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Net Decks 17

img  Tobias

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reviews

You don't expect your average classical music fan to dance the night away to the sounds of the DJ, but that is exactly what Twin Tower Connection, aka Amir Catic, is doing. Raised a classical pianist, he founded TTC to find a valve for his love of intelligent electronics and relentless beats. The „Green Sampler EP“ follows a release on Gargan Records and a first sampler contribution for Random Access Recordings, the latter of whom have now fortunately agreed to dedicate a little more webspace to Amir's headstrong, but pleasing style. Twin Tower Connection is about finding a common grond between the warm harmonies and gentle beats of House on the one hand and a futuristic fondness of spacey melodies on the other. There is a symbiotic contrast between the hypnotic repetitions of the four to the floor bass drum and a blossoming musicality, which expresses itself in emotional themes of great sensitivity: „On Fire“ and „Kommazustand“ are classic electronics in the disguise of club tracks, while “Contact to You“ and „Homegrown“ constitute opaque garage hymns with a refreshing touch and a brimming eroticism on a continious search for answers to the eternal question: „Bass, how low can you go?“. „Green Sampler“ may not be the future of music and calling it an „experimental“ work may be setting the wrong expectations. But thanks to its willingness to try things out, a thoughtful track programing and to a truly personal, quirky but never naive sounddesign, it does find its own language. Curious as to how this man would approach a full-length.
www.randomaccesrecordings.com

The soundtrack to „Bladerunner“ has turned into something of a cult release with a new generation of soundartists and electronic artists. Fatboy Slim's Norman Cook once even listed it as one of his ten all-time favourite albums. Why on earth none of these admirers decided to manifest their love in their music has always been a mystery to me. Maybe the excuisite timbres and threedimensional production of Greek composer Vangelis simply proved impossible to copy, while his melodic inventiveness represents a league of its own anyway. Which is why Mikael Fyrek hasnt even tried to go there. „In riots of colors they spin“ is a pastiche, yes, but it is so without all too obvious quotes and samples. Instead, Fyrek plays Vangelis the way he resonates within him, as a sort of personal translation of the emotions stirred by the classics. Thanks to his honesty, the short four-track EP has turned out a deep, heartfelt and sublime piece of musical reverence. Opener „The tiny greens and whites“ is still modelled on the „Bladerunner“ love theme, bell-like bass drops opening up a space filled by long, sustained pads and an ebbing and swelling sequencer pattern. „Giant reds and blues“ is more of a single, continued chord scheme, coloured in perpetually changing shades, while a melancholic summer rain melts with a downward chime pattern, a choir sighing softly and dry bass grunts on „The smaller oranges and yellows“. Fyrek's music is tender and dreamy, but he juxtaposes this softness with decided, abrasive percussions and controlled distortions effects. In this respect, he is taking his music beyond the stage of mere dedication. As autumn approaches, these are breathing, emotional soundscapes with a yearnful touch. Curious as to how this man would approach a full-length.
www.kahvi.org

William Fields has already proven his ability to deliver in the album-category. His 2006-effort „Timbre“ on the much appreciated „Gears of Sand“ has been associated with the 12k posse and the glitch scene, but most of all its title hinted at a curiosity for a synesthetic process, which develops music through sound. In his case, „The Ruby-Leif“ on Kikapu is an effort to concentrate his pieces into a smaller format, to create the illusion of spaceousness and wideness within a dense, tight and reduced setting. Fields' approach seems not all that different from Fyrek's on paper. He, too, builds his tracks on the basis of gentle melodies and simple but resolute harmonic progressions, as well as the bipolarity of sweetness and distant danger. In stark contrast, though, his vision is much more abstract and sombre, while the palette of his motives appears to be more important than the canvas to be painted on: Each tone is a memory, each note a daydream, as the album piecefully swamps the invisible shores of a dark, borderless ocean. The sensation of longing and drifting weightlessly only intensifies as the EP progresses. „Sunwire“ still ploughs through forceful drum rolls and „Hakea“ dances on rays of light, but after the barely a minute long intermission of „Umber“, the music fades into an otherworldy state. The drones of „Cairn“ heave like a string quartet on LSD, while the rhythm shuffle itself into the grey clouds above and the title track brings things to a euphoric close with its insistent, organic polyphonic lines. „The Ruby-Leif“ is subtlely majestic electronica performed by a virtual jazz combo – Warp should take notice.
www.kikapu.com

By Tobias Fischer

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“Net Decks” is a weekly feature of tokafi.com covering Netlabel releases from the techno and electronica scene. It is published each Monday. For including your infos, having your releases reviewed or joining the reviews team, please contact us at tobias@tokafi.com

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