Music News

Carl Cox

Carl Cox may be one of the best Detroit DJs who actually hails from Manchester, U.K. Not that the tribal-house guru hasn't repeatedly blazed through the Motor City during his quarter-century of jockeydom. It's just that he bottles a particular blend of soul tech, futurescape electro and throbbing club vibe that's so hard house/garage, so American, that many assume the stocky vinyl vet is a native.

Currently, Cox is stateside in support of his debut major-label mix CD, Carl Cox Global. The disc, released on FFRR/Strictly Rhythm, features only a couple of well-known dance artists -- Angel Moraes ("Turn It Up") and DJ Disciple ("Treble & Bass") -- in order to focus on quality cuts from Oxia (the retro "Nation"), Bryan Zentz (the brooding "Watch the Sun") and Simulation (the bouncy "Simulation"). While staying true to his four-on-the-floor philosophy, Cox lays down a tribal-house style that avoids the pots-and-pans grind of many tribal DJs. With richly produced drum beds and just a sprinkling of vocal samples, Cox's sound is warm and organic in comparison with that of peers like Armand Van Helden or Victor Calderone. While Cox is always a crowd-pleaser in a live setting, his tense style can take some getting used to for the uninitiated. Once you get comfortable in his world, however, Global is a dance-floor treat.

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Kelly Lemieux