Ruede Hagelstein is a tease, but not in a playful or flirtatious way. When you think you’re being looked after with a mix of calm, considerate deep house, the German weans you off, puts you onto a more pointedly funky strand, then withdraws with inconsiderate timing to what the dancefloor requires. Pulling rugs from under feet when heads are in clouds, it’s a journey not always taking the correct fork in the road.
Starting as a house haven to free the mind before sharp detoxes are lead by Chris Wood & Meat, Hagelstein becomes the DJ booth’s baddie, offering druggy chugs to serviceably dull the session’s expansion. Consulting Amine Edge on letting the funk back in and Marco Resmann as a brain-massaging asset, the prowling pianos of Fischer & Kleber build to a potentially massive moment, expect RH doesn’t follow through with a deservingly detonative drum kick and deadens the impact.
The Salt City Orchestra mix of Marshall Jefferson’s “Mushrooms” is the mix’s centerpiece, a monologue that remains enterprising and weirdly endearing. Perfectly suited for the set’s sensory freedom, it re-builds momentum by itself. Mike Dunn and Losoul again restore funk flavor, the latter with a devilish swing, but the segues continue to lack a natural reasoning and shared degrees of smoothness, and the balance never feels absolutely settled. Plenty of solid individual moments (Shlomi Aber, C2) clamber in and drift off before being awoken by the spinner’s jabbing fingers.
File under: The Cheapers, Tiefschwarz, Henrik Schwarz