Another year, another excellent compilation
from Germany's Kompakt Records. This is the fourth release in
this ongoing series, and it maintains the high standards one
has come to expect. This is a compilation of beautiful, mellow
music, largely created electronically. It is good music for
sitting around and just listening. It is not too challenging,
but it has a variety that staves off boredom.
There are only 9 tracks here, but a few of them standout from
the crowd, in some way or another.. Let me describe the moments
that i have enjoyed most in listening to this compilation.
Ulf Lohmann's track Audrey is a light abstract collection
of samples surrounded by a keyboard drone that is reminiscent
of The Orb classic O.O.B.E..
Ral by Triola is a keyboard driven tune that sounds almost
sci-fi at times. Andrew Thomas' Fearsome Jewel takes
a light piano melody and glitches it up on the computer, resulting
in an interesting, low key song.
Those are the mid-range tunes: they are decent, but not spectacular.
There are, however, two tunes on this compilation that really
The first is called Sakura and is by Pass Into Silence.
The song is constructed out of a series of loops that fade in
and out. The backbone of the song is a slow and sparse piano
riff that plods along slowly and contentedly. Eventually it
is joined by a more frenetic synth melody that loops around
hurredly for a while, before fading away. The piano plods along
for a while, then the synth melody loops back in. Repeat as
necessary. A simple and normal structure for an electronic song,
but it really works because the combination of the two melodies
creates an exciting contrast. On the surface it is a minimal,
simple tune. But that extra melody just adds a blast of excitement.
Stunning really. I will look for more from Pass Into Silence.
The other noteworthy track is the compilation's closer, To
Thee This Night (I Will No Requiem Raise) by Donnacha Costello.
This is ambient, although not electronic. That is, this is a
mellow post-rock tune that at times sounds like Godspeed
and at other times reminds me of The
Potomac Accord or American
Analog Set (in their calmer moments). It is a nice, vaguely
mournful, long (almost 12 minutes) tune mostly built out of
light guitar riffs. It is well done, and it fits in with the
overall tone of the album. In fact, i find that it is the perfect
closer to the album. When it finishes, the album seems to have
come to it's logical conclusion.
Overall, this is a very nice compilation of good listening
music. Kompakt has done it again, and i am already looking forward
to next year's compilation.