When it was announced last year that Mark Radford had been tapped for a Rinse mix, it felt like a watershed moment: the first straight-up house turn in the series. Since then, house and techno have become increasingly common on Rinse, but it's still hard not to feel surprised by their next choice—Hot Creations associate Richy Ahmed, who doesn't have Radford's connections to pirate radio. Following an especially eclectic mix from Kode9, Ahmed's contribution signals a new chapter in the Rinse story, with the radio station reaching outside its cast of residents.
As a result, Rinse 23 doesn't really feel like a Rinse CD. The series has taken in grime, dubstep, funky, garage and everything in between through the years, but flirtations with house have always been taken hand-in-hand with UK-centric music (Ben UFO, Kode9), or simply packed with good old London bassweight (Radford). Not so here. Ahmed's mix is closely aligned with the Hot Creations empire, making few deviations from that label's template for passably catchy house. Ahmed has fine taste in poppier fare, from Outboxx's "Sunshine Mills" to the Michael Jackson samples of Jey Kurnis' "Francis," but his set rolls along with little pizzazz to perk up your ears.
Coming from a different background, Ahmed's smooth and seamless mixing style also feels incongruous for the series. It might suit his record collection, but Rinse 23 carries the nagging feeling that this is the kind of session you could get anywhere, completely removed from the label's scene-defining pedigree. A capable DJ by anyone's measure, Ahmed's venture into the Rinse world is certainly competent. But it isn't much more.
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Tracklist: Richy Ahmed - Rinse:23 01. Outboxx - Sunshine Mills
02. Demarzo - Draw The Line (Jingling Mix)
03. Les Cerveaux Lents - Tribute To Chicago
04. Jey Kurmis - Francis
05. Chaos In The CBD - Slab
06. Hot Natured - Reverse Skydiving feat. Anabel Englund (Tom Shorterz Remix)
07. Mark Jenkyns - Mind Dust
08. Danny Tenaglia - Read My Lips feat. Lula
09. Richy Ahmed - Your Love
10. Chris Lattner & East End Dubs - Nut Cracker
11. Kim Ann Foxman - Creature (Richy Ahmed Remix)
12. Vaal - Cine (Tale Of Us & Luca Cazal Remix)
13. Tanka - Salwa
14. Waff - Body Ice
15. Subb-an - Cloak & Dagger
16. Jey Kurmis - Lil Nic French
17. Michael Janson - All I Give
18. Lake People - Point In Time
19. Phonique feat. Erlend Oye - For The Time Being (Burnski Remix)