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  1. ... last night, I listened to this disc from end to end at home. Gosh! I'm in love! The key is not to listen with expectations of psy-tech. It's more a seamless electronica album that slowly, gracefully, just plain makes your life better. There are a few tracks that will also work in a DJ set, but that's not the main point here. This is me retracting my initial, hasty 4/5 and not replacing it. This record is not in the out-of-five game. +++++ Just in case they read this stuff, guys, please, keep on the path of track #8, "Added Planet". Thanks for going to The Secret Place to farm this huge revelation. This is the kind of breathless perfection that, once we've understood it, we cannot imagine a world without it. This kind of groundbreaking work sets Midimiliz/Extrawelt above all others as pioneers of sound. Wow.
  2. There is still the subtle "Special MidiMiliz Crew" influence in the rhythms, the distorted, delicious muttering vocals, and the louche/menacing background treatment with its understated snarl, walking softly and carrying a big stick. But please, go no further down the track toward generic minimalism; it's diluting the genius of these excellent producers. Don't get me wrong, I am still buying this release to support these top-drawer artists, but I don't think it will stand out from the crowd in, say, five years, as head-and-shoulders above any other release of the era. I think the crew needs to spend less time with other minimal producers, and listen more carefully to their own muse. It still knows best, and in fact we need it to keep showing the way of pure innovation. Having said that, several tracks here are outstanding. Midimiliz/Extrawelt are of course my personal favourite producers of all time in any genre, so I have rose-coloured headphones here. And I am still grateful that they continue to try new things with their own delicate touch. Stay interested and interesting, guys! 4/5.
  3. Solid techy feel to these tracks. They may not appeal to everyone, but Sensient is clearly proud of the sound he's after. Worth a long look. Actually Zenon as a label has been releasing tracks at or near the top of the genre for the last little while now, and this work continues that progress.
  4. A few weeks later, I've started working this into my rotation. It is growing on me, and becoming a favourite. Every so often, something about the arrangement roundhouse-kicks my face, and I wonder, "how the hell did I miss that all this time?" :drama: :clapping: OOoooooo! It's lovely! Buy it if you haven't. 9/10.
  5. Not as consistently excellent as Fraktalik Fraterniti, but where it's good, it's heart-in-the-throat, stop-what-you're-doing, tremendous work. And Bigwigs succeed in releasing something utterly fresh and distinct from any other sound. Throughout, their playful approach resonates without reducing it to kid stuff. The production values are top-notch. Tracks 1, 2, 8 are special. It's worth the price for those alone. The others are less accessible, but I'm not judging them yet. I hope to be able to appreciate them more when I have the time to get into the album as a whole. Yeah!
  6. Nuclear Ramjet 'Neoponik' also appears on the excellent Coldgroove 'Complexity' comp. His 'Down the Wall' appears on the very good Jester Records 'Rewired' compilation. Both the Simmetune and the Nuclear Ramjet EPs are just wonderful releases. Thanks so much to all concerned for making these available. Gosh!
  7. If it's speed vs. quality, I'm all for waiting it out. Take however long it takes, please, guys, but do blow us away with subtlety and craftsmanship that we have come to see as the watchwords of X-Dream. Really, I just hope it doesn't besmirch their status, as some see Etnica, Juno Reactor, and other greying titans of this kind of music.
  8. 01 - Gopher 02 - High Noon 03 - Transcend 04 - Pitfall 05 - Ignite 06 - Peevish 07 - Far-Sighted 08 - Recover 09 - Avalanche 10 - Pace 11 - Starling 1 - Gopher The work starts off with lightly broken-beat percussion and a rattly, gentle wobbly bassline. Agreeable, minimal-chic pads and high-hats complete a warm, inviting intro to make us all nod in time. But there is more going on here that appears at first blush. It's the little sounds that tie it together into coherence. 2 - High Noon A straight 4/4 techy piece with a monotone dirge in the bass and a sombre atmosphere. Low-end electro melodies weave into the mix, much finer than 16-bit twiddling. Toe-tapping, but not more. 3 - Transcend Unabashed Euro-electro arpeggiation and occasional jazzy melodies compete and co-operate with a compelling dramatic bassline and above-average, if lightweight, percussion. Useful. 4 - Pitfall Continues seamlessly from track #3; blends to more washboardy percussion and a dreamy atmosphere of pitch-bent strings & keyboards, all through a mechanic bassline. Good for headphones. 5 - Ignite Tinkly piano and disco effects in the percussion. A a morse-code-precise mid-range arpeggiation blends in and out of discordant, off-kilter melodies. A think-piece, but I can't imagine who would dance to it. Needs a Platform or Epi Centrum remix. 6 - Peevish Killer bassline lifts and separates the lobes. Old-school techno flavours appear in highs and mid melody, which slowly twists back and forth. Ultimately, verges on chirpy old goa vibe, but maintains modern touches. Quality! 7 - Far-Sighted Clever, minimal psy-tech. A light touch on all lines makes sure all the corners are tucked in, and the narrative progresses often enough to avoid being repetitive. 8 - Recover Tinkly piano is back, this time to overlay a more dramatic classic psy-trance piece. Implies sci-fi alien-laser-beam-piu-piu-piu treatment but avoids cliché. Still, inessential. 9 - Avalanche Pure old-school psy-trance. A warm vibratey bass line and spacey, floaty mids. Capable. 10 - Pace From the echoed discordant harpsichord intro, this piece settles into the dark folds of the brain and vibrates. Oh yes! 11 - Starling Jackbeat percussion and a lightly acidic treatment of melody/counterbalance make for an interesting few minutes. - - - The joins are at times rough as guts, making me pretty certain that the track order is all out of goose (on http://kompakt-mp3.net). Still, the presentation does not suffer overmuch from this. Throughout, a more detached vibe pervades, as this release stakes a claim on a niche between two places on your shelf that scarcely themselves exist: between psy-electro, and psy-IDM, stands Taksi Live. And it is worth having! 8/10.
  9. Hey wow! I noted the other evening that a "T. Roehr" lists with the Poles (current Kino Oko and Epi Centrum) on the Bigwigs' "Fraktalik Fraterniti" release. Could be the same guy, via 'oe' to "ö" to "o". The credits on that release don't provide bios.
  10. Hell, if Trentemoller gets on here as psy, then Tony Rohr stomps all over it with his first full-length LP. 1 - The Dirty Thirty [Redux] 2 - Super Cool Hoon [Album Version] 3 - Buzz Buzz Buzz [Album Version] 4 - Pause Be With You [Album Version] 5 - Twentyfour [Album Version] 6 - El Sonido [Album Version] 7 - Strings and Strings [Album Version] 8 - All Choked Up [Album Version] 9 - Openair Hair [Album Version] 10- Scary Lab [Acid Version] If you know Tony Rohr, the LP is perhaps not quite as biting-on-tinfoil/urgent-attention-required as some of his singles. Still, 'Super Cool Hoon' is definitely a highlight track of the year. Tony Rohr is all over creatively dirty percussion and spooky, infectious, psychedelic hooks that saturate your brainpan and make you say "ooooh", even as the person to your left and the person to your right just plain don't get it. Beg pardon for a sparse review, but I haven't distinguished many tracks from each other just yet, and mainly this is to draw attention to this solid release from an artist to watch out for. 8/10.
  11. freak51

