Claude VonStroke - fabric 46 CD
Sometimes life moves in mysterious ways. Take, for instance, Barclay Crenshaw, aka super-producer and dirtybird/mothership boss Claude VonStroke. How could he, as a rap-obsessed 16 year old dreaming of an engineering job at Metroplex (Juan Atkins’ studio) in Detroit, expect that someday he’d end up headlining gigs alongside Atkins? The same could be said about his days as a frustrated creative working in post-production houses, when he began creating an electronic music documentary by interviewing internationally-renowned DJs. He never could’ve predicted that one day, rather ironically, he’d be in the opposite chair: the world-famous DJ being interviewed. Cleveland-born, Detroit-raised, San Francisco-based Barclay Crenshaw has been fuelled by happy accidents and a contagious, happy-go-lucky attitude in general. He’s living proof that everything happens for a reason, even if everything might seemingly happen at the wrong time. Ask him about his novelty rap tapes as a teenager, or his time in Hollywood that ended with his song being pulled from a blockbuster movie, or his short-lived drum & bass career that ended in a disheartening electrical disaster. There were many reasons for Barclay to think that his musical fate was doomed, but it took a "surprise" production (and the meeting of a likeminded spirit, Justin Martin) to convince him otherwise.
"Everything is really tailored; the tracks aren’t really the tracks, it is all cut up, chopped and twisted. It’s challenging to do a project that has to say everything in such a small time frame because I play a lot of genres. So I worked hard on getting all the different sounds that I really dig into one mix." Claude VonStroke
Taking the characteristic bump of dirtybird/mothership, including the fresh sounds of Italoboyz and Voodeux, and merging it with the likes of Troy Pierce’s stripped-back precision and the melancholic grace of Stimming, fabric 46 is the eccentric, animated, wide-ranging sound of Claude VonStroke embodied. Always maintaining a sense of humour throughout, and projecting his playful personality into each transition and groove, it vividly captures the feel of his often imitated - but never replicated - bubbly bass-driven style. Tricked out and chopped up to perfection, the 22+ tracks hold on to a tangible underlying motif throughout: for lack of a better word, fun. Arranged with such artistic dexterity, fabric 46 swells and pulses with womps, stomps, climbing basslines and slippery beats; sounds collected from across the electronica map, all housed stylistically on one immaculate disc. At times the mix will make you laugh out loud; other times you’ll find yourself disarmingly spellbound; other times still, you may even close your eyes in a delicate daydream – but most of all, the point is to make you move. So, as DJ Deeon says: "Shake what your momma gave ya."