RAZOR SHARP
by Matt Kalkhoff
 

If you haven't yet experienced one of Peter "Razor" Osback's live DJ performances, it might help to consider his prime influences in the music industry in order to get a better idea of what to expect. His frequent visits to Vinyl and Earth, where he dutifully listens to and learns from mix masterminds Danny Tenaglia and Junior Vasquez, respectively, have noticeably influenced his multifaceted musical style. This may not necessarily be the sound you equate with the traditional Saint-At-Large White Party experience, but with the selection of Peter Rauhofer to play the first set of last year's event, the organizers have made it clear that they are attempting to reach a wider audience while exposing guests to new and different types of music.

It's anybody's guess how the programs of three such diverse artists will work together, so you'll just have to see for yourself when Razor joins legendary DJs Frankie Knuckles and Robbie Leslie at Roseland on Saturday, February 16th to kick off the 22nd annual Saint-At-Large White Party. Razor's unique blend of tribal rhythms, energetic vocals and precision layering is sure to impress even the most skeptical attendees.

Avid clubgoers and dance music enthusiasts are likely already familiar with Razor's extensive remix and production work. As one half of the massively successful duo, Razor N' Guido, the young Long Islander played a key role in creating some of the biggest dance hits of the past several years. Among the pair's many revered remixes are Kim English's "Unspeakable Joy" and Vernessa Mitchell's "This Joy," while original productions like "Do It Again" and "Miss The Way" (featuring Reina) dominated dance floors and music charts around the world.

But all good things must come to an end, and although Razor and Guido are still friends, they parted ways in 2001 to pursue individual professional goals. Razor now works primarily with another long-time friend, Mike Pont, a DJ for whom he used to work the lights when he was just getting started in the business and now collaborates with on a number of different projects. Among the many commercially-commissioned and personal remixes they are currently working on is a record for the new group Frou Frou called "Breathe." Razor will debut a special version of the song at White Party as a tribute to the flag dancers. Eight Ball Records will also be releasing a "deep vibe" track that Razor and Pont have created under the moniker Wave Lab, and Razor is exploring mix CD options with both Centaur Music and Logic Records as well.

For those of us who have grown weary of the relentlessly dramatic build-ups so frequently found in many remixes (including the bulk of Razor N' Guido's discography), good news is on the horizon. "I want to do more production work and get more songs out there. I'm in the studio every day just trying to create a new sound without all the build-ups," Razor reports, and then firmly reassures, "No more build-ups!"

New York audiences will have plenty of opportunities after White Party to catch Razor's handiwork during his once-a-month residency at Roxy and on Fire Island this summer at the Pavilion. He's consciously chosen to play more gay parties lately in an effort to "get away from the whole straight thing because they just don't know." Razor truly appreciates the respect and recognition the gay community has shown him over the years, and claims, "Even if I won the lottery tomorrow, I'd still be playing these parties."


© 2002 Matt Kalkhoff
Featured in NEXT Magazine's White Party issue, February 2002