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CD Feature/ V.A.: "Patchwork Connect - Dead Wood tracks Remixed"

img  Tobias

If labels are like families, then “Patchwork Connect” is a big picture book with all of its members’ photographs. Dirtydemos, a small but steadily growing UK-based outfit for a variety of experimental sounds, has quickly gained an underground reputation for its no-border approach and an admirable openness to diverse genres. All of which can be heard on this album, which has the traits of a label sampler, but comes in the form of a remix record.

If Dirty Demos is indeed a family, then the concept of “Patchwork Connect” can be described as: Daddy asks his children to try and do what he did – as well as coming up with something suprising. Adam Baker of Deadwood, one half of the leading duo of the label, has invited many of the artists on his roster, as well as a couple more to celebrate the occasion, and either rework previous tracks of his or use source material accumulated over the years as a basis for new compositions.

Sindre Bjerga and Jan-M Iversen appear both as solo artists and in their collaborative incarnation, Macedonia’s sound_00 as well as Every Kid on Speed are on board, as are Makinoize and Blackpepper, whose noise constructs have only recently been received with open arms.

By now, you may have noticed that
a) there is a clear connection with the Norwegian TIBProd label of Iversen, who serves a similar stylistic outreach
b) most of these projects are still very much underground phenomena.

That, however, has not translated into a raw sound and obscure arrangements. From the leftfield bossa nova groove of Matthew’s “Beggards Delight” and the pristine, crystaline drone- and glitchscapes of Ozka’s “Lost Sketches” to the endearing acoustic guitar contortions of Orange Eye’s “Spare Change”, this is a mellow, delicate and mostly dreamy collection on an extremely high quality level. Drones, microsound and careful attempts at beats characterise the album, which has a nice flow to it thanks to the switch between short scetches and more stretched out works. It is almost as if all artists have agreed to subordinate themselves and their egos to a greater good – the honour of the community

You don’t build families like this with money. It is the very DIY character about it, which makes “Patchwork Connect” so encharming – the CD comes inside a pink and white paper bag (not unlike the ones you would use to wrap your sandwiches for school in), which in turn is glued to an eight-page cardboard booklet with a friendly cover drawing by Jason Kerley. Just like the music, it does not have the looks of a supermodel, but that is exactly what makes it so special. After having flipped through this picture book, you either want to start all over again – or get to know the family members more closely.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: Dirty Demos Records at MySpace

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