Disc one reflects Väth's diverse main room closing sets, featuring blatant deep progressive sounds alongside the more typical big room Väth techno, typified by ice cannon-inducing juggernauts like Timo Maas' "Subtellite." The confusion starts when the instantly recognisable cascading chirps of Sasha's "Mongoose," makes an appearance after hardly being played all summer. Other oddities include Virtualmismo's "Mismoplastico" and Smith & Selway's "Total Departure," the latter of which sounds like the duo ran out of ideas and rehashed their legendary "Move."
Yet the almost slapdash miscellany embodies a Sven happily ignoring the cynics and simply playing records that he loves in the cavernous Amnesia main room. It's a mentality—ignoring critics, that is—that saw the night enjoy unprecedented success. Despite the stripped back policy to the night this year—a concept that cost one photo shoot and some part-time dancers, negligible PR compared to rival events and non-existent décor in the club—more than 8,000 people crammed into Amnesia more than once, and the venue recorded at least four total sell-outs.
Retrospectively you can chart how the perfect storm materialized: The closure of DC10, the economic pinch limiting tourists to only two or three clubbing nights and the redevelopment of the Amnesia Terrace—and it's appealing sound system with bus stop DJ booth—into an arena-like main room. When Ricardo and Luciano played back-to-back on the terrace for eight hours this year, well, something special happened. (As DJs and performers, they showed that there was far more adventure left in the Cocoon story.)
Disc two offers snippets of memorable terrace moments like Joris Voorn's thrilling anthemic Magnolia mix of "Dark Flower," and provides a more panoramic vista of the Cocoon Ibiza experience. There are the warped Chris Tietjen staples (Reboot's "Vandong"), Ricardo regulars (SIS' "Orgsa") and even understated Marco Carola moments (Pigon's "Promises"). Despite the predictably of omnipresent hit "Orbitalife," exclusion would have made Johnny D noticeable by his absence—and the same goes for Dubfire's remake of "Grindhouse."
Ultimately, that's why the compilation works: It's a snapshot; nothing more, nothing less. It is, indeed, the Sound of the Ninth Season. Naturally, this causes the mix to seem immediately dated, but what critics might not understand is that's exactly the point.