Terence Fixmer/Various Aktion Mekanik

Every once in a while, you take a look at your CD collection, skim over its many faces (and cases) and heave a big sigh of frustration. I do anyway. That’s why discs like this are perfect on just those occasions. Sometimes it’s nice to have someone else play DJ and mix songs up a bit, taking the decision-making out of your hands. Belgian producer Terence Fixmer has taken the liberty here by throwing together 16 Nu Beat and EBM classics from the good old days when electroclash was still a twinkle in its mother’s eye. Some songs such as the Normal’s "Warm Leatherette” and Skinny Puppy’s "Assimilate” will be fondly recognised by many, but the real gems here are the songs that most of us likely have never heard. Early Fad Gadget, obscure one-record wonders Crash Course in Science, German post-punk electronic pioneers DAF and Canadaës Psyche are all here. At the risk of sounding pretentious, I won’t say that I like the obscurity of his choices. Let’s just say that it isn’t very often that you’ll hear Nitzer Ebb’s "Warsaw Ghetto” instead of "Join in the Chant.” This is one compilation worth spending the money on. Chances are that if you care enough to take interest in this in the first place, there is some material here that you don’t already own. This one will be enjoyed by old and new fans alike. A great history lesson in early electronic music. Available on double vinyl too! (Music Man)