This year has been, by all accounts, a massive one for Ben Westbeech. Letting his crooning, vocal persona take a back seat and instead letting Breach be the driving force has paid dividends. His release with Dark Sky produced two widely played top-tier tracks, and the follow up ‘Jack’ was truly an International smash, gathering a glossy video and a number 9 slot in the UK charts. Inevitably with such success the vultures are already circling citing that his sound is now more Defected than Detroit, or something along those lines……


You could be forgiven for looking at the tracklist and having a niggling feeling then, that this selection is contrived in places. Is it a bloke-who-dun-good trying to gain back underground credibility (whatever that is), or is it a genuine output representative of where he’s at right now? On listening, it’s clearly the latter. Breach’s contribution to the DJ-Kicks series is a coherent showcase of bang-up-to-date house music, and you can completely agree with his assurance that this is the kinda thing he plays when he DJs.

Initially, it’s a bit of a trip; Westbeech prefers to go from A to B via Y, for example sitting pop-not-pop anthem Pedestrian’s Hoyle Road in between tracks by Fred P and Coni, like a piece of tropical pineapple between two tough bits of rye bread. But as the mix progresses we get into more familiar territory, with great cuts from Cassio Kohl, Detroit Swindle, and Redinho’s monster ‘Searching’ served up. His chops as a DJ are shown all over this mix too. Transitions feel natural throughout, even when the track list suggests it shouldn’t fit, such as Dopplereffekt’s Z-Boson.

All in all this is another stellar addition to the DJ-Kicks series. Like most mixes its unlikely to change the natural order of things, however it’s a great compiliation of what’s happening right now in house music, and should silence anyone doubting his integrity and passion for house music. Defected or Detroit, does it really matter, why not both……

Breach – DJ Kicks (Out Now)

01. Innercity – Prince Of The Immortal Woods
02. Wire People – Triangle Vision (Original Mix)
03. Beesmunt Soundsystem – All Day
04. Fred P. – It Is What It Is
05. Pedestrian – Hoyle Road
06. Coni – My Secret Diving
07. Breach – Beroving (DJ-Kicks)
08. Cassio Kohl – Broken
09. CLOSE feat. Joe Dukie – My Way (Dusky Remix)
10. Iron Galaxy – Attention Seeker
11. Detroit Swindle – The Break Up
12. Dopplereffekt – Z-Boson
13. Redinho – Searching
14. Winx – How’s The Music
15. Sabre – Nightdrive To Bolland

Rating 8/10