Celebrate 20 years of the Essential Mix with sets from its epic birthday party

A couple of weekends ago, the venerable Pete Tong celebrated a grand dance music milestone: The 20th anniversary of the esteemed Essential Mix. Over one thousand sets have been recorded for the series since its inception in 1993, turning it into what Tong fondly refers to as an “archive of dance music history.” (Check out our list of 20 DJs we still need an Essential Mix from over here).

For younger fans of electronic music, the Essential Mix archive is a time capsule that allows them to listen to sets that took place before they were born; for others, it’s a treasure chest of musical memories that allows them to re-visit the glory days. And what better way to celebrate 20 years than with a party? Rather than the usual broadcast from Tong’s studio, fans had the opportunity to join in on the fun at the Manchester Warehouse Project, with an absolutely stellar line-up pitting veterans of the scene back-to-back with rising stars.

That means that lucky attendees at the Warehouse Project got to see Pete Tong back-to-back with Eats Everything, Steve Lawler B2B with Hot Since 82, James Zabiela B2B with Paul Woolford, Skream B2B with Jackmaster, and Derrick Carter B2B with Krysko, as well as dance music veteran Sasha, Booka Shade playing live and a host of other dance music stalwarts and upstarts.

If you weren’t fortunate enough to be in attendance, though, you’re in luck, for the sets from the night have started to appear online. First to drop was the set from Sasha, who marked his 25th appearance on the Essential Mix with a forward-thinking hour of all new dark, trippy music, from Bwana and SCNTST to Tiga (video below). Next we got an hour of modulating house and techno from Eats Everything and Pete Tong, keeping things well paced between cool-down valleys and up-tempo peaks, and now the second two sets have just dropped: an epic hour of techy house veterans Booka Shade playing their finest tunes live, and an hour of Steve Lawler going back to back with Hot Since 82 with heady tribal house and throbbing techno. Check out the mixes and tracklists below.

Sasha Essential Mix Tracklist

1. Jagwar Ma – Come Save Me (Pachanga Boys Remix) [Pias]

2. Hunter/Game – Distant Storms (Christian Prommer Remix) [My Favorite Robot]

3. Bwana – Flute Dreams [White Label]

4. Mathew Jonson – Typerope [Itiswhatitis Recordings]

5. Tiga vs. Audion – Let’s Go Dancing (Solomun Remix) [Turbo Canada]

6. Eric Volta – Love Your Illusion [No.19 Music]

7. Henry Saiz – Love Mythology (Uner Remix) [Natura Sonoris]

8. SCNTST – Fall Of Misery [Boys Noize]

9. Rebel – Eyes Then Lips

10. Dominik Eulberg – Kleines Mausohr [Traum]

Pete Tong B2B Eats Everything Essential Mix Tracklist

1. Ron Costa vs Tiga & Audion – Gez Dancing [Eats Reebeef]

2. Hot Natured – Alternate State (Unknown Remix)

3. Green Velvet & Oliver $ – Dance To My Beat [Relief]

4. Green Velvet – Bigger Than Prince (The Martinez Brothers Remix) [Circus]

5. Blaze – To My Beat [Ambassador Remix) [Eats Reebeef]

6. Catz Eats Dogz – Evil Tram VIP [Pets]

7. Untitled – Untitled

8. Martin Buttrich – Monkey Troopers [Supplement Facts]

9. Ruben Mandolini Feat. Tronco Traxx – Walk 4 Me Acapella [Inside Me]

10. DJ Hyperactive – 25 Hours [Droid]

11. Good Guy Mikesh ft. Filburt – Place Of Love (Maceo Plex Edit) [Ellum]

12. Sandy Rivera – I Can’t Stop [Eats Reebeef]

Booka Shade Tracklist

1. Booka Shade – Leema

2. Booka Shade – Night Falls

3. Booka Shade – Charlotte

4. Booka Shade – Perfect Time

5. Booka Shade – Medley

6. Booka Shade – Darko

7. Booka Shade – Crossing Borders

8. Booka Shade – Blackout / Karrera

9. Booka Shade – In White Rooms

10. Booka Shade – Many Rivers

11. Booka Shade – Freak Out

12. Booka Shade – Mandarine Girl

13. Booka Shade – Love Inc

14. Booka Shade – Body Language

Steve Lawler B2B Hot Since 82 Tracklist

1. Sidney Charles – Morning Glory

2. Sidney Charles – Ruffline

3. Anek – Come Out To Play (Sante Remix)

4. Ninetoes – Finder

5. Hot Since 82 – Like You

6. Romanthony – Let Me Show You Love (Gavin Herlihy & Laura Jones Remix)

7. Harry “Choo Choo” Romero – Tania

8. ID – ID

9. Marco Faraone & Arado – Strange Neighbours

10. Raul Mezcolanza – Try To Do It

10. Barnt – Geffen

11. Kölsch – Goldfish

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