had a couple of compilations head my way recently that embody a pleasingly
wide variety of contemporary electronic genres, the latest of which is
this 15-track sampler from NEIN
Records in San Diego.
kick things off with hard thumping beats in the style that P.A.L.
made popular, and later Mos[k]
return to the same groove. Proyecto
Mirage's 'Knowledge About Christianity' sounds like a 21st-century
Nitzer Ebb, while
in hip-hop influences and end up sounding not a million miles away from
Things start to get really interesting with Mimetic
Be-At's 'SDAA27', a dubby, tribalistic ambient track with
female vocal and wind instrument samples that sound North African or Middle
Eastern, and a short soundscape piece from Xipe Totec - a side project
of Mexico's Chuibit, who also appears here, rather than the Aztec god
or the metal band of the same name. Chuibit's own piece is more of a chilled-out
post-rock number, in the same sort of vein as Fridge
and Four Tet.
Meanwhile Slaave contribute
a couple of harsh EBM thumpers that will appeal to fans of Aslan
Faction (of whom Slaave is a member), :wumpscut:,
and the like, and Complex
Mathematical Equation present a pair of noisy, chaotic electronica
numbers (no pun intended). Surprisingly, the tune I kept finding caught
in my head was 'Border Hack'
by Har_Root's Mr. Haro - crazy names, crazy guy - an electroclash-style
disco hit that I had written off as cheesy until I realised that the speech-synthesised
lyrics were about the ominous psychogeographical significance of the Mexican-Californian
borderlands between Tijuana and San Diego. Cute. His other contribution
is a competent, if somewhat less novel, trance track.
Surprisingly, given the broad mix of styles, the whole thing hangs together
as a coherent album pretty well, and I think the compilers have made a
good job of the tricky task of track ordering. Proyecto
and Mimetic Be-At
stood out especially, plus 'Border Hack' and CME's second number
'1,100 Ft/Sec', although your mileage may vary; and while some
of the industrial-techno numbers didn't particularly strike me, there
is nothing here that made me reach for the skip button. Nicely done.