This might seem a bit of an overblown description for the first few minutes of the album, but that's because it takes a little while to get going. Sure, it's necessary to hold back. (And hold back, and hold back...) There's a hope, but not a certainty, that holding back is just what he's up to, while the opening build that leads into the blend of "Kinda High"/"Auf und Ab" (with the former's too-familiar vocal) catches a locked groove and tries to decide which way to turn.
Ever listened to the first minutes of a set that you were really looking forward to, got bored and took a wander, and then stopped in an hour later and the legions of hell were in the process of being commanded forth? Well, just as "Higgs"s' rubber band tension is stretched to its breaking point, you're running back to your mates with a Very Serious Look on your face spluttering about how they Have To Come Right Now. From there, it goes deeper and more syncopated, full of muscle-bound tech and railroad momentum. "Two Ninety One"'s warning chimes calm and the mix drops out before the re-introduction of a lonely kick, giving you a short breath above water and scaring you with the anticipation at the same time.
The next few minutes are an exercise in pressure-loading, after which Pfirter's "Mi Estudio" breaks through with unprecedented quantities of bass hypnotism and pure urgency in the form of a scalp-shredding lead line. By the time "Sor" drops, you're deep under, leaning on the barriers at the front next to some dude with his eyes closed who's circling his arm around in a kind of Zen-like trance. It's raw industrialism of the kind that we had been largely deprived of until Berghain and Ostgut Ton came along. Dissipating into scatty weirdness near the end, the house lights flash on terrifyingly, then go off again, before the bookending "Kinda High" vocal (more relevant and less hackneyed this time) burns it out and suddenly, you're back in stark reality, wondering where the bloody hell you've been for the past half-hour.
Anyone can put together a pounding mix, but not many people can do it with the kind of measure that Liebing does here. This album isn't 60 minutes of Chris Liebing at a Secret Warehouse Location, it's a direct translation of the whole depraved experience to your living room, whose few shortcomings include the potential to make you blow your entire overdraft on tickets to Awakenings for the next five years.
Tue / 18 May 2010
01. Chris Liebing vs. Green Velvet - Kinda High / Auf Und Ab (Dustin Zahn Mix)
02. Chris Liebing - Ataraxia
03. Adam Beyer - Antistius
04. Brian Sanhaji - Higgs
05. Function vs. Jerome Sydenham - Two Ninety One
06. Function vs. Jerome Sydenham - Two Ninety One (Chris Liebing Edit)
07. Monoloc - Pumpkin
08. Pfirter - Mi Estudio
09. Speedy J - Armstrong
10. Tommy Four Seven - Sor
11. Alex Bau - Arctica
12. Chris Liebing vs. Green Velvet - Kinda High / Auf Und Ab (Dustin Zahn Mix)