Whether they're working as MURK, Funky Green Dogs, or simply themselves, Miami DJ/producers Oscar Gaetan and Ralph Falcon have had a significant impact on dance music, winning over fans around the world with their signature dark house sound. Their latest mix compilation, Bangin' Progressive Beats, finds them staying with the tried and true: spinning deeply dark, trembling bass sub-beats that can always move something.
Segueing in and out of heavy house beats, ominous monotone vocals, and tribal rhythms, MURK cuts together over fourteen tracks, produced by themselves and others, creating a more accessible version of the solo sets Gaetan spins as a resident at Club Space on Saturdays. From the opening cut, Abe Duque's happily harrowing "She is Yours," to Moogroove's hard-hitting "Deuces," the DJs build a murky (pardon the pun) environment, spotlighting pop vocalists like INXS and dance diva Amber over a pumping percussion foundation. Each peak in the set is prefaced by a subterranean moment in the depths of bass vibrations.
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While MURK's mixing is top-notch and the chain of beats rarely hits a snag, astute listeners might grow restless midway through. The musical range practiced on this release isn't the most daring, and with so many stay-the-course mix CDs cramming the club bins, fans and critics alike will better appreciate Bangin' as just a teaser to MURK's forthcoming album of original material due this spring. Then, it's hoped, MURK will deliver better and more necessary material to silence any doubters.