Disco overlord Larry Levan was the resident DJ behind the all-important Paradise Garage club in New York, where a whole scene was able to flourish. Larry Levan’s Classic West End Records Remixes is a 1999 compilation of 9 Levan favourites, each remixed by him for maximum dance-power. Triple vinyl reissue on West End Records.
7/10 Andrew Customer review, 2nd July 2016
If you haven't heard of Larry Levan or the Paradise Garage, then move in as there is nothing for you to see here. If you are massively familiar with him and his disco legacy then you'll love this, however you'll probably alreadyvhave most of not all of the tracks included here. Thanks no criticism of the collection, more a case of demonstrating how difficult it can be to document someone's legacy when they have already influenced so many others which rather stolen the thunder of comps like this by claiming the tracks for themselves.
Nevertheless, for disco aficionados this is a fine selection of records that pay tribute to the music being played by Levan atthe height of his popularity, if perhaps not at the peak of his creative powers.
Kicking off with the pretty straight ahead grrove of Taana Gardner - Heartbeat it isbfollowed up with the cosmic, Star Wars referencing Ednah Holt - Serious, Sirius, Space Party - also a big fabourite of David Mancuso's Loft parties. There is the Levan produced Peech Boys - Don’t Make Me Wait, Arthur Russell production Loose Joints - Is It All Over My Face and the pumping synths of Sparque's - Lets Go Dancin. And you still ain't done.
Taana Gardner features 3 times more which is I think a bit unnecessary. Her tracks are fine, but it doesnt exactly help reflect Levan's eclectic playlist. This is perhaps where the collection fails. It is full of great disco tunes, but lacks dimension, missing out on what made him great - there is no variety. Throwing in a funk rock tune, a soulful Chi Lites number or the gospel disco of the Joubert Singers for example would have provided a far better example of his work behind the booth.
That said, this is solid and a worthwhile purchase for anyone who wants to give their front room a NYC disco makeover for the evening.
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