Sasha Re:Fracted [Live]

One of the original superstar DJs of the 1990s, Sasha was equally famed for his hedonism offstage as his onstage aptitude for conducting crowds to similar states of ecstasy with his masterful selections. Recent years have seen Sasha transformed into an elder statesman of rave, with his most recent release — last year’s Scene Delete — being a neoclassical-cum-electronic work variously influenced by Steve Reich and Nils Frahm.

In this, only the second live show he’s ever performed, Sasha reinterprets that recording in the first half with orchestral accompaniment and the set opens with a plaintive solo piano melody before the luscious eight-piece string section, led and arranged by Rosie Danvers, elevates the composition into the percussive insistence of tracks 'Baracus' and 'View2'.

Drum machines, synthesisers and orchestral percussion weave a satisfying blend of modernist ambient textures with the thumping crescendos of club performances. There’s a slow build in energy, assisted by vocals from Julie Daske and Laura Bettinson, yet the compositions often blend into one another and fail to fully engage.

Read the rest of the review in The Morning Star.

[This piece was published on 07/06/17]