For a great long while of my musical life I utterly hated electronic music or “techno” as I foolishly referred to it as. I was admittedly ignorant to the plethora of subgenres contained within “techno” music, such as house, trance, drum and bass, just to name a few. And of course each of these subgenres have sub-subgenres to which fans and producers alike cling to fiercely at times and at other times they cross over into multiple genres on a single album.
These days I am much more appreciative of electronic music, even though I wouldn’t say that it is the first thing I gravitate towards when choosing something to listen to, however when I am introduced to something good, say by a friend of mine or for work purposes, I grow that much more appreciative of electronic music. And it was for work purposes, this article specifically, that I was introduced to v/a (various artists). v/a is a compilation of 18 remixes by artists from five different countries put out by the Santa Fe, New Mexico-based electronic music label Mesa Recordings. The album, entitled Mesa Remixed 1 is an ambient amalgamation of mellow grooves and catchy head bobbing beats.
According to the folks at Mesa Recordings, Mesa Remixed 1 is meant to “invoke the spirit of the annual desert mesa parties from which the label and this compilation takes its name.” I am unfamiliar with such gatherings myself, though after a few spins of Mesa Remixed 1 I was able to get a sense of the freeing feeling which must come with being out in a desert at night beneath the stars, and just letting everything go and letting the melodic music take you where it will.
Mesa Remixed 1 begins with “Gone” Revy Remix, which is a nine-plus-minute slow and sinister track with dark echoes of ringing single guitar chords. This is followed by the cheerier “Abundance” Doubting Thomas remix, which retains a slowed down and restrained clubby feel to it as does “13 Blossoms” Spoolius Melange Remix. Quiyote Remix of “The Rocks” stood out with its ‘90s groove of English electro auteurs Underworld as did “Gumball Machine” for its nostalgic Atari sounding beats.
Mesa Remixed 1 is by and large a compilation for fans of the more mellow chillwave likened branch of electronic music, though seasoned veterans may find flaws amongst its eighteen songs, most of them being the lack of diversity in the overall sound of many of the songs. As a whole however I would suggest Mesa Remixed 1 as a perfect starting point for anyone looking to shirk off their ignorant distaste for electronic music, or are just looking for a soundtrack to help them let go of their problems, lose themselves, and chill out for a bit.
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