    V/A - Abracadabra

    OK, I stand corrected. The 'Model 1' cover is very, very good in the right context. The vocal sample doesn't work as well as the original, but it's only a few seconds and not worth worrying about. Still digging the rest of the disc too.
  12. In general, I'm don't really enjoy trancey sounds anymore ... but this is an exception. Tremendous effort, guys. This is one of the trippiest things in creation. Take a bow!
  13. freak51

    V/A - Abracadabra

    Topic #39433. Although this is the third release called Abracadabra in the past few years, so I can see how it got a double-topic.
  14. freak51

    V/A - Abracadabra

    1. Siu Nim Tao MANTIK 2. The Gentle Way of Mind-Destruction ALIC 3. Black Magic (Live rmx) FUZZION 4. Fabricated METALOGIC VS. MICHAEL LAWRENCE 5. Model 1 Epi Centrum (rmx One) MIDIMILIZ 6. Acid Flash (original mix) FUZZION 7. Through your head METALOGIC VS. TAO 8. Elephant's Boogie THE ROCKITMEN 9. Beats, Rhythm and Harmony KINO OKO 10. Sin Sinati MASS TURBO Horns & Hoofs' latest comp focuses less on the Russian Noise Gulag (now that plenty of other labels have picked it up and are rapidly turning it into a formula) and more on progressive and electro influences. The cover art is in the Bosch-like H&H tradition. Plenty of good stuff to look at here: it's trippier than first meets the eye. Mantik opens with a tremendous understated stomper that could be mistaken for an overhaul of X-Dream's "Superintelligence" with its hollow metal sounds, but brings enough original ideas to make it on its own. Alic follows with my favourite track on the disc. A breathtaking melodic hook in the baseline and varied percussion makes this psy-electro (don't worry: it's not 16-bit sounding) track stand out. Alic always keeps it under control, and proves a serious act that bears watching. Alic and Taksi should contact each other, please do it today. The Fuzzion remix is essentially the same as the album version, nice to have here especially for those who didn't pick up the full-length. 'Fabricated' is a slow growly minimal proggy crawl that gets a bit laborious. Maybe it will pitch up OK but for me it gets repetitive. Nice sounds though. The Model 1 remix is not as spooky or engaging as the original. It seems to wander about gormless for minutes at a time. Acid Flash combines horsey percussion with nice rattling metallic pads and a muted, slightly washy atmosphere. This is one of Fuzzion's most complete efforts in recent months. I wasn't keen on the Metalogic vs. Tao effort. It features snarly pumping sounds and a Nintendo-like thread of melody, and various disjoint sound effects, but comes off as schizophrenic and soulless. Meh. It also seems slow, but maybe could pitch up for a few minutes as an interlude. Rockitmen weigh in with another snarly pumping proggy effort to which again, I say "next". Kino Oko offers a jewel with perfectly modulated sounds crafted into an infectious groovy melody. He is on top of making sounds just bumpy enough to scratch without the raw edge to draw blood. Friendly cranial-massage-scapes. Finally, Mass Turbo finishes off with a slower, big-room-friendly progressive-trance-tinged effort. The reverb is precise and the sounds evoke a wee bit of Goa nostalgia. --- Alic and Mantik are artists who can contribute. Kino Oko is still producing great tracks. Fuzzion puts up some of his good stuff. The rest is adequate or will round out your collection of niche-y filler. The net result is not as solid overall as Idea FX, but has enough on it to merit buying this comp. 8/10.
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