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Xpander EP


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Audio CD, EP, October 19, 1999
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Biography

DJ/producer/remixer SASHA is recognized as one of the world’s most innovative icons of the electronic genre. In addition to playing 100 shows across 30 countries in 2009 including a successful Ibiza residency at Cream Amnesia, Sasha had a prolific year in the studio – remixing top singles for Kasabian, Doves, Little Boots and Damian Lazarus. He also released remix packages and ... Read more in Amazon's Sasha Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 19, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: EP
  • Label: Ultra Records
  • ASIN: B0000296W7
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #173,751 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Xpander Edit
2. Xpander
3. Belfunk
4. Rabbitweed
5. Baja

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Five track EP from the reputed house artist. Contains 'Xpander' (Edit), 'Xpander', 'Belfunk', 'Rabbitweed' and 'Baja'. Available domestically for the first time & at a cheaper price than the import. Standard jewelcase. 1999 release.

Amazon.com

DJs Sasha and Digweed are known throughout the world for their sublime mixes and clever choice of material popularized by their Northern Exposure CD series. Beyond the interminable techno and house of their contemporaries, S&D have found some magic key with which they make real music out of monotonous dance-floor detritus. Their mixes breathe, travel, and reflect, making armchair listening a resplendent journey in the head. Those of us who would rather endure an evening with Sugar Ray than get caught in some ear-shattering dance dungeon find solace in the mercurial, near shamanic sounds of S&D. But can solo Sasha match the muse? Xpander follows the S&D formula to a T, leaving you wondering who is the genie and who is the master in that partnership. Almost subliminally, the Sasha tracks "Xpander," "Belfunk," "Rabbitweed," and "Baja" unwind as much in the air as in your head. The beat, of course, is omnipotent, but Sasha adds touches of glowing ambient, experimental house, soundtrack surrealism, and trippy, Warpish techno. Remember that scene in 2001: A Space Odyssey where our hero, Dave, travels light years in a single moment, only to find himself looking at his own aged body eating eggs? Xpander is the eerie modern soundtrack to a heightened aging process, one where the mind gets lost in the void while the body either shuts down or dances. --Ken Micallef

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 51 customer reviews
The Xpander edit track is good, but the longer version is my preference.
M. Abate
There's "Belfunk", another great tune (more sparce and slow with a bit of groove, "Rabbitweed", and the ambient stylings of "Baja."
R Diaz
Basically, I love this CD, and if you like trance music then this is a must buy.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Y. Ronnen on May 12, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Well, it seems that Sasha had decided to go further than just DJing and mixing and decided to start produing too. After listening to this EP, I've reached the same conclusion that I've reached when I've heard "Northern Exposure" for the first time. This guy is more than just a DJ - he's an artist.
Except the radio cut for "XPander", all of the tracks are very long (10 minutes and up) and yet do not find them boring. Instead, they really do what they were meant to do : put you in a trance. All the tracks are absolutly fantastic, and I don't think you'll find a respectable trance collection CD that doesn't have one track from this EP.
XPander has the best potential to be a radio hit, but my favorite track on this EP is "Bellfunk". Sasha is not afraid to put stop to the beats in this track, and so you get 2 minutes of a dreamy chillout sound in a middle of a really poundy track. "Rabbitweed" is a fine tune too, and Baja is a bit different, starting slowly and climbing up.
I believe that after this EP Sasha will become a very wanted person in the production studios as he is on the clubs. You should really try this EP and experience a sophisticated, non cheesy trance and progressive house sound.
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20 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on May 2, 2005
Format: Audio CD
People have been gushing about this EP forever, saying it is the touchstone of progressive trance. I would agree partially about that claim but as a consumer the overall value of the record is something to consider as well. Hence, I will begin my review.

First of all, this is an EP, strictly speaking - five songs (one of which is a shortened edit of "Xpander") that admittedly constitute a significant length of time. This is not a mix album, where the tracks are programmed to flow one after the other, as a live set would. Rather, this is an electronica artist EP where Sasha displays his own beatmaking and songwriting skills - which are considerable.

There are three golden tracks on this record. "Belfunk", which was used for Sasha's Northern Exposure III: Expeditions set, is the first of these. There is something to be said for a DJ who mixes up his songs with feels other than "four on the floor", as Sasha does here. There is a memorable buildup, with a simple but intoxicating flow, and a fallout which forms the core of the song. It is here that Sasha slowly builds his mix back up, starting with simple synth stabs to state the melody. (The entire phrase is 5 measures, which is an irregular length; this is likely why the phrase has a unique feel.) Sasha's memorable sense of texture and melody shine through even as he engages in intellectual exercises such as this one.

"Rabbitweed" is a more straightforward trance exploration, with a solid 4-to-the-bar beat pattern throughout. There is a decidedly foreign vibe about the piece; whether it is Middle Eastern or closer to Indian remains slightly vague, however. This is a stomper that would probably be heard in a typical club set, but Sasha's pacing and intensity keep it from delving into pop cliche.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By JEDI on November 23, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Sasha is back with a blazing CD that is reassuring that he is one of the top in his game. Picking up where Northern Exposure's "Expiditions" left off, the DJ continues to assault with dark trance that moves the soul. Listen to the track "belfunk" for a perfect example. My favorite track happens to be "baja" for the different groove it provides. All in all, Sasha has shown more growth as an artist here on this EP of shake and he shows it. Even without John Digweed behind the table, Sasha is able to evoke the same emotion in this EP as any Exposure CD to date. Buy it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By j. on March 25, 2000
Format: Audio CD
i decided to pick this up for the hell of it, as i've heard some of sasha's remix work (bt's 'embracing the future' and chem bros 'out of control). let me say this is a damn good cd, although only having 4 tracks (5 counting the edit, but who cares) is a bit of a let down.
there is something quite funny about this cd though...as the xpander edit blasted through my speakers, i had this weird feeling like i heard the track before. then it hit me. i've heard it at every rave i've been to (4 so far). not only that, but it's featured in the wipeout 3 commercial and possibly the game (don't know, never played it...but i know sasha did the music). but it's just one of those magical tracks where it never gets old like 'halcyon & on & on' and 'o.b.e.' by rabbit in the moon. the full length xpander rocks out the house adding more to the floor every time the main loop comes back around and the it just changes *snap* like that. belfunk starts out as hard hitting trance then midway jumps into a creepy piano line with minimal percussion. in rabbitweed you can just hear the breakbeat trying to get through, but sasha manages to keep a tight a rein on it with some wicked synths. baja is quite a departure from the usual progressive trance, but as an ambient track it holds it's own
so what are you waiting for? buy it! j.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Robert Nerenberg on January 20, 2000
Format: Audio CD
XPander has to be one of the Top Five trance songs ever as well as one of my all time faves(Saltwater--- Chicane, Silence--- Mike Koglin are two others). The opening mix while short is hard and intense. The second mix is longer and more mellow. It definitely works but doesn't reach the frenzy that Track one reaches or XPander on his live set from Ibiza hits.(That XPander is the best mix of the song I've heard). I'll admit the first time I heard Belfunk, and Rabbitweed I was totally bored and wondered what the fuss was about. Now I can't stop myself from overplaying it. If you like going on journeys while never leaving the room these two songs are for you. Belfunk flows from the first seconds of the song to its long conclusion(It's an eleven minute tour-de-force). Rabbitweed runs a tad shorter but is a bit more intense. He mixes it up perfect. After you get through the first four songs you get to Baja but I am normally so tripped out from my travels I have yet to fully grasp the meaning of the song. A beautifully flowing intermittently intense, constantly thought-evoking album.
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