Five tracks by as many artists on Merck originally released on n5MD as a part of the MD2 compilation. Featured artists are: Proem, L’usine ICL, Jvox, Tim Koch and Spark “Laid back off” by Proem features his cut-up treatment and some interesting choices in sounds, creating a dubby feeling to this track and beats are functional as ever. “Don’t Interfere”, L’usine ICL delivers again and delivers in style: excellent glitchy beats, subbass and organ like melody, forward moving and lots and lots of atmosphere. Jvox’s “Cardona” a playful track with some truly beautiful sounds and heartbreaking string arrangements follows it. Tim Koch’s “poly800vs.6581″ features straight up beats and some really nice layered structures alongside effective chords. Spark’s “Array” ends this EP with some nicely played basslines and tempo shifts together with playful electronic sounds.
Hymen is celebrating the fifth year of record label activities and what better way of celebrating than releasing a double CD? The “Masonic” contains all imaginable music from the electronic music field, exactly in the same manner as this versatile label has evolved during these years. You get it all, from the melancholic to the straight up abusive! In the order they appear and with no other guiding principle than order, commencing with item number one: A2, Neutral, Dead Hollywood Stars, Beefcake, L’usine ICL, Funkstörung, Imminent, Baracuda, Scorn, Venetian Snares, Frz & Blue Baboon & Etero Expandum Club, Fourplay, Solar-X and Sonic Dragolgo. The order of appearance on item number two is the following: Gridlock, Xingu Hill, Lilienthal, Bochumwelt, Substanz-t, Starfish Pool, Noosa Hedz, Somatic Responses, Xanopticon, K_chico, Red Sparrow, Llips, Trifid Project, End, So Fucking Jazz and Fanny. And to single out some tracks in the high quality breakbeat vain of things on the first item: 1.04, 1.05, 1.06, 1.08, 1.09 and 1.11. And to single out some more tracks in the high quality breakbeat vain of things on the second item: 2.01 – 2.08, 2.12 and 2.14. If you like breakbeat based electronic music then my recommendation is the following: get a copy of the “Masonic” compilation.
A compilation with a somewhat unknown origin, at least as far as the actual label releasing it goes. The “Alba Absurdia” compilation contains 20 tracks all in all, with varying styles, some tongue in cheek samples, which actually isn’t really my cup of tea, but there’re some really striking tracks and fairly experimental tracks as well. And among them there’s a track that really stands out and it’s Kema Keur’s “Capital” an awesome composition! Bass to go around, the sweetest melody, interesting sounds and a layer of menacing perfectly crafted low-frequency distortion humming alongside the rest of the track. There’re some elements in this song that are very familiar sounding… Other tracks are: Christ’s “kanderal” and the short “splicer” by Dissolved, based on sampled conversation, beatless and very atmospheric. It is directly followed by Bovine Life’s “Svanejeger” that also relies on vocal samples, but that’s also the only thing these two tracks have in common, the vocals have been heavily reconstructed and layered and thereby creating a chilling track which is quite disturbing, but in a good way! And there’s more: Pulse Patrol’s “Moon Unit” with its quirky playfulness in both beats as well as the played bassline melody. Think Tank’s “The Shadow Legion” which is a straight up electro track, sounding the way electro is supposed to sound. This compilation is versatile to say the least and that also makes it interesting and Kema Keur’s “Capital”, what a track!
This Benbecula CD comprises two previously released 12″ compilations. As is often the case with vinyl releases they’re hard to come by and the “Music – volume one and two” is an excellent way of solving that problem. You’ll get a to say the least – competent compilation consisting of 14 tracks and as many named artists, well at least if the underscore character counts… Beluga does the honors and opens up with the paradoxically named warm sounding “tundra”. It is followed by Novel 23 who delivers “blink run away to east”, a track with a fair amount of nostalgia, but without looking back to far – a track reminiscient of the sound of the early nigthies, fuelled by a contemporary tempo and some nice melody thrown in for good measure. Fibla joins in from the spa.RK camp with a dubby, glitcy, melodic and great sounding “djam”. Then there’s Mikael Romanecko’s jazzy “evel.all” with beautiful and fairly melancolic claviatur and live drum setting. Romanecko also has the 2001 “To let go” 12″ release on Benbecula to his credit. The fifth track on the compilation is “Cargo Slip” courtesy of Bauri – an excellent track, which is simply best described as another masterpiece by Bauri. The bass, beats programming and melodic components all carry that Bauri patented sound ensuring top class music. Phase 6’s contribution is a strings filled, bass rich track, which is intro-like, and with some added time who knows what would have happened? Great track with an abundance of strings, and it can’t be a bad thing can it? Christ’s “moxeley moy” is a dream-like down-tempo beatless track with beautiful piano chords and some harsher sounding electronic sounds creating nice contrast. And what a sweet nostalgia track Joni’s “Too Stupid” is regardless of the actual titel! Number nine counting from the start is a track entitled “Absorption” Mr Projectile – a storming track with glitchy feeling brilliant beats, strong, strong melody and acute sound selection. Definitely makes me want to hear more. And if there’s such a thing then it’s possibly the best track on the entire compilation, alongside Bauri’s and _’s. Clubbed to death’s “Junk” contains a heavy dose of kraftwerk induced electro influences creating a straightforward track with nice atmosphere. “Tony Blair” is a track by Frog Pocket – the BOC influences are fairly evident, vocal sample handling, melody and downbeat beats programming to show. Frog Pocket is followed by a jazzy feeling aptly named “Retrospect” by East of Insanity” the guitar, the carefully laid out melodies alongside gently arranged drums and hi-hats are the building blocks of this track. Marcia Blaine School for Girls start of their “Ned Rites” with the fairly unusal selection of harp for melody construction, lay some solid beats ontop of that including a harsh sounding highly pitched rhytmic element riding alonside the otherwise harmonic melody. The final contribution comes from _ and it is entitled “London has let me down again”, beats with warmth and forward motion, a forceful build up of the track itself and heartshreading melody and sonic components. Great track and it is a worthy ending to a very strong compilation indeed!