Heartbeat Volume 1
Let’s face it, DJ remix compilations are a dime a dozen. That’s why reviewers are always somewhat dubious when one happens across our mailbox. In the case of San Francisco house DJ David Harness, however, things are somewhat different.
His new mix, Heartbeat Volume 1, takes smooth garage house out of the clubs and puts it into a warmer place: the soul. It is this soul that makes him such a skilled manipulator. Harness has selected tracks (like Goapele’s majestic “Closer,” Charles Spencer’s mighty “Even Now” and Beady Belle’s deep house excursion “Hindsight”) that swerve from seemingly different directions and converge into a furious eddy of deep underground bliss. He’s also included two stellar collaborations with Loveslap founder Charles Spencer (the uplifting “Breezy’s Groove” and the charismatic “Tribal Stomp”) that not only fit warmly into his set but testify to the fact that Harness knows how to pick songs that strike chords and shuffle feet.
From the opening of Alma Horton’s “Gimme That Music” to the closing notes of Blaze’s “Found Love,” Harness declares with a loud house beat-laden exclamation point that he is in it for the long haul. He is a DJ who uses high hats, tribal thumps and subtle backbeats to get across his message that house is an emotional musical force to be reckoned with. Like the genre itself, Harness is matriculating.
As demonstrated with this release, he’s gone from being the don of SF House to an artist who understands how to work a room and really reach an audience. For a DJ, there is no better feeling in the world. Heartbeat will undoubtedly introduce many new people to David Harness, while thrusting him into the upper echelon of renowned club jocks.