Bäumel makes all the disparate pieces fit by blending together so many tracks that their edges are smoothed down. (Check the section where Throwing Snow, Vessels, Doubtingthomas and M83 all merge.) On occasion, this approach can sound like a nondescript gloop. The dynamics and flow of the mix can also feel odd at first—the rippling ivories of Nils Frahm's "Remember" would be a great way to catch your breath, but dropping it so early on doesn't feel warranted. After accepting that Bäumel has gone for a slow-burning journey rather than a dance floor workout, however, the mix makes more sense.
As he does with the Frahm track, Bäumel uses M83 twice to inject some air. "Couleurs" and "You Appearing" bookend a section that contains what are ostensibly peak-time tracks—like Plastikman's "Disconnect," the Trevor Jackson remix of DJ Hell's "Hell's Kitchen" and Bäumel's exclusive remix of Underworld's "Bird 1"—but which hardly hit those heights. The recognisable parts of each tune only briefly emerge before they're sucked back into the dark undercurrent. Similarly, when FKA Twigs appears over the shuddering collision of Throwing Snow and Kangding Ray, the effect makes her sound less like the avant-pop queen she is and more like she's teetering on the edge of a K-hole.
The big moments of Bäumel's Balance are less about the most famous tracks than the parts that sound genuinely huge. The opening section brings together Heathered Pearls' "Ringing Temple (Decreased Version)," Jon Hopkins' "Journey," Kurt Baggaley's "Former Self" and Christopher Bissonnette's "Jour Et Nuit," raising the curtain with real widescreen glory. Rather than highlighting the individual details of his selections, Bäumel uses each piece to paint a larger picture.
Thu / 28 Apr 2016
01. Patrice Bäumel - Intro
02. Heathered Pearls - Ringing Temple (Decreased Version) / Jon Hopkins - Journey
03. Kurt Baggaley - Former Self / Christopher Bissonnette - Jour Et Nuit
04. Nils Frahm - Familiar
05. Throwing Snow - Clasp / Vessels - Elliptic (Barker & Baumecker Remix) / Doubtingthomas - Casa De Bas Bun
06. M83 - Couleurs
07. Plastikman - Disconnect
08. Minilogue - Ahck (Jichael Mackson Remix) / Bee Mask - The Story Of Keys And Locks
09. DJ Hell - Hells Kitchen (Playgroup Remix)
10. Underworld - Bird 1 (Patrice Bäumel Remix)
11. Guy J - Moderate
12. M83 - You Appearing
13. Barry Jamieson - Stars (Charlie May Low-g Remix)
14. Jesse Somfay - Lying In A Bed Of Myst / Stephan Bodzin - Wir (Max Cooper Remix)
15. El_Txef_A - Mugarrirantz (Dave DK Remix)
16. Throwing Snow - Lumen / FKA Twigs - Glass & Patron / Kangding Ray - L'envol
17. Patrice Bäumel - Departure