Ten years after his first release, UK artist Lone (Matt Cutler) is taking up the reins and releasing an entry into the renowned DJ-Kicks series.
Anyone familiar with Lone will recognize this as being the perfect platform for the artist to showcase the genres that, over the years, he's worked with and have influenced him. The first half of the mix is pretty close to perfection, moving through beautiful layers of downtempo topped with 8-bit glitches before quickly landing on "Brooklyn Banks," a Lone exclusive for DJ-Kicks, propped up by a loose beat and cresting piano trills. From there, the beat thickens and the rumbling, gravely hook of Camu Tao's "Hold the Floor" eases in (by far the best transition and track on the mix) and Lone's roots and influences begin peeking through.
Lone's take on DJ-Kicks nails it right out of the gate, but starts to lose its eclectic melange as it pushes forward, swapping out the nuanced front half of the album with bland cut-outs that vary too little. From downtempo to hip-hop to ambient, the album then moves onto bouncy, colourful house (Gnork's "U"), kicks up the percussion with "Placid Angles" by John Beltran (presents Nostalgic), and then falls into a bit of monotony.
As the mix nears its end, it rolls into lo-fi house with "The Outsiders" by Ross From Friends (cheap claps and arid hisses abound) and glitchy, repetitive electro that drags on longer than necessary. It's a slight misstep, but one that can be overlooked given the rest of the mix. (!K7)