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Wednesday, Sep 30 1998
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Felix the Dog
Felix the Dog is more of a storyteller than a typical DJ. At every party, at every club, he seeks a narrative from the crowd and crafts a soundtrack that matches its unique dance-floor cinema. Borrowing flutes from Brian Eno and snippets of funk guitar from an album of Richard Burton narrating War of the Worlds, DJ Felix the Dog shapes innumerable layers of sound into rich downtempo creations. The tailored mixes and imaginative breaks of techno, breakbeat, punk, and hip hop can move dancers and wallflowers alike.

Felix, who moved from Brighton, England, to San Francisco 10 years ago, began dropping beats and moving crowds with co-producer Claire Rhodes at Black Diamond parties back in the early '90s. It was at these various basement gatherings along Haight Street that Felix helped introduce downtempo to the San Francisco masses and developed his own cinematic style. Back then Felix and his cohorts -- DJs Thomas the Mammal, Laron, and Darkhorse -- would spin along to pieces of film like the car chase scene in Bullitt, incorporating slices of rumbling engines that complemented murky, rolling beats.

This mixing of material from diverse sources remains in Felix's sets today, but the downtempo grooves he helped popularize are by no means the limit of his talents. Although Black Diamond is still a force in underground DJ culture, these days Felix's just as likely to slam a knowledgeable, elegant mix of experimental hip hop, drum 'n' bass, or ragga.

-- Robert Arriaga

DJ Felix the Dog performs with DJ Juice McQueen (aka Z-Trip) and Shortkut at the "Money Shot" on Friday, Oct. 2, at 10 p.m. at Storyville, 1751 Fulton (at Masonic). Tickets are $7; call 441-1751.

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Robert Arriaga

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