will leave “many people surprised” - Flügel can do straight-up dancefloor belters, as much as he can plug soul healing ambience. Väth's vocal is put through the distortion motor, broken up and looped in a pattern that completely deviates from the path of the original. The speed is reduced, making the driving thrust all the more penetrable, and bursts of the horn section, glitchy synths and elements of the bassline direct you to the belly of OFF's 1986 fierce spinner.

We'd imagine both Schwarz and Flügel to be relishing in contentment and satisfaction with their dusting of sonic wizadry.

WORDS | Aimee Lawrence


A. Electric Salsa (Henrik Schwarz Dub)
B. Electric Salsa (Henrik Schwarz Rmx)
C. Electric Salsa (Roman Flügel Rmx)
D. Electric Salsa (Original Baba Baba Mix)

